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Finding a Word or Phrase with Your Browser

Computer Tips
Doing genealogy on the Web can be a painful process if your favorite search engine takes you to huge webpages and you do not know how to have your browser find the exact location on a page of the information you are looking for. It can be a daunting task.

However, there is no reason to have to painfully skim dense text, looking for a name or keyword when your computer's browser should be doing that work for you. All browsers have some kind of search function to help you find what you are looking for easily. After all, the whole point of computers is to make things easier for us. So, if you don't know how to get your browser to find a word for you, read on!

The simplest way to search for a name, word or phrase on a page is to hit the control key (CTRL or CTL) and the letter F at the same time. If a dialogue box pops up, just enter your search term or phrase, press ENTER, and let your browser do your work for you. If you are using an Apple computer, then you will need, depending on your keyboard, to hit either the Apple key or the COMMAND key, one of which should be near the control key (CTRL or CTL), and the letter F at the same time. If you are on any kind of computer and are using a text browser such as Links or Lynx, you can enter a slash "/", and a dialogue box will appear.

If these shortcuts do not work, then you will need to use your browser's toolbar features. And, whatever you do, do not give up. There are just two or three very simple steps for using the toolbar.

If you are using a standard browser such as Internet Explorer, Netscape, Opera, Firefox, Mozilla, and most other fully featured browsers, you need to understand that these browsers all have a toolbar at the top of the screen. If you do not see that toolbar, that means that the toolbar display has been turned off, and you can turn it back on again if you wish to use toolbar features. All you have to do is press the F11 key to turn it back on (IE 7 users press the ALT key instead of F11). In some cases, you may have to press the F11 key twice to turn the toolbar back on. If you are using IE 7, the toolbar will disappear after you complete an action, but you can always bring it back by pressing the ALT key.

If you have a small screen and want to hide the toolbar, you can simply press the F11 key to hide the toolbar again.

To find a word using your toolbar:

Some dialogue boxes will give you the option of customizing the search. If you start the search in the center of a page in some browsers, for example, the browser will only search for the keyword or phrase from that particular point to the end of the document. So, if you get a "Not found" message, try the "searching backwards" option, or perform the search by starting at the beginning of the page.

If you have helpful information you wish to see added to this page, or the above instructions do not work for you, please contact us.

Happy browsing!


Mozilla Web Browser

Opera Browser: Simple Settings

Introduction to the Internet: Web Browsers, Netscape, AOL

How to find your way around (IE and Netscape)

Managing Netscape - An On-Line Tutorial on Toolbar Buttons

Personalize Your IE Browser

Internet Explorer7 Quick Reference Sheet

Internet Explorer 7 Changes including List of Shortcut Keys

IE Browser Usage Tips

Tutorial: IE6 Web Browser Tips

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Contents Last Modified September 19, 2010


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