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Optimizing Firefox 3 Hacks And Tweaks

Updated on March 21, 2012

Firefox

Previously I was using Firefox 2 and was happy with its performance. Then I downloaded the latest version on world download day. More than 60 million downloads are done till now. Earlier I used to tweak my browser to optimize it for the best performance. Now I am experimenting with the possibilities of the latest version. I am sharing them with you here. However I am a little disappointed with the extension compatibilities of the latest version. I guess I will need to re-install most of the extensions I was using with the earlier version. Its a pain considering the fact that most of those extensions do not have an updated versions for Firefox 3. I also found out what more I can do with the latest firefox, and then thensome easter eggs too! I hope these tips, tricks, hacks and tweaks will help you in optimizing the browser to suit your needs.


Firefox 3
Firefox 3

Optimize Firefox 3

As I was trying to tweak Firefox 3 to suit my needs, I realized that it is more cutomizable and user friendly than the previous version. I used the 'about:config' to do most of the tweaks. If you want to them please take a back up of your settings first, so that you can revert back, if you don't find the hacks and tweaks useful for you.

Firefox 3 Hacks And Tweaks

The following tweaks are obtained by typing about:config and then modifying the page. Make sure you take a back up copy just in case something goes wrong. Here are some of the hacks for the experimentally oriented.

Step one: Type about:config in the address bar and hit enter

Step two: Make the following modifications to the file by typing in the values on the respective fields to get the desired result (feel free to experiment)

1. To enable/disable Single Click Select URL of address bar

browser.urlbar.clickSelectsAll = True 
browser.urlbar.clickSelectsAll = False

2. To auto Complete URL while typing in the address Bar

browser.urlbar.autoFill=True

3. To set the number of auto complete URL in the address bar

browser.urlbar.maxRichResults = #

(# indicates the number of auto complete URLs shown. The default is 12)

4. To disabler Browser Toolbar Tip

browser.chrome.toolbar_tips = False

5. To paste copied content by clicking the center button on the mouse

middlemouse.paste = True

6. To disable blinking text

browser.blink_allowed = False

7. To create a single close button to for all Firefox Opened Tabs.

browser.tabs.closeButtons = 3

8. To increase number of recently closed tabs.

browser.sessionstore.max_tabs_undo=15

9. Right click view source in your editor

view_source.editor.external=True
view_source.editor.path= Path of Editor 

10. To enable fast scrolling across tabs

toolkit.scrollbox.scrollIncrement =75

11. To stop displaying website icon in address bar and on the tabs

browser.chrome.site_icons = False
 

12. To enable spell check in text fields

layout.spellcheckDefault = 2
 

13. To speed up the browser

network.http.max-connections 30 to 96
network.http.max-connections-per-server 15 to 32
network.http.max-persistent-connections-per-server 6 to 8
network.http.pipelining false to true
network.http.proxy.pipelining false to true
network.http.pipelining.maxrequests 30 to 8
network.http.pipelining.ssl false to true
network.http.proxy.pipelining false to true
 

14. To disable annoying browser behavior

Change the followowing values to 'false'

dom.disable_window_open_feature.titlebar
 
dom.disable_window_open_feature.menubar
 
 
dom.disable_window_move_resize
dom.disable_window_open_feature.toolbar
 

15. To show more tabs on single window

browser.tabs.tabMinWidth = 75
 

16. To display search results in new tab

browser.search.openintab=True.
 
 

I have used many of the above about:config hacks with Firefox 2 before and it is working for the new version as well. If some thing goes wrong after applying these changes, restore your about:config to older setting.

Firetune
Firetune

Using Software to Fine Tune Firefox 3

People will be coming out with more helpful hacks, useful tips, tweaks and tricks soon. FireTune is a simple freeware utility that will help you to fine tune Firefox 3. It is meant for tuning network related settings and is done with respect to your computer speed and Internet speed. This saves your lots of time which you would waste while doing this optimization manually. Click here to download this utility. If you feel that the changes done with Firetune are not upto the mark then you can always revert back to your original settings.

How to Easily Save All Images and Media Files

One other interesting feature I have fond in Firefox 3 is that you can easily save all media and image files. To do this first you need to click on the site identification button sitting just left to the address bar. A “Manage Information” Button will pop up. Click on it and you will see another popup with lot of options. Select the Media Option. Here you can see all the images and other media files availble in that web page. Select any or all, then click on the Save As button. This will ask you to specify a folder where it will save all the media and image files.

I am also using flashblock extension which blocks all annoying video and flash contents and help the pages to load faster. Interclue is another useful add-on I have installed, which helps me see less and know more, click less and do more, and warns me of dangerous sites.

Firefox 3 Easter Eggs

Like most of all other softwares, Firefox 3 is also carrying easter eggs!

To see the first easter egg in Firefox 3, type about:Mozilla in the address bar and hit enter. You can see the following text appear on the screen, (white text in maroon background). "Mammon slept. And the beast reborn spread over the earth and its numbers grew legion. And they proclaimed the times and sacrificed crops unto the fire, with the cunning of foxes. And they built a new world in their own image as promised by the sacred words, and spoke of the beast with their children. Mammon awoke, and lo! it was naught but a follower.

from The Book of Mozilla, 11:9 (10th Edition)"

To see the second easter egg type about:robots into the Firefox 3 address bar. The following will appear!

"Welcome Humans!

We have come to visit you in peace and with goodwill!

* Robots may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.

* Robots have seen things you people wouldn't believe.

* Robots are Your Plastic Pal Who's Fun To Be With.

* Robots have shiny metal posteriors which should not be bitten.

And they have a plan."

There is a button saying "Try Again". Try it!

Do You Use Firefox?

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    • birdslover profile image

      birdslover 5 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Thanks for giving so much info about Firefox.

    • profile image

      shahad 5 years ago

      lol wow thanks

    • profile image

      Uth Video 6 years ago

      While Facebook doesn't quite allow you the same degree of profile customization that MySpace does you can still tweak the look of your personal profile and apply some really nice looking Facebook Layouts to your profiles.

    • profile image

      Red Chilli Media 6 years ago

      Thanks for your kind information about Firefox 3 , I am always use Firefox for better performance to other explorer .

    • profile image

      Abhimanyu 6 years ago

      I want to say that firfox is best browser for developers..!!

      Tone's of tricks are available..!!

      Just to see that what is new firfox 4.!

      Currently there is firfox 4 beta version..!!

      Thanx for sharing this great article..!!

    • profile image

      Gecko Academy 6 years ago

      Previously I was using Firefox 2 and was happy with its performance. i am always using firefox and thanks to sharing using tips ........... <p class="subheading" align="center">

      Animation Institute Delhi

    • profile image

      igrice 6 years ago

      How to reduce the size of memory and virtual memory?

    • profile image

      Domain For Sale 7 years ago

      I never like IE i m using it from a long time but about firetune i don't know. A Deep thanks to the writer of the article.

    • profile image

      wparena 7 years ago

      I got the power after following your tips...thanks for sharing your knowledge

    • adorababy profile image

      adorababy 7 years ago from Syracuse, NY

      I love Firefox as well. To all the users out there who are still using IE, I don't think they have realized what they have been missing out.

    • save my system profile image

      save my system 7 years ago from United Kingdom - London

      Thanks for sharing this wonderful tips and tricks. Firefox is most user friendly browser and now it will be more fun with all this up gradation. I like to perform some experiment with my browser.

    • motricio profile image

      Mauricio Rodriguez 8 years ago from Bogota DC, Colombia

      Firefox is the best browser! XD

    • profile image

      Dodi 8 years ago

      Thx SunSeven,ur the best !

    • profile image

      Wayne 8 years ago

      Thanks for taking the time to provide us with these great tips! It is nice to know there are still some giving and caring people in this world, and you are at the top of the list in both categories!

    • Avare profile image

      Avare 8 years ago

      Firefox is really awesome browser! Like it very much!

    • profile image

      mark 8 years ago

      I also use the firefox. And I&acute;m also having problems with the extensions...great

    • MissJamieD profile image

      MissJamieD 8 years ago from Minnes-O-ta

      Thanks so much for this, it helps tremendously:)

    • jasonstevens profile image

      jasonstevens 8 years ago from California, United States

      Thanks, FireFox was starting to get slow but these tips really helped.

    • creativeMind profile image

      creativeMind 8 years ago from Cochin

      FF3 is a very good browswer..I should thank you for increasing the surfing speed by your tips..

    • paywalker profile image

      paywalker 8 years ago

      Oh boy, I really started to hate FF3. Using it long time now, and finally got something that could really work for me, and who knows how many others. Thanks.

    • profile image

      ace_ventura2 8 years ago

      Its a great article dude. Thanks a million

    • cosmos11 profile image

      cosmos11 8 years ago

      Great article. These will be really useful tips.

    • leeroper profile image

      leeroper 8 years ago from UK

      Thanks for the write-up and some useful comment additions. When I typed: "about:config" I received a warning message saying "This might void your warranty".

      The message could be concerning for the more novice user wanting to fix a FF problem. Maybe a note within the hub that explains, because your reading this Hub you do know what you’re doing, unless you start changing things not directed. Although I can't understand what warranty will be voided in the first place?

    • ocbill profile image

      ocbill 8 years ago from hopefully somewhere peaceful and nice

      yeah, evry good tips even a newbie can follow.. Great hub !!

    • profile image

      Erick Smart 8 years ago

      Good info here. I have been using FF for quite some time. I started when I was wanting to save things to my iPod so that I could review them on the plane. There are lots of great hacks to make FF a personal experiance that you need.

    • surviveprison profile image

      surviveprison 8 years ago from New York

      Hi - great info - have a question: I have loaded the newest version of FF and now I find that it takes almost a minute to load - what gives?

    • profile image

      Al Soto 8 years ago

      Great Tips! Glad I found it after many searches. Thanks for sharing. Makes the world a better place.

    • profile image

      t08c15 8 years ago

      Thanks for the tips. It is needed &amp; will be very useful.

    • Sterling Sage profile image

      Sterling Sage 9 years ago from California

      Great hub. I love the simplicity and readability of your format!

    • agape12 profile image

      agape12 9 years ago from Alberta, Canada

      Firefox 3 is packed with lots of cool features. It also have the capability of detecting some security issues and vulnerabilities, which firefox 2 was not able to pick out.. It also sends quick alerts on noticing vulnerability.

      I have also noticed that it is faster than the previous versions. The video customization options allows you to save video files in different formats including flv, mp3 etc. However, it seems that it is less robust and stable. It crashes when loading or reloading some pages or when it encounters little error.

    • kyleko1234 profile image

      kyleko1234 9 years ago

      LOL! I love the Easter Eggs!

    • bested profile image

      bested 9 years ago from Huntington Beach

      thanks for all the tips, I'm upgrading my firefox to 3.0.4 (update bar just popped up :D).

    • RichR profile image

      RichR 9 years ago from Nottingham, UK

      After about 3 years with Firefox I have just switched to Flock. I upgraded to Firefox 3 and found it less stable. Flock is built on the same engine, so very familiar for firefox users. You can use most of these tweaks and most Firefox addons are compatible. I believe that Flock is in the lead at the moment and it has lots of great social networking features.

      Cheers

      Rich

    • bladeguy profile image

      bladeguy 9 years ago

      Good tips. My favorite tip not mentioned here is to change the address bar so that it automatically does a google search (not an &quot;I'm feeling lucky&quot; search) for anything that doesn't resemble a URL. That way, I no longer need a separate search box.

      Thanks for the hub!

    • billnad profile image

      billnad 9 years ago

      As a vetran Firefox user I love to get under the hood and tweak my browser. Your tips though are going to take me a while to get trhough. There are lots and they all seem to be great, I know this becasue I have done the Firefox speedup and it has worked well.

      Thanks for the tips

    • pylos26 profile image

      pylos26 9 years ago from America

      a fox with feathers...wow...good tips...

    • myi4u profile image

      myi4u 9 years ago from United Kingdom

      appreciate this ... these tips are great ... i wonder if it works on FF3 portable ... trying it out soon!

    • marketingmergenow profile image

      marketingmergenow 9 years ago from Spokane

      Exceptional Hub! I think the information was just what I was looking for. I appreciate your time &amp; efforts.

      marketingmergenow

    • terenceyap07 profile image

      terenceyap07 9 years ago from Singapore

      Just came back to let you know that these tweaks are great!

      Thank you so much, my friend!

      *grins*

    • mytube profile image

      S.M. Tanvir Farhad 9 years ago from Dhaka, Bangladesh

      Good tips for browser. I will try it.

    • profile image

      terence 9 years ago

      Fantastic tips!!!

    • cesarnoel profile image

      cesarnoel 9 years ago

      Nice Tips on the browser speed tweaking

    • ubanichijioke profile image

      Alexander Thandi Ubani 9 years ago from Lagos

      Great hub. thanks for the tips. U did so great.

    • SuperStar 8 profile image

      SuperStar 8 9 years ago from Indianapolis, Indiana

      I use Firefox but I don`t know which one I use. It just says Firefox. Anyhow, I likeyour tips. Thanks.

    • RyanRE profile image

      RyanRE 9 years ago from Bellingham, WA

      Great tips! I haven't been really happy with FF3 either. In fact, I still run FF2 on one of my machines. Maybe I will try some of these hacks in FF3 and be happier.

    • dougmcunha profile image

      dougmcunha 9 years ago

      Good article. Tweaking aboud:config settings is now part of Firefox user routine, although we never know what to change.

      We have to be selective about what we change in about:config. Most &quot;how to turn Firefox faster&quot; articles around the internet suggest changes to config which reduce memory usage to improve overall performance. But it have an opposite effect. Using less RAM increases the use of virtual memory, which is a place in your hard drive used like memory. Once RAM is much faster than hard drive, it's a bad idea stop using it in favor of much slower hard drive.

      When I found that you did not fall into this trap, it was a good surprise.

    • profile image

      cthomas 9 years ago

      Thanks for your article, I switched to Firefox from IE7...I don't have anymore freezes and it made my website better for some reason, not sure why, but it cleaned up a lot of background screens which were previously showing with IE7......

    • Scorpion_M profile image

      Scorpion_M 9 years ago from Portugal

      I also use the firefox. And I&acute;m also having problems with the extensions...great hub

    • profile image

      Novetrix 9 years ago

      Heh... I LOVE how FF3 gives you a warning about how you're about to f up Firefox xD &quot;I'll be careful, I promise!&quot;

    • profile image

      Bluerider 9 years ago

      Thank you!

      FF is my favourite browser,but this 3.0 ver. keeps crashing all the time!

      Even with one window and tab opened.Update of some great addons are late.UnPlug doesn't work and many others....

      Keep doing good job!

    • TravelAMP profile image

      TravelAMP 9 years ago from Around the world

      Cool. I use Firefox for its performance and add-ons. Beats IE miles away. Oh, love the easter eggs.Thanks for sharing.

    • pcdriverupdate profile image

      pcdriverupdate 9 years ago from VA

      Awesome tips. The easter eggs are fun. Thanks!

    • KateWest profile image

      KateWest 9 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      As someone with comparatively little computer know-how, I've found that (even though I'm a total MAC girl) that MAC requires you to upgrade your Operating System which you can't do until you buy a new computer, and so on and so on. I've seen this happen attempting to updgrade SAFARI and FIREFOX. Frustrating. Do PCs work the same way?

    • cspence profile image

      cspence 9 years ago

      I found 3.01 upgrade is the best tweak you can do. I was having endless problems with 3.0 crashing, but 3.01 really helped.

    • eugie17 profile image

      eugie17 9 years ago from online (everywhere)

      Thank you for this information

      Firefox is my best browser, I use it coz its stable and professional

    • profile image

      Ravon 9 years ago

      Thanks for this! Love Firefox!

    • Patnet profile image

      Patnet 9 years ago from San Diego Area

      There's no doubt that Firefox is quicker than I.E.. One thing I have to be careful of is opening up too many link windows as it can overload resources and freeze everything.

      Thanks for in the info about the icon to the left of the add. window and being able to download media files from a page that way. I wasn't aware of that.

    • joer4x4 profile image

      joer4x4 9 years ago from Philadelphia, PA

      Actually the file you are changing is prefs.js. If you mess it up and didn't take a backup you can delete it. Firefox will create a new standard one when restarted.

      Not to take anything away for the author but the "To speed up the browser" sections should not be taken lightly. If you don't understand what you are doing you could just a easily degrade performance. You really need to experiment and put the time in to get it right for your installation. Not something I would recommend except to those who are technical. The problem lies in the balance of the communications (your ISP) and the user interface which also plays a part.

      Otherwise nice article!

    • terenceyap07 profile image

      terenceyap07 9 years ago from Singapore

      Dear SunSeven,

      Thank you for this very useful instructional hub. I have learnt a lot from reading it, my friend.

    • marketingcoach profile image

      marketingcoach 9 years ago from Georgia

      Great artilce.Thanks for the tips.

      Donna

    • Guru-C profile image

      Cory Zacharia 9 years ago

      Dear SunSeven: Thanks so much. I had never heard of Easter Eggs before. I didn't know there was a hidden, creative world beneath the surface of the software. My left brain tells me that it is text written as a placeholder for the computer language. But my right brain says that no, the software is a holding place of treasures... Like you!!!! Best Regards, Cory

    • stevemark122000 profile image

      stevemark122000 9 years ago from Southern California

      I've been using firefox on mac for about 6 months. I like it much better than Internet Explorer with Windows.. Thanks for the tips!

    • profile image

      Ronald Daniar 9 years ago

      It is very useful! Thanks for the tips!

    • cspence profile image

      cspence 9 years ago

      Well I decided to upgrade from FF3 to FF2, what an upgrade!

      Now I stopped crashing!!.

      I'll give FF3 another 3-6 months before I touch it again.

      Still an awesome hub!

    • ElizaJay profile image

      ElizaJay 9 years ago from Wirral

      Nice one - few there that I wasn't aware of before

    • WebsiteEditor profile image

      WebsiteEditor 9 years ago

      Thanks SunSeven for the great tips.

      Off I go to change the settings! :)

    • cspence profile image

      cspence 9 years ago

      Now if only FF3 would stop crashing every 1-3 hours. Even in safe mode without plug in it constantly crashes for me. I usually have 4+ tabs open and BAM cya.

    • pcdriverdoctor profile image

      pcdriverdoctor 9 years ago

      Great Hub! Thanks for sharing.

    • Elaine Hannah profile image

      Elaine Hannah 9 years ago from Tejas, USA

      I just began using FireFox (I know, I know...WAYYYY behind the 8 ball on that one!), so I came in using the Beta &amp; RC versions.

      Can you say LOVE?

      Thnx for the tweaks &amp; hacks. They're going to make my Firefox experience even better!

    • Griffo profile image

      Griffo 9 years ago

      Really cool tips here. I'm finally getting used to the new FireFox especially after my add-ons and themes were updated for it :)

    • Pete Michner profile image

      Pete Michner 9 years ago from Virginia

      This is a ton of useful information, thanks!

    • LdsNana-AskMormon profile image

      Kathryn Skaggs 9 years ago from Southern California

      Great Hub:-) thanks for all the tips to improve firefox.

      tDMg

      LdsNana-AskMormon

    • rapmanual profile image

      rapmanual 9 years ago from Hubpage Island, Squidoo Land

      I freakin love firefox :)

    • profile image

      Orior 9 years ago

      Nice! I'm looking forward to Firefox 3.

    • Urdezire profile image

      Urdezire 9 years ago

      Great...i liked this page , even bookmared this.

    • Premium Websites profile image

      Premium Websites 9 years ago from Vancouver, WA

      I have noticed the FF3 crashes a great deal more than FF2. Do you have a solution for this annoying behavior?

    • ChrisLang profile image

      ChrisLang 9 years ago from Gilbert, AZ, USA

      You are number one on HubPages today and you deserve it. I bench marked FF before I applied your hacks, going to restart now. Thanks!

    • jezzbb profile image

      Jess Ba-ad 9 years ago from Philippines

      I found firefox 3 better than the earlier versions. Now I can make it even better thanks to your hacks. Again, thanks for sharing.

    • ahmadnaim profile image

      ahmadnaim 9 years ago from Earth in where people's smile is worthful than platinum

      Super cool nice dude!Thanks for sharing! Have a nice day!

    • ProCW profile image

      ProCW 9 years ago from South Carolina

      Hey SunSeven... I did the Speed Up the Browser thing... IT WORKED!!!! Thanks!

      ProCW

    • profile image

      proudfilipino 9 years ago

      click help and then click about youll see your version

    • agnesgriffins profile image

      agnesgriffins 9 years ago from Philippines

      Wow! Nice one. Thanks for sharing it.

    • Louie Jerome profile image

      Louie Jerome 9 years ago from UK

      Very useful, thanks. I am usually wary of mesing about with settings on my computer because i don't have the background knowledge but you make it sound easy.

    • rkat profile image

      rkat 9 years ago

      Easter eggs are my favorite, thanks for the tips to find them.

    • AndyBaker profile image

      AndyBaker 9 years ago from UK

      Very useful tips - thanks !

    • profile image

      preciousleonna 9 years ago

      That is a great information, especially for the people like me, kidding aside, more readers are really appreciate your tips.

    • Nicki B profile image

      Nicki B 9 years ago from Orange County, Ca

      Thank you for the tips!

      -Nicki B.

    • rbnstr08 profile image

      rbnstr08 9 years ago from Philippines

      Gee, I would not know if I would have time to do that. I think I am still using Firefox 2, not really sure. I just have some problems of cut and paste on some sites. Is it alright for us to copy your post here for reference?

    • hcshi profile image

      hcshi 9 years ago from Singapore

      Cool! Very useful tips. These are advanced stuff in plain English.