Everyone enjoys different browsing experiences and environments. From appearance to privacy, we all have our unique preferences. This is why web browsers come with the Settings page, which allows you to change how you interact with them and surf the Internet.

Now, imagine not being able to change any setting because the “This setting is enforced by your administrator” error keeps popping up. Some users reported seeing the error when they attempted to change their default search engine, while others reported seeing it after trying to change appearance settings, such as font size.

If you’re in the same boat as these users, keep reading since this article contains guides that will show you how to get rid of the administrator-enforced error in Chrome.

How to Remove the Error “This Setting Is Enforced by Your Administrator” in Google Chrome

Follow these fixes as they are arranged to get rid of the error for good.

Apply Google Chrome’s default group policy

Your first troubleshooting step involves restoring certain local group policies to their default settings. Your current policies might have been modified by malware or a third-party application. You’ll be performing this fix in an elevated Command Prompt window.

Follow these steps:

  1. Use the Windows + S keyboard combo to summon the search utility in the taskbar. You can also click on the magnifying glass icon in the taskbar.
  2. After the search box opens, type “cmd.”
  3. Click on Run as Administrator under Command Prompt or right-click the Command Prompt’s entry in the search results and select Run as Administrator from the context menu.
  4. Select Yes after the User Account Control dialog window opens.
  5. Next, type the following lines and hit the Enter key after typing each:

RD /S /Q “%WinDir%\System32\GroupPolicyUsers”

RD /S /Q “%WinDir%\System32\GroupPolicy”

gpupdate /force

  1. Once the command executes, launch Google Chrome and check if the error persists.

Change some group policy extension files

If the Command Prompt method doesn’t work, you can force Windows to reset the Group Policy by modifying some of its files. You’ll be going through File Explorer.

Follow these steps:

  1. Launch the File Explorer window by clicking on the folder icon in the taskbar or using the Windows + E keyboard combination.
  2. After the File Explorer window shows up, go to the left side and expand This PC.
  3. Click on your local disk under This PC and switch to the right side of the window.
  4. Open the Windows folder.
  5. Once the Windows folder opens, locate the System32 folder and open it.
  6. Next, scroll down to the GroupPolicy folder and open it.

Note: You won’t see the GroupPolicy folder unless you turn on the “View hidden items” option. Go to the top of the File Explorer window and switch to the View tab. Go to the “Show/hide” section and check the boxes for “Hidden items” and “File extensions.”

  1. Once you enter the GroupPolicy folder, open the Machine folder.
  2. Now, locate the file with the “.pol” extension and change the extension to “.sav.”
  3. For example, if you see a file named “registry.pol”, rename it “registry.sav.”
  4. If you see more than one POL file, rename all of them.
  5. Restart your computer, then open Chrome to check for the problem.

Disable and remove the Google Docs Offline extension

Extensions help you perform tasks that are not available by default in Google Chrome. The Chrome Store has a vast collection of extensions that can help you do just about anything. The Google Docs Offline extension is one of those applications. It allows you to edit Word files without an internet connection.

As helpful as the web application might be, some users reported it as being the cause of the ‘This setting is enforced by your administrator’ error. Disable and remove the extension, then check for the problem.

These steps will show you how to do that:

  1. Go to the Start menu, search for Chrome, and launch the browser.
  2. Once Google Chrome opens, go to the top-right corner and click on the three dots.
  3. When you see the menu, click on More Tools, and select Extensions.
  4. Once the Extensions page opens, locate Google Docs Offline and turn off its switch.
  5. Restart Chrome and try changing the setting that produced the error.
  6. If you still see the error, go back to the Extensions page and click on Remove under Google Docs Offline, then restart the browser and check for the error.

Delete some registry keys

Your next step involves deleting some keys in the system registry. These keys hold the configurations that prevent you from changing Google Chrome settings.

It’s important that you understand the gravity of making mistakes in the system registry. One wrong modification could cause permanent damage that will cripple your operating system. So, before you start, back up the entire registry so that you can undo any erroneous change.

Follow these steps:

  1. Press the Windows + R keyboard shortcut to launch the Run dialog box. Another way to summon Run is by right-clicking the Start button and selecting Run from the Power User menu.
  2. Once the Run dialog opens, type “regedit” and hit the Enter key.
  3. Click Yes in the User Account Control dialog window once it pops up.
  4. After the Registry Editor shows up, go to the top-left corner, click on File, and select Export.
  5. Once the Export Registry File dialog window opens, select All under Export Range, choose a filename for the backup file, browse to the folder where you want to save the file, and click on Save.
  6. When you want to restore the registry, go to File >> Import, browse to the folder where you saved the backup, and double-click the file.

You should also consider creating a system restore point. This way, you can restore your computer to its current state if things go sideways after modifying the registry. If you don’t know how to create a restore point, follow these steps:

  1. Use the Windows + S keyboard combo to summon the search utility in the taskbar. You can also click on the magnifying glass icon in the taskbar.
  2. After the search box opens, type “create a restore point” and click on the first result.
  3. The System Properties dialog will now open.
  4. Under the System Protection tab, go to the Protection Settings section and click on Create. If the Create button is greyed out, select Configure. Once the System Protection for Local Disk X window opens, select “Turn on system protection” and click on the OK button.
  5. Now, click on the Create button.
  6. Enter a name for the restore point in the “Create a restore point” text box and click on Create.
  7. That’s it.

Now, follow these steps to apply the fix:

  1. Press the Windows + R keyboard shortcut to launch the Run dialog box. Another way to summon Run is by right-clicking the Start button and selecting Run from the Power User menu.
  2. Once the Run dialog opens, type “regedit” and hit the Enter key.
  3. Click Yes in the User Account Control dialog window once it pops up.
  4. After the Registry Editor shows up, go to the left pane and expand HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Google\Chrome.
  5. Click on the Chrome key and delete every string on the right side of the window. To delete a string, right-click it and select Delete from the context menu.

Run a full malware scan

The error is likely caused by a malware program. You have to remove it if you don’t want to experience the problem again. To do that, run a full malware scan. You have to run a Full Scan (not the regular Quick Scan) as the malware program could be operating from one of your system folders. It’s possible that it has compromised one of your system files.

If Windows Security is your main protection program, follow these steps to run a Full Scan:

  1. Use the Windows + I keyboard combo to open the Settings application.
  2. After Settings shows up, click on the Update & Security icon at the bottom of the page.
  3. Go to the right side of the Update & Security interface to click on Windows Security.
  4. After that, switch to the main page and click on Virus & Threat Protection under Protection Areas.
  5. Once the Virus & Threat Protection window appears, click on Scan Options.
  6. Select Full Scan on the Scan Options interface and click on the Scan Now button.
  7. The process could span several hours, depending on your system’s speed.
  8. Allow the tool to complete the scan and make sure you allow it to carry out the necessary actions to remove any malware entity that it finds.
  9. Restart your system and open Chrome to check for the problem.

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You can also run Chrome’s Cleanup Tool to fix the problem. The Cleanup Tool will scan your computer in search of malicious programs that attach themselves to the browser. These steps will show you what to do:

  1. Open the Start menu, search for Chrome, and launch the browser.
  2. After Chrome opens, go to the top-right corner and click on the three dots.
  3. Click on Settings once the menu appears.
  4. After the Settings page opens, go to the right pane and click on the arrow beside Advanced.
  5. Scroll down and click on “Reset and cleanup.”
  6. Go to the right side of the window and click on “Clean up computer.”
  7. Once the “Clean up computer” page opens, click on Find beside “Find harmful software.”
  8. Allow the tool to check your system for harmful software and delete it.

Reinstall Google Chrome

If the problem persists, remove Google Chrome from your system and reinstall it. However, before you do that, reset Chrome and check if that will resolve the problem. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Start menu, search for Chrome, and launch the browser.
  2. After Chrome opens, go to the top-right corner and click on the three dots.
  3. Click on Settings once the menu appears.
  4. After the Settings page opens, go to the right pane and click on the arrow beside Advanced.
  5. Scroll down and click on “Reset and cleanup.”
  6. Go to the right side of the window and click on “Restore settings to their original defaults.”
  7. Once the confirmation dialog opens, click on “Reset settings.”
  8. Chrome will now reset your search engine, new tab page, startup page, and pinned tabs to their defaults. The browser will also clear temporary data such as cache and cookies and disable your extensions.
  9. After the browser restarts, check if you can now modify its settings.

If resetting Chrome doesn’t remove the error, follow these steps to uninstall it:

  1. Use the Windows + I keyboard combo to open the Settings application.
  2. After Settings shows up, click on the Apps icon.
  3. Once the Apps interface opens, type “Chrome” into the search box under “Apps & features.”
  4. When you see Google Chrome, click on it and select Uninstall.
  5. Click on Uninstall again.
  6. Click on the Yes button in the User Account Control dialog.
  7. Once the Uninstall wizard appears, follow its prompts to remove the program.

After Windows removes Chrome, restart your computer, download the browser’s setup file, and install it.

Conclusion

You should now have full control over Google Chrome’s settings. If you have questions regarding the ‘This setting is enforced by your administrator’ error or want to share your thoughts about it, please use the comments section below.