I usually have to type Ctrl+F, type the search string, and then Alt+A to toggle "Highlight all", because only one match is highlighted by default. I want the "Highlight all" button to be always on, and I don't think I'll ever need to turn it off.


  • "Highlight all" has to be re-enabled by the user for every page.

  • "Match case" stays toggled when you switch between pages.

Which is the wrong way around from a usability perspective.

Searching for some time did not yield any good results. This thread http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=2077733 addresses the problem, but the solution there (Find Toolbar Tweaks plugin) doesn't work with newer versions of Firefox. The plug-in's page doesn't list any recent updates.

Is there a plug-in or a setting to get this standard behaviour in Firefox? (Chrome, Opera, and even IE all behave sensibly in this regard.)

  • 3
    Sadly, Mozilla intentionally does not do this. See bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=266538 Jun 23, 2014 at 18:12
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    @Gabriel The argument being that if "Highlight All" is on and a single letter like 'e' is typed, the contract of the functionality is that every letter 'e' on the page will be highlighted as you type, which will cause a major slow-down for large web pages. (This behaviour is highly annoying in Chrome.) The obvious solution there is to make the search-and-highlighting process asynchronous and low-priority, so that it won't block further user actions and will progressively highlight more and more matches, given time. Appropriate feedback that it's not finished yet can be given in the findbar. Jun 24, 2014 at 2:37
  • 1
    Yes, that insight is also in the Bugzilla ticket and was apparently ignored. Jun 24, 2014 at 12:33
  • 2
    @Gabriel It seems to be ignored because nobody wants to work on it. Probably a tricky thing to implement for what may be seen as a small gain. However, thinking about the number of users of Firefox who all use this feature every day, and remembering all those multi-million dollar scrapped projects with much more impressive functionality, except that they are sort of impressive in a vacuum, having zero users now, I think the utility/effort ratio for this feature is actually quite high. Jun 26, 2014 at 23:18
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    And the "just always highlight all" bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=342101 feature request in addition to Gabriel's (better) remember highlight all button state request. Let's upvote them! Mar 4, 2015 at 14:10

4 Answers 4


You could try the latest version 1.3.4 of FindBar Tweak. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/findbar-tweak/versions/

The "Highlight All" checkbox can be found in the extension's "Highlight" preferences panel.

  • It works. I was already wondering if it's possible to write a Firefox add-on to do this, in a few minutes. But I can't see it taking less than an entire evening, in which case it wouldn't be worth it. It's surprising that Google didn't show any up-to-date solutions on the first page of results — I assumed it means there isn't one. Sep 9, 2013 at 13:23
  • How do you get Findbar Tweak to maintain the highlight on page reloads? Aug 12, 2015 at 8:07
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    Ah it's just buggy! It seems to frequently forget to highlight the word even though it highlights the occurrence in the scrollbar i.imgur.com/9SmlYDz.png Aug 12, 2015 at 8:14

Starting at Firefox 50 you can change the default value in the settings.

  1. Type about:config in the browser's address bar and hit enter.
  2. Confirm you will be careful if the warning prompt appears.
  3. The parameter findbar.highlightAll determines whether highlight all is enabled or not when you search in Firefox.

Source: http://www.ghacks.net/2016/06/11/firefox-page-search-improvements/

  • Wonderful! I can confirm that this works in Firefox 50.0.1, no addons needed.
    – RafG
    Nov 30, 2016 at 14:21
  • I can confirm this. It should really be the default, though. And this should be the accepted answer :)
    – donquixote
    Feb 2, 2017 at 23:01
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    This should be the accepted answer
    – j08691
    Feb 7, 2017 at 17:03
  • 2
    Just enabling now to me it stays enabled (i.e. ctrl + f, alt + `a' will leave the setting on). Jun 25, 2017 at 14:43
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    Yes: As of now, modern Firefox remembers your choice for Highlight All. No need to go into about:config any more.
    – Pistos
    Jun 20, 2019 at 15:35

You don't need any extension nor to go to about:config.

Since Firefox 54, just do a search (ctrl+f) and enable highlight all (alt+a). It will remember that automatically on future searches.

It is not necessary anymore to enable it through about:config

(please, upvote so more people can know it)

  • 1
    This works in FF68, much safer than mucking around with the config
    – Timmah
    Aug 14, 2019 at 0:14

The extension Highlight all will highlight all occurrences of a work by double clicking on a word. I don't know if that will help you with what you want.

I couldn't find a way of toggling the highlight all button in about:config, but the case-senstive toggle is listed there, so it's probably not directly configurable.

  • Yes, I've seen "HighlightAll" too, but I think that means I'll need to double-click a word every time, which is not better than having to click "Highlight all" or typing Alt+A. Sep 9, 2013 at 4:01

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