I'm using Firefox 3.5.3 with a Google as my default search.

When use the search toolbar at the top of the screen, is there a way to show the search results in a new tab?

Right now the search results overwrite the current page I am looking at. That is rarely what I want. I would like to see the results in a new tab.


This is pretty easy.

Type about:config into the address bar, and then put the following into the filter box: browser.search.openintab. Double-click the value to change it to true.


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  • 2
    +3 if I could. This really helped me. – Macha Sep 28 '09 at 17:43
  • +1 for most correct answer. Though I personally wouldn't recommend doing that. – hasen Sep 28 '09 at 17:47
  • @hasen j - why wouldn't you recommend it? – ChrisF Sep 28 '09 at 17:52
  • I selected this answer because it is the best Firefox-only solution (no add-ons). I ended up using @alex's solution but I can only select one. Thank you everyone. – Robert Cartaino Sep 29 '09 at 17:17

You could use TabMixPlus for this. It can override the default behavior; it also has a lot of other features that you might find interesting and useful:

Tab Mix Plus enhances Firefox's tab browsing capabilities. It includes such features as duplicating tabs, controlling tab focus, tab clicking options, undo closed tabs and windows, plus much more. It also includes a full-featured session manager.

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  • I've been a long-time user of TabMixPlus but I never made the connection that it could control this. Thanks. – Robert Cartaino Sep 29 '09 at 17:15
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    No problem. Glad I could help you! To be honest, TabMixPlus has so many features it's nearly impossible to know them all. I consider it a Swiss army knife of tabs :) – alex Sep 29 '09 at 17:17
  • Agreed. It's one of the first add-ons I install after Firefox. It's rare that I can't find some combination features that let me get Firefox tabs working exactly the way I want. – Robert Cartaino Sep 30 '09 at 14:17

A few better options have been put here, but the lazy option is to just press CTRL-T to open a new tab before searching.

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Alternatively to changing any settings, you can just use alt+enter when you search from the search box, or middle click the "search" icon to open the results in a new tab. This way you can still search in the same tab if you want to, or open them in a new tab when that is more convenient.

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SearchLoad Options is a Firefox Add-on that's highly rated and seems to do what you want.

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