My Firefox plugins

I finally got around to upgrading to Firefox 2 yesterday. When it first came out, I upgraded, found that 90% of my plugins hadn’t been updated yet, and then promptly went back to 1.5. I figured it was finally time to give it another shot, and as I’d hoped all of the plugins I needed were available. Seems much faster now and the memory leak from loading lots of images isn’t quite as bad as it was in 1.5. I think.

Anyhow, since I made a list of plugins before I updated to check that they were all available, I figured I’d turn that into a post here. I did this once a while ago, but that’s way out of date now. So here’s what I have now:

Web development things

  • Firebug: The state of the art in web development extensions. Interactive changes to HTML and CSS, element inspection, and way more. You really need to see this one to get how handy it is.
  • Web developer: The previous state of the art in live website development, but still has dozens of features Firebug doesn’t have, mostly involving enabling and disabling particular browser features and displaying specific elements.
  • ColorZilla: Photoshop’s eyedropper in the browser.
  • IE Tab: Lets you use Internet Explorer’s rendering engine on a per-tab or per-site basis. Useful for cross-browser development and for those websites which only work in IE. (Windows-only.)
  • Live HTTP Headers: Lets you inspect, modify, and replay the HTTP conversation between the browser and the Web server. Especially handy for troubleshooting problems that would otherwise be concealed by SSL.
  • View Cookies: Adds a “View cookies” tab to the Page Info dialog box, which lets you view and remove the cookies that were set by the current page.

Navigation things

  • Link Widgets: Toolbar buttons for “first”, “previous”, “next”, “last”, “up”, and “top”, based on link rel or heuristics.
  • Firefusk: A fusker in the context menu.
  • Undoclosetab: Context-menu option to reopen the most recently closed tab. Apparently this functionality is built in to Firefox 2.0 in the History menu, but I find this far handier.
  • Disable Targets: Stops links from opening new tabs or windows if their content isn’t browser-renderable.
  • Linky: Lets you perform bulk operations on all or a selection of links on a page, such as “open all links in new tabs”, “open all images in one tab”, or “download all links”.

Interface things

  • Download Statusbar: Replaces the download window with a status bar with short progress indicators above the Firefox status bar.
  • Popup ALT: Fixes an ancient yet mysteriously unfixed Firefox bug that truncates tooltips from element titles or image alt tags.
  • Stop-or-Reload: Replaces the Stop and Reload buttons with a single button that is either Stop or Reload depending on whether or not a page is currently loading.
  • Menu Editor: Lets you reorganize all of Firefox’s menus (including the context menu) to change the order of items or prevent them from displaying. I use it to hide all the mail-related items and trim out some overly-enthusiastic extensions’ noise.
  • ErrorZilla: Replaces Firefox’s default error page with a more useful one, with options to view Google’s cache or a page in the Internet Archive and more.

Configuration things

  • SwitchProxy: Lets you configure multiple proxies and switch between them or disable the proxy feature from the Status Bar.
  • FasterFox: Easy preferences-panel access to a bunch of Firefox performance-related options. Some of the settings can be harmful; please don’t go beyond the “Optimized” setting.
  • User Agent: Lets you change Firefox’s user-agent to anything, with presets.

Functionality things

  • Mozex: Lets you specify external programs for a variety of actions, including using your own editor to edit the content of textboxes.
  • Adblock Plus: Blocks ads.
  • Filterset.G Updater: Automatically downloads and applies updates Filterset.G, a set of filters for Adblock Plus.
  • Greasemonkey: Allows you to apply scripts to loaded pages to change what’s on the page: fix usability problems, work around bugs, add new interface elements, and more. Explained well at Dive Into Greasemonkey; hundreds of scripts are available at
  • Deepest Sender: LiveJournal/Wordpress/Blogger client. I’ve sort of stopped using this since I started using WordPress, but it’s very, very handy for LiveJournal.
  • SessionSaver: Saves browser sessions on shutdown or crash and restores them on startup. The user interface is still awful, though.
  • BugMeNot: Automatically fills in username and password fields on sites that unnecessarily prompt for same, from those collected by

And finally, I use the Modern Pinball theme, because it’s small, simple, and decent-looking.

6 responses to “My Firefox plugins”

  1. You shouldn’t need SessionSaver anymore since that functionality is also built in now.

    I haven’t done a huge amount with my Firefox since I wiped my machine, but I have some of the favorites/must haves: Firebug, Deepest Sender, Greasemonkey, Download Statusbar, Linky. I’ve yet to be in a situation where I’d need Web Developer instead of Firebug, though.

    Also, your links to Firefusk and Download Statusbar are bad. And I must say I love how this is filed under ‘Uncategorized’ as well as some specific categories.

  2. You shouldn’t need SessionSaver anymore since that functionality is also built in now.

    Only parts of it is. The big missing bit is that SessionSaver asks me if I want to restore my sessions when I restart Firefox; I don’t always want to restore my sessions after a restart. It also recognizes that if I start, restore, and crash immediately that next time it probably shouldn’t try to restore.

    Also, your links to Firefusk and Download Statusbar are bad. And I must say I love how this is filed under ‘Uncategorized’ as well as some specific categories.

    You must be… imagining things.

  3. i use a lot of these, but haven’t heard of a bunch of others. thanks for the tips! i use tab mix plus instead of session saver, though.

  4. Wot, no NoScript or FlashBlock?

    I find NoScript particularly useful. And Nuke Anything is a great tool for selectively removing content from hosts that one doesn’t want to block systematically.

  5. I don’t use LiveHTTPHeaders any more, as Firebug has all of the live HTTP header goodness that I’ve ever needed.

    Also, I expected the subject of the post to be: my plugins, let me show you them.

  6. gcrumb: I’ve never really had much need to disable Java and Javascript. Adblock Plus blocks the annoying kind, and the rest I want. Same deal with NukeAnything: if AdBlock Plus misses something, I don’t really bother doing anything about it.