Add or remove a search engine in Firefox

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Firefox comes with a number of available search engines by default. Many websites offer search engines that you can add to Firefox. This allows you to search with that website's search engine, directly from your Firefox address bar or Search bar. This article explains how to add or remove the search engines that Firefox uses.

Add search engines

Note: If you removed one of the default search engines built into Firefox, such as Google, you can restore the default search engines in your Firefox OptionsPreferencesSettings to add it back. See Remove search engines and Adding back a removed search engine, below.

Firefox offers an optional Search bar. See Add the Search bar to your Firefox toolbar to add it to Firefox.

  1. Visit a website that offers an OpenSearch search engine (we'll use YouTube as an example).
  2. Click the magnifying glass addsearch 40 icon in the Search bar.
  3. Click on AddYouTubeSearchBarIcon Add "YouTube"the YouTube AddYouTubeSearchBarIcon icon in the Search bar drop-down.
    Fx78AddYouTubeSearchFx91SearchBar-AddYouTube

The search engine will appear in your available search options.

Add a search engine from the address bar

When you visit a website that offers an OpenSearch search engine, you can add it from the address bar Page actionscontext menu (we'll use YouTube as an example).

  1. Right-clickHold down the control key while you click on the address bar.
    Fx89AddSearchEngine
  2. Select Add "YouTube" from the context menu.
  1. Click the Page actions (3-dot) button on the address bar.
    Fx78PageActions-AddSearchFx88PageActions-AddSearch
  2. Select Add Search Engine from the Page actions menu.

To add search engine discovery to the address bar: Right-clickHold down the control key while you click the Page actions Add Search Engine menu item that indicates an available search engine (as shown above for YouTube) and select "Add to Address Bar". A search engine icon will be added to the address bar. When you visit a different site that offers a search engine (such as www.yahoo.com) then an icon for that site will appear in the address bar.

Fx78AddressBar-YahooSearchIcon

You can click on the website icon in the address bar to add the search engine.

Mycroft Project search engine plugins

The Mycroft Project website offers search engine plugins. When you click on an available search plugin, you can add it to Firefox from the Search bar or from the address bar context menuPage actions (3-dot) menu, on the Install plugin page.

Fx97InstallMycroftSearchEngine

Search engine add-ons

Many providers offer search engine add-ons. To find these search engines and add them to Firefox:

  1. In the Menu bar at the top of the screen, click Firefox and select Preferences. Click the menu button Fx57Menu and select OptionsPreferences.Click the menu button Fx89menuButton and select Settings.

  2. In the OptionsPreferencesSettings tab that opens, click on Search in the left pane.
    Tip: If you added the optional Search bar, another way to open the Search panel is to click the magnifying glass MagnifyingGlass on the Search bar and then click Change Search Settingsthe Fx89Personalize-GearIcon Change search settings icon.
  3. At the bottom of the Search panel, click on the Find more search engines link. The Firefox Add-ons website will open.
  4. Select the search engine add-on you want to install and click Add to Firefox.

Hide search engines

Follow these steps to remove alternative search engines you don't want to use.

  1. In the Menu bar at the top of the screen, click Firefox and select Preferences. Click the menu button Fx57Menu and select OptionsPreferences.Click the menu button Fx89menuButton and select Settings.

  2. In the OptionsPreferencesSettings tab that opens, click on Search in the left pane.
    Tip: If you added the optional Search bar, another way to open the Search panel is to click the magnifying glass MagnifyingGlass on the Search bar and then click Change Search Settingsthe Fx89Personalize-GearIcon Change search settings icon.
  3. Under One-click search enginesSearch Shortcuts, remove the check mark next to each search engine you don't want to use.
    Fx78SearchEngineListFx83settings-HideSearchEngine

Remove search engines

To remove a search engine, follow these steps:

  1. In the Menu bar at the top of the screen, click Firefox and select Preferences. Click the menu button Fx57Menu and select OptionsPreferences.Click the menu button Fx89menuButton and select Settings.

  2. In the OptionsPreferencesSettings tab that opens, click on Search in the left pane.
    Tip: If you added the optional Search bar, another way to open the Search panel is to click the magnifying glass MagnifyingGlass on the Search bar and then click Change Search Settingsthe Fx89Personalize-GearIcon Change search settings icon.
  3. Under One-click search enginesSearch Shortcuts, click on the search engine you want to remove.
    Fx78-RemoveSearchEngineFx83settings-RemoveSearchEngine
  4. Click the Remove button to take it off your list.
Note: If a search engine is added back after you restart Firefox, it may be a Firefox extension. Those can be removed using the Add-ons manager (see Disable or remove Add-ons for details).

Adding back a removed search engine

If you remove a search engine that you added yourself and you change your mind, you'll have to add it back again, either from the Search bar or address bar by visiting the website or by reinstalling the Search engine add-on (see above).

If you remove any of the default search engines that are built into Firefox, you'll have to go to your Firefox OptionsPreferencesSettings Search panel and click the Restore Default Search Engines button in the One-click search enginesSearch Shortcuts section to bring them back.

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