Add Internet Search to the Windows 7 Start Menu

No Internet Search by default

One of the features I like most about Microsoft Windows 7 is the ability to search for applications from the Start Menu search box. Rather than navigating through a long list of menus, you can just type the name of the application into the search box and immediately get a list matching what you are typing.

However, there is at least one thing missing from the search the Desktop technique - the ability to search the Internet directly from your Desktop. But you can change that if you have a version of Windows 7 that incorporates the Group Policy Editor. The versions of Windows 7 that support the Group Policy Editor include:
  • Professional
  • Ultimate, and
  • Enterprise

If you have Starter or Home Premium, you will not be able to take advantage of this tip.

Adding Internet Search
Under the default settings, the Start Menu has no option to search the Internet.

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Image created by Mark Kaelin for TechRepublic.

By Mark Kaelin

Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to,, and TechRepublic.