Since the last Firefox update (23.0), it doesn't behave as it used to when you search something from the address bar.

Before v23, it used the default search engine (Google, by default), but now it uses the engine that is selected in the search box (which has the side effect of making the search box redundant)

I don't like this behavior at all, is there a way to restore the old behavior?

  • The only way would be through a plug-in – Ramhound Aug 8 '13 at 15:47
  • I've used Firefox for years and I've never seen a Firefox version that use google by default. It always use the selected engine in the search box, and it's much more convenient because sometimes I need to search something other than on google – phuclv Sep 13 '13 at 5:37

There are several add-ons to augment the address bar search functionality.

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/keywordurl-hack/ (I use this. Install it and change the keyword.URL property in about:config.)

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/keyword-search/ (This one looks a little more usable, and appears to address your problem specifically.)

  • Awesome, it's exactly what I was looking for! Thanks a lot – Thomas Levesque Aug 9 '13 at 15:02
  • keyword.URL doesn't comes up in firefox 25.0 in debian squeeze with keyword url hack – Ashildr Dec 2 '13 at 13:01

A perfect plugin for you would be Firefox's InstantFox


You can go to about:config and then add a string named "keyword.URL" (case sensitive) and set the value to http://www.google.com/search?ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&sourceid=navclient&btnI=1&q= which used to be the default in older firefox versions.

  • Welcome to SuperUser. Can you please add the source from where you got this answer (if any) ? – Lorenzo Von Matterhorn Sep 18 '13 at 18:17
  • 2
    This does not work in FF23 or later. – Reid Nov 8 '13 at 15:57

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