Removing Autocomplete in the Address Bar on Chrome

by Allen Bethea
BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images

Like a friend who constantly offers unsolicited advice, Google Chrome's autocomplete feature can be right at times, but usually annoying, embarrassing or flat-out wrong. Because Chrome knows a little about you and your Web browsing history, it tries to help you get where you need to go by completing URLs in its address bar as you type. Though you can't completely turn off the autcomplete function, you can configure Chrome to temporarily remove distracting, irritating suggestions from your browsing history.

Step 1

Launch Chrome, then click or tap the "Settings" button.

Step 2

Scroll down the Settings page, then click or tap "Show advanced settings."

Step 3

De-select the checkbox labeled "Use a prediction service to help complete searches and URLs typed in the address bar." This will stop Chrome from future attempts at guessing the URL for sites you have not yet visited. Chrome will, however, still offer suggestions based upon sites you've visited in the past.

Step 4

Click or tap the "History" link on the current Settings page, then click or tap the "Clear browsing data" button.

Step 5

De-select all checkboxes except for those labeled "Clear browsing history" and "Empty the cache."

Step 6

Click or tap the drop-down list labeled “Obliterate the following items from:” and select "the beginning of time." This will clear Chrome's record of all the website URLs you have visited. Chrome won't offer any suggestions at all, since your browsing history has been wiped clean. All your passwords, cookies, plugin data, form Auto-fill information and download history, however, will be retained.

Click or tap the "Clear browsing data" button to clean your browser history. The autocompletion feature will gradually return, however, as Chrome rebuilds its record of the URLs you type into the address bar.


  • Use Chrome's incognito mode to avoid adding potentially embarrassing URLs to your browsing history. This feature enables you to surf the Web as you please while leaving no evidence of your activity on your normal Chrome browsing history. In addition, all cookies created during the incognito session are deleted once you close the browser window. Press "Ctrl-Shift-N" to launch a new incognito mode session.


Photo Credits

  • BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images

About the Author

Allen Bethea has written articles on programming, web design,operating systems and computer hardware since 2002. He holds a Bachelor of Science from UNC-Chapel Hill and AAS degrees in office technology, mechanical engineering/drafting and internet technology. Allen has extensive experience with desktop and system software for both Windows and Linux operating systems.

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