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Defeating forced redirection of google.com to google.ca?



5:59 pm on Oct 13, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I have noticed Google going back to forcing me to visit www.google.ca whenever I go to Google. It has gone back and forth - forcing me, giving me a link to google.com, not forcing me, etc.. The link on the Google.ca site that says "go to www.google.com" doesn't work.

I was doing a search today and got irritated that I couldn't access www.google.com to do it. Perhaps it's based on a wrong impression but I don't want to feel that I am missing out on relevant search results because someone at Google thinks a web site isn't relevant for a Canadian Google search.

Is there a way to defeat this forced redirection? I am using a NAT router/firewall running the Smoothwall Linux firewall so every request of mine goes through the firewall. Which uses an internal to my network IP. But when it connects to the outside world it uses the IP assigned to me by my ISP - which apparently falls within IP's that are reserved to Canadian businesses. So...it would seem that using a local proxy server for my browsing on my internal (to my network) computer wouldn't do any good.

Using a web based proxy server is too slow oftentimes. Is there any other solution? If I want to go to www.google.com I believe I should be able to go there.

Thanks for any input on this. I thought of posting this to a more Google oriented forum but I couldn't find one that sounded like this might fit into it's theme.



7:54 pm on Oct 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Is there any other solution?
I don't think there is Carlos. Somehow, you need to visit Google from a "US based" IP so a different ISP or a proxy are about your only choices.

This is about the best forum for your question too. :)


8:03 pm on Oct 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator jatar_k is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

I am Canadian and I have no problems with the "go to google.com" link.

Once I've clicked it .com ends up being my default and I get a link for "go to google Canada". It hasn't switched since I have installed the browser. If I use the go to google Canada link .ca will then be the default. It is stored in my prefs cookie as far as I can tell.

Do you have cookies disabled?
Do you have any other prefs set for google?
Have you tried setting prefs and see if they stay?


9:03 pm on Oct 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I think there is no way to defeat this, as you send your request to google.com which transfers it to google.ca, request is processed, and then the response is sent, so you'll never be able to control that.


9:24 pm on Oct 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Proxy browser. :)


9:27 pm on Oct 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member nick_w is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

I can get (after some experimentation) google.com instead of google.dk

I had to mess with languages first, then when I'd got google.dk in english i went into preferences on THAT page and did it all again.

I've no idea if that will help as you don't have the language thing but knowing that I did it TWICE on 2 seperate pages may give you a puch in the right directions....

Best of luck..



10:14 pm on Oct 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks very much for the responses you all.

For some reason the goto google.com link on the main google page was not working for me a few days ago. Now it is. Could be a cookie issue. I normally don't surf with cookies or Javascript turned on and use the Konqueror Linux browser.

Today it is working just fine and when I click on the link I can thereafter just go to google.com without being forced to google.ca. Must be a cookie thing.

Come to think about it the way google has apparently settled on for this is a good way of doing it. 99.99 % of people will hardly notice being forcefully redirected to google.ca. Although I knew this was happening way back I eventually ignored it (until I started searching for things which were not that popular and coming up somewhat empty on my searches - though the implication of less quality searches on google.ca may just be an incorrect impression on my end).

Anyway thanks again. I am happy :)



2:27 pm on Oct 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member encyclo is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

I live in Canada - and if you want the plain vanilla standard Google rather than the local version, you can go to:


I usually don't bother, but it may be useful if you want to check if the search results are different for each version.