When visiting Google Search home page at www.google.com (or country-specific Google Search homepage), many people may notice that a new style of classic homepage has been introduced. The new feature of the new Google classic homepage is that it’s a “fade in” web page.

According to Google blog, the “fade in” feature of Google Search homepage makes it shows only Google logo, the search box and the buttons on first load, in order to maximize the theme of clean and minimalist approach. User can type in the search phrases for direct searching without extra distraction. But, for users who are interested in using a different application like Gmail, Google News, Google Maps, Google Video Search, Google Blog Search, Google Image Search or Google AdSense or AdWords advertising programs, the additional navigation links on the homepage will be “faded in” and revealed elegantly when the user moves the mouse.

However, not many people may like the Google homepage fades in idea, especially when it gives a false impression that the page is loading slowly. The fading in of extra links on Google homepage also prevent users from directly accessing other functions and products quickly, and has to wait for these links to appear instead. In addition, the font of the ‘faded in’ components does not support ClearType, making the font looks grainy in IE.

Google does not provide built-in configurable switch or URL parameter to turn off and disable the Google homepage “Fade In” animation effect. For users who feel that the face in effect is useless, crap, annoying, slowing down the process to use Google services, or just a bad idea, it’s possible to use various workaround to disable, turn off and remove the fade in animation on the Google search page, as listed below.

Workaround 1: Move the Mouse Pointer Around

In fact, this is not a workaround at all, but by design. Moving the mouse will make the hidden navigation elements to be “faded in” and displayed on screen, accessible to the user in a second or two.

Workaround 2: Use Alternative Google Search Homepage

Only official Google homepage at www.google.com or Google interface in local language for various countries and regions has “fade in” animation effect implemented. User can set the search page to open alternative Google search page in order to bypass and avoid the “fade in” effect. One such web page is iGoogle, with URL as follow:

http://www.google.com/ig

Alternatively, Firefox Start Page with Google Search can also be used:

http://www.google.com/firefox

Workaround 3: Disable or Turn Off JavaScript (JS) Support on Web Browser

JavaScript is required for the fade-in effect on Google homepage to work. By disabling JavaScript support of the web browser, the Google homepage will work as it usually does, with whole page displays at once within navigation links hidden on initial load.

The downside is that users can no longer use many web pages, web apps or web services that require JavaScript.

Workaround 4: Firefox Only – Use NoScript Add-On to Forbid JavaScript on Google.com

If disabling Java Script completely on the whole browser is not the way to go (workaround 3), NoScript add-on on Firefox browser (install at https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/722) can disable JavaScript on Google.com (or country-specific Google homepage) only. With NoScript installed, and when visit Google homepage, click on the NoScript icon (in blue or red S in pale blue circle) on the right side of the bottom status bar, and click on “Forbid google.com”.

The downside is similar to workaround 3, where is JS is prevented on google.com domain, may Google services and web apps does not work properly.

Workaround 5: Firefox Only – Turn Off and Remove Fade In on Google with Stylish Add-On

Download and install Stylish addon for Firefox from https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/2108. Then add a new style for all google domains (click on S icon on the right side of bottom status bar, and select “Write New Style” for google.com) where user want to disable the fade in animation effect, and add the following lines as the style script:

@namespace url(http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml);

@-moz-document url-prefix('http://google.'), url-prefix('http://www.google.') {
#ghead, #sbl, .fade, #fctr{ opacity: 1 !important; }
}

Workaround 6: Use Greasemonkey (Firefox, Google Chrome and Opera), GreaseKit (Safari) or IE7Pro (IE) to Disable Google Fade In Effect

Greasemonkey user script can be used to disables fade in animation on Google Search homepage. Greasemonkey allow users to customize the way a webpage displays using small bits of JavaScript. Greasemoneky support is depending on web browser, although there is a workaround to implement a user script (in JavaScript format) in most web browser if a browser does not support Greasemonkey add-on or plug-in.

Here’s a list of addon or plugin or method that each web browser has to installed or implemented the user script support:

Firefox: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/748
Safari: GreaseKit (http://8-p.info/greasekit/)
Google Chrome: How to install and run Greasemonkey user scripts in Google Chrome
Opera: How to install and run Greasemonkey user scripts in Opera
IE: IE7Pro (http://www.ie7pro.com/)

The user scripts to disable and remove the fade in animation includes (just pick one you prefer):

http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/63436
http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/63421

With Greasemonkey or GreaseKit, user can directly click on “Install” or “Install this script” button to start the installation of user script. In Internet Explorer, user has to save the JavaScript file (in .js extension), rename it to googlenofade.ieuser.js, copy the script to %ProgramFiles%\IEPro\userscripts (%ProgramFiles(x86)%\IEPro\userscripts for 64-bit OS) folder, and then enable the script in IE7Pro’s settings.

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