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I'm trying out Chrome, but I use this Firefox feature all the time so I strongly feel its absence. I've searched Extensions and Google in general, but couldn't find anything and don't even know if it's possible to create such an extension. Important: I'm not interested in extensions that require me to click anything to activate the different searches. The important part is it all happens in the URL bar.

If you don't know what this Firefox feature does, briefly: you can assign a keyword to a bookmark and embed %s in the URL. Then, from the URL bar (not the search bar), you can type the keyword and then one or more words to replace %s.

For example, if you create a bookmark with URL: "http://www.imdb.com/find?s=all&q=%s" and keyword "imdb". Then in the URL bar, you would just type: "imdb young frankenstein" and it will send you to: "http://www.imdb.com/find?s=all&q=young+frankenstein".

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2 Answers 2

up vote 14 down vote accepted

Not only does Chrome have this, the browser adds them automatically as you use site's search boxes.

Go into the Options -> Basics Tab -> Manage. You'll see a list of "Search Engines". Some of them are supplied by Google when you install Chrome, others are learned as you use the browser. Double-clicking an entry will let you edit it, where you can change the keyword from the default (domain name) to something shorter or more memorable.

To use your example, I hadn't used imdb.com yet in my Chrome install. So I went there, used the search, clicked "Go", and got my results. After getting back to the "Manage Search Engines" dialog, imdb.com was at the bottom of the list. Double-click it, set the keyword to "imdb" and go back to the browser. Now when I type "imdb" in the address bar, the first auto-complete entry is to search imdb.com. The browser asks to "type Tab to search imdb.com", but I just hit space anyway like I do in Firefox and it works.

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An article about this with a screenshot: lifehacker.com/5476033/… –  Doug Harris Jul 16 '10 at 18:39

that's great but the good thing about capturing this functionality in a bookmark is that many people (myself included) now sync their bookmarks across multiple browsers.

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There's a bug open to sync search engines in chrome: code.google.com/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=15548 Until it's resolved, you could use Shortmarks, a service I created to be able to use custom searches in all browsers: shortmarks.com –  danhersam Jun 27 '11 at 6:38

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