Firefox: add saved searches and folder searches back to the library

Martin Brinkmann
Jul 23, 2013

When you open the Firefox bookmarks library right now, you may notice that it misses a couple of elements that Mozilla removed in Firefox 19. Before that version, it was possible to save searches that you made here and to restrict searches to select folders.

This is actually how Mozilla handled the "most visited", "recently bookmarked" and "recent tags" bookmark listings in the browser up to that point.

With the feature removed, it is no longer possible to limit your searches to a specific folder in the bookmarks, or to save searches.

The reason for the move? Simplification of the library to port it in a tab. According to Mozilla, the features may be added back after the port. At the very least, bookmark search may get improvements but no mention has been made as of yet how those improvements will look like.

bookmarks library
new library

Firefox users who are missing the feature can install the SavedSearchButton extension for the web browser to add it back to it.

After you have installed the extension and restarted the Firefox web browser, you will notice that the option to save bookmark searches and to search only in a specific folder has been added to the library of the browser again.

old library

Let me show you how this works. This can be useful to users who have not noticed the feature yet in the browser.

Saving bookmark searches

save firefox bookmarks

Enter a search term that you are interested in, e.g. Firefox. The library populates all results automatically once you stop typing. You can browse the selection here directly, or use the save button to save the search.

If you do, you will receive a prompt to name the new search. It is then added as an entry to the Bookmarks Menu so that you can reopen it whenever you need to access it without running that search again.

What this means is that you can access the search results in one of the toolbars, bookmarks menu or in the library directly.

Filtering searches

This is mostly useful if you sort your bookmarks into folders and if you have  a lot of them. Instead of searching all bookmarks, you restrict the search to a single folder instead. This can be useful if you do not want other bookmarks to pollute the results, or to narrow down the search results.

You can combine the search and save option as well.


If you have used saved searches in Firefox before you may already know about the extension. If not, you may want to give it a try to create a couple of custom saved searches to access a custom selection of bookmarks easier. (via Sören)


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. lliseil said on January 23, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    Thank you for the tip and the explanations Martin.
    I can confirm Alice White’s addon ‘SavedSearchButton’ does as you say.
    And it helps to have her other addon ‘Show Parent Folder’ installed as well.

    Now let’s search for a practical way to restrict bookmarks search to *tags* only, and Mozilla Firefox bookmarks may become usable as a “knowledge” management system again ;)

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