Disable auto completion in Firefox address bar

Fire­fox 3 has a "fea­ture" that auto-fills a web­site that you wish to go to as you're typ­ing in the Loca­tion bar.

I wanted to turn this off, but with­out turn­ing off other auto com­plete functionality:

  • I want to retain the auto­com­plete in forms (which can be man­aged from Tools -> Options -> Privacy)
  • I also want to retain the auto­com­plete in the search box on the right (which can be turned off by right-clicking inside the box, and then check­ing off "Show Suggestions")

But the Loca­tion Bar is a some­what more involved beast. After hunt­ing in the innards of "about:config" I dis­cov­ered that this was pos­si­ble. Just fol­low these steps:

  1. In the loca­tion bar, type about:config. The loca­tion bar is of course the place where you type URLs. Note that this is your inter­nal Fire­fox con­fig­u­ra­tion. Don't mess with it.
  2. In the text box that appears at the top of this page, enter browser.urlbar.maxRichResults as the pref­er­ence name. (Tip: copy it from here and paste it into that box.)
  3. Set the value to 0 if you wish to dis­able the auto-complete alto­gether. I have it set to 2 so I get some sug­ges­tions but it doesn't crowd up the experience.
  • Jon

    Any way to dis­able the sug­ges­tions while typ­ing on Google.com?
    It annoys the hell out of me!


  • / snip­tools

    That's the eas­i­est. That's inline form auto-filling. You'll find it in Options (in Win­dows) or Pref­er­ences (on Mac). Look for "Saved Form His­tory" or words to that effect.

  • jon

    Thanks for your reply.

    Well, I still can't find a way to dis­able it!
    May be my Fire­fox that's crappy. I read that it's best to unin­stall the cur­rent ver­sion run­ning before installing 3.0.1…I did not do that.

    I have set "signon.autofillForms" and "browser.urlbarFill" to false.
    The only thing under options that I can find is "remem­ber what I enter in forms and the search bar". That box is empty.

    I just want to not have sug­ges­tions while start­ing typ­ing some­thing on google.com.
    I'll sur­vive. Just got to swal­low the annoyance.

  • / snip­tools

    It's a part of your "Pri­vate His­tory". You can clear that from the cache and it'll be gone.

    Tools -> Clear Pri­vate Data.

    Then select the option for "Saved Form His­tory". In Tools -> Options -> Pri­vacy, you can set up auto­matic dele­tion of form his­tory when you close Firefox.

  • Jon

    Thanks Shanx for try­ing to help me.

    Either I'm stu­pid or I'm.…stupid.
    I'm clear­ing the pri­vate data en cache and have FF auto delete it every time I close the appli­ca­tion, but the sug­ges­tions still appear.

    Are you sure that the sug­ges­tions appear because of my search his­tory or my cache though? The sug­ges­tions are just going by what I type in and not by some­thing I searched for before..seems more like some­thing inside FF that can be dis­abled through about:config

    maybe the quick search bar sug­ges­tions is all that can be disabled…

  • Omnidex

    Google's auto sug­ges­tion is web-based javascript that has noth­ing to do with your browser's set­tings. If you have the Adblock Plus add-on you can dis­able it by adding this filter:


    That will fil­ter out the javascript auto sug­ges­tion box.

  • Jon

    Thanks a mil­lion, it worked!
    My life is now complete!


  • Dave in NC

    I am plagued by the same prob­lem. Where does on add the fil­ter "http://www.google.com/extern_js/*"?
    Thanks, Dave

  • / snip­tools

    Dave in NC, you can add that in the AdBlock fil­ters. Do you use AdBlock? It makes life a lot sim­pler, and is almost the first addon I install. Once you have it on your sys­tem, right-click on the lit­tle "AB" icon that will appear in your Fire­fox sta­tus bar on the right hand side and then on "Open Block­able Items". Rest is intuitive.

  • Ernie

    I just fol­lowed these instruc­tions to the let­ter and the loca­tion bar is still auto­com­plet­ing! Please help.…