How to use Google Search entirely AI-free automatically

Martin Brinkmann
May 23, 2024
Updated • May 24, 2024
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Google is integrating AI information into Google Search. Called AI Overviews, it is a feature that is rolling out to users from specific regions already. The feature adds an AI response to the very top of the search results. Below that, you find the regular web links.

There are good reasons to skip AI output. From hallucinations, which means made-up information, to returning the wrong or even dangerous information. Add ads to that, which Google is now also rolling out in the United States, and you may not be super interested into these results at the time of writing.

If you prefer to search without any AI, then you may do so. Google integrated the option into Google Search, but it is buried under the "more" option there. Good news is that you may use it directly, without having to pick the option manually each time.

This guide walks you through the steps of running searches on Google entirely AI-free again. It includes information on adding an AI-free Google search engine to your favorite web browser.

Google Search without AI

Google uses a parameter to determine output. If you use a special parameter in the URL, Google will show web links only. You won't get an AI Overview at the top, nor any other AI-related content.

What you need to know: the parameter &udm=14 returns web-only links without AI content.

While you can append the parameter to any Google Search URL manually, doing so is cumbersome. One option that you have at your disposal is to add a custom search engine to your browser of choice that uses the parameter.

Whenever you run searches, the parameter is added automatically and you get AI-free search results.

How that is done differs slightly depending on the browser that you use.

Chromium-based browsers (including Google Chrome, Brave, Vivaldi, Opera and more more)

  1. Load chrome://settings/searchEngines in the address bar.
  2. Click on the add button under Site search.
  3. Type any name.
  4. Type a shortcut, e.g. :go
  5. Paste https://www.google.com/search?q=%s&udm=14 into the URL field.
  6. Click on Add.
  7. Left-click on the three dots next to the newly created search engine and select "make default".
  8. Run a test search from the address bar to see if it works.

Microsoft Edge

  1. Load edge://settings/searchEngines in the address bar.
  2. Select Add next to Address bar search engines.
  3. Type a custom name for the search engine.
  4. Add a shortcut, e.g. :go.
  5. Paste https://www.google.com/search?q=%s&udm=14 into the URL field.
  6. Click on Add.
  7. Left-click on the three dots next to the newly created search engine and select "make default".
  8. Run a test search from the address bar to see if it works.

Mozilla Firefox and Firefox-based browsers such as Mullvad Browser or Tor Browser

  1. Load about:config in the address bar.
  2. Confirm that you will be careful.
  3. Search for browser.urlbar.update2.engineAliasRefresh.
  4. Create a new Boolean value and make sure it is set to True.
  5. Restart the browser.
  6. Load about:preferences#search in the Firefox address bar.
  7. Click on the Add button.
  8. Type any name for the search engine.
  9. Paste https://www.google.com/search?q=%s&udm=14 into the Engine URL field.
  10. Type any alias, e.g. @go
  11. Click on Add Engine.
  12. Scroll to the top of the page.
  13. Select the newly created search engine as the default search engine.
  14. Run a test search to find out if it works.

Tip: In case you do not want to make Google Search the default, you may run searches from the address bar manually using it. Just type the shortcut / alias in the address bar first followed by pressing the Tab-key and then typing the search term.

Closing Words

If you use Google Search but do not want AI Overviews or any other AI content returned, this is the best option to do so. You could also try search engines that use Google's index, such as Startpage, which does not have AI results at the time.

Summary
Article Name
How to use Google Search entirely AI-free automatically
Description
Find out how to add a custom search engine to your browser to run searches on Google without getting AI results returned.
Author
Publisher
Ghacks Technology News
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Comments

  1. VioletMoon said on May 25, 2024 at 7:02 pm
    Reply

    AskVG posted some nice tweaks and instructions–all auto if one wants to disable everything.

    https://www.askvg.com/how-to-enable-disable-all-new-ai-features-in-google-chrome/

  2. TelV said on May 25, 2024 at 1:44 pm
    Reply

    AI Overviews does at least produce some amusing results such as suggesting everyone eat at least one small rock a day: https://boingboing.net/2024/05/24/googles-ai-enhanced-search-suggests-users-add-glue-to-their-pizza-and-eat-one-small-rock-a-day.html :D

  3. User1 said on May 25, 2024 at 9:08 am
    Reply

    This does nor work for non-US google, e.g. google.co.uk….

    1. Anonymous said on May 25, 2024 at 11:18 am
      Reply

      It works with the UK and AU, at least with Firefox.

  4. John said on May 24, 2024 at 3:41 pm
    Reply

    I think AI is a false sense of accuracy. I think eventually it may actually be useful and reliable. Unless the obsession to push it out too early provides a bad experience with users who will reject it. Seems like we now have a race to implement AI everywhere and that may not be the best way.
    I plan to stick with more proven methods of gaining web information at least for now.

  5. Bobo said on May 24, 2024 at 2:24 pm
    Reply

    In Firefox name it GoogIe (With a big letter “i”), after making it default you can remove the crappy Google.
    In Chromium just name it whatever at first and make it default, then remove the crappy Google and rename the good one to Google.

    1. Bobo said on May 24, 2024 at 5:12 pm
      Reply

      This also works in Kiwi Browser. Just visit udm14.com after you add the good Google search engine, then restart Kiwi, and it will be way down on the search engines list.

  6. Benjamin said on May 24, 2024 at 1:26 pm
    Reply

    As far as i understand the EU has yesterday voted legislation that by 2026 all AI generated content has to be marked as such. If that is as true as it sounds this would be a good stroke to avoid all kinds of sinister conspiracies especially in politics, science and generally for everything else as well.

    I think that the future will bring at least a two tier society. Those with not enough money will have to be content with AI while those who can afford to pay for real people will still get the real thing.

    I use one of these https://searx.space/ for search, configured in the FF search, but the google corporation presses ahead and sneaks first in in the search results.

  7. Tom Hawack said on May 24, 2024 at 10:14 am
    Reply

    I use 14 search engines but not Google’s.
    Yet, because I never lock doors, because I or a guest might want to search with Google, I’ve set Google Search and Google Search smart keyboard to include indeed in their url parameters ‘udm=14’ but also ‘ucbcd=1’ (prevent requests related to consent, especially that Google cookies are all blocked here) :

    Google Web search : [https://www.google.com/?ucbcb=1&udm=14&hl=en&num=100]
    Google Web Search smart keyword : [https://www.google.com/?ucbcb=1&udm=14&hl=en&num=100&q=%s]

    But this is really just in case, I get along perfectly well without Google generally speaking, without Google Search in particular.

  8. Graham said on May 24, 2024 at 3:32 am
    Reply

    A much simpler URL: udm14.com

  9. Seeprime said on May 23, 2024 at 11:26 pm
    Reply

    Good information. Thanks!

  10. Scroogled said on May 23, 2024 at 10:24 pm
    Reply

    It’s unfortunate that we have to go through this process just to obtain a basic search. Google has been poor at locating anything last 5 years anyways. I switched to DuckDuckGo, but their promotional junk is now forced. I switched to startpage.com since then.

    1. plusminus_ said on May 24, 2024 at 9:29 pm
      Reply

      Thank you – I am trying StartPage now (I had completely forgotten about it!) and it seems okay. I have grown tired of Google’s downgrades and I had been trying DDG but the results didn’t seem great – I found myself switching back to Google on occasion. I will see how I fare with StartPage but it seems promising.

      1. Tom Hawack said on May 25, 2024 at 1:55 pm
        Reply

        @plusminus_ , another interesting scheme IMO is to use DuckDuckGo together with a userscript called ‘UnDuckButton’ that adds Buttons that redirect DuckDuckGo searches to other search engines :
        [https://greasyfork.org/en/scripts/420707-unduckbutton]

        Doing so allows you to set with the script as many buttons as wished that redirect your query to another search engine. This is feasible with DuckDuckGo’s Bangs, but with this userscript searching with another search engine is just 1-click away.

        Screenshot to illustrate : [https://img.justpaste.me/i/20240525/sApeS/DDG&UnDuckButton.png]
        Here I’ve named buttons with short words to allow many to be displayed, with i.e. BR for,Brave etc. as well as BR for Encyclopedia Britannica and so on.

        I like the idea, seems so handy.

        NOTE : the ‘UnDuckButton’ userscript does not include displaying tooltips when hovering the buttons, which is what I was hoping for given I’ve set a 2-letter abbreviation for most of the search engines’ buttons.
        I decided to ask for the first time an AI to help me do this, that is to add the necessary code to the userscript in order to have those tooltips appear. I went over to [https://huggingface.co/chat/] and the AI provided the extra lines to add to the userscript … immediately. For those who may be interested, let me know and i’ll provide a link to the modified version of ‘UnDuckButton’ which includes the tooltips!

      2. plusminus_ said on May 28, 2024 at 2:46 pm
        Reply

        Thank you, I am trying this now!

        It’s quite handy, though looks quite different from your setup :p

      3. Tom Hawack said on May 28, 2024 at 5:53 pm
        Reply

        @plusminus_, my setup, that is the way the script’s buttons appear on DDG is the result of two factors,

        1- The userscript included only default query redirect buttons which may be edited (remove, add your owns)
        2- The userscript positions these buttons with an included style. To position many buttons, to fit them on the screen the way you want, I personally use a dedicated userstyle.

        I’ve zipped the modified UNDUCKBUTTON.js script together with the DDG userstyle and uploaded to :
        [https://drop.infini.fr/r/fAXfXKFk0g#aD7P6rebpWbpsGNBTimZFA8tD8SGPNE+y69GIsYz1w8=]

        Valid 45 days from now. If you remain interested and need more info, let me know.

      4. plusminus_ said on June 2, 2024 at 11:44 pm
        Reply

        Thanks again, I now have both the modified script and userstyle (in Stylus) up and running!

  11. Robert said on May 23, 2024 at 8:06 pm
    Reply

    I use searchall net for the direct web search. No settings needed

  12. Haakon said on May 23, 2024 at 7:28 pm
    Reply

    A Special Thanks(!) for this one, Martin.

    I haven’t yet seen an AI Overview return in my environment (USA, Firefox, Win10pro 22H2), but when it happens, I’ll know what’s going on to a much greater degree than before this article.

    Eventually, we can hope some one to create a Firefox extension with a toolbar toggle…

    I often talk about AI with the non-geeks when the subject comes up; I’m adding “hallucinations” to “data bloated haphazard pattern matching” in the discussions.

    Cheers.

    1. Tom Hawack said on May 24, 2024 at 12:00 pm
      Reply

      @Haakon,

      > “Eventually, we can hope some one to create a Firefox extension with a toolbar toggle…”

      The ‘udm14’ Firefox extension : [https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/udm14/]

      There are also dedicated userscripts :

      Fix Google Web Search :
      [https://greasyfork.org/en/scripts/495638-fix-google-web-search]

      Open Google’s New “Web” Search by Default :
      [https://greasyfork.org/en/scripts/495275-open-google-s-new-web-search-by-default]

      1. DaveB said on May 24, 2024 at 7:37 pm
        Reply

        thank you

  13. Fred said on May 23, 2024 at 7:21 pm
    Reply

    Thank you Martin. Works well on Google Chrome.

    1. chesscanoe said on May 24, 2024 at 1:35 pm
      Reply

      Ditto for me. Careful post reading produces desired results.

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