How-To Geek

Search Directly from Firefox’s Address Bar using Quick Search Shortcuts

Do you want a quick way to conduct searches in Firefox’s Address Bar using your favorite search engines? Then see just how easy it can be to search using this terrific set of shortcuts with the Instantfox extension.

To get started simply type in the letter associated with your choice of search engine (see list below), hit the space bar, and type in your search term. Instantfox will narrow down the results as you type. As you can see here, we only had one letter left to type for “Ubuntu” and we could finish our search just by clicking on the Wikipedia link without further typing.

Instantfox is also great for weather forecasts…just type “f” and your location.

Here are the quick searches available for the extension at the moment:

  • g >> Google
  • i >> Google Images
  • m >> Google Maps
  • e >> eBay
  • a >> Amazon
  • y >> Youtube
  • t >> Twitter
  • b >> Bing
  • yh >> Yahoo
  • w >> Wikipedia
  • wa >> WolframAlpha
  • c >> Calculator (i.e. c 1+2)
  • f >> Weather Forecast

Note: More quick searches are due to be added in future extension releases.

Download the Instantfox extension (Mozilla Add-ons) [via MakeTechEasier]
Instantfox Homepage

Akemi Iwaya is a devoted Mozilla Firefox user who enjoys working with multiple browsers and occasionally dabbling with Linux. She also loves reading fantasy and sci-fi stories as well as playing "old school" role-playing games. You can visit her on Twitter and .

  • Published 03/31/11

Comments (7)

  1. Bob

    Opera does this by default..

  2. MJ

    Yeah, Opera rules!!! I have most of those configured, and also dictionaries and translators.

  3. Steve

    the extension also let’s you use many of the Google search shortcuts in the address bar.
    Ex: g firefox tips and tricks

  4. tyros

    this was in opera long time ago

  5. Jamie

    Wasn’t this in Firefox a long time ago, without the need for an extension? Just right-click on a search box and choose “Add a Keyword for this search”. Is all that the extension does give you a convenient set of defaults?

  6. John Lander

    You can do this from the awesome search engine DuckDuckGo.

    If you set it as your default search engine in Firefox, you can enter “bangs” into your address bar, using DDG’s “band syntax”.

    !g – Searches Google
    !yt – Search YouTube
    !w – Searches Wikipedia

    And about 1000 more.

  7. roger

    I had a look at this, but, as I am already using many of my own keywords for my favourite sites, I couldn’t see a use for it. Actually I could not see the point of the calculator at all as all you have to do is enter the calculation or conversion directly into the Address bar ( at least if you use Google as your default search engine, I haven’t tried it with Bing or whatever, but assume others provide the same service).

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