October 3, 2014

Unity Custom Search in the Address Bar (Omnibox)

Edit 2014-10-03: apparently there’s an even faster way to set this up (courtesy of /u/jakkarth). Right click on the search field on the custom search engine, “add as search engine”, and fill out the same forms as in Step 3 below (url is pre-filled for you). Awesome! Here’s a quick video:

One of the most essential tools I use when doing Unity development work is this Unity Reference Search Engine, it allows you to search multiple Unity related sites and communities at once (Unity documentation, Forum, Unity Answers, Wiki, MSDN, Reddit…etc). A lot of the issues you have in your game are probably already solved by other developers, and this little search tool allows us to quickly find solutions to problems.

However I found having to open a browser tab for this page, wait for this page to load, type in a search query, and wait again for the results can be a bit tedius. Fortunately in Chrome you can utilize the Address Bar (Omnibox) and the Edit Search Engines option to make this a lot quicker – I can now click on the Address Bar, type “u”, tab, then enter whatever I want to search for, and the only thing that gets loaded is the result page. Beautiful :)

(Note: I have only set this up on Chrome, although I suspect you can do this with Firefox as well.)
Unity Search in Address Bar

It’s fairly simple to set up.

Step 1:

Right click on the Address Bar, click on Edit Search Engines

Edit Search Engines

Step 2:

Scroll to the bottom of the pop-up window titled “Search engines” and find an area where you can enter a new search engine.
Add New Search Engines

Step 3:

Enter these into the three fields.
Add a New Search Engine: Unity

And that’s it! Now when you go to Address Bar, type in “” (the Keyword you defined in Stpe 3), and hit Tab, you’ll see this lovely label that says “Unity” and you can search the custom search engine directly there!
Search Unity in Address Bar

After you’ve done this a few times, Chome will start automatically filling out the url for you so as soon as you start typing “un…” it’ll show in the Address Bar so you won’t have to type the whole thing out. Alternatively you can change the Keyword to just “u” and you can then type “u” -> “tab” and get the custom search engine in the Address Bar.

That’s it and happy searching!

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