Hum, I would try a reinstall. That sounds like a really weird problem. Or if there is a reset preferences button in FF, then you can try hitting that.
I also agree. Sounds like one of those problems that there is really no easy solution too. Remove FF and reinstall it, then try again. You will find that that takes alot less time then trying to figure out the answer to such a strange and unique problem.
If you cannot manualy install search engines from firefox web site, better reinstall entire firefox.
Engines is realy easy to install, but your problem is that engine install procedure does'nt work. So, reinstall Firefox, don't bother.
Btw, very useful engines can be added into firefox search bar. I add several torrent engines, for example...
Yes you will. You can only save your bookmarks, by exporting them out.
Also once u Unistall firefox delete all its folders from Program Files and your XP profile (assuming u r on XP)
Then reboot and then reinstall.
If you have a registry cleaner like Registry Mechanics do run it to clear ur registry. If not the use CCleaner to get all the crap out, before you reinstall FF.
This way you will literally have a fresh install. Also after you are done, dont just install all your extensions at one go because one of the plugins could be the culprit (It happens many times).
Wherever you have Firefox installed (in an English, Windows XP installation, it will be "C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox") there is a directory named "searchplugins". Within that directory should be two files for each search engine you have installed. One is the source code for performing the search. The other is an image to act as an icon in the search-engine drop-down box.
I'm not sure if something else, somewhere else could be interfering, but if those files are in that directory, the search engines should be working.
Also, don't forget to exit Firefox and restart it before deciding whether it truly isn't working. In particular, after exiting, be sure to check your Task Manager to be sure that Firefox really did terminate. Sometimes, it can get "stuck" in memory. When that happens, even though you "restart" it, it hasn't really restarted because the other image was still in memory. Thus, if it is still there after you think you got out of it, terminate the process before restarting Firefox. After that, it may work again.
there is a extention that saves that stuff... its starts with a p i think the icon is a safe.