Jun 232009

In Firefox when you type in a word in the address bar and just click enter, if the DNS name or URL is not found you are taken to a search engine page or a 404 page depending on how Firefox is configured. Mostly it defaults to Google and will query based on the words you entered in the address bar, but if you installed other toolbars this “default search” can be replaced by other search engines including Yahoo, Scour, MSN among others. In researching how to remove scour from my default search URL I found the following steps which may help users change their default search engine for Firefox:

The first thing you want to do is decide what do you want to happen when you type something in the address bar and then hit enter, do you want it to search for what you typed, or display an error page if you typed something incorrectly. I prefer a search term, as often I just type “dictionary” or some other keyword and would prefer to see listings.


Once you know what you want to set it to, then open up your Firefox and type about:config in the URL bar
Then type keyword.URL in the filter tab to see what is set for your default.
You can see from the image I set mine back to Google, note that you cannot simply type in a homepage, as this will just append the keyword to whatever URL is typed, you must type the proper URL that will initiate the query.

Here are some examples for users to set their keyword.URL to:

Google Search: http://www.google.com/search?q=
Yahoo Search: http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=
Microsoft Bing: http://www.bing.com/search?q=
DogPile Search: http://www.dogpile.com/info.dogpl/search/web/
Altavista Search: http://www.altavista.com/web/results?itag=ody&q=
Ask.com Search: http://www.ask.com/web?qsrc=1&o=0&l=dir&q=

If you have questions about how to set other search engines as the default Firefox Search engine just leave me a comment and I will find out and update the table above here.

For those who don’t want to set any search at all, and would prefer to automatically have .com appended to any keyword they enter, so if you just typed “dictionary” and hit enter, it would append .com and you would be taken to dictionary.com, you can change the keyword.enabled to false


-Dragon Blogger

Justin Germino
Working in the IT Industry for over 13 years and specializing in web based technologies. Dragon Blogger has unique insights and opinions to how the internet and web technology works. An Avid movie fan, video game fan and fan of trying anything and everything new.
Justin Germino


Technology, Gaming and Wordpress blogger who runs gadget giveaways, helps others with blogging tips, monetization, earning and more!
YHhao Over-Ear Headphone Review https://t.co/WhVxfOyefV - 52 mins ago
Justin Germino
  • Black Friday HDTV Reviews

    Thanks for this firefox tip. I have had firefox for a long time, but I was not aware you could change your search options. My deafult search engine always defaulted to some orbit downloader webpage when there is a page not found error. Thanks again, this helps.
    .-= Black Friday HDTV Reviews´s last blog ..Antennas Direct DB4 Multi Directional HDTV Antenna Review =-.

  • Romney

    Thank for this… I despise yahoo search but love the messenger. Unfortunately when installing whether you want your search defaulted to them or not, it does. This helped me change back to the one I usually use. Thanks!

    • I really didn’t use Yahoo search or Messenger myself. I remember when Yahoo was king though.

  • Simon

    what would the code be for the “yahoo! uk” search engine?

  • TrevorA

    Do you know what one would use to use the UK version of Google?

  • TrevorA

    Do you know what one would use to use the UK version of Google?

    • @TrevorA just replace google.com with google.co.uk and you will have the uk version of Googlle.

  • geekgirl

    Just in case someone wants to know, the string for the Swagbucks search engine is: http://www.swagbucks.com/?sfp=h&t=w&p=1&isHomeMain=true&q=
    It’s not a famous search engine, but it’s useful for earning Amazon gift cards and things, and it took me a while to find out what the string for it was, so I thought it’d be useful to post it.

  • daniel

    hi , there is this damn scam phishing like search engine flipora
    installed on my fire fox out of no where ! please help me out of this, i just
    typed about.config but again this search engine appeared doesn`t let the program
    work .it starts searching for it too ! flipora is not in the
    extension list either ! i really need help

    thanks a million in advance

    • If you uninstalled Flipora already you have to reset your firefox homepage https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/How%20to%20set%20the%20home%20page

      Uninstalling this add-on from your browser is extremely easy.


      Go to menu Tools >> Add-ons, select “Extensions” tab and click “Remove” button for “Flipora – Connect with friends and discover the best of the Web”. Restart your browser.

      Follow this guide for removal of Flipora http://malwaretips.com/blogs/remove-flipora-search/

  • alrui

    Thanks for the article but I am having an issue whereas the keyword.URL always goes back to the default oogle code no matter what I set it to, ARGH! Any help would be great, Thanks!

    • alrui

      I figured it out, the addon Browse By Name was conflicting with keyword.URL (apparently it takes it over).