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Stop Windows 10 from always searching the Web

How to keep your Windows 10 searches from running through the Bing search engine.

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

When you use Windows 10's new search feature, and especially if you use Cortana, your searches are automatically sent through Microsoft's Bing search engine -- whether you're searching for an online news article or a file on your PC.

This isn't ideal -- especially if you don't want Microsoft potentially spying on your personal, PC-specific search terms.

If you want to use Cortana, you will need to leave this setting turned on. But if you only want to be able to search your computer for files, apps and settings, you can turn this feature off. Here's how:

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

1. Open the Search menu by clicking the search icon or the search textbox on your taskbar.

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

2. Turn off Cortana. Click the notebook icon, click Settings, and then switch the Cortana toggle to Off.

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

3. Turn off search's Web results feature. Click the Settings icon and find Search online and include web results and switch the toggle to Off.

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

Now, when you open the search menu, you will see a message that says Start typing to search for apps, files, and settings, instead of seeing Bing news stories or Cortana's splash page.