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How to remove Google search bar

Added by Jonas Fitz about 10 years ago

Hi there,

I wonder whether there's an more or less easy way to remove google search bar from Replicant OS.

Also, I'd like to remove standard google search from the standard browser and replace it with another search engine, which respects users' privacy more (ixquick, e.g.).

Any helpful comments appreciated.

Kind regards,
Jonas


Replies (9)

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Xan VFR about 10 years ago

Hi,

I've removed Google search bar in Settings -> Start -> Start screen and unmark "Search bar". Just to be sure Google doesn't get any data, I've installed AFWall+ and I've configured it in "Blacklist mode (block only selected)". I have checked Google search, Mail, Browser and Exchange Services.

As e-mail client I use K9-Mail

As browser I use Tint Browser with DuckDuck Go (Settings -> Search engine). You can use Start Page if you like.

I also use AdAway to get rid of the ads.

If you want to use DuckDuck Go outside your browser you have two options

Hope this helps

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Paul Kocialkowski about 10 years ago

I guess I'll remove it from the default Replicant settings. After all, I don't see why we would promote Google to the point of showing a search bar on the home screen.

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Martin R. about 10 years ago

@Paul Kocialkowski

Hiding the search bar by default would be detrimental on many levels. It is an excellent feature that sets Android apart from iOS and WP.

I think we should modify the app (com.android.quicksearchbox) instead.

One solution would be to route the app's web search queries through <https://startpage.com/> or <https://duckduckgo.com/> and change the text that is displayed on (and in) the search bar to "Startpage" or "DuckDuckGo".

In the long run, it would be nice to be able to change the app's search engine through some settings page.

edit We could start by changing Browser's default search engine to DuckDuckGo. It is already an option under Settings -> Advanced -> Set search engine.
The default home page could be set to <about:blank> or <https://duckduckgo.com/&gt;.

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Paul Kocialkowski about 10 years ago

The difference between Google and DDG is only based on individual appreciation of their good faith. On principle, I don't see why DDG would be better than Google (I reckon it cannot be worse though). If anything, I think we should not recommend any search engine in particular. They are all 3rd party services that one can decide for themselves whether to use or not. Why promote any of them?

The point here is that Replicant shouldn't be tied or recommend any 3rd party internet-based service in particular. Another thing to change in Replicant is the default bookmarks, which contain many such services, such as Google, Facebook, Twitter. Instead, they should be replaced with websites that are relevant to our cause, such as replicant.us, fsf.org, gnu.org, fsf.org, etc.

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Martin R. about 10 years ago

@Paul Kocialkowski

In terms of gratis versus libre, I see your point. My angle was more along the lines of respecting the users' anonymity.

Disconnect Search, DuckDuckGo, Ixquick, MetaGer and Startpage respect anonymity more than Google, Yahoo and Bing.

Source: <https://prism-break.org/en/categories/android/#web-search>

edit I suggested DDG as default because it's already a built-in option and would therefore be the easiest to change.

edit 2 Personally, I would prefer having Startpage as the default search engine. Too bad it is not an option in Browser.

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Martin R. about 10 years ago

@Paul Kocialkowski

If we are to avoid 3rd party internet-based services, we should:

1) omit the Search app (com.android.quicksearchbox) from future releases
2) remove the built-in search engine capabilities of Browser
3) set Browser's default home page to blank (or replicant.us)
4) replace the default bookmarks with websites that are relevant to our cause, as suggested

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Paul Kocialkowski about 10 years ago

Disconnect Search, DuckDuckGo, Ixquick, MetaGer and Startpage respect anonymity more than Google, Yahoo and Bing.

Yeah, that's your personal belief and their good word. From a project's perspective, these are all third party services, regardless of how anonymity-respecting most people consider them to be.

If we are to avoid 3rd party internet-based services,

I think we should. I see no reason why Replicant would advise any third party online search engine.

1. It can still be used for local search, so we could keep the application but remove Google search from it. It shouldn't show the Google logo either but could say "Search" instead. That's not a crucial feature to have on the homescreen so I think it should be removed from there.
2. Well, we could keep them disabled and have no search engine set by default, so that it's a neutral feature that users can enable.
3. Agreed
4. Agreed

RE: How to remove Google search bar - Added by Martin R. about 10 years ago

@Paul Kocialkowski

I could live with those changes. Implementing them would require some work, though. Thanks for sticking to principles!

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