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How to disable InPrivate browsing in Microsoft Edge on Windows 10

All browsers have a private browsing mode. The private browsing mode offers some very basic privacy in that it doesn’t store your browsing history. Microsoft Edge has a private browsing mode as well called InPrivate and like Chrome and Firefox, you can disable InPrivate browsing in Microsoft Edge with a registry edit.

Disable InPrivate browsing

Since this works by editing the registry, you’re going to need admin rights.

Use the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box. In the run box, enter ‘regedit’, and tap enter.

In the registry editor, navigate to the following location.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft

Under the Microsoft key, look for a key called MicrosoftEdge. If it’s not there, you have to create it yourself. Right-click the Microsoft key, and select New>Key from the context menu. Name the key MicrosoftEdge.

You have to create another key under the one you just created. Right-click the MicrosoftEdge key, and select New>Key. Name this key Main.

Now, with the Main key selected in the column on the left, right-click inside the pane on the right. Select New>DWORD (32-bit) value from the context menu. Name this value AllowInPrivate. Make sure its value is set to 0.

If you have Microsoft Edge open, close it and open it again. The InPrivate option in Edge’s menu will be greyed out. It will still be listed there but it will be inactive. Its keyboard shortcut will also be disabled.

Unlike Chrome and Firefox, this edit doesn’t remove the option from Edge’s menu. It’s still there and so users can guess that it’s been deactivated.

To enable the InPrivate browsing mode, all you need to do is delete the AllowInPrivate key that you added. You can also change its value to 1. If you choose to delete the DWORD value, you can leave the keys you created in the registry. They’re harmless.

This change, as you can guess, is easy to reverse if a user has the ability to change the registry i.e., admin access, and can figure out that InPrivate browsing has been blocked via the registry. If you want, you can use it as a soft form of parental control and prevent younger children from browsing in private mode.

This setting can be reset if a user uninstalls and reinstalls Edge however, Microsoft Edge is a core app on Windows 10 so uninstalling it isn’t easy and it definitely requires admin rights which, if a user has them, can just reverse the change from the registry.

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