Tag Archives | tips

Move the Close Tab Button in Firefox

In an effort to simplify the Firefox interface, did you know you can make a few changes in the about:config page to move the close tab buttons around?  I’ll show you how to move it to the far right of the browser, in just six easy steps.

Before the tweak (notice the close tab button is on the tab itself)

Firefox's Normal Close a Tab Button

After the tweak (notice the close tab button has been moved to the far right)

Move the Close a Tab Button to the Far Right

Now what is the secret?  You just need to do a little editing in your about:config page.

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Easier Access to Private Browsing

Here is a quick tip that is not that well known.  If you want to start private browsing in a hurry, and you don’t have time to dive through the menus to start it (Tools > Start Private Browsing) then just type about:privatebrowsing into your address bar.

are you really sure?

There you have it.  Once you have done so, it will ask you if you want to switch into Firefox’s private browsing mode.  You could also save about:privatebrowsing as a bookmark, so you have easy one click access to the private browsing mode, without adding any extra add-ons to Firefox.

Now here is my challenge to all of you out there, does anybody know a quick way to stop private browsing, and return your browser back to normal (other than the traditional menu method).  If you do, leave it in the comments!

Tweak Your Firefox Download Manager

Change the Firefox Download Manager

Want to tweak the way the download manager from within Firefox works?  You can now tweak the way downloads are handled in a number different ways with the Download Manager Tweak add-on for Firefox.

The main thing you might notice, right off the bat, is the ability to changes download manager’s appearance and allow the download manager to be opened in a window, tab, or sidebar.

A few more options available to you are:

  • The ability to always ask where to save a file or always save files to one default location
  • Open the download manager after a delay of X milliseconds
  • Show or hide the toolbar on the bottom of the window
  • Show or hide the infobar, attached to the folder
  • Disable or enable the download manager theme changes
  • and much more!

This is an add-on for Firefox I could seriously see adding to my default add-ons list I put on every personal Firefox install I do, it is that cool.  The Download Manager Tweak extension is free to download, so give it a shot – and let me know how much you enjoy it.

What is the Firefox Applications Tab?

To get to the Applications menu, you’ll want to go to Tools in the menu toolbar, then Options, then click on the Applications tab.

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From here you can change just about any way that Firefox relates to any other file, application or task out there.  Here are a few things I did to speed up my browser usage.

ARCHIVES: For archives (like .zip, .rar, ect) I set the action to “Save File”, that way I can skip Firefox asking me if I would like to open or save that type of file when I download it.

FEEDS: Since I am a Google Reader user when it comes to subscribing to feeds, I changed the Web Feed option from “Preview in Firefox” to “Use Google”.

MP3S: Another fix I like to do here is to set MP3 Format Found from the hijacking QuickTime (which like to take control of everything you do) to “Always Ask” cause sometimes I might want to stream it right there and other times, I might like to download it.

MAILTO: If you use Gmail a lot, you can also setup the mailto links to Use Gmail anytime you click a link that is formatted in that way.

I hope that handful of Application handling in Firefox is handy.  Just one more way Firefox lets you have the ultimate customized web browsing experience, if you you know where to look.

Create a Downloads Folder for Firefox

Sometimes the simple usability tips are the ones that people overlook the most.  Creating a downloads folder not only keeps things organized when you download things from the Web in Firefox, it also will save you time too.

More About the Downloads Settings and Options

In the menu bar, go to Tools and then select Options.  In the Main tab in the options menu, you should see an area where you can configure how Firefox handles your downloads.

image

I would recommend selecting the Save files to option and setting up a downloads folder where you can save all your downloaded files.  Why?  It makes it much easier to find them after you are done, and also it keeps your desktop clean – which often is the default place to dump things for many people out there.  I have mine setup right inside of my documents in Windows XP and my profile folder inside of Vista.  It doesn’t matter where you put it, as long as it is somewhere you can easily reach.

Show the Downloads window when downloading a file is pretty obvious, checked it will show the download manager box as your downloads progress and unchecked, it’ll keep the download information and alerts in your Firefox status bar.  You can also select the option to close it when all downloads are finished.  I don’t do this, cause I usually want to check out what I just downloaded after I downloaded it. 

Always ask me where to save the files might be a good option for those of you out there that need to have everything in it’s specific spot, but often becomes a great time waster. 

Just dump your downloads into a folder called, “Downloads” – it makes things much easier.

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.

Looking Back at the Most Popular Firefox Facts

While checking out my Google Analytics stats for Firefox Facts, I thought it might be fun to look back and see what (so far) have been the top ten most popular items posted here on Firefox Facts.  We have some classics here, so I hope you enjoy.

Have a favorite post of yours that didn’t make it on the list?  Feel free to share it in the comments, and maybe we can put together a user’s list of some of the favorites we have had here over the years.

Master’s Guide to Reloading a Tab in Firefox

Reload a Tab, Any Tab!There are a number of different ways you can reload or refresh a window in Firefox.  For such a simple task, you would have never imagined that people have put so much work into making it easier.  The truth of the matter though is they have, and I want to share with you all the tab reloading secrets that I know of (and hopefully you can share your own favorites with me).

Here are the add-ons to help you with your page loading and re-loading.

Now, I know a lot of people will say, “How hard is it to hit the refresh button in your browser?” So with that in mind, here are a few additional ways to reload that web page in question.

Refresh That Tab! Reloading Keyboard Shortcuts

Windows/Linux: F5 or Ctrl + R = Reload a Page

Apple: F5 or Cmd + R = Reload a Page

Extra Tip: Another way to reload that tab you are on is to left-click on the tab, drag it into the browser window and the release.  That will give it a quick refresh too.

How do you reload your browser window?

Firefox’s Gray Bar and Red Text Problem

Ever have the problem of Firefox’s main browser window being a little messed up looking?  What I am speaking of exactly is a large gray bar along the bottom, wish some red text in it.  I have not run into this problem in a long time, but I know others have – so wanted to cover it and how to fix it.

gray-bar-firefox

First thing you should do is follow the common Firefox troubleshooting tips:

Check for Faulty Add-ons

Next, take a look at your extensions.  It could be that one of your add-ons you have installed has a problem with it.  First thing I want you to do when checking out your add-ons is to go to Tools > Add-ons and then click on the “Find Updates” button.  See if updating any of your add-ons might help get rid of the issue.

The next suggestion would be to go to Tools > Add-ons, disable all the add-ons you have installed, and then restart Firefox.  If the problem has gone away after that, you can then enable add-ons until the problem comes back.  This should help you figure out which add-on is at fault.  It could also be caused by a combination of add-ons, that do not play nice together, so do not rule that out as a possibility too.

Could it be Spyware/Malware?

This suggestion from mozillaZine might also be worth checking into:

If the problem is in Firefox on Windows, check for a file named m3ffxtbr.manifest in the “chrome” folder of your installation directory (usually “C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\chrome\m3ffxtbr.manifest”). If the file exists, delete it, then restart Firefox. This file is created by the “MyWebSearch Toolbar” (a form of spyware).

Be sure to check out this knowledge base post for more tips on working with this nasty problem.  Now the last and nuclear step would be to do a fresh or clean install of Firefox to see if you can get rid of the problem that way.  It is a drastic step, but has worked for me in the past.

Why is NASA Night Launch a Popular Theme?

NASA Night Launch Tweaks I have not spent much time with the NASA Night Launch theme for Firefox, but I did always wonder, why is it the most popular and downloaded theme for Firefox?  Sure, it is a dark (and very nice looking theme), but what else is there to it?  Well, if you do a little digging – you can find several guides on how to modify the NASA Night Launch theme to fit your own needs.

Here are a few example tips and tricks:

To use these tweaks and tips for yourself, all you need to do is download the NASA Night Launch theme from the Firefox Add-ons site – and get started.