uTorrent is a popular choice for many when it comes to torrenting. However, one common issue that users encounter is the presence of the Smart Search bar. If you’re one of those people who find this feature more annoying than helpful, you’re in luck. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the steps on utorrent how to remove smart search bar with ease.
Understanding Smart Search
The Smart Search bar is a feature that comes with uTorrent as a browser extension for Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Internet Explorer. Despite its name, it is not a virus but an adware. Its primary function is to display advertising banners, promotional links, and false coupons to sites that are working in cooperation with its developers.
Even though it’s not a virus, this feature collects personal data and sends it to third parties for analysis. This is why it falls under the category of potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) and why many users prefer to remove it.
The Intrusion of Smart Search
The Smart Search bar doesn’t magically appear on your uTorrent. It often comes bundled with other programs that users download from free sites. Most people don’t pay much attention to the installation process and unknowingly allow the adware to infiltrate their systems.
To avoid this, always read the user agreement before hitting the “Next” button. You should also choose the advanced installation type to ensure the program you’re downloading is safe.
Removal of Smart Search
The most straightforward way to remove the Smart Search bar from your uTorrent is through your computer’s Control Panel. Here, you can uninstall the feature and delete all its files and registry keys.
# Steps to Remove Smart Search from Control Panel 1. Click **Start**. 2. **Control Panel**. 3. Then click **Add or Remove Programs**. 4. Find **Smart Search**. 5. Click **Uninstall**.
After uninstalling it from your Control Panel, the next step is to remove it from your browser. The steps may vary depending on the browser you’re using. For example, if you’re using Google Chrome, you’ll need to open the browser, click on “Alt + F,” choose “Extensions,” find “Smart Search,” and click on the trash can icon to remove it.
AdLock: Your Next-Generation Adblocker
If the manual removal process seems too tedious, you can opt for a more technological approach. AdLock is an ad-blocking tool that can help you get rid of the Smart Search bar and other unwanted ads.
AdLock works by blocking any adware and third-party tracking on your device. It is designed to start working as soon as it’s opened, but you can adjust its settings according to your needs.
Blocking Ads in uTorrent Using AdLock
To block ads in uTorrent using AdLock, you need to download and install the software on your device. Here are the steps to follow:
# Steps to Block Ads in uTorrent Using AdLock 1. Download and install AdLock for [Windows](https://adlock.com/adlock-for-windows/); 2. [Choose your plan](https://adlock.com/purchase/) and get your license key; 3. Launch AdLock => click Activation => paste your 9-digit license key; 4. Click Ad-blocking => find a large on/off toggle and switch it to the On position; 5. Enjoy the looks of your torrent tracker.
With AdLock, you can also whitelist certain websites or applications if you don’t want to block ads on them.
Disabling uTorrent Ads in Preferences
If you want to remove ads only on uTorrent, you can do so through the Advanced settings in the Preferences menu. Here, you can hide uTorrent ads by modifying the flags.
# Steps to Disable uTorrent Ads in Preferences 1. Open uTorrent and click **Options**. 2. Choose **Preferences** from the drop-down menu. 3. Click **Advanced**. You'll find a list of flags and a filter box. 4. Search for and mark as false the following flags: * offers.left_rail_offer_enabled/left_rail_offer * gui.show_plus_upsell * offers.sponsored_torrent_offer_enabled/sponsored_torrent_offer_enabled * bt.enable_pulse * gui.show_notorrents_node * offers.content_offer_autoexec
Be careful not to disable the wrong flag, as it can affect the application’s performance.
Upgrading to uTorrent PRO for an Ad-free Experience
If you don’t want to go through the hassle of modifying settings, you can simply upgrade to uTorrent PRO. This version offers an ad-free experience, along with other perks like malware and virus blocking, conversion options for mobile devices, and instant playing in HD.
Third-Party Scripts like Pimp My uTorrent
Another way to mute ads in uTorrent is to use third-party scripts like Pimp My uTorrent. This open-source script automates the process of disabling ads in Advanced settings. However, use this option only if you trust the script developer enough not to meddle with your software.
Opting for an Older uTorrent Version
If you’re not a fan of the current uTorrent version with the Smart Search bar, you can opt for the older version, uTorrent 2.2.1. This version is free of ads, but it’s less secure and has fewer features compared to the current version.
Securing your Downloads with VPN
Lastly, you can secure your downloads with a Virtual Private Network (VPN). This tool hides your IP address and encrypts your internet connection, making your data unreadable to third parties. A VPN can also allow you to visit prohibited or restricted websites without being unveiled.
There are several ways to remove the Smart Search bar from uTorrent, from manual removal to using ad-blocking tools like AdLock. Regardless of the method you choose, the important thing is to ensure a smooth and hassle-free torrenting experience. Happy downloading!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the last uTorrent version?
The latest tracker version is uTorrent 3.6. However, it’s known for its high CPU usage, so consider this before downloading it.
What are the ad-free alternatives to uTorrent?
There are several ad-free alternatives to uTorrent that you might want to consider, including BitTorrent, qBittorrent, Transmission, and Deluge.
uTorrent changed my default browser pages. How can I get rid of this?
If uTorrent changed your default browser pages, you can change it back to normal by going to your browser settings and resetting them to their original defaults.