// Internet Duct Tape

Spreading the Firefox 2 Love

Posted in Firefox and Greasemonkey, Links, Technology by engtech on October 26, 2006

Firefox 2 is out. Instead of blogging about it, I’ve been happily enjoying it. Rooster nicely summarized my opinion of the changes (geeks of a feather think together). They can be summarized as:


  • Session Saver can restore browser with same web pages that were open before (this used to be one of the most useful extensions, now it’s part of the browser)
  • Better RSS integration (2007 will be the Year of RSS now that all major browsers support it in a nice and clean manner)
  • An amazing built-in spell checker for all forms. Sure, I had the Google toolbar spell check but I never remembered to hit it. Whenever I enter words in a form (including the WP post editor) they are underlined with red if there’s an error. Now all I need is an extension for synchronizing my Firefox dictionary across multiple machines.

Read more to find out the bad.


  • Closing tabs now requires clicking on the X in the tab, instead of an X on the right. Of course, you could just get in the habit of using Ctrl-W to close a tab.
  • Accessibility keys interfering with java functionality. For example, Alt-V should bring up the advanced post editor on wordpress.com, but instead it is bring up the View toolbar menu. Alt-Shift-V works the way Alt-V used to.

Good news: there is a simple config tweak to restore tab functionality to the way it worked in Firefox 1.5. Got to love “old fogey” hacks… expect to see an embedded video of me with a broom yelling “Get off my blog, damn kids!” any minute now.

Fx 2 only: Another tab interface change in Firefox 2 is the addition of a close button on each individual tab. I happen to love this, but some hate it, saying it causes them to accidentally close a tab when just trying to switch to it. If you’re a hater, revert to the Firefox 1.5 behavior by changing the browser.tabs.closeButtons value to 3. This will not display close tabs on individual tabs, and turn on a single close tab at the right end of the tab bar.

Lifehacker has a really nice list of other Firefox config tweaks such as ALWAYS storing sessions when closing the browser (I believe it even keeps form data).

UPDATED 2006/11/02: a neat trick for reducing the Firefox menu bar to increase screen real estate.

UPDATED 2006/11/04: Accidentally closed a tab? Bring it back Shift+Ctrl+T

Related Posts

Spreading the Internet Explorer 7 Hate
>> Geek to Live: Top Firefox 2 config tweaks – Lifehacker
>> Firefox 2 First Impressions
>> Firefox 2.0 is a solid improvement

9 Responses

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  1. […] In addition to my thoughts yesterday //engtech had a take on the fox as well. It is good to see what others think of the new version. I have also removed the close tab X from the individual tabs thanks to the post. Now I have no close tab buttons at all which is great. Why I did this is because tonight on this post when I clicked the tab that this post was in I almost closed it, that would have been bad. Plus I did not like the way they looked in my theme at all, Yuk. […]

  2. mystarbucks said, on October 26, 2006 at 10:00 pm

    I just started using firefox and all of a sudden I have to download a new version. Technology is obviously traveling faster than I am.

  3. Cardinal47 said, on October 26, 2006 at 10:37 pm

    Here’s a more objective comparison of the two browsers IE 7 and Firefox 2.


  4. Kristin K. W. said, on November 02, 2006 at 2:43 am

    I actually think it’s a good thing they moved the close tab to the actual tab as I use Opera for browsing and it’s quite used to that instead of the ‘x’ hiding somewhere in a corner.

    And I love the spell checker, now I can blame Firefox if I write strange words..

  5. engtech said, on November 02, 2006 at 8:47 am

    The spellchecker is *SO* good.

    It really rules my world. All I ask for is an extension or mechanism for synching my personal dictionary across multiple computers.

  6. Kristin K. W. said, on November 02, 2006 at 10:26 pm

    I’d like that too, as I tend to forget which Firefox user I have learned what.

  7. […] Text under Firefox (?) […]

  8. blumoon said, on November 19, 2006 at 8:54 am

    This alt-shift-v doesn’t work for me. Is it because it is a microsoft keyboard!? :) Any other suggestions?

  9. engtech said, on November 19, 2006 at 10:41 am

    Try typing in the text entry box first. or using alt-v.

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