Firefox 5.0 has the option to "switch to tab" if the requested URL or search terms point to an already open URL (great thing by the way).

Now, to open a URL from command line to Firefox a mere firefox http://myurl.com would do, but even if that URL already is open, Firefox will open it once more in another tab.

How can I---from command line---tell Firefox to open the desired URL in an already existing tab if possible?

4 Answers 4


You can do it like:

firefox -new-tab "www.duckduckgo.com"
  • 1
    Awesome! Thank you...
    – Atul
    Feb 3, 2020 at 8:34

Well at least one possible method is to modify your about:config files. See http://www.ghacks.net/2009/07/03/force-firefox-to-open-links-in-same-tab/ for details as to how to do this.

  • 1
    Well that's a cool thing, but it's indiscriminate. What I want is to be able to do that for particular URLs only and at particular times. Aug 16, 2011 at 8:41

It is not possible at the moment.

  • its possible ...
    – user889030
    May 1, 2019 at 19:00

firefox will work fine; if DISPLAY variable has a valid value; if not you need to set it manually

DISPLAY=:0.0; firefox "imgress.com"

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