Firefox addressbar search hijacked by Microsoft Bing

Previously, whenever I type something in Firefox addressbar and press enter, the search engine used is Google. Nowadays whenever I type something in the Firefox addressbar and pressed enter, the search engine used have changed to Microsoft’s Bing! I never recalled changing it so I did a search and found the following solution….

  1. Type about:config in Firefox’s address bar.
  2. In the Filter box, type keyword.
  3. You should find a few keyword entries. Make sure that keyword.enabled is set to true.
  4. Look for keyword.url and right click on it to modify. Copy this string value http://www.google.com/search?ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&sourceid=navclient&gfns=1&q= and enter it in the box.

Restart Firefox.

Source: Mozilla Support

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44 Responses

  1. Type about:config in Firefox addressbar and search for “bing.”
    Right click browser.search.defaultenginename url change to google

    • I can’t “search” for Bing in about:config but I can filter by browser.search.defaultenginename and it already says Google.

      • …but then I read Ravikumar Vasudevan below and tried “keyword.url”. It had an Alexa address (grrr – I’ve already uninstalled $%^&!*! Alexa and restarted FF). Changed that to “http://www.google.com/search?q=” and the problem now seems to be fixed.

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  3. Oh, thank you! I’m so thankful I found this helpful information,you’ve posted here. I have been so annoyed with the fact that Bing jacked my browser to increase its usage numbers. I, as I;m sure many people who use firefox know, that if i type a word into the address bar, if the word has a domain registered with it it immediately just comes up. No need to type http:// or .com. if i want to go to walmart thats what i type in the bar. all of a sudden Bing’s jacked me and added a level of irritaion to a feature I enjoyed. Congratulation on all your success with Bing, Microsoft. If at first you don’t succeed, cram it down my throat. Google FTW

  4. Here’s how you change firefox’s address bar search from bing to google.

    Type “about:config” in firefox address bar and type “keyword.url”. right click and choose modify and type “http://www.google.com/search?q=”

    Ref:: http://www.blogsolute.com/2009/09/change-default-firefox-search-engine-bing-wikipedia-yahoo.html

  5. the above method works for keyword searches… and forwards your entry to a google search result page, but if you type in “walmart” or “engadget”, it still takes you to the search result page instead of directly to the actual website.

    i installed ccleaner and somehow did a double click through the wizard and the gay ask.com toolbar got installed… but even after removing it, it’s hijacking of firefox is still around.

    after doing the above and changing the search engine back… i can enter in a keyword but it ALWAYS sends me to a search result page instead of directly to the website if there is a domain registered for that keyword.

  6. Awsome article, it’s my pleasure to read your blog.

  7. Bing had installed itself as my address bar search engin. Very frustrating. your instructions worked. Tx Mark

  8. Heres how…
    see Ravikumar Vasudevans post above, hes almost there, it gets rid of bing but wont take you to the website you asked for, just gives a list of hits like a normal google or whatever search, so follow his instructions but dont paste http://www.google.com/search?q=,
    instead paste this

    http://www.google.com/search?ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&sourceid=navclient&gfns=1&q=

    and you should be back to your pre-bing state.

  9. Heres how…
    see Ravikumar Vasudevans post above, hes almost there, it gets rid of bing but wont take you to the website you asked for, just gives a list of hits like a normal google or whatever search, so follow his instructions but dont paste “http://www.google.com/search?q=”,
    instead paste this
    “http://www.google.com/search?ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&sourceid=navclient&gfns=1&q=”
    and you should be back to your pre-bing state.
    Sorry about first post, forgot to put “” ! so copy and paste
    Reply

    • After having tried many different things, I was frustrated in being unable to revert back to the original Firefox address bar functionality. Your solution did the trick!

      Thank you so very much!!

      P.S. This was very under-handed and coercive of Microsoft! Boo to them.

  10. Great!

    That was annoying me so much, thank you.

  11. Im not trying to embarrass you, but do you have any embarrassing guilty pleasures?

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  13. I’ve tried changing the keyword.URL back to google maaaaany times. Every single time I restart the browser, Bing is back. I tried it in safe mode and still the same thing. It’s really frustrating!

  14. Thanks for telling me how to return to Google for search. But the Bing search page appears whenever I open a new tab or browser, even when I set my homepage to Google!

    Please tell me how to make this default to my homepage.

  15. This guy knows his stuff
    That killed those little SOBs at M$ and their unwanted cantgiveitaway BING

    scroll down and click on the line that starts

    browser.search.defaultenginename

    and a dialog pops up and then just type in your favorite ==> google :) in place of BING

  16. Thank you so much!!! This has officially solved one of the most frustrating problems. I had tried everything and had made sure there were no installs of bing anywhere but still it would come up. I am so thankful for this post.

  17. Dude, I’ve never been so happier to have gotten rid of bing! Love you, HATE bing.

  18. Yes! Did exactly what the first post said and problem seems to be fixed. THANK YOU!

    I’m able to go straight to websites without typing the full url. For instance, “fb” takes me straight to facebook.

    Screw off Bing, you are terrible….

  19. Worked! Thank you!!
    Goodbye Bing!

  20. Okay, so HOW did this happen?

  21. It finally worked!!!! Thank you!!!! I am so thankful!!

  22. Thanks for the help
    i felt like hijacked….

  23. THANK YOU!!!!

    All of a sudden Firefox states I have a problem and should run in safe mode (now I don’t recall if there was a software update at the same time).

    I do that and my entire menu bar changes and I see BING where there wasn’t any search engine previously!

    I wasted nearly 2 days trying to figure out HOW to REMOVE IT! Firefox’s site was USELESS! I decided to boot up IE and discovered it was the same. So I kept searching and finally arrived here!

    THANK YOU.
    Simple instruction and simply execution.

    It’s not the same as it was Pre-Bing, but finally it is more normal than bing.

  24. Post Bing … how do I return the “close and save open tabs” (don’t know the term) feature in firefox ?

  25. Thank you for the posting this info!

  26. Startnow toolbar was inadvertently installed by Adobe Flash Player when I updated it and after realizing and uninstalling the toolbar noticed that Bing had somehow hijacked Firefox’s address bar search. No matter what I tired to change in about:config it remained this way and I got frustrated enough to look for solutions. Thank YOU! lol This worked, and there was the evidence that Startnow toolbar did this right there.

    Never again will I install Adobe Flash from Adobe’s own site again. I will now get it from a different and trusted resource as this type of problem is caused by Adobe looking for ways to generate income off bundling with these viral toobar companies as default settings upon installation of their software. Sneaky Adobe, very very low and sneaky of you….

  27. You’re awesome. Bing = gone.

  28. Thanks for the helpful assist there. Was getting annoyed with the veoh web player hijacking my browser search and was unable to track down the cause.

  29. Wow! You guys use 6 trackers.I think I got rid of the above but now I don’t know how to get rid of another insidious Microsoft product.Microsoft .Net Framework Assistant 0.0.0 is an extension added to Firefox without my permission & cannot be removed,only disabled.Any ideas?

  30. You have saved my day. I HATE BING.

  31. HELP – when I type in about.config in the URL bar, it takes me right to My Earthlink page, and it says “We are sorry, about.config cannot be found.”

    • sorry – my fault – I read that as about.config – then I tried about:config and it worked fine! Thanks a bunch!

  32. OP: Thanks for the clear guidance. I did upgrade Adobe flash recently, but I thought I unchecked the box to make bing the default search engine. I will check it more closely next time.

  33. they say they have fixed it but if not this is what i did and it worked for me but I have a mac not sure if it works the same on mirco soft

    i down loaded google chrome, and started to search on google only at some point a message comes up saying google is not your serch and do you want to chang it press yes then keep using only google to search and it fully changes your search engins to google

  34. Thanks much I was about to just uninstall firefox if I couldn’t fix it.

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