A Compendium of Firefox 4 Beta Tweaks
With Chrome nipping at Firefox's ankles, Mozilla knows it has to perform a drastic overhaul – and it is. Firefox 4 is shaping up nicely, adding tons of new features and addressing many complaints about the current version. Despite that fact, many people will find it difficult to embrace some of the upcoming changes.
Fortunately, Mozilla hasn't deviated from what's made Firefox the second most used browser in the world: flexibility. We're going to look at some tweaks you might want to apply if you're running the current Firefox 4 beta, such as changing the color of the new orange menu button, moving tabs back to the bottom, getting add-ons to work and more.
Force your add-ons to work
Firefox wouldn't be where it is without extensions, and we know many of you rely on them for school, work, and entertainment – we do too. Some developers drag their feet when it comes to updates, and while you can't make them work faster, you can force Firefox to ignore the incompatibility of your add-ons with a simple change in about:config.
Change the new menu button's color
Among the more obvious changes in Firefox 4 is the addition of an orange menu button located at the top left corner of the browser window. This replaces the menu bar by including the most used options in a single location. Although this button is convenient and leaves more space for content viewing, the color will probably clash your Aero theme.
Download Squad has a solution that not only lets you change the new button's color, but you will be able to move it around, too, if you don't mind messing with CSS (and for us, that's asking for trouble). If you simply want to make the button transparent follow the instructions below, if you want the full instructions on how to move and tweak the button for a complete tutorial:
Open new tabs after the active tab
If you open a link in a new tab in Firefox 3.6 or Firefox 4, it will start right beside whatever tab it was launched from – just like Chrome. Earlier versions shoved new tabs to the back of the line, and call us picky, but it can be hard to break old habits. Here's a thirty-second fix:
Disable taskbar previews for every tab
Instead of showing one taskbar preview per window, the Firefox 4 beta displays a preview for every single tab you have open. Tangerine menu button aside, this has to be the most annoying setting on what is otherwise a very impressive refresh, especially if you're juggling many windows with tons of tabs. Thankfully, it only takes a moment to turn off:
Move tabs back to the bottom
Yeah, we all get it. Firefox isn't the first browser to shift tabs above the address bar. Opera and Chrome have long used this layout, and for a good reason: it makes more sense. To clear things up once and for all, Mozilla recently released a video explaining why tabs are on top in Firefox 4. Unconvinced by their logic? Then put the tabs back "where they belong":
Remove the Feedback button
Before we get rolling, we'd like to say that you should consider participating in Mozilla's feedback program. The organization is working hard to deliver the features you want, but that's impossible if you don't speak up. That said, if you're not going to contribute, you might as well free up the space occupied by the feedback button and here's how: