Using different search engine in URL bar

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Using different search engine in URL bar

Post by jumba » 2013-09-14, 07:31

Mozilla decided to remove the ability to set custom search providers to be used from the navigation bar, thus removed the parameter "keyword.URL" completely. The reason for this seems to be to prevent browser hijacking from happening to novice users. This change also landed to the Pale Moon 24, but here are couple of options to get the old behavior back:

With the ability of add-ons (and their great developers):

keyword.URL Hack!
This is simply an add-on to resurrect the old behavior back. To use it, install it and add a new string parameter called "keyword.URL" to about:config if your profile is missing it. The parameter takes the search url which will be used from the navigation bar, e.g. I'm using Google's encrypted "feeling lucky" search engine:

Code: Select all

Site note about the current experimental state of the add-on from the developer, so use with caution:
The approach in which this add-on brings back the old behavior is indeed a very ugly hack (see also the name), so it can occasionally happen that other features related to search break. At this point this addon is supposed the be strongly considered experimental.
Keyword Search
This is another add-on that adds the same function back to use different individual search engine from the navigation bar without the need to change the search bar's engines. To use it, install and it will show new configuration window to set up the search engine. You can choose from the same search engines that you have currently installed including the DuckDuckGo secure search engine provided by default by the add-on. The difference between this add-on and with the the first one is that it doesn't use the keyword.URL parameter.

Without using add-ons

If you're like me and never use the search bar, there is another way to achieve the same functionality. Both search and navigation bar shares the same engines, which means that the engine you have currently selected from the search bar is used in navigation bar too. Therefor if you're using only the navigation bar for making your searches (e.g. using the keywords like letter 'g' for Google search), then you only have to change and select the default search engine from the search bar that will be also used in navigation bar when typing a search without the keywords.

Although if you're heavily dependent on using the search bar, I recommend to try this way out. In the near future it is most certain that Mozilla is planning to join these two bars the same way as in Chrome.