Tips and tricks for Firefox guidebook

Discussion of general topics about Mozilla Firefox
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Post Posted August 22nd, 2004, 8:45 pm

A little late, but here are two things I know:

You can set unread tabs in italics by adding this rule to userChrome.css
Code: Select all
.tabbrowser-tabs > tab:not([selected]) {font-style: italic !important;}

and setting browser.tabs.loadFolderAndReplace to false.

Bookmark items have a label attribute, and the value of that attribute is equal to the name of the bookmark. If I have a bookmark named foo, I can use .bookmark-item[label="foo"] as a selector for it. So the following rule, for example, hides the bookmarks toolbar folder:
Code: Select all
.bookmark-item[label="Bookmarks Toolbar Folder"] {
  display: none !important;

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Post Posted August 23rd, 2004, 6:36 am

I realise I'm kind of crossposting because I mentioned this over in the build forum but I think it deserves a place here as well:

If you play around with firefox a lot and reinstall and uninstall different builds you may inventually get problems such as not being able to install extensions, bizzaire behaviour or not having firefox come up (no window appears!) despite installations and uninstallations and such. I have been having a lot of problems with this, and the solution is that you need to clear out all of the junk which might have built up across conflicting versions of the software.
The solution is to delete this directory: C:\Documents and Settings\Windows User Name\Application Data\Mozilla which contains all of your back data. Uninstall firefox, delete that directory and reinstall. This should fix a lot of problems, but be aware, it contains all your bookmarks and settings and extensions so you will have to retrieve these or reinstall them so to speak. I hope this helps you because I wish I had known to do this before spending ages trying to figure out what on Earth Firefox was doing.
The post below has more info on this.
Last edited by komencanto on September 28th, 2004, 7:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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Post Posted August 23rd, 2004, 6:35 pm

i feel like the above post needs clarification (not for the editor... but for any passerbyers)

When you muck a whole bunch with firefox expecialy with weird extensions you build up a lot of junk in your userprofile (as mentioned above) This can be taken care of by removing this "junk" from the file found in windows at

C:/Documents And Settings\ <windows user name> \Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\ <firefox profile name>

It is advised that you copy any documents in there that you have invested time into before deleting this file, this can include bookmarks, and the userfiles (usrchrome etc). I personaly incourage anyone out there to try and fine the trouble files or extensions through trail and error and remove those first, this will give you some idea as to what a clean profile looks like, and what to look for when you have future problems.

(to the above poster I just feel that a more clear explanation was needed)



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Post Posted August 24th, 2004, 12:43 pm

I'm a bit of a tech junkie and thus find some deranged pleasure out of learning about modifying and tweaking FF just to see what I can do. My real understanding of things is pretty limited though. I imagine that many of the people, like myself, that have recently migrated to FF from IE have some similar techlust. Most end users though, like my roomates and family, would hate the idea of downloading extra extensions, let alone fiddling with userchrome.css. I have to admit even I was rather daunted by the prospect of cutting and pasting code into some file that ends in ".css" (I still have no idea what this means). It would be great if the userchrome.css file could have a really simple, no code-to-see kind of interface to help end users who are scared to look at that stuff. That probably isn't going to happen, but in the mean time, some explanation of the safety of updating userchrome.css would be nice. After reading about the dangers of updating a registry, I've been reluctant to touch it. I guess this reluctance carried over and turned into a bit of paranoia.


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Post Posted August 26th, 2004, 5:34 pm

CSS refers to stylesheets (CSS being the standard for such). It determines, basically, how pages are displayed (this is my understanding of it anyway).

...and registry updating can be quite fun ;)

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Post Posted August 28th, 2004, 6:25 am

I think the book should be organized in a FAQ format. That'll make it easier to find 'fixes' for whatever problems the user faces. Also it won't clutter the user with unnecessary info.
IMHO, I think FF has to transition to a more user friendly, less geeky s/w. There should be no tweaking of the *.css files required. I think a menu option should be provided that provides the 'tweak' required. The user would only need to select that option to get the tweak working.


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Post Posted August 29th, 2004, 3:14 pm

I think it would be good to be done in a similar way to The Webhikers Guide to Outpost Firewall -

I found this guide invaluable when I started off using Outpost Firewall and there is also a link to download the whole guide for offline viewing.

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Post Posted August 30th, 2004, 2:19 am

Somehow they got it right about the media stuff. I think it was Winamp that was having problems getting onto Netscape and Mozilla. Anyway, I just dl'd the most plugins I could but by the time I got RealPlayer 10, the problem with the missing plug-in was still evident. I bitched and moaned at AOL for a while, sent screenshots, then the thing finally loaded up this afternoon. Problem solved, maybe I helped somebody else get something they could not before. They might just start making people pay for all the videos and stuff, anyway.
Last edited by on August 31st, 2004, 3:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.0; en-US; rv:1.7) Gecko/20040626 Firefox/0.9.1
RealJukebox NS Plugin,
RealPlayer(tm) G2 LiveConnect-Enabled Plug-In, (32-bit), RealPlayer Version Plugin, Mozilla ActiveX control and plugin support, */Nullsoft Winamp Plug-in for Gecko/*,


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Post Posted August 31st, 2004, 7:00 am

I'm Running a P4 system with 512 ram and it seems that FF tends to takes a while to load, any suggestions or other info on this?

Edit: Nice Icon


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Post Posted August 31st, 2004, 2:18 pm

I think mentioning all the about:'s and what they do would be nice. I only know, about:, about:config, and about:plugins. Is there any more? I sure don't know!

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Post Posted September 2nd, 2004, 9:56 am

In my opinion,the best user´s guide would be a MozillaZine Forum compilation. As a result, I´ve written the following " sheme " :

1.1.Download Firefox
1.2.Install for first time
1.3.Install from a existing one
1.4.Reinstall Firefox
2.1.Differences between Mozilla and Firefox
2.2.Can Firefox coexist with Firefox
2.3.Differences between releases and nightlies
2.4.Differences between trunk and branch
2.5.Where are my personal preferences, bookmarks, passwords stored
2.6.How do I star profile manager
2.7.What is Talkback
3.1.Navigation, Searching, Improving speed and efficiency
3.2.Download Manager
3.3.Customization : Toolbar, Themes and Extensions
3.5.Controlling Pop-ups
3.6.Managing Cookies
3.7.Keyboard Shortcuts
3.8.Mouse Shortcuts
3.9.Menu Reference
4.1.How I import bookmarks from others browsers
4.2.How I alphabetize bookmarks
4.3.How I backup my bookmarks
5.1.What a plugin is
5.2.How I install Java, Flash, Adobe Reader, etc
6.1.Where I download them
6.2.How I install from the hard drive
6.3.How I backup my extensions
7.1.How I access the profile manager
7.2.How I backup my profile manager
7.3.Create a new profile
7.4.Create a new profile without xxxxxxxx.slt
8.1.The configuration files
8.2.How I edit the configuration files
8.3.The about:plugins,about:buildconfig,about:cache
8.4.The about:config
8.5.How I tweak Firefox for better speed

A correct Firefox User´s guide is a factor because teaches us the huge gulf which exists between Firefox and Internet Explorer

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Post Posted September 6th, 2004, 12:42 pm

Talk about popular and usefull extensions :)
<a href=""><img border="0" alt="Get Firefox!" title="Get Firefox!" src=""/></a>


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Post Posted September 8th, 2004, 5:16 am

An Internet Cache that is easy to access like the one in IE6 under "Tools>Internet Options>Settings>View files" folder.

While it may take a bit more surfing to get there (to IE's vciew files folder) than typing "about:cache?device=disk" in Firefox's location bar, selecting and saving files is a lot easier to do from a folder than the "about:cache" browser window Firefox has.

In a folder you can save an item with 2 clicks with a browser window it takes several clicks and this can take a lot longer this way especially if you have a lot of files you want to save.

EDIT: Sorry meant to post this in the Feature request section, making users aware of the "about:cache?device=disk" address to locate their internet cache would be a handy thing to know though


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Post Posted September 8th, 2004, 11:16 pm

To disable text resizing on CTRL-mousewheel, in about:config change mousewheel.withcontrolkey.action from '3' to '0'
Last edited by fishbert on September 9th, 2004, 9:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post Posted September 9th, 2004, 8:38 am

I think a list of the "about:xxx" pages would be useful. I learned of "about:config" when I was installing Firefox to a USB stick drive and I just saw "about:cache" in this thread.

How many more "about's" are there?

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