Posts Tagged ‘firefox’

Enable URL autofill in Firefox

A little thing that bugs me about Firefox is that when you start typing an URL in the address bar there is no autofill:

However, Mozilla have again predicted that I and other people will whine about that and have actually added this feature, but have disabled it by default. In this short tutorial we will show you how to enable it.
First, open Firefox:

In the address bar enter about:config:

Hit Enter. Firefox will warn you to be careful, as you are about to open the configurations to your browser:

Click the I’ll be careful, I promise! button. The configuration page will open:

In the Filter textbox enter autofill:

Here you can see the browser.urlbar.autoFill setting. It has the value false. Simply double-click on the row it is to change it to true:

Close the window and try to type an address in the address bar:

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Enable on-demand tab loading in Firefox 8

Modern day websites and browsers are not very friendly to slow computers with little memory. However this is “by default”. There are a lot of fine tunings that you can make to a browser, which will improve its performance and your overall experience. One common source of badly utilized memory is all those tabs that you keep open from previous sessions instead of bookmarking them as Read later. But, Firefox 8 provides a mechanism for tackling exactly those tabs. Instead of loading them on startup, you can set Firefox to load them on-demand, that is, when you first click on them. In this short tutorial we will show you how to enable this feature in Firefox 8.

Open Firefox, click the Firefox button and select Options:

A new window will open:

Select the General tab:

In the When Firefox starts dropdown menu select Show my windows and tabs from last time. Also, enable the Don’t load tabs until selected option:

Click OK. Next time you reopen Firefox your tabs will not be preloaded.

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How to change the number of suggestions in Firefox address bar

One thing I love about Firefox is the ability to tweak almost every aspect of your browsing experience. Another thing I love about Firefox is that once a tweak is discovered it remains valid in all the later versions. This little tweak I’m about to show you, I discovered in Firefox 3 and remains valid till this very day – Firefox 8.

So basically we will see how we can change the number of suggestions in the Firefox address bar:

And of course as a first step, type about:config in the address bar and press Enter:

Press I’ll be careful, I promise! and you will be redirected to a list of configurations:

In the Filter textbox enter browser.urlbar.maxRichResults

Double click on browser.urlbar.maxRichResults and you will be prompted to enter a new value (default is 12). Enter the new value:

And press OK. Close the about:config tab and you are done. You don’t even need to restart Firefox:

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Customize the Google country-specific search in Firefox

Perhaps you have noticed that by default google.com redirects you to a country-specific version of google based on your IP. This is extremely noticeable when you are travelling or using a proxy. We will see two solutions to the problem.

The first solution is to type http://www.google.com/ncr in your address bar. This sets a cookie in your browser, which on the other hand tells google not to redirect you. This solution however is not the best, since you completely disable the country-specific search and if you delete your browser cookies you will have to repeat the procedure.

Note: This solution is not Firefox-specific and can be implemented with every browser.

The second solution is a bit more elegant, as it allows you to use multiple country-specific versions of google search, it is not cookie based and it doesn’t change the default behavior of google.com.

The second solution utilizes the Firefox search bar:

By default all searches made from the search bar use google.com, however it can be extended to support multiple country-specific google flavors. Let’s show how we can modify it to use google.de as well.

Of course you may ask “What is the point of that? I can always type google.de in my browser”. True, but by extending the search bar, you can finally have a uniform way for doing searches, which makes searches a lot easier.

But let’s see how we can extend the Firefox search bar. Navigate to the searchplugins subdirectory of the Firefox directory (usually C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\searchplugins). You can see several xml files there:

Copy the google.xml file to google.de.xml. Move google.de.xml to the Firefox profile folder\searchplugins (C:\Users\<your username>\AppData\Roaming\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\<your Firefox profile name>\searchplugins on Windows 7)

Now change google.de.xml in such way.

Old:

New:

You can see that we have changed the ShortName, the template argument of the second URL tag and the SearchForm.

Restart Firefox and now you can see Google.DE in your search options:

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Mozilla chooses performance over add-ons for Android

Johnathan Nightingale – Mozilla Corporation Director of Firefox Engineering, announced that Firefox for Android will use Android’s native UI, instead of the XML User Interface Language (XUL) technology, that’s in the core of Mozilla’s projects from before Firefox.

In the announcement Nightingale stated that “Firefox on Android is a critical part of supporting the open Web” and thus, they must “build the best Firefox possible”.

While Firefox is one of the most used desktop browsers, it is rarely used on mobile devices, where it is greatly outmatched by Apple’s Safari, Opera and the default browser Google builds on Android, all of which are installed by default on different phones. Still it is the main effort of Mozilla to keep the Web “open” and bring the Web to the user in the easiest and most natural way.

But what does a Firefox with native Android UI mean from a technical perspective? Well, it means faster start-up, less RAM usage and better experience from actions like zooming. The project is called Fennec and according to its page its goals include better battery life as well.

Start-up is a big deal when we are talking about mobile browsers, and especially when we compare Firefox to the default Android browser, since Firefox tends to get flushed out of the memory, when it is not used, which forces another slow load on the user when he needs the browser.

The heart of the browser will remain unchanged – the Gecko engine is still the choice for processing page elements, however dropping XUL is a pretty big deal, since all add-ons built upon XUL will not be compatible with Fennec, and the process of translation will be severely complicated.

Still there’s a lot of planning to be made and backward compatibility with add-ons may still be saved, only time will show.

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Deactivate the Firefox 3.5 Geolocation feature

Many people worry about their privacy because of the new Firefox 3.5 feature called Geolocation. Well turning it off is really easy using a little about:config trick.

How it works: The Geolocation feature determines your location using the Google Locations Services. It uses your IP, information about nearby wireless access points and a client identifier which is assigned by google every two weeks.

First open Firefox. In the address bar enter about:config:
Read the rest of this entry »

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Useful Firefox Add-ons

Firefox offer several features which distinguish this browser from the others.

At first place this is the freedom. Firefox is free open source browser based on Mozilla engine. He offer improved speed of web page rendering and loading, strongest security, platform independent, etc.

Other Firefox feature is "look and feel" customization. Firefox can be designed to take individual face for every user. He supports themes, skins, rss readers and many more.

And the last and may be the most important feature are Firefox add-ons. Add-ons are external and small programs (plugins) which can be attached to Firefox and to gave the user more power and control when browsing or developing web pages and whatever he do with the browser.

Add-ons can be separated on several types. For people just need more useful browsing enviroment, for designers, for developers, for blogers, for SEO specialists, etc.

In this tutorial I will show you several Useful Firefox Add-ons which can help you to keep up your comfort while browsing in the Internet.

Please have in mind that some Firefox add-ons supports not all versions of Firefox. Read the rest of this entry »

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