Firefox address bar search engine- Yahoo to Google: how to change

Firefox address bar can not only be used for opening websites but also for searching as well. Good news is you can configure the Firefox address bar with various search engines like Yahoo, Live Search, Ask, Wikipedia,, Amazon, Creative Common, Yahoo Answer, E-Bay etc.

By default, whenever you type anything in  Firefox address bar and hit return or press the GO button, Firefox checks whether the entered string is valid address or not. If it’s a valid address Firefox tries to load corresponding site for you (I’m Feeling Lucky) otherwise it is submitted to Google Search and search results are returned.

There are some cases when you type a keyword in the Firefox address bar and it takes you to Yahoo preferences page instead of performing a Google “I’m Feeling Lucky” Search and take you to the first page of Yahoo’s search results page. It’s probably because of the Yahoo IM.

Now probably you want to restore the Google “I’m Feeling Lucky” search; most people do including me!You can change to any search engine for keyword search. Google is everybody’s first choice search. The following steps will guide you how to configure your Firefox address bar with Search Engines of your choice:

Step-[I]: Type in the Mozilla Firefox address bar “about:config”  ;of course without the quote. Warning message saying “This might void your warranty” will show up. Click on “I’ll be careful, I promise!” Remember: This is the Firefox’s registry. So, please be careful with what you do, especially if you use lots of customization and add-ons. Better copy your Firefox data somewhere safe. In case something goes wrong, restore the original files to the folder C: /Documents and Settings/UserName/Application Data/Mozilla; – of course depending on your setup.

Step-[II]: Next type “keyword.URL” in the Filter box (right under the tab bar) which will appeare after you complete the first step successfully. Under the Preference Name section you will find the keyword.URL entry.

Step-[III]: Double-click or right click the entry and select modify. A prompt for Enter String Value (for keyword.url) will appear.

Step-[IV]: Choose your Search Engine and accordingly enter the string value of various Search Engines given below. Copy any of the below strings and paste it into the box that appear in Step-III above. List of Various Search Engines are as follows:

Google’s I’m Feeling Lucky(Default Firefox address bar Search):

Google Web Search:

Yahoo search:

Microsoft’s Live Search:

Ask Web Search:

Wikipedia (en) Search:

Creative Common:

Technorati Blog Search:


Let me know if you need further help!


48 thoughts on “Firefox address bar search engine- Yahoo to Google: how to change

  1. Pingback: Use any Website’s Search Option Right from Your Browser Address bar: « Dr.No

  2. RAFIA WAHEED, I post here to make worried face into smile & you are still worried! Is that because the Keyword URL looks complicated? Nah.! Just follow the step 1-2-3 and choose your Search Engine and copy the URL: http://………… and paste into “Enter String Value” prompt into step 3 and smile! 🙂

  3. Thank you! I was getting of my Firefox address bar taking me to a Google Search when I prefer Yahoo for finding things! I have the Yahoo Search Bar installed but I didn’t like where, if I typed in the Address Bar instead, Google was the search provider! Really, thanks a bunch!

  4. Thanks so much. You know, we take for granted all the information on internet, but it’s real people who take their time to put it over there.

  5. I tried doing this but even after I select okay after inserting the google search bar address, it comes up with yahoo again. It won’t read the change of address at all and the yahoo search bar remains there. I’ve tried the extensions to see if I can simply deselect it. The yahoo search engine is not listed there either. This is frustrating. I hate the yahoo search engine.

  6. From: Shawn K, University Place, WA (USA)
    I wanted to say, “Thank you,” for your accurate, easy to follow instructions. While it was clear that the instructions were for the Windows version of Firefox, I will let you know that these directions work correctly for the Mac version of Firefox. My Firefox version is: 18.0.1, running on my Mac O/S version: OS X 10.8.2.
    One thing, though: Perhaps you could edit your posting for choices of search engines could include Bing (
    Thanks again! 🙂

  7. I’m obviously doing something wrong based on all the other comments but somehow this didn’t work for me. I followed all the steps to change the search bar to Google web search and when I go back and check it indeed says “user set” instead of default and shows the google address as I copied it from here in the String Value BUT when I type something into the address bar it still goes to Yahoo search. Did I miss a step? Am I trippin?

  8. Pingback: Configurando pesquisa na barra de endereço do Firefox « webD+

  9. This tutorial has step by step how to instructions with pictures. For other browsers too

  10. What if you want a normal address bar? I have a search bar with a drop down arrow for whichever search engine I choose to use, but I would prefer to have an address bar. When I type a correct webpage into the bar, it still uses the search.

  11. Help! I have done this same procedure before on a friend’s computer, however, when I try to do this on my computer it doesn’t work. My Firefox has always been the default Google I’m Feeling Lucky search until recently when it mysteriously changed to Charter search. I’m stumped, changing the keyword.url string to Google isn’t working. I can’t be stuck with Charter forever!

  12. This did not work for me. I changed the keyword.url but after entering a new keyword.url the Yahoo url is still there in the list.

  13. This would be great if I had “keyword:url.” I searched on the word Yahoo to see what came up but I see nothing that I could edit.

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