Disable Show Definitions Inline in Microsoft Edge

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Microsoft Edge is the default web browser app in Windows 10. It's a Universal (UWP) app which has extension support, a fast rendering engine and a simplified user interface. Starting with Windows 10 build 17713, the browser allows the user to look up definitions for selected words in Reading View, Books, and PDFs thanks to the new dictionary function added to it. If you find the definition popup annoying, here is how to disable this feature.

Microsoft Edge comes with Reader mode, which might be familiar to Firefox and Vivaldi users. When enabled, it strips out unnecessary elements from the opened web page, reflows the text and turns it into a cleaner looking text document without ads, menus and scripts, so the user can focus on reading the text content. Edge also renders the text on the page with a new font and formatting in Reader mode.

With Reading View, Microsoft Edge provides a new, consistent, more powerful experience across all your documents, whether they’re EPUB or PDF books, documents, or web pages. The feature utilizes Fluent Design System elements like motion and Acrylic material to provide a fluid, delightful experience that keeps the focus on the page.

When you select a word in Reading View, in a EPUB or PDF document, you will see a definition popup next to your selection.

If you are not happy with this feature, you can disable it.

To disable inline definitions in Microsoft Edge in Windows 10, do the following.

  1. Launch the Edge browser.
  2. Click the three dots "..." menu button.
  3. In the Settings pane, click on the Settings item.
  4. In Settings on the General tab, disable the option Show definitions inline for.
  5. Alternatively, you can disable the definition lookup feature for certain objects, such as Reading View, books, and PDF files.

The inline definitions feature is now disabled for the Reading View in Microsoft Edge

This Inline Definitions feature can be configured with a Registry tweak. Here is how it can be done.

Manage Inline Definitions with a Registry tweak

  1. Open the Registry Editor app.
  2. Go to the following Registry key.
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\AppContainer\Storage\microsoft.microsoftedge_8wekyb3d8bbwe\MicrosoftEdge\Main

    See how to go to a Registry key with one click.

  3. On the right, modify or create the following string (REG_SZ) values:
    Name Value
    Dictionary Enabled yes - enable "Show definitions for"
    no - disable "Show definitions for"
    Book Dictionary Enabled yes - enable Show definitions for books
    no - disable Show definitions for books
    ReadingView Dictionary Enabled yes - enable Show definitions for Reading view
    no - disable Show definitions for Reading view
    Pdf Dictionary Enabled yes - enable Show definitions for PDF files
    no - disable Show definitions for PDF files
  4. To make the changes done by the Registry tweak take effect, you need to sign out and sign in to your user account.

To save your time, you can download the following ready-to-use Registry files (*.reg).

Download Registry Files

They will allow you to enable or disable the features mentioned above.

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

2 thoughts on “Disable Show Definitions Inline in Microsoft Edge”

  1. Hi

    I followed your regedit instructions but the options to enable/disable the dictionary wasn’t there. So I followed your link to dl the zip which has the new regedit data and I opened it. The option is now in the regedit and is selected to yes. I restarted my laptop but nothing is coming up on my settings panel to select to turn it on. I don’t even have the General Settings section. I have a brand new laptop but nowhere on the internet helps explain how to get to General Settings. All I have is Settings, then Advanced Settings, none of which mentions the inline data.

    Please help

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