Set up your browser to make your work easy

Last updated on
30 September 2016

Setup an Internet Explorer quick search to search Drupal API documents.

You can set up the same functionality in Internet Explorer [editor's note: not sure which versions]:

  1. Create a text file called "ie_search.reg" containing the following lines:
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchUrl\api]

    You can substitute a different URL for to search a different site.

  2. Double-click to import it into your registry
  3. To use this, open Internet Explorer and type your search into the browser's address bar (e.g.: "api bootstrap").

Setup a Firefox quick search to search Drupal API.

This was first posted by MissterX as a comment to this page. But now exist in page itself.

  1. Start Firefox (tested with version 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 beta).
  2. Surf to
  3. In the Search Bar, you will see an icon for whatever search engine is currently active. By default, it will be Google's "G". Directly to the right of this icon is a down arrow. Click on either the icon or the arrow.
  4. A drop-down menu will now appear. Under configured search engines you will see text like this (in the language FF is configured of course):
  5. Add "Drupal API 5"
    Add "Drupal API 6"
    Add "Drupal API 7"
    Add "Drupal API 8"

  6. Choose one or more of the listed API search engines.
  7. Done!

Configure Firefox For Development

The following settings are appropriate for development, but you probably don't want to use them for general web surfing:

To prevent Firefox from timing out and terminating a request while Drupal is stopped in a breakpoint:

Starting about release 29, Firefox has a timer that terminates an incomplete HTTP request after a certain length of time. This can cause termination while Drupal is in the interactive debugger, thus ending the debug session prematurely. To prevent this, type about:config into the location bar:
search for network.http.response.timeout:
double click on this line to show the popup to modify the value:
and set the value to 0.

To prevent Firefox using outdated JavaScript or CSS:

Install the Web Developer extension and restart Firefox. Go to Disable>Disable Cache and check Disable Entire Cache:

Setup Chromium/Chrome to search the Drupal 7 API* by adding a custom search engine.

  1. Start Chrome (tested with Chromium 17).
  2. Copy & paste "chrome://settings/searchEngines" into your address bar, press enter/return then scroll to the bottom.
  3. You will see a row with three empty fields:
    1. Enter "Drupal 7 API" into the first field (Add a new search engine)
    2. Enter "D7" into the second field (Keyword)
    3. Enter "" into the third field (URL with %s in place of the query)
  4. Lastly press the enter/return key to save the new search engine
  5. Now test it out by opening a new tab (Ctrl/Cmd + T) and then type "D7" followed by tab then enter your search term followed by enter/return.

* You can setup multiple versions of the Drupal API to be searched by repeating the steps above and replacing the "7" with the desired version number.

Setup your browser to jump to API docs, project pages and more(Cross-browser using open-search)

This was first posted on Ayesh's blog here. Now the XML source exists here also.

You can setup a cross-browser search to jump to project pages, special document pages, API functions, and even user profiles using Google's "I'm feeling lucky" search.
Adding a custom search to browsers depends on the browser. In Firefox, you can't add custom searches to the browser without hacking XML files or using add-ons. Also, as "I'm feeling lucky" search is not giving any search boxes, we have to use a different approach to add this search.

Once setup, you can quickly jump to modules' and themes' project pages just by entering name of the module. For an example, searching for "Views" will open the Views module's project page. Searching for "Core" will open Drupal core's project page.
Searching for "api node_save()" will open the relevant API document.
You can even search for user names, common bugs(such as "WSOD"), issue queues("Issues for Views", etc), and more. It entirely depends on how Google "thinks" about it.

Note that we are not adding a "Drupal" term to the search. The trick here is, we are adding the "Drupal" term to the search query and launch an "I'm feeling lucky" search so you will end up in correct page.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?> 
- <OpenSearchDescription xmlns="" xmlns:moz="">
  <ShortName>Drupal Search</ShortName> 
  <Description>Drupal search is designed to jump to module pages faster and search Drupal-related stuff easier.</Description> 
  <Url type="text/html" method="get" template="{searchTerms}" /> 
  <Image width="16" height="16"></Image> 
  <Developer>Ayesh Karunaratne</Developer> 
  <Url type="application/opensearchdescription+xml" rel="self" template="" /> 

Note: Please note that this XML file contains Ayesh's own words. Please change it to your own purpose. favicon is 48x48 pixels. But according to Open-search standards, icon should be 16x16 pixels. So a new icon was uploaded to his site.


<Url type="text/html" method="get" template="{searchTerms}" />
This is the main search URL pattern. it will add "Drupal" keyword to the query and fire a Google "|'m feeling lucky" search.

<Url type="application/opensearchdescription+xml" rel="self" template="" />
This is the location of XML file so updates will apply from that XML file.


Create your own open-search XML file and use your browser-specific method to add the open-search.
If you feel that it's a more work, you can install it right from Ayesh's blog page here.