A9 Enhances Toolbar with Cool New Feature

Word from A9 that they’ve just released a new version of their toolbar for Firefox and IE. I’ve listed the new features below including an option to add the search functionality from ANY search engine directly to the A9 toolbar by just clicking. The engine doesn’t need to have its own toolbar or an A9 Open Search column. This is as cool (very) as it is useful. However, it’s not the first time we’ve seen such a feature.

Both NeedleSearch (see my 2003 SearchDay article) and Copernic’s Toolbar (both free) have offered this option for a couple of years.

Regardless, this is a welcome new option from A9. Try it, you’ll like it. Kudos to A9.

Adding any search engine couldn’t be easier. Here’s an example:

Let’s say you want the ability to search the SEW Blog archives directly from your toolbar.

First, go to http://blog.searchenginewatch.com and look for the search box in the left column.

Second, right-click in the search box and select the “Add to A9 Search Menu” option

Next, enter a title, I’ll call this entry SEW Blog.

That’s it. Wasn’t that easy? Again, this should work with just about any search box.

Now, simply select “SEW Blog” in the search menu, enter your terms, and click enter.

Here’s another example.

This time let’s search Yahoo Video and limit our searches to Flash videos that are greater than one minute and come only from .edu sites.

+ Go to Yahoo Video Search (advanced interface)
+ Select the options stated above
+ Place your cursor in the search box and select add to A9 search menu.
+ Give the search a title
+ That’s it. Now, go to the A9 toolbar and run a search. You should see all of the limits you selected are included in the url.

Have fun!

Here’s a complete list of what’s been added to A9 Toolbar 1.3 :

  • Fast Sign In?Switch between accounts quickly if you share your computer
  • Open Search?Search your favorite columns directly from the toolbar
  • Performance?Drastically improved startup and page-turn times
  • Customizable Search Menu?Add your own custom searches to the search menu with Smart Bookmarks
  • Enhanced SiteInfo Menu?Website owners can add custom menus for their site

More info and and complete instructions here.

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