In the comments to last night's post, Riverdog asks a question that I've had a lot of folks ask when frustrated by their browser's attempt to autocomplete something in a web form.
Don't you just hate it when your browser 'tries" to help, but there's such a raft of useless choices offered that it just gets in the way?
The two most common problems are that the number of choices for the autocomplete get too long and you're fishing through an extensive list for what you want to use, or even worse, you enter an incorrect string at some point and the mistake then gets offered to you by default each time. (A co-worker did this by entering my email address incorrectly once, and now at least twice a week, I miss emails from her because the wrong address autocompletes on her.)
Fortunately, there is an easy, though utterly unintuitive solution.
If you double-click on the text box that's offering too long a list or a mistake, the list of Autocomplete choices comes up. Simply hover (NOT click) over the offending entry to highlight it, hold down the Shift key on your keyboard, then hit the Delete key. That entry will disappear. Do the same thing to all the entries you want to prune. If during multiple deletions the process stops responding, just mouse away from the text box, then go back and continue as before. (I occasionally hit this glitch in Firefox - not sure if IE does it too.)
This seems to be a convention in most implementation of Autocomplete. I know it works in IE and Firefox as well as Outlook. Try it on your own applications and let me know in the comments if you find others in which it works.
If you want to completely remove all the Autocomplete entries from Internet Exploder 6, got to the Tools menu, then to Internet Options, then click on the Content tab. you'll see the Autocomplete button, which will give you the option to turn it on and off for particular purposes, as well as to completely clear it's content for forms and/or passwords.
To clear all the entries in the dropdown for the browser's address bar, you have to clear the history from the General tab in the Internet Options window. (In IE7, both forms and history content can be deleted from this location) Microsoft's Knowledgebase article on Autocomplete.
In Firefox, go to the Options link under the Tools menu, then click on the Privacy icon. Make sure the Ask me before clearing private data box is checked, then just click the Clear Now button. You'll be present a list of what can be cleared. The Saved Forms and Search History is what you're looking for, plus anything else you'd like deleted.