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  • Last reply by Chris Ilias

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One of your recent updates has all searches forced to the address bar..... I use the Google search box on my homepage and from the first letter its moved to the address bar... Go back to the Google box on the homepage.... You've made it useless....

One of your recent updates has all searches forced to the address bar..... I use the Google search box on my homepage and from the first letter its moved to the address bar... Go back to the Google box on the homepage.... You've made it useless....

Chosen solution

There is an option to turn that off at the moment, but I don't know whether it is a permanent option:

(1) In a new tab, type or paste about:config in the address bar and press Enter/Return. Click the button accepting the risk.

(2) In the search box in the page, type or paste handoff and pause while the list is filtered

(3) Double-click the browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.improvesearch.handoffToAwesomebar preference to switch the value from true to false

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All Replies (20)

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fx13 said

As I said in my version of the same complaint Microsoft knows better than you what you are thinking and what you intend to do. No they do not. I constantly fight MS software to do what I need. In my car if I press the accelerator pedal, I don't expect the radio to change stations. Don't be like the assholes at Microsoft. Put my search back on the screen/page I start typing on. (HINT: If I wanted to type in the address bar - I would type in the address bar)


I totally & utterly agree! Mozilla Firefox - please fix this very annoying glitch!

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jscher2000 said

There is an option to turn that off at the moment, but I don't know whether it is a permanent option: (1) In a new tab, type or paste about:config in the address bar and press Enter/Return. Click the button accepting the risk. (2) In the search box in the page, type or paste handoff and pause while the list is filtered (3) Double-click the browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.improvesearch.handoffToAwesomebar preference to switch the value from true to false

Thank you! It took days of searching for a solution after a recent update. This one works!

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So far, I've turned this feature off, in addition to the, (as one employee called it), horrible user interface off, on about 36 machines, and I still have a boatload of machines to deal with.

Thank you very much Mozilla.

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Colin WG said

So far, I've turned this feature off, in addition to the, (as one employee called it), horrible user interface off, on about 36 machines, and I still have a boatload of machines to deal with.

Are you in an environment where you could use Group Policy to modify user configuration?

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Thank you for the option to get back to it, it did work!

I wasted all the day yesterday to find a way, (yes I'm that bad with a computer) I even switched to Chrome, with all passwords etc... 

Seriously, I just can't see the point of having a search bar in the middle of the screen if it's useless. I'm a journalist, the middle bar is where I type 90% of my searches, I need to see quickly what I'm looking for, the typing is obviously much smaller in the adress bar and it's at the top of the screen, what's the logic?? I'm not against improvements but that's not one. Anyway, I suppose that's trial and error, thanks for the help everyone!

Modified by delphinekargayan

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Thanks for this solution, jscher2000, and giving up your nights and weekends to help us! It works perfectly. For some reason it hurt my eyes when the words I typed in the search box jumped to the address bar. My old eyes don't readjust that quickly.

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Hello to everyone,

I'm sorry to point out that, once the value of browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.improvesearch.handoffToAwesomebar has been turned to false, there's no change at all! Being eighty years of age, I'm too old to start learning the ABC's of IT, so I'm afraid I'll have to get used to that singularity, I mean the address bar and the search bar on the same line.

Have a nice day!

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smthiebaud said

We come to firefox to avoid all the crap the other browsers force on you. I like to search from the google search window on my firefox homepage. It is very distracting to have it automatically move to the address bar. Please leave basic functions alone. Please stop showing us all that is new. If we want to see new features we can look for them. If there is a feature we want, we can look to see if it is available. When I open firefox I only want to see a clear screen with an empty google search window in the middle. Then I want to type something into that search window and have it stay in the search window. Then I want to hit return and have firefox take me to google showing my search results. Please I only want what I was looking to find. I do not wish to upset anyone, but you have absolutely nothing worth while to ever suggest for me. Remeber that if I want to find something I will go and find it. The same may apply to features. Turn them all off and let us choose what we wish to use. Default should be off for everything that doesn't disable the browser. Steve

Couldn't agree more. Perhaps Firefox could post this above the computer of everyone who writes code for them. But they are in denial. "If that doesn't help, please can you explain why searching from the address bar is different or not suitable for your needs?" This is so common in tech thinking. We know what is good for you. If you don't like it, you must be a weird outlier. We will tell you what you need. You must justify yourself. Conform to our standards.

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jierbe31 said

Hello to everyone, I'm sorry to point out that, once the value of browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.improvesearch.handoffToAwesomebar has been turned to false, there's no change at all! Being eighty years of age, I'm too old to start learning the ABC's of IT, so I'm afraid I'll have to get used to that singularity, I mean the address bar and the search bar on the same line. Have a nice day!

Maybe it has something to do with your computer? I'm also 80 yo, running Win 7 on an ancient Dell laptop. Turning the setting to "false" did solve the problem for me: my search box is now the search bar more or less in the middle of the page, not the address bar near the top of the page. (Why on earth anyone thought that forcing search input into the address bar was a good idea is impossible to fathom.)

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TP said

fx13 said

As I said in my version of the same complaint Microsoft knows better than you what you are thinking and what you intend to do. No they do not. I constantly fight MS software to do what I need. In my car if I press the accelerator pedal, I don't expect the radio to change stations. Don't be like the assholes at Microsoft. Put my search back on the screen/page I start typing on. (HINT: If I wanted to type in the address bar - I would type in the address bar)

Well said! Love the part about the car radio - an excellent metaphor! Firefox: stop forcing things on us. Gearhead thinking generates more problems than it solves.

I totally & utterly agree! Mozilla Firefox - please fix this very annoying glitch!

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drwin said

jierbe31 said

Hello to everyone, I'm sorry to point out that, once the value of browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.improvesearch.handoffToAwesomebar has been turned to false, there's no change at all! Being eighty years of age, I'm too old to start learning the ABC's of IT, so I'm afraid I'll have to get used to that singularity, I mean the address bar and the search bar on the same line. Have a nice day!

Maybe it has something to do with your computer? I'm also 80 yo, running Win 7 on an ancient Dell laptop. Turning the setting to "false" did solve the problem for me: my search box is now the search bar more or less in the middle of the page, not the address bar near the top of the page. (Why on earth anyone thought that forcing search input into the address bar was a good idea is impossible to fathom.)

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Although I'm hopeless with IT, I can assure you this has nothing to do with my computer. It runs Win 10 Pro and is updated quite regularly. Please dont ask me why the process failed on my computer, I've decided to accommodate myself with that new absurdity! I only wish I could tell Mozilla computer engineers what I really think of their particular initiative!

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jierbe31 said

Although I'm hopeless with IT, I can assure you this has nothing to do with my computer. It runs Win 10 Pro and is updated quite regularly. Newer isn't always better. One reason I stick to Win7 is that it works, and it's a lot cleaner. I've tried the various Windows "upgrades" and they all turn out to be downgrades, just more tinsel and junk, little popups and sidebars and useless features. (Sort of comparable to Firefox's new, "upgraded" useless feature of putting searches in the address bar instead of the search bar/search box.) I would not be at all surprised if in fact the Win 10 Pro is the reason that the solution that worked instantly on my ancient Win 7 machine did not work for you. Please dont ask me why the process failed on my computer, I've decided to accommodate myself with that new absurdity! I only wish I could tell Mozilla computer engineers what I really think of their particular initiative!
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jscher2000 said

SeanaMuigean said

A search bar is for searching and an address bar is for addresses and never the twain should interchange.

.... you can set keyword.enabled to false in about:config, as well as the above-referenced preference.

"The above-referenced preference" is on display in the cellar without stairs in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying "Beware of the Leopard."

Whats the point to have a search bar if you are forced to not use it ?!?! How much effort is to put a tick in the Setting-> Search "Do not use address bar as a search bar" ?

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I prefer the search box in the center of the page to work when I put the cursor there. The automatic handoff to the address bar is a giant step backwards. Visually using the address bar is harder for most of my searches. When I want to use the address bar, I will use the address bar. When I want to use the search box, I want to use the search box. No automatic handoff to what I don't choose.

I've done the about:config switcheroo...but fie on Firefox for making me do it.

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Okay, the solution provided does work, even if only temporarily, but that is totally unacceptable.

As others have said, the Address Bar is for addresses, ie URLs.

The Search Bar is for searches.

I start typing "horse" in the Search Bar and suddenly I'm in the Address Bar with a huge drop-menu with a bunch of URLs not even related to horses.

Whoever dreamed that up should be taken out and shot.

The whole reason to use Firefox was because it wasn't like other browsers, and guess what? Opera and Brave don't do that, so that's what I'll be using from now on.

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I too don't see the need to send your search topics to a new window. What was wrong with the way it has always been in previous versions? It just adds extra key strokes for users - especially since the window which has been unnecessarily opened takes you to the search engine you would have got to in any case. Come on Firefox - do a fix to get rid of this totally unnecessary irritant! Many years ago I worked for a govt department user testing new software. In that role I would never have accepted this so called "improvement". Is any user testing done now or do the techies know best?

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Since fixing my search box with about:config, I no longer choose to update my firefox when updates are offered. Too risky.

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Thank you jscher2000 for the work around! I really appreciate it. Now Mozilla needs to at least make this an option in settings are just plain fix it. I thought that I had changed the wrong setting. It never crossed my mind that this was actually a "design" decision!!!

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I just dropped by, to offer my sincere gratitude to jscher2000.

Searching for this kind of solution on various forums and topics must have cost me around 2 hours time, not to mention driving me insane.

Apart from that, let me try and provide some context about why i think this type of change was a terrible idea: I use a 42" monitor and my eye level is exactly in the middle of the screen. When i start typing in the search bar of the home page, said bar is perhaps 1-2 inches from the middle of the page. When this annoying change was implemented, i had to start my focus in the middle of the screen then, at the first pressed key, shift my focus to the upper left side of the screen, which was quite uncomfortable.

Even in a 27" monitor i also use, i find the shift in focus annoying and tiresome, especially if you spend a lot of time in front one, as i do.

Anyway, thanks again jscher2000, i really appreciate it.

Modified by Silent Society

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