Make sure you are using Firefox while going through this tutorial for best
In this tutorial, I will walk you through making a search plugin
for the website
www.cduniverse.com This site has lots of CDs and lots of information on
those CDs. Click the link above to open the website.
What we are looking for on this page is the search box, seen
The information that search box takes and processes to the next
page is what we need to make this search plugin work. Right-click anywhere on
the page and select View Page Source. A new window will open up with
Now we need to find the specifics of that search box. Hold
Control and hit the F key to bring up the find box on the bottom of the
In the find box, type in "input name" or "input" without the
quotes. It will take you to the information we need.
In this example, the code shows "input name="HT_Search_Info". We
need the "HT_Search_Info" part. The other information we need should be above
this line of code. Look for "form" or "form action".
In the code, the form action shows the page that will return the
search results. In this example it is "http://www.cduniverse.com/sresult.asp".
Those should be the only two pieces of information we need from here.
Now we need to create the search engine plugin file. I've made a
template to use to get you started, download it
this text and paste it in a Notepad window. Before we change anything, let's
save it to the correct format to the correct folder.
Click File, Save As..., and navigate to the following folder:
C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\searchplugins
Save it under an easy to remember name, preferably one word, no
spaces with a ".src" after it. Make sure you change the "Save as type" to "All
files". Once that is saved we can edit it. I saved mine as "cduniverse.src".
Inside this file, there is just a few things to edit.
On the top of the page, in the "search" section, you will see a
line that reads "name". This is what you will see as the name of it when listed
with the other search engines. Change this to the name of the website, or
whatever you wish.
Below that you see a "description" section. This just describes
what it is, put whatever you like here.
Now below that you will see a "action" section. This is where
you input the web address of the action the page's search does. Earlier in the
tutorial, we learned this address was "http://www.cduniverse.com/sresult.asp".
Input that into the action field. TIP-Some websites require a forwardslash "/
" following the website address. If it doesn't work the first time, try putting
one in after the address.
Below that is a "searchform" section. You can put in the
websites main address here, like "http://www.cduniverse.com".
The last thing we need to add is below in the "input name"
field. In my template, you will see TWO input name fields. The one that reads
"INPUT NAME=sourceid" should stay there so leave it alone. The other one is the
one that needs editing. For the "input name" section, type in the name of the
field that the website is using. We found this information before, and it was "HT_Search_Info".
Once that is done you can also change the comments section on
the top, where the # signs are, if you wish. Make sure you save changes.
The last thing to do it make an icon for this new engine! What I
usually do is take a screenshot of the webpage, cut out the logo or name or
whatever, trim it down and save it. Then I resize that image to the dimensions
of 16 x 16 and save it as a .PNG file with the same name of the .SRC file in the
same folder. Here is the one I created for cduniverse...
Now that all this is saved, it must be tested! First close ALL
firefox windows. Then reopen firefox. In the upper right corner, click the down
arrow to see all your search engines. You should see the new one you created
here. Select the one you created, type in something to search for and hit the
Enter key. If everything works, the next webpage that should come up is the
actual search results on the webpage you made it for. If it doesn't work, go
back to the .src code and try to find your mistake. Like I said before,
usually this whole process is pretty simple, but every website is coded
differently and they may not be using the traditional "form" and "input" fields,
so it might be a lot more complicated or impossible to do by using this method.