Remove New Tab Button From Firefox 3.5

I have just upgraded to the latest version of Firefox.  While there are many new features in 3.5, the one that you will probably notice first is the addition of a button to the right of your tabs that will open a new blank tab.

Remove New Tab Button From Firefox 3.5

Since I use shortcut keys to open a new tab this button is pretty much useless to me.  I like to keep my browser as uncluttered as possible.  Fortunately, if you aren’t afraid of some minor text editing you can remove this button in about one minute.

You’ll need to find your user profile for Firefox which contains the userChrome.css file.  On my XP computer it is located here:

C:\Documents and Settings\<your_account>\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\ftz0ce5v.default\chrome

On OS X you will find this file here:
~/Library/Application Support/Firefox/Profiles/ftz0ce5v.default/chrome/

On Windows 7:
%appdata%/Mozilla/Firefox/Profiles/ftz0ce5v.default/chrome

Note that ‘ftz0ce5v’ is randomly generated by Firefox so you will see something slightly different.  Once in this directory you should see a file named ‘userChrome-example.css’.  Make a copy of this file in the same directory and rename it to ‘userChrome.css’.

Open the file you have just created an add the following line:

.tabs-newtab-button {display: none}

Restart Firefox and you will see the button is gone.

Use FireGestures to Open Your Favorite URL

As mentioned previously, one of my favorite Firefox addons is FireGestures.  If you don’t already have this essential addon – It allows you to perform common tasks in Firefox such as open/close tabs, switch tabs and minimize using only your mouse.

This tool also allows you to create custom scripts to perform additional actions not available ‘out of the box’.  Adding the ability to open your favorite website with the flick of a mouse is simple:

In firefox go to the menu and select ‘Tools’, then click on ‘Add-ons’ in the drop down menu.  Then click on the ‘Options’ button for Firegestures.

Once the FireGestures dialog box opens, click ‘Add Script’

Choose a name that will be easy for you to remember,  clever me, I used ‘Open mySite’.

In the ‘Script’  text box copy the following*

const URL = "http://www.digg.com/";
const IN_NEW_TAB = true;
const IN_BACKGROUND = false;

if (IN_NEW_TAB)
  gBrowser.loadOneTab(URL, null, null, null, IN_BACKGROUND, false);
else
  gBrowser.loadURI(URL);

* Note: for demonstration purposes, my favorite url is digg.com,  you can change to yours by changing the url to the site of your choice.

Now enter the gesture you want to use: U=up, L=left etc… I used DULDR (the letter ‘d’).  Save, exit and test out your new gesture!

My favorite Firefox Addons

I would guess that 90% of what I do with my computer I do online, and 100% of what I do online is using Firefox.  I recommend this browser 110%.  I recommend so highly because of its great addons and extensibility.  Here is a list of my favorites:

fireftpfireftp allows you to create a connection to an ftp server right in your browser.  It has all of the features and functions you would expect from any modern ftp client including ftps support and persistent logins.  Fireftp presents the files in an explorer type view that lets you drag and drop files back and forth.

firebugfirebug is essential to any one who does web design or programming, it is also a great tool for learning.  One of my favorite features is the ‘inspect element’ tool which allows you to see what tags and css are associated with a particular part of an html document.  With it you can also code css on the fly and see how it will affect layout.  There are simply too many features to cover here, but I will just say this is a game-changer.

firegestures1firegestures has become the one addon that I simply cannot go without.  It allows you to perform common browser actions such as navigate forward or backward, open favorite url, go to home page and reload by simply holding down the right mouse button and moving the mouse in particular shape.  You can also create custom gestures and actions.  This feature is so useful, you will find yourself trying to do the same thing in explorer windows and other programs.

Digg fails the YSlow test

Recently while trying to improve my blog’s load speeds I installed Yslow. It’s basically a Firefox addon that adds to the firebug console, and ‘grades’ particular aspects that could improve your site’s performance and load speeds.

Well always curious, I wanted to see how some other high volume websites fared on this test. One of my favorite places on the internet is Digg, and you could say it’s fairly busy:

6.8 million monthly unique visitors in the U.S. and over 17 million worldwide

Here’s the result, Digg get an ‘F’, and a low one at that. I wonder if it’s because of the parameters Yslow uses or because Digg ignores them?

digg-yslow_700

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