Setup plugins directory in Linux (debian) for Firefox

I had issues with Firefox not finding the plugins for flash. I had to setup the following environment variable for it to find it:

Check if it is already set:


If it is not, set it:

export MOZ_PLUGIN_PATH=/home/user/.mozilla/plugins

Any path will work, I just used the .mozilla directory to keep things clean.

You should restart Firefox to see the plugins.


This was tested on Debian Wheezy.

Change default search engine in Firefox (in address bar)

The default search engine in Firefox is Google. There is a way to change it to whichever search engine you wish. In this post I will talk for transferring the default search from Google to DuckDuckGo. I am experimenting with DDG now and seeing if it will suit my needs better than Google.

Instant Search

For the instant search () you can easily add new search engines or select one on the go, there is even a GUI which will help you add new ones, remove and edit them

When you are on a website that offers search services, you will see a new entry “Add <site>” in the instant search list of engines, click it and it will be added automatically. So visit now to add it if you wish.

Default Search in Address Bar

The default search is the address bar (), instead of typing a URL, you type a search query and hit enter. The search query is then passed to your default search engine and the results are displayed on their website.

There is a way to modify the default search engine in Firefox, start by typing this in the address bar:


agree to the warning and in the search field enter the following:

It should show one row and the Value field should be Google. Double click on it, and enter the value of your desired default search engine (in this case DuckDuckGo).

Click OK and you are good to go.

Note: The search engine that you want to make as your default must be in the Instant Search list.

This is good for productivity if you are using multiple search engines, you can set them on each and search faster without distractions.

Firefox: How to save tabs on exit and display them on restart

With Firefox 4 (and 5) the feature which asks if you want to save the tabs on exit/close is no longer active by default. This feature was great for me because I restart Firefox from time to time to refresh my RAM or just restart the machine and I don’t want to add everything in bookmarks or lose some tabs that I am intending to read/view later.


1. Open the about:config page by typing that in the Firefox’s address bar, then press Enter

About-config in the address bar

2. Agree to the warning screen by clicking the I’ll be careful, I promise! button

3. Locate the preference browser.showQuitWarning (type it or part of it in the filter on the top), if its value is false, double click on it and the value will change to true.

4. Repeat step 3 for the following preferences:

  • browser.warnOnQuit
  • browser.warnOnRestart
  • browser.tabs.warnOnClose

Now every time you close or restart Firefox it will warn you and ask if you want to save the tabs or not. You can modify these settings to your needs, by following the above steps (double click will set the values to false).

This is tested on Firefox 4.x and Firefox 5.x.

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