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How do you change the default search engine in the address bar?

Posted

AVG toolbar beta changed the search engine used when I type in the address bar to Yahoo search. I have uninstalled AVG toolbar beta completely, but I cannot seem to discover how to change the search engine back to Google search.

Chosen solution

Skip this step unless you also have a Yahoo Toolbar Remove the Yahoo Toolbar

  1. "Ctrl+Shift+A" (Add-ons Manager)
  2. Select Puzzle piece on left-side for Extensions List
  3. Find "Yahoo Toolbar" and click on "Uninstall" button, and restart Firefox. (if you really need to keep the Yahoo toolbar, you can hide the toolbar instead with customize, and still change all the search defaults as below)

Then to fix the default search engine used at the Location Bar, change the value of keyword.URL in about:config to one of the values shown in Location Bar search at MozillaZine.

  1. type in about:config into the location bar (in a new tab)
  2. if the warning message nonsense comes up uncheck the box before dismissing the dialog message
  3. filter on keyword
  4. right-click on keyword.URL and choose "modify" then paste in the Google search engine string of your choice.
  5. filter on defaulturl
  6. right-click on browser.search.defaulturl (if it exists)and again choose "modify" then paste in the Google search engine string of your choice.
  7. filter on ytff
  8. right-click on yahoo.ytff.search.popup_src (if it exists) and again choose "modify" then paste in the Google search engine string of your choice, if adventurous might see if "reset" would remove and see if gone in next session (well not for those keeping the extension).

Avoiding the problems: Many software installations contain additional baggage known as crapware. The Yahoo Toolbar is packaged with Java picture

More information on ask.com, Yahoo Toolbars which involve extensions, not just changes to the home page.

More information on configuration variables available in about:config entries and for users not familiar with the process there is about:config (How to change).

Read this answer in context 10

Additional System Details

This happened

Every time Firefox opened

This started when...

I installed AVG toolbar beta.

Installed Plug-ins

  • np-mswmp
  • Adobe PDF Plug-In For Firefox and Netscape "9.4.4"
  • Shockwave Flash 10.3 r181
  • iTunes Detector Plug-in
  • 4.0.60531.0
  • Office Authorization plug-in for NPAPI browsers
  • The plug-in allows you to open and edit files using Microsoft Office applications
  • NPWLPG
  • The QuickTime Plugin allows you to view a wide variety of multimedia content in Web pages. For more information, visit the QuickTime Web site.

Application

  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:5.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/5.0

More Information

David McRitchie 321 solutions 3089 answers

Chosen Solution

Skip this step unless you also have a Yahoo Toolbar Remove the Yahoo Toolbar

  1. "Ctrl+Shift+A" (Add-ons Manager)
  2. Select Puzzle piece on left-side for Extensions List
  3. Find "Yahoo Toolbar" and click on "Uninstall" button, and restart Firefox. (if you really need to keep the Yahoo toolbar, you can hide the toolbar instead with customize, and still change all the search defaults as below)

Then to fix the default search engine used at the Location Bar, change the value of keyword.URL in about:config to one of the values shown in Location Bar search at MozillaZine.

  1. type in about:config into the location bar (in a new tab)
  2. if the warning message nonsense comes up uncheck the box before dismissing the dialog message
  3. filter on keyword
  4. right-click on keyword.URL and choose "modify" then paste in the Google search engine string of your choice.
  5. filter on defaulturl
  6. right-click on browser.search.defaulturl (if it exists)and again choose "modify" then paste in the Google search engine string of your choice.
  7. filter on ytff
  8. right-click on yahoo.ytff.search.popup_src (if it exists) and again choose "modify" then paste in the Google search engine string of your choice, if adventurous might see if "reset" would remove and see if gone in next session (well not for those keeping the extension).

Avoiding the problems: Many software installations contain additional baggage known as crapware. The Yahoo Toolbar is packaged with Java picture

More information on ask.com, Yahoo Toolbars which involve extensions, not just changes to the home page.

More information on configuration variables available in about:config entries and for users not familiar with the process there is about:config (How to change).

Modified by David McRitchie

Question owner

Thanks! I followed your instructions, and it seems to have worked. I never would have figured that out by myself. I wonder why it is not in the Help files?

David McRitchie 321 solutions 3089 answers

Helpful Reply

You're welcome.

I don't think it belongs in the Help file, but since the Help file was shoved into the KB (Knowledge Base) that blurs the lines. This is not a reference on how to use Firefox (help reference) nor even as examples on how to use (guide)_ but in solving a problem introduced by an extension or external changes to Firefox (KB article or practical experience).