How to change Firefox Location Bar Search Engine?

Sep 18, 2010

The Firefox Location Bar is normally used to enter web addresses that you want to visit. But it can also be used to search your history, bookmarks and the web too. For web, the default search engine is Google. But sometimes, toolbars like Yahoo! toolbar, may chance the default search service. Want to change the location bar search engine in Firefox? Or, want to remove automatic Yahoo! search from the Firefox address bar? Don’t worry, you can do it easily. Read on to find out how.


When you type a word into the Location Bar, Firefox does text string searching within your history and bookmarks. Results are displayed in a drop down list. If you do not select a local search result from the drop-down list but just press enter, Firefox will take you to the top Google result for that search by default. And if there is no clear match to a URL, Google search results for the entry will be displayed. Here, Google’s Browse by Name service is the default keyword search service used in Firefox Location Bar Search. But some toolbars may change the keyword search engine and even after uninstallation those changes remain (for example: Yahoo! Toolbar). This may annoy you, specially when you use Google Search a lot. So, you may want to get rid of that and reset it back to the default. The following steps will tell you how to change/modify Firefox location bar search service.

Steps to Change Firefox Location Bar Search Engine:

  1. Open a new Firefox tab.
  2. Enter about:config in the location bar and press enter.
  3. “This might void your warranty!” warning page may appear. Click “I’ll be careful, I promise!”, to continue.
  4. In the filter field search for the preference keyword.URL.
  5. One result will appear with the URL of the current Internet keywords service. Decide what you want to do (reset or modify).
  6. To modify the search service, right-click on keyword.URL and select Modify from the drop-down menu.
  7. Enter the URL of your preferred search service (Example: and click OK.
  8. To reset, right-click on keyword.URL and select Reset from the drop-down menu.
  9. That’s it. Exit about:config section and enjoy automatic location bar search with your preferred search engine.
Note: The Reset option appears only when your search service is not the default one (Google). This option is useful when you want to get rid of automatic Yahoo! search from the Firefox address bar. And if you want to change the default (Google) to something else, just use the Modify option and enter the correct URL of your preferred search service.

One Response to “How to change Firefox Location Bar Search Engine?”

  1. Bill Richards on 14th Oct, 10 01:10am #

    Thank you a thousand times!!!!

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