In Depth: 100 tips to help you work smarter with Firefox
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July 17, 2009, 12:03 PM
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In Depth: 100 tips to help you work smarter with Firefox
In Depth: 100 tips to help you work smarter with Firefox
I did not write this,i just Copy and Pasted this from a Sticky Thread from another website I visit.But its useful
.Maybe is should be a sticky here.
The beauty of using Firefox is the control that it extends to users, and there are almost limitless ways that it can be tweaked, hacked and mastered to improve speed usability and productivity.
The affinity developers have with Firefox also means that there are thousands of add-ons which can make Firefox into whatever you want it to be.
There are so many ways to get more from Firefox - here are our 100 favourite tips, tweaks and add-ons to get the most from your favourite browser.
Firefox performance tips
1. Enable pipelining
Browsers are normally very polite, sending a request to a server then waiting for a response before continuing. Pipelining is a more aggressive technique that lets them send multiple requests before any responses are received, often reducing page download times.
To enable it, type about
:config in the address bar, double-click network.http.pipelining and network.http.proxy.pipelining so their values are set to true, then double-click network.http.pipelining.maxrequests and set this to 8.
Keep in mind that some servers don't support pipelining, though, and if you regularly visit a lot of these then the tweak can actually reduce performance. Set network.http.pipelining and network.http.proxy.pipelining to false again if you have any problems.
2. Render quickly
Large, complex web pages can take a while to download. Firefox doesn't want to keep you waiting, so by default will display what it's received so far every 0.12 seconds (the "content notify interval"
. While this helps the browser feel snappy, frequent redraws increase the total page load time, so a longer content notify interval will improve performance.
:config and press [Enter], then right-click (Apple users ctrl-click) somewhere in the window and select New > Integer. Type content.notify.interval as your preference name, click OK, enter 500000 (that's five hundred thousand, not fifty thousand) and click OK again.
Right-click again in the window and select New > Boolean. This time create a value called content.notify.ontimer and set it to True to finish the job.
3. Faster loading
If you haven't moved your mouse or touched the keyboard for 0.75 seconds (the content switch threshold) then Firefox enters a low frequency interrupt mode, which means its interface becomes less responsive but your page loads more quickly. Reducing the content switch threshold can improve performance, then, and it only takes a moment.
:config and press [Enter], right-click in the window and select New > Integer. Type content.switch.threshold, click OK, enter 250000 (a quarter of a second) and click OK to finish.
4. No interruptions
You can take the last step even further by telling Firefox to ignore user interface events altogether until the current page has been downloaded. This is a little drastic as Firefox could remain unresponsive for quite some time, but try this and see how it works for you.
:config, press [Enter], right-click in the window and select New > Boolean. Type content.interrupt.parsing, click OK, set the value to False and click OK.
5. Block Flash
Intrusive Flash animations are everywhere, popping up over the content you actually want to read and slowing down your browsing. Fortunately there's a very easy solution. Install the Flashblock extension and it'll block all Flash applets from loading, so web pages will display much more quickly. And if you discover some Flash content that isn't entirely useless, just click its placeholder to download and view the applet as normal.
6. Increase the cache size
As you browse the web so Firefox stores site images and scripts in a local memory cache, where they can be speedily retrieved if you revisit the same page. If you have plenty of RAM (2GB or more), leave Firefox running all the time and regularly return to pages then you can improve performance by increasing this cache size. Type about
:config and press [Enter], then right-click anywhere in the window and select New > Integer. Type browser.cache.memory.capacity, click OK, enter 65536 and click OK, then restart your browser to get the new, larger cache.
7. Enable TraceMonkey
TraceMonkey is a new Firefox feature that converts slow java script into super-speedy x86 code, and so lets it run some functions anything up to 20 times faster than the current version. It's still buggy so isn't available in the regular Firefox download yet, but if you're willing to risk the odd crash or two then there's an easy way to try it out.
Install the latest Firefox nightly build, launch it, type about
:config in the address bar and press Enter. Type JIT in the filter box, then double-click java script.options.jit.chrome and java script.options.jit.content to change their values to true, and that's it - you're running the fastest Firefox java script engine ever.
8. Compress data
If you've a slow internet connection then it may feel like you'll never get Firefox to perform properly, but that's not necessarily true. Install toonel.net and this clever Java applet will re-route your web traffic through its own server, compressing it at the same time, so there's much less to download. And it can even compress JPEGs by allowing you to reduce their quality. This all helps to cut your data transfer, useful if you're on a limited 1GB-per-month account, and can at best double your browsing performance.
9. Reduce RAM usage when Firefox is minimized
Go to about
:config, right-click anywhere and select New-> Boolean. Name it "config.trim_on_minimize" and set it to TRUE.
10. Tune up Firefox
FireTune enables you to optimise Firefox's settings, based on your computer and internet connection.
Firefox productivity tips
11. Auto-complete websites
Go to the address bar (Control-L) and type the name of the site without the "www" or the ".com". Press Control-Enter, and it will automatically fill in the "www" and the ".com" and take you there. For .net addresses, press Shift-Enter, and for .org addresses, press Control-Shift-Enter.
12. Turn your bookmarks into keywords
Right-click the bookmark and then select Properties. Put a short keyword in the keyword field, save it, and now you can type that keyword in the address bar and it will go to that bookmark.
13. Speed up your downloads
Download Manager Tweak Extension adds extra functionality to the existing Download Manager to help you download faster.
14. Search faster
To search with lightning speed just highlight the word or phrase with your mouse and drag the highlighted text into the search bar. Firefox will then automatically load up the search in a new tab, so you can stay informed faster.
15. All-in-one Sidebar
All-in-one Sidebar makes Firefox's Sidebar more useful by displaying pretty much anything you might want: source code, downloads, add-ons, page info, entire web pages...
Jealous of Safari's Porn Mode - ahem, Private Browsing? Now you can have it, too, with Stealther.
17. Web Developer Toolbar
The name's a clue: the Web Developer Toolbar adds a toolbar containing useful tools for web developers.
Grab Instapaper's bookmarklet and you can store interesting things to read later. You can view pages without ads or other distractions, and it works on phones as well as PCs.
FireFTP is an excellent bit of charityware - it's free, but donations are encouraged. It puts a fully featured FTP program right inside your browser.
The Swiss Army Knife of the internet, Greasemonkey enables you to bend sites to your will through the power of java script.
21. Tab Mix Plus
Get complete control over Firefox's tab handling, from the way tabs look to the way they work, with Tab Mix Plus.
22. User Agent Switcher
Browser sniffers stopping you from seeing sites? Pretend you're using a rubbish browser by changing the user agent string with User Agent Switcher.
23. IE View
Sometimes you need to view or test a page in IE. IE View is a Windows-only extension that makes it a one-click job.
24. IE Tab
Does much the same as IE View, but opens IE within a Firefox tab. Once again IE Tab is Windows-only.
Firefox's RSS support is pretty basic. Sage gives you a fully-featured RSS and Atom feed reader that's a joy to use.
Pretend you're busy working with this excellent boss key. Not only does HideBad replace the current tabs with safe ones, but it zaps your browsing history, too.
27. Download Statusbar
Keep track of and control your file downloads without leaving the main browser window with Download Statusbar.
Download every link or linked image from a web page in one fell swoop, filtering out unwanted file types automatically with DownThemAll.
FoxyTunes lets you control your music player, or take advantage of Yahoo's online MP3 player, while you wander around the web.
30. Gmail Space
So unofficial that Google will probably kill you if it catches you using it, Gmail Space turns Gmail into an online hard disk.
StumbleUpon is the easy way to discover sites that other people liked.
Eliminate annoyances and security risks by blocking scripts and other executable content from sites you don't trust with NoScript.
Don't want to register to read an article? BugMeNot gives you other people's logins.
34. Fast Video Download
Download embedded video clips with Fast Video Download so you can watch them at your leisure.
ScribeFire is a superb in-browser blog editor that works with everything from LiveJournal to WordPress.com and WordPress.org.
BetterSearch adds previews to search results so you don't end up on irrelevant, malicious or obscene websites. Unless that's what you're looking for...
37. Stop time wasting
Serial time wasters will love LeechBlock, an add-on which lets you block access to sites which waste your time during specific periods of the day.
38. Adblock Plus
Adblock Plus eliminates invasive ads and makes some sites look very weird as a result.
39. Nuke Anything Enhanced
Before you print use Nuke Anything to strip out any objects or text you don't want displayed to save on wasted ink, paper and time.
40. Highlight multiple text
This trick is similar to selecting different files which are not stacked together in Windows explorer using the Ctrl button. In Firefox 3 when you want to select multiple areas of text without having to repeatedly copy and paste, click on the Ctrl button and use your mouse to select multiple areas of text.
41. Don't ride your luck with automatic search
When you type a keyword into the navigation bar, Firefox will perform an I'm Feeling Lucky search and load a new web page. You can make it list the search results instead by opening the about
:config, finding and double-clicking the keyword.URL entry and entering 'http://www.google.com/search?btnG=Google+Search&q='
42. Inline search smarter
Select Tools, Options. Click the Advanced icon and then the General tab. Check Search for text when I start typing, and click OK. Now you don't have to press Ctrl-F to find a word. Just start typing and matches will be found automatically.
43. Hack Firefox to get a minimalist interface for your netbook
If you've a netbook then you might want to free up screen space, create a cleaner, simpler browser, or just redesign the program to better suit your needs. Here's how to hack Firefox to get a minimalist interface for your netbook.
44. Create your own Firefox theme
With a seemingly endless collection of add-ons, extensions and extras, Firefox is one of the most customisable browsers. But you can take your customisations even further by changing the graphics and adding your own add-ons and extensions. Here's how to create your own Firefox theme.
45. Create a new profile
The Profile Manager is meant for advanced users who don't want other user's add-ons cluttering their set up. To access it, close Firefox, go to Start > Run and enter "C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe" -profilemanager. If you've installed Firefox in another directory, browse to its location. In the Profile manager, click Create Profile, name it and then you're back at the Profile Manager, where you'll see your new profile on the list.
46. Make a desktop shortcut to your profile
Right-click the desktop and click New > Shortcut. Browse and locate
firefox.exe. C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe is the default location. Type -P yourprofilename -no-remote into the box after the file path.
47. Get the answer fast
With the Answers add-on just hold ALT and click a word, to be presented with an information bubble with the meaning or answer in seconds.
48. Get the weather
Keep an eye on weather with the help of ForecastFox. Once you've relaunched Firefox, you'll be prompted for your location, and you'll soon have little weather symbols adorning your Firefox window.
49. I can hear music
FoxyTunes links in with most popular music players to enable you to control
your player from within Firefox itself. Once installed, the media controls appear on the bottom rim of the Firefox window.
50. Take a note
QuickNote makes it possible to select some text, right-click it and send it to QuickNote with the URL appended to the end. Perfect if those who use the web for research purposes - like us.
Firefox money-saving tips
51. Firefox Companion for eb*y
The eb*y Companion shows auctions in the sidebar and alerts you when anything happens, helping you to strike at the right moment.
52. Amazon Shopper
Amazon's prices change from day to day, so tell this nifty plug-in what you're willing to pay. When the price drops, it'll let you know.
Discover whether discount codes are available for the site you're visiting. RetailMeNot is a collaborative effort, so the more people that use it the more useful it gets.
Flight finder Yapta includes the main European carriers, although it's best for transatlantic or US travel. The tracking feature lets you know if any flights drop in price.
Planning to buy currency? Timing is everything. Exch carries out currency conversions and shows you graphs of the underlying trends.
Find bargains on Craigslist from your status bar: select your region and what you're looking for, and CraigZilla fetches and filters the listings accordingly.
Despite the rubbish name, this is pretty handy: select and right-click on a product name, and One-Click-Best-Deal checks Shopping.com to see if it-can-find-it-cheaper.
If you post on forums or use online forms to enter information, you may
wish to have the safety net of a spellchecking tool. Spellbound is one of the best.
Firefox security and privacy tips
59. Delete items from address bar history
While it's very handy to have your recently visited pages autocompleted as you type, it's not always desirable. Go to the address bar (Ctrl-L), start typing an address, and the drop-down menu will appear with the URLs of pages you've visited. You can highlight and delete these at will, for maximum privacy.
60. Protect your PC from malware
You don't have to visit the seedy side of the web to pick up a virus - even the best social networking sites regularly host all kinds of malware. But you can reduce the chance of infection by installing NoScript. This handy add-on blocks java script, Java, Flash and other executable content from running unless you explicitly allow it, and is a great way to keep yourself safe online.
61. Speedily search for images
Browse Google images and your results are split into blocks of 21. But use CoolIris and you'll get all your results displayed on a 3D photo wall, a much faster and easier way to find the images you need. It only works with some sites, unfortunately, but as these include Google, Flickr, Picasa, Yahoo, Photobucket, Facebook and MySpace then you'll still have plenty to browse. Especially as it searches and displays YouTube videos, too. Give it a try.
62. Easily open multiple links
Sometimes your image searches will lead you to forums or websites with large thumbnail galleries. You could do the right-click "open link in new tab" thing for every thumbnail, but it's much easier to use Linky. Just select the thumbnails you want to view, right-click an empty part of the page, and click Linky > Open All Image Links In Tabs to open them automatically. A real time-saver.
63. Watch videos in your sidebar
Organising your images is easy. Videos? That's more of a challenge, but YouPlayer can help, at least with the big sites (YouTube, Google Video, MySpace and Metacafe). Drag and drop video links into the playlist and you can play them in your sidebar, without having to revisit the original site each time. It can download videos, too, but if that's your main interest then we'd recommend a more specialist tool like Video DownloadHelper.
64. Keep your bookmarks online
If others make use of your PC occasionally then you might not want them to see your more, hmm, specialist bookmarks. Use StartAid and you can save your favourite sites online, instead. The service imports your existing bookmarks so it's easy to get started, and you can then access them from any convenient PC.
65. Go covert
One of the best privacy add-ons is Ghostfox, which not only hides your browsing using emergency mouse gestures, but can display Firefox within programs such as Paint for the ultimate in covert browsing,
66. At-a-glance download monitoring
When you're downloading several large files then it can be annoying to keep switching to the download window to see how they're progressing. But there is another way. Install the Download Status Bar and every download generates a new button on the status bar, so it's visible whatever tab you happen to be using. Each button includes a progress bar for easy download monitoring, and you can right-click the button for options to pause or cancel the download.
67. Use Master Password
Firefox will remember your passwords, but it's not really secure unless you use the Firefox master password. To set this up, select Tools, Options and click the Security icon. Check Remember passwords for sites and Use a master password. The first time you log on enter this, and then password fields will be autocompleted.
68. Don't record your browsing history
Make sure no trace of your activity is left by checking "Always clear my private data when I close Firefox".
69. Get paranoid
Torbutton will allow you to connect and disconnect from the Tor anonymity network. Tor scatters your browser requests across the internet for ultimate privacy.
70. Don't get tracked
Using the Tools menu, click on Options, select the Privacy tab. Ensure that 'Accept third-party cookies' is unchecked, and the 'Keep until' option is set to 'I close Firefox'.
71. Disable 3rd Party Images
On websites the content you receive from the website is called 1st party content and content drawn from other websites is called 3rd party content. This thrird party content has cause privacy problems, so it's possible to block it. Got to "about
:config" and filter for 'permissions.default.image' double click it and set the default value to 3. This could stop Google from returning image results so be careful.
72. Control Firefox with your mouse
A massive time saver, Mouse Gestures enables you to navigate with a quick flick of the mouse while holding the right mouse button down.
73. Go one page forward in the browsing history
Hold the right mouse button down and move mouse to the right
74. Go back a page in the browsing history
Hold the right mouse button down and flick mouse to left
75. Close the active tab
Hold the right mouse button down and move the mouse down and to the right in an L motion
76. Open the link crossed by the gesture in a new browser window
Hold the right mouse button down and flick the mouse downwards
77. Open links in tabs
Making any gesture ending with a straight Right-Up-Left movement opens all crossed links in tabs.
78. Autocomplete .com URL
79. Autocomplete .net URL
80. Autocomplete .org URL
81. Open Active Downloads
82. Select Location Bar
Alt+D/ F6 /Ctrl+L
83. Bookmark All Tabs
84. Bookmark This Page
86. Caret Browsing
88. Clear Private Data
89. Rotate forward among tabs
90. Rotate to the previous tab
91. Choose a number to jump to a specific tab
92. Open link in Background Tab
93. Open link in Foreground Tab
94. Open in New Window
95. Copy Tab or Bookmark
96. Paste URL and Go
Middle-click on Tab
97. Reload and overwrite cache
98. Scroll line by line
99. New tab
Double-Click on Tab Bar
100. Close Tab
Middle-click on tab
hope this is of use to people
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