Tag Archives | add-ons

Get the Best of Firefox on FirefoxFacts.com

New Feature on Firefox Facts

Have you seen the new menu item on FirefoxFacts.com?  I have gone through the four years of archives I’ve posted here to find all of the “best of” Firefox-related posts.  Here is just a small sample of the posts you will find there:

Be sure to check out the new “Best of Firefox” page via FirefoxFacts.com, for a true collection of every best of list I have put out there over the years.

Beginner’s Guide to Greasemonkey

943948800 In a nutshell, Greasemonkey is an add-on for Firefox that allows you to customize a web site’s look and function.  Now you don’t have to be a coder to use it though, because there are already hundreds of scripts out there available for free that you can use to help you do a number of different things.

How Do You Use Greasemonkey?

Once you have installed Greasemonkey, you will see the little monkey’s head come up in your status bar.  From here you can create a new user script of your own or you can edit the ones you have already installed.  You also have the ability to enable and disable scripts or Greasemonkey all together, if you need to.

Where Can I Find Greasemonkey User Scripts?

Finding Greasemonkey scripts is easy.  For that, let me point you in the direction of Userscripts.org. This is a great depository of user scripts people have created to get more out of various web sites.  You can browse through all of the scripts, or search for the web site you want to modify.

Greasefire, another extension for Firefox can also help.  It will let you know in the status bar how many user scripts are available for that specific URL you are visiting. Here are a few more of my favorite Greasemonkey script collections:

How Can I Make My Own User Scripts for Greasemonkey?

Making your own Greasemonkey user scripts might be a ‘bit of a challenge, unless you are an old JavaScript coding pro.  It does take some learning, however there are several resources on the Web that will help you teach yourself.  One of the best is the Dive into Greasemonkey eBook.  Here are a few more resources to help you create your own user script:

Once you have made a successful Greasemonkey userscript, you might even look into creating it into a stand alone Firefox add-on.

If you like the tweak the Web, and make it your own, then Greasemonkey is well worth picking up as a Firefox extension.  The add-on, plus some user scripting can lead to helping you get more out of your favorite web sites, and then share that help with others.  When push comes to shove, isn’t that what the Internet should be all about?

Firefox Profile Files – What Do They Do?

Firefox Profile FilesWhen browsing through your Firefox profile folder, you might see a lot of odd files. Some might make sense, such as your searchplugins folder, however others might seem a little odd.

Here are some of the important files you might seen in your profile folder and what they are used for.

  • search.sqlite and the searchplugins folder – The first file, search.sqlite stores the order that your search engines (for the search box) are sorted. Inside of the searchplugins folder you can find all the extra search engines you have installed.
  • mimeTypes.rdf – your preferences with respect to what Firefox does when it comes across known file types.
  • formhistory.sqlite – this is where information that you have searched for or entered into forms on web sites (think autocomplete) is stored.
  • places.sqlite – this is the file that contains your bookmarks and previously visited web sites.
  • cert8.db – all your security certificate settings and any SSL certificates you have imported are stored here.
  • permissions.sqlite – the file here stores site specific preferences, such as if you allow it to install add-ons, show images, display popups or any special orders you have allowed for that domain.
  • key3.db and signons3.txt – these are the files that store your password information you have saved.
  • persdict.dat – this file will hold your words you have personally put into Firefox’s built in spellchecker.
  • cookies.sqlite – your web site cookies are stored here.

Now, I do know there are more files – however, these are the files that are most important for you to know about, just in case something bad might happen.  Hopefully, this additional documentation will come in handy when troubleshooting your own Firefox issues or problems.

Best Firefox Facts of December 2008

What Firefox tips, tricks and reviews did December bring out way?  Well, there is no doubt that Firefox closed out the year doing better than ever.  Here are some of the highlights we shared together here on FirefoxFacts.com in the month of December – one more time.

Useful Firefox Add-ons

Mozilla and Firefox News

Best of the Best Firefox Tools

Firefox Themes

Firefox Tweaks, Hacks and Tips

From everybody at Firefox Facts (which I am pretty sure, that is just me) I want to wish all the Firefox fans out there who come in and visit or subscribe to the RSS feed a very happy new year!

Also, be sure to check out the best web hosting podcasts of 2008 too!  Great list of great shows!

Trouble Removing a Firefox Add-on?

Need Help Removing Add-ons?Ever have a Firefox add-on that just did not want to leave your PC?  Most of the extensions to Firefox are really easy to remove, however sometimes you run into a situation where one is so bad or tricky, it just doesn’t want to let go.  Here are some of the common ways to remove an add-on from Firefox.

The Traditional Way

The way you usually uninstall add-ons from Firefox is to go to Tools and then Add-ons from the menu bar.  In the next Window, you should see your extensions (if not, hit the “Extensions” tab at the top).  Now click on the one you wish to remove, and hit the button labeled “Uninstall”.  You can do this several times if you need to get rid of several add-ons.  Now, simply restart Firefox and your add-on in question should be removed.

Try Removing the Add-on via Safe Mode

Close out Firefox, and start up using Firefox’s safe mode.  Try to use the traditional steps above then to remove the addon that is bugging you.

Checkout Add/Remove Programs

This might change some (depending on what version of Windows you are using) but these general directions should get you to the right spot.  Click on the start menu (or windows globe) and go to the control panel.  From there, you want to go to the “Add/Remove Programs” settings.  Scroll down this list and see if you see the extension in question here that you can not remove via Firefox.  Some toolbars and add-ons install themselves here, rather than the traditional add-ons menu from inside of Firefox.

Last (but not least) Remove the Add-on Manually

You can also remove add-ons manually, but I would leave this as a last resort.  You will need to navigate to your Firefox profile folder.  Once you make it there, look for a folder called “extensions”.  Inside of that folder, you will see more folders with names that look like random ‘bit of text thrown together.  Each folder represents an extension that has been installed. Go through each folder, and look for install.rdf.  Open that up in your standard notepad program and it should tell you the name of the extension you are looking at.  If you can’t find it, search the install.rdf for the phrase “em:name”.  After that, the name of the extension should be given.  You may also find a few themes inside this folder too.  Once you find an install.rdf that matches that addon you want to remove, you can delete that extensions entire folder.

As you noticed, this pretty much covered things for the Windows people to some extent.  If any Apple or Linux fans want to let me know how they do things, please drop in a comment and share with the group!

Find Greasemonkey Scripts for Your URL

greasefire-for-firefox We all love using Greasemonkey to help customize the Web or Firefox itself to our liking.  There is a problem though when it comes to finding scripts based around a certain URL.  It is not an easy thing to do.  That is where Greasefire, an add-on for Firefox, comes into play.

As a companion extension to Greasemonkey, Greasefire automatically find Greasemonkey scripts on Userscripts.org for the URL you are looking for.  When you are browsing a web site that does have user scripts available, Greasefire will light up the Greasemonkey icon in the status bar.  Then, right-click the Greasemonkey icon and choose the “X scripts available” item to see and install the scripts available for the current page.

So, if this is always looking for user scripts, isn’t that going to slow down your browsing?  Not exactly.  Greasefire works with a local level index to search for scripts that apply to the page you are on.  The local index updates periodically, so you shouldn’t be too out of the loop when doing lookups either.

You can pick up Greasefire on the Firefox Add-ons site.

Greasemonkey Help User Script Trouble? Be sure to check out the Beginner’s Guide to Greasemonkey!

Do We Really Need an Add-on for That?

obvious-addon

Pardon me as I put on my fake surprise pants on… wait a minute, you mean clicking on Firefox’s close button actually closes the tab your on?  After you have looked at as many Firefox add-ons as I have some of them really catch you off guard. Yes, Captain Obvious – a fast way to close your tabs is to hit Firefox’s close button!

Reading a ‘bit more about the extension for Firefox, it starts to make a ‘bit more sense:

Do you find it annoying to have to click on the small cross to close a tab ? Now with Fast Close Tabs you can just click on the upper right cross from the window to close the active tab. No more need to precisely point at the tab close cross.

Thank you Fast Close Tabs for allowing me to start my Monday off with a giggle.

Best Firefox Facts of November 2008

The Thanksgiving leftovers are starting to taste funny, and your already thinking of starting a new exercise program. Those two events coming together as one can only mean one thing. November is over. Here are some of the best Firefox Facts November had to offer.

Firefox Themes

Useful Firefox Add-ons

Best of the Best Firefox Tools

Mozilla and Firefox News

Firefox Tweaks, Hacks and Tips

Just think of this as your Thanksgiving Day leftovers warmed up one more time. Now to start planning for how Firefox Facts will leave you begging for more in December 2008. End of year awards, anyone?

Bonus: Check out podcast #173 of the Web Hosting Show, my web development and hosting podcast side project.  Totally free, and updated every week.

Check Multiple Checkboxes with Ease

checkboxmate

Nobody likes having to click on checkboxes, in our e-mail or on the online forms we might need to fill out.  It is a pain in the rear process, that I wish sometimes I did not have to do.  With that said, I have found one experimental add-on that promises to make the pain go away.

CheckBoxMate, an add-on for Firefox, allows you to check multiple checkboxes with ease by drawing a box around them to automatically select them all.  Here is what the developer of the extension had to say about it:

This tool is great for sites that use lots of checkboxes like a registration form or your Hotmail or Yahoo! inbox. Imagine this: Your Hotmail inbox has 10 spam messages and you don’t want to click on 10 separate checkboxes just to select them all. Now you can select them all just by drawing a box around them! To begin drawing a box, your mouse MUST first be positioned over one checkbox. Then drag to activate this tool.

Learn more about the CheckBoxMate add-on on it’s official site, or download it via the Firefox Add-ons web site.

7 Amazing Musical Add-ons for Firefox

Firefox - Your Musical Jukebox?

Most people might not consider Firefox to be much of a jukebox, however it does know how to “get down with it’s bad self” with the right selection of extensions.  Here are seven of the most popular audio related add-ons for Firefox.

firefox-musicOnline Music Player – It is a music player in status-bar. It provides Firefox with ability to play online mp3 music(local file as well), to search and display the lyrics automatically, as well as to manage the music lists.

Online Music Player

firefox-musicFire.fm – Winner of the Extend Firefox 3 contest, Fire.fm is your direct access to the extensive music library on Last.fm. Listen to music related to your favorite artist, and discover new artists and music in the process.

firefox-musicStop Autoplay – Disable the autoplay of the embedded music and movie.

Stop Annoying Autoplay Embeds

firefox-musicFoxyTunes – Do you listen to Music while surfing the Web? FoxyTunes lets you control almost any media player and find lyrics, covers, videos, bios and much more with a click right from your browser.

firefox-musicTwittyTunes – Allows to post your currently playing songs to Twitter with a click. As a bonus, you can also post the web sites you’re visiting, videos you’re watching and more!

Twitter + Audio = Bliss

firefox-musicMusic Player Minion – Music Player Minion is a client for the Music Player Daemon network music player. The purpose of MPD and it’s clients is to allow music playback on one PC (such as a home media server) to be controlled from another over the network.

Your Evil Music Minion!

firefox-musicAmazing Media Browser – Amazing Media Browser automatically searches for all embed objects in a web site and shows you a list of the source links. You can then conveniently browse through each link to see the content of the source file.

Is there another speaker-loving extension I might have missed? Which one of these would be your personal recommendation?  Let me know in the comments, and I’ll be sure to get it on the list.