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Add custom search engines to Firefox


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Add custom search engine is a free extension for the Firefox web browser to add any search engine to the Firefox web browser.


Firefox users have quite a few options when it comes to adding search providers to the web browser: add them on Mozilla AMO, run searches on sites to have them added, use the search bar to add Open Search search engines, or use the Mycroft Project website to do so.


Mozilla changed recently how search providers are added to Firefox. The initial version broke important functionality, e.g. the option to add search engines from AMO or MyCroft. These issues have been fixed for the most part.

Add custom search engine

add custom search firefox


Add Custom Search Engine is a browser extension that adds an option to Firefox to add any Internet search engine to the browser using it.


Just click on the icon that the extension adds to the Firefox toolbar to open the "add custom search engine" dialog.


The basic version requires just two parameters: a name for the search engine and the search URL. You need to replace the search term with the placeholder %s. The best way to go about it is to run a search for TEST on the search engine, copy the URL, and replace TEST with %s, e.g. https://www.ghacks.net/?s=TEST with https://www.ghacks.net/?s=%s.


The extension may pick up the favicon automatically but you may specify it if it does not or if you would like to use a different icon. Browse options to pick a local icon are provided as well.


Note: The search engine data is uploaded to file.io temporarily due to a limitation with Firefox WebExtensions before the search engine is added to Firefox.


The search engine is added to the list of supported search engines by Firefox. You can make it the default search engine, add a keyword to it, or run searches using Firefox's one-off search functionality, or by using the search field if you make use of it.


Add Custom Search Engine supports advanced operators that you may enable on the configuration screen. These add the following options:

  • Use Post query parameters.
  • Add a suggest Url so that Firefox may use it to display suggestions using that functionality.
  • Change the input encoding.
  • Add a description.

Search engines that you add to Firefox remain available even after you remove the extension. You control all search engines by loading the about:preferences#search in the browser. There you may change the default search engine, enable or disable suggestions, add keywords to search engines, or remove search engines again.

Closing Words

Add Custom Search Engine is a handy extension for Firefox users who have issues adding certain search engines to the browser and users who want more control over the process.


Source: Add custom search engines to Firefox (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)

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