Thursday, 31 January 2013

Restore/change new tab URL on your Mozilla Firefox

Problem in opening new Mozilla Firefox tab? While trying to open a new tab in Mozilla Firefox, does the new tab automatically open with an unwanted URL( something like or )? And you are not sure how to fix it? You tried Tools > Options but you just couldn't find a way?

So, without further ado, let me tell you... there is a solution. The fact is, many of Firefox's important settings aren't visible through the Tools > Options menu and you can only change them manually. Firefox keeps its settings in a javascript file called prefs.js ( to know the location of this file, click here ). You can edit the file manually, but it's easier to edit the user preferences using Firefox. Just type about:config in the Location Bar (address bar) and hit enter. If you are opening about:config for first time you will get a warning ( you might want to click the 'show this warning next time' check box off). Click on the I'll be careful, I promise! button.

You'll see all the user configuration preferences currently enumerated in prefs.js, listed in alphabetical order. To limit the configuration preferences list to the one you need just type browser.newtab.url in the search bar above the list. Then edit the preference by double-clicking on it and putting new value (your preferred URL) in the prompt. It can be or about:blank or any url that you prefer.

However, it is advisable that you log any change made to the prefs.js file using about:config.


  1. Hi,

    So far I've only seen extensions that modify keyword.URL value and not the browser.newtab.url. Must be something new, maybe by any chances you still have that extension? I would then update the post about Certified toolbar. Waiting for your reply. Thanks!

    1. Thanks Michael,

      I removed the extension using firefox add-ons manager before modifying the newtab url. But, following instructions in your post, I found certified toolbar as a search provider in IE8 and removed it from there too. As I found, keyword.URL is a preference which determines the Internet Keywords service URL. Perhaps these toolbars modify it to change the service. I was facing problem with opening a new tab on firefox. Removing the extension did not solve the problem. Found this solution on mozilla support website. However, thanks for sharing your great post.

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