Where/how are Google search results stored.

  mooly 12:34 14 Dec 2010

Done a web search for this and not really found the answer. Using IE8

It's this... if you search and visit a web site from google and then do the same again at some point that site is highlighted on the google search page in purple (showing you visited it) and not blue.

If I delete all browsing history, and also do the same using IE8 "content" tab and select "delete autocomplete history" it still remembers SOME but NOT ALL sites visited and even says how many times and when last visited. Speedtest.net is one... shocked to see I have visited that over a hundred times.

Is all this remembered at googles end... is it possible to clear it?

Just wondered if there was a simply answer... I don't want to install any cleaners etc... just puzzled more than anything.

  johndrew 14:02 14 Dec 2010

I think it is in 'C:\Documents and Settings\<your name>\Local Settings\Application Data\Google. It may be in one of the files there, but I think it is encrypted somehow.

The reason not all is deleted when you clear history could be down to the fact that either you log on under different user profiles (Administrator and/or self) or perhaps some gets stored in a backup with a time limit on it I'm not certain.

I have found that using the box next to the Google logo in the toolbar clears all mine - click the down arrow and select 'Clear Search History.

  961 14:07 14 Dec 2010

"is all this remembered at googles end"

You bet your sweet life it is

And stored in the US of A

  Woolwell 14:28 14 Dec 2010

Think that this could well be down to cookies click here

  interzone55 14:54 14 Dec 2010

It's down to your internet history file, which stores details of all links you've clicked.

If you clear your history then the link will be back to blue, as your web browser will not remember you've visited the site.

If you have a google login, such as a GMail address, and it's currently signed in then there's an extra entry next to the results showing when you last visited the page. This is because Google remembers everything for a very long time.

Now whether this worries you depends on your personal level of paranoia. Google assigns every visitor a unique code, no personal details are attached to this code on Google's servers. All they know is that user 81 or whatever has visited certain sites, and searched for certain things.

If the US department of homeland security submitted a google admin to intensive waterboarding they could probably put two & two together, and in the usual manner make 4.6. To be honest I don't particularly care who knows where I've been, but some people do in which case they should not sign into Google's services, and use the current incognito or porn browsing modes in the new range of browsers so each visit to google appears to be from a new visitor...

  mooly 17:57 14 Dec 2010

Thanks for all the replies...

johndrew... hello john and thanks for the suggestions. appdata\local\google, nothing much in there, just an empty crash folder. Drop down box next to Google logo, hmmm don't have that lol, as I don't use or have the google toolbar installed. Just have the one profile... me :)

961... I guessed as much!

Woolwell... not quite sure of the implications of your link. Wouldn't the cookies get deleted though during a full cleanup.

alan14... I do delete all the history. I use the command inetcpl.cpl to open the "internet options" screen without IE being open. I delete
ALL in there, in other words all tick boxes checked except "preserve favourites" which is unticked. I can use the same command and select
"content" and "delete auto complete history" as that was mentioned somewhere. Using speedtest.net as an example if I then open IE and google
and begin typing speedtest it comes up as a suggestion, and it's in purple on the google list of sites with details of how many times I
visited. So clearing history as I understand it doesn't work for all sites. I say that because some sites that I know I have visited do not
show in this way... it has cleared those as if I had never visited.

Google login... yes I do, for gmail and igoogle. Strange to say when I clear ALL browsing history igoogle often shows me still signed in, gmail always asks (as expected) for password. Which implies google does store data as 961 mentions.

Very interesting, just trying to fill a gap in my knowledge with this.

  interzone55 20:52 14 Dec 2010

Download CCleaner and run it to see if it clears anything extra

click here

  mooly 08:53 15 Dec 2010

Thanks alan14
I used to use CC but abandoned it 16 months ago after clean installing. Just use windows tools... 100% trouble free since. Possibly the reg cleaner that caused unexplained issues. All I can say is no trouble since.

Next time I have to do an Acronis recovery I might install CC first and see what it shows can be deleted.
I think you might have something with the gmail login... and that's needed or was (not sure now) to get the google "instant" search feature.

I'll tick this as resolved.

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