Firefox Love

I love Firefox.

Being a pure Linux user, I can’t use IE anyway, but every time I have to use a Windows computer with IE on it, I always find something that pisses me off. Popups, some piece of adware (one of which actually inserted a link into a plain text file I was trying to read), and a general lack of customizability.

Firefox has one of the smartest pop-up blockers I’ve ever seen. I don’t ever think I’ve seen a pop-up that I didn’t have to click for. Granted, sometimes I have to click twice to allow it, but it’s a small price.

Firefox is very extensible. There’s a little mini-searchbar next to the address bar that you can use to search Google or do a “find in page” right off the bat. You can also add a whole bunch of different search engines to that little bar, including Cambridge American English Dictionary, Webtender, How Stuff Works, and even the Straight Dope archives.

But what’s really impressed me about Firefox is the other extensions. There are the simple ones, like the one I use that adds a little “Next Image” or “Previous Image” to your right-click dropdown menu. Really, all it does is change the number in the filename by one, but it saves a lot of clicking. There are all sorts of little tweaks and even a couple of games in the extension archive, including a interactive fiction interpreter.

The one that’s really impressed me, though, is Adblock. Adblock allows you to block banner ads and similar things by right-clicking the offender and selecting “Adblock Image” or “Adblock iFrame”. The beauty of it is, though, that it then pops up the URL in a litte text box and you can then use wildcards to widen the range of what’s blocked. For example, if the URL is “”, you can simply change it to “” and you’ll never get another ad from again. I went to maybe a dozen sites and blasted all the banners and boxes I saw, and now I rarely see a banner. Now, I don’t really have a lot against these ads. It’s just that some of them are really annoying (bright multicolor flashy WINNER ads, anyone?) and of all the things on a page, they seem to load first. Sometimes it takes them a long time to load even on a cable modem connection. Now my browser doesn’t even bother. Skip the banners and get to the content!

So g’wan. Give it a shot.

Preach it, Tentacle Monster!

After the latest round of news stories highlighting IE vulnerabilities, I increased my already-paranoid avoidance of Microsoft products that access the internet. Visiting my folks for a week has kept me from using the Slackware GNU/Linux desktop computer that remains in my apartment, so I pulled out a Knoppix Live CD-ROM and have been accessing the internet from a spare computer running Knoppix.

I’m a new convert to Firefox, prompted by the incessant security holes in IE.

After using it (and loving it) I’ve been convincing people to dump IE at home and go with the Firefox goodness.

Fast loading, tabbed browsing, no pop-ups, no security issues and tons of plug-ins and extensions. Life is good!

After using it for months on my iBook, I downloaded Firefox for my Windoze work computer. Ahhhh, how pleasant it is! Tabbed browsing, handy searchy toolbar thingie, and pop-up-free-a-rific!

My very favorite feature of Firefox is “Use Find As You Type.” It’s not even an extension. Just go to Preferences: Accessiblity and check it. Open a webpage. Think of a word you want to find. Click in the pane. Start typing the word. Find an occurrence, but not the one you want? Just hit Control-G (or Command-G on a Mac.)

I am so hopelessly addicted to Find As You Type that it makes me really insane to use anything but Firefox anymore. Control-F??? Ain’t no way I’m gonna waste my time typin’ Control-freakin’ F and messin’ with no damn dialog box!!!

Another Firefox user here, on both WindowsXP and my Mandrake install. I love the Mouse Gestures extension; whenever I am stuck on a machine with just Internet Exploder, I get all twitchy trying to use gestures that are not there. :slight_smile:

I am unable to suppress an audible AAUUGGHH!! whenever I run into a browser without mouse gestures.

I wish there was a good way to convey to IE users what they are missing in the way of features without soundling like some MS bashing fan boy.

I was on Mozilla for a while. It was clunky, but it REALLY helped keep down the spyware/adware/malware. Then I got Firefox… none of the clunkiness, all of the awesomeness.

I’m trying to get my boss to tell our IT guys to install it on the work computers…

I’ve been using Firefox since it was called Phoenix, and while in some ways it reminds me of Opera (at least, the version of Opera that I tried) I’ve always preferred Phoenix/Firebird/Firefox. One of the simplest features is my favorite: tabbed browsing. LOVE it! Especially since I discovered SDMB: I like to keep one tab open to whichever forum I’m browsing, and open an individual thread in a separate tab (with another one open to Yahoo Mail, a fourth open to a reference site of some kind, etc.). With IE, keeping track of all of those windows is a pain in the ass!

I used Firefox kind of “on the side” for a while, but when I got my new home computer (XP Pro OS) for some reason IE wouldn’t work correctly. That is, it would work until it suddenly crashed the whole damn system. So I switched to Firefox as my default browser, and it has never crashed. Ever. I still tend to use IE as my default browser at work (though I’m switching over there, too), but at home and on my laptop it’s Firefox.

You are my new hero! :smiley:

As I started to read the OP, I was thinking to myself “…if only the Merriam-Webster toolbar would work on Firefox…” It’s something I use frequently, for both my day job (writing and editing stuff) and at home (writing e-mails and SDMB posts), but I never knew about the “add engines” capability! I have already added the M-W dictionary and thesaurus, as well as several others…and I ain’t done lookin’ yet. :slight_smile:

Now that I learned about adding search engines to Firefox, I can use it for everything except two work-related web apps. So I’ll keep IE around for those, and also for the occasional site whose layout just looks/works much better on IE (usually e-commerce of some kind).

Go, Firefox! (And go, Tentacle Monster! :wink: )


Haven’t had a whit of spyware/pop-up trouble since I made the switch a few months back.

Unfortunately, I still have to fire up IE every now and then, since that’s the only browser my company’s web site supports. :smack:

I also love Firefox.

Is there an extension for the latest version that will save sessions? That would be really nice.

I have my little FoxAmp extension, which puts winamp controls in the status bar.

The Mouse Gestures extension has spoiled me shamelessly. Using IE is a chore now.

Even the little things, like being able to get different browser themes, help to make Firefox a towering beast that wholly overshadows Internet Explorer.

An even quicker way to do this for some of your more heavily used sites(you don’t even have to select them in the little pulldown):

(I’ll use google, it works the same with, and a lot of others)

Go to google, do a search on something memorable, say, foobar, and bookmark the results. Go to manage bookmarks, and select that new bookmark, and hit the properties button. In it’s location you will see something like:

Edit the url and replace the foobar with %s.

Then in the “keyword” field, insert a “g”, then hit OK.

Now all you have to do from now on to search google for say, “cecil adams” is to go to the location bar, and type

g cecil adams

and it’ll run that search for you.

This is especially helpful with and mouse gestures. Quick flick of the mouse to pop open a new tab, type a d followed by an attempted spelling, and get a definition, or a list of alternate spellings.

In general, most search sites put your search text in the url somewhere. If you have a saved bookmark with a shortcut, and you type that shortcut into the location bar, and append a space and then some text, firefox will look for a %s in the saved location of that bookmark, and replace it with the text that follows the shortcut you typed in.You just have to find how a site embeds your search terms in it’s url, and put the %s in the right place.

You can use shortcuts longer than one letter, but I have only found I really need 5-10 of them, after that I forget the shortcuts.

Also, shortcuts are useful just as simple shortcuts(duh).
On any of my machines, all I have to type in the location bar is an s, and I get the sdmb, a c is cnn, etc.

That one is a really underrated feature of Firefox IMO. I have loads of these “quick searches” set up, g for Google, w for Wikipedia, various dictionaries as d, dd and ddd, and so on. I use “g <search term>” so much that I hardly ever go to the actual Google page any more, and on other browsers I find myself typing g <whatever> in the address bar and wondering why it doesn’t do a search…

I want to add Yahoo as one of the search engines on the Firefox search bar… but when I go to their site to download the extension, there are options for just about every yahoo site imaginable – Yahoo Canada, Yahoo Japan, Yahoo Cameroon, Yahoo Entertainment, et.c etc. etc.

But no plain old

And the experts about 2 years ago were saying Microsoft had won the browser wars.


Check out Tabbrowser Extensions. Not only will it save tab sessions for you, it offers a wealth of other configuration settings for customizing tabbed browsing. Highly recommended.

Ok, you and Tentacle Monster must share: you are both my new heroes. :wink:

Before this thread I was geek enough to know about/use Firefox, but not geek enough to look into all of the cool stuff it can do. Since yesterday I have added a bunch of engines to the search box, installed a couple of extensions (including Tabbrowser Extensions), and have now set up this quick search thing for a few sites. I’m in danger of geek-happy overload: I got a ‘new’ laptop last week; set up a wireless network at home last night; and am discovering/playing with all of this cool Firefox stuff today. :smiley:

I tried the quick search thing on IE, just out of curiosity, but I can’t edit the shortcut key. Is this due to something I can change (a setting or permission or something), or does IE keep them locked down as a rule?

On this page, go to section 5 (General). Plain ol’ Yahoo is the 6th plugin in that list (by Fernandes, McGuigan [last updated: 01.06.2003]).

Useful tool: the BugMeNot extension–and if you’re not acquainted with the fabulousness that is BugMeNot, read about it here.

Fun thing, not useful in the slightest, but it gives me a giggle: Firesomething. Right now I’m browsing using Mozilla Spacevulture.

It’s there - sixth one down under the ‘general’ catagory (5) for Yahoo!

Yeah, this thread is great. I didn’t about all of these features either.