Possible Duplicate:
Turning off Google search results indirection

Sounds like a stupid question, but this really bothers me and I don't see an easy workaround. Every time I need to post link to PDF found by google, I have BIG trouble.

  1. When I click on the link in the Google results and click "Copy link location", it yields the horrific URL like http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CBUQF.....

  2. When I click the PDF (I don't want to do it, I don't want to download it!) I don't get the URL in the browser location either!

  3. Copy-pasting the URL from google result is also horrific, it doesn't contain http:// and for long URLs it is incompete.

Have you found some easy way to achieve this?

  • 4
    I have the same problem. There's an online tool that I find useful here . You can paste the 'horrific URL' and convert it into a normal link.
    – JW01
    Sep 15, 2011 at 22:19
  • 1
    @JW01: I think you could post it as a separate answer (you would get some upvotes, at least from me). :)
    – Sk8erPeter
    Feb 15, 2013 at 18:57
  • 1
    Thanks @Sk8erPeter - I could not add an answer to this question. So, I posted the solution onto the duplicated question at: webapps.stackexchange.com/a/40504/6876
    – JW01
    Feb 16, 2013 at 7:41
  • 1
    @JW01: OK, I upvoted it. ;)
    – Sk8erPeter
    Feb 17, 2013 at 2:21

2 Answers 2


Google rewrite the href for some reason with a rwt() Javascript function whenever there is a mousedown event on the link.

Other people have fixed this themselves with Greasemonkey. Maybe doesn't help if you're not a Firefox user!

Another thread discussing it here. Their solution was to tab to the link and use the keyboard to copy the url.

  • 1
    Thanks for useful links. It's a pitty there is no easier solution. The second solution (open link in new tab) doesn't work in case of PDF because the link itself won't appear.
    – Tomas
    Nov 29, 2011 at 14:08
  • The linked Greasemonkey script doesn't work anymore, use "Google Tracking-B-Gone" by tbolt instead, here's the userscripts link.
    – Thor
    Jul 29, 2012 at 14:55
  • Love the solution of avoiding the mouse right-click (+1) You usually have a key on your keyboard between right Alt and right Ctrl that shows the same context menu as right click, after you've tabbed to the link.
    – DaveBall
    Aug 10, 2012 at 10:30
  • The Google Tracking-B-Gone that Thor linked is now also obsolete. Another userscripts author has provided an updated version of this script here which works for me as of 09/03/2012
    – peepsalot
    Sep 4, 2012 at 2:10
  • "Other people have fixed this themselves with Greasemonkey. Maybe doesn't help if you're not a Firefox user!" - Greasemonkey user scripts are natively supported since Google Chrome 4: blog.chromium.org/2010/02/40000-more-extensions.html
    – Sk8erPeter
    Feb 15, 2013 at 19:41

I can't reproduce your problem:

  • right-clicking and copying gives me the correct URL
  • the page source shows a valid link (example while searching for Approximating the Worst-Case Execution Time of Soft Real-Time Applications):

    <a href="http://matteocorti.ch/publications/eth_15927_slides.pdf"
      class="l" onmousedown="return clk(this,this.href,'','','','2','RMvtQpjUSw9UPW3pVTWTew','0CB8QFjAB')">
      <em>Approximating the Worst</em>-<em>Case Execution Time of Soft Real</em>-<em>time</em> <b>...</b>

Even using a non-Javascript text browser (e.g., Lyx) gives the correct link.

Which OS/browser are you using?

Update (on a Mac):

  • Safari copies the link ignoring the onmousedown event
  • Firefox copies the rewritten link

Now it seems that Safari is wrong (onmousedown should be called with right-clicks) but in this case I like the non-standard behavior :-)

  • 1
    Firefox 3.6. Firefox 4 and 5 sucks... anyway, now it doesn't look like browser issue - they change the link using javascript. When I open the page source, I see the same as you, but when I "copy link location" or mark it in text and select "View selection source", I see the weird-google-modified link.
    – Tomas
    Sep 10, 2011 at 15:20
  • 1
    It is a browser issue in the sense that if the browser ignores the Javascript event you have the correct URL. See my edited post
    – Matteo
    Sep 10, 2011 at 15:32
  • To reproduce - Note it only occurs when you do a search on google whilst at the same time being logged into a google account (i.e. gmail).
    – JW01
    Oct 7, 2011 at 9:09
  • @JW. - nope, I get the same result when logged out.
    – Tomas
    Nov 29, 2011 at 14:11
  • @Matteo, "right-clicking and copying gives me the correct URL" - that's really strange you can't reproduce it! Do you have javascript switched off??
    – Tomas
    Nov 29, 2011 at 14:14

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