How to disable Quick Find Feature and Hotkeys in Mozilla Firefox?

By ivan.diskin | April 22, 2019 |

greater than 4 minutes

Technology has made everyone’s life easy. Every day, we witness groundbreaking inventions that are geared towards making things even easier for us. While we await the introduction of artificial intelligence that can make us do virtually nothing, we’re still basking in the enjoyment and convenience that tech has made possible.

We owe a lot of that convenience and enjoyment to the internet. Our mobile devices and computers are now integral parts of our lives and daily activities. Whether it’s browsing for information for work, checking out the latest happenings around you, or simply finding out why your skin looks different, you have to admit you can hardly do without the World Wide Web.

For good reason, the internet is packed with a mind-boggling amount of information. This is why strides are always being made to improve our browsing experience. Optimizations are deployed on a regular basis to ensure we find what we’re looking for without breaking a sweat. Search engines have made it simpler than ever to look for the right information on the internet in a timely manner.

However, a single web page can also pack a lot of information. Sometimes, your answers lie in a paragraph, a sentence, a phrase, or link that leads to somewhere else. In a congested website or blog, finding the info you’re looking for can be unnecessarily time-wasting, especially when you’re in a hurry.

Luckily, web browsers have done their part by adding nifty features to make things easier. The Find function is one of such features that can help you narrow your search. You’ll be pointed to the locations of words and phrases on a web page by simply typing them into a little text box. Well-known browsers such as Chrome, Microsoft Edge (Internet Explorer), and Firefox have this feature by default. You can access it by pressing Ctrl+F.

But with the aim of taking ease to a different level, Firefox introduced a unique Find feature known as Quick Find. With a simple tap on the apostrophe (‘) or the slash (/) key, which are called Hotkeys, a text box will pop up at the bottom of the browser, eliminating the need for pressing the Ctrl+F shortcut. Once you’re done with your search, all you have to do is press the Escape key or ignore it until it goes away on its own.

It even gets better: by pressing the apostrophe key, you can make the Quick Find function search for all the hyperlinks present on the web page, while the slash key, though similar to the traditional Find function, comes with additional features such as Match Case, Highlight All and more. Simply press Shift+F3 or F3 to navigate between the search results. So, this feature gives you an edge if you want to search for links or, case-sensitive words or phrase occurrences on a webpage

That said, certain users find the Quick Find feature a step too far and invasive, even though others welcome it. This is because some people type in text boxes while using their browsers. Pressing the apostrophe or slash key while typing will dramatically summon the Quick Find feature, and subsequent keystrokes will be entered into the Quick Find text box. All sorts of things will also begin to happen as your typing starts to initiate searches on the web page.

If you’re one of those that can’t take it anymore, not to worry: we’ll show you how to disable or turn off the Quick Find feature or ‘ and / hotkeys in Mozilla Firefox.

How to turn off Quick Find in Firefox

In earlier versions of Firefox, the Quick Find feature was sort of imposed on users as disabling it was virtually impossible. Thankfully, though, Mozilla introduced a hidden setting to make the Hotkeys go away, starting from version 63. This means you no longer have to worry about accidentally triggering the Quick Find feature while you type in online chat rooms, social media, or your WordPress admin panel. Follow the steps below to turn off the Quick Find feature:

Note: Make sure you’re using version 63 or a later version of Firefox.

  1. Open your Firefox browser.
  2. In the address bar, type or paste about:config and hit Enter.
  3. Click the “I accept the risks” button in the warning message that pops up.
  4. In the Search box, enter typeaheadfind and then look for accessibility.typeaheadfind.manual in the result list.
  5. Double-click accessibility.typeaheadfind.manual or right-click it and select Toggle to change its value to false.

Now that should do it! Go back to your browser and press the apostrophe or slash, and you’ll find that the Quick Find feature won’t pop up again. Simply use the Find feature (Ctrl+F) whenever you want to carry out searches on individual web pages. If you happen to need the Quick Find feature in the future, simply go back to the about:config advanced settings page and turn on the accessibility.typeaheadfind.manual preference.

There are other tweaks that can be applied in the about:config settings, but be careful as this part of the browser can be sensitive.

You can now browse seamlessly without having to worry about interruptions while you type. If you want to improve your overall browsing experience on your Windows computer and take your PC’s performance to the next level, install Auslogics BoostSpeed. The tool is designed to clear out junk files that are cluttering up your computer and causing lags. It also has a built-in protective feature that will prevent spyware from sniffing through sensitive information stored on your hard drive. Who says you can’t enjoy hassle-free browsing and have a PC in tip-top shape at the same time?

Do not hesitate to share your experiences with the Quick Find feature in Mozilla Firefox with us in the comments section below!

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