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  1. Firefox 69.0.3 fixes download issues Firefox 69.0.3 will be released to the Stable channel later today. The new version of the web browser addresses two issues, a download issue and a Yahoo Mail issue. Mozilla released Firefox 69.0.2 on October 4, 2019 and became aware of an issue affecting downloads for some users shortly thereafter. Users affected by the issue could not download any files using the browser; Firefox would place a 0-byte file in the download folder but would not download the actual file. Mozilla's investigation revealed that the issue was limited to Firefox on Windows 10 devices and there only if parental controls were enabled. Mozilla implemented checks for parental control software as part of the DNS over HTTPS rollout in the United States. The organization disabled the new feature for devices with parental controls to avoid impacting the functionality of the software. Background updates to Firefox 69.0.2 were throttled as a consequence and work on a patch began. Mozilla acknowledged the issue in the Firefox 69.0.2 release notes stating that "File downloads may not work for Windows 10 users with Parental Controls enabled ". Firefox 69.0.3 Firefox 69.0.3 fixes the download issue for affected users. Interested users can check out the official bug on the official bug tracking website to find out more about the issue and the patch. Firefox 69.0.3 addresses another issue. Yahoo users who use the browser to access Yahoo Mail may have received download prompts when they clicked on emails in the Yahoo Mail web interface. Firefox's downloads manager would list the file "as.php" as the downloaded file on affected systems. Fixed download errors for Windows 10 users with Parental Controls enabled (bug 1586228) Fixed Yahoo mail users being prompted to download files when clicking on emails (bug 1582848) Firefox 69.0.3's official release date is October 10, 2019. Firefox users affected by the issue may run a manual check for updates once the browser is released officially to upgrade to the new version immediately. All that needs to be done for that is to click on Menu > Help > About Firefox. Closing words Mozilla fixed both issues in less than a week's time. Affected users may have downgraded Firefox to an older version to mitigate the issue for the time being. Firefox 69.0.3 fixes the issue and users should consider upgrading to the new version. Source: Firefox 69.0.3 fixes download issues (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  2. Link Gopher is a Firefox add-on that can extract links from webpages Most websites have tons of links in their pages. Some of these may be used as internal links to pages within the same website while others are outbound links to other resources. If you want to find out how many links a page has or even extract links from a webpage, it could be a difficult job to handle this manually. There could be hundreds of URLs. The Firefox add-on Link Gopher can do this for you as it was written specifically for extracting links from webpages. The add-on adds an icon to the Firefox toolbar when you install it that displays a light interface that consists of just 3 buttons. Extract all Links Extract all Links by Filters About Link Gopher (links to the official website). Extract all Links Go to any web page and click on the "Extract all Links" option and Link Gopher will open a new tab in Firefox that contains all the links that were found on the web page. All of these links are clickable so you can use them directly from the browser. Internal links and links to other resources are displayed under Links. Scroll down to the end of the page to see "Domains", i.e., links to the top-level domain of other websites. The list of the links follows the browser's colour policy to distinguish visited URLs. You can also save the links to a document manually if required. This can be useful for webmasters or if you're on a web page with several download links. It was handy during my tests as it could pull all the direct download links from web pages and saved me a few extra clicks now and then. Another example when I found the add-on to be particularly helpful was when I used it to find the "source link" in articles on other websites. Many writers and admins make it a practice nowadays to hide outbound links within words used in the article. It is good for SEO but the reader may find it difficult to spot the link, especially if it is of the same colour as the rest of the text. Extract all Links by Filters This option may appear quite similar to the normal extractor, but it's quite different. When you click on this option (from a source web page), you will see a search box that accepts keywords, e.g. If you only want to see links from gHacks, type "ghacks" and click on the ok button. Link Gopher will filter the links from the page, and you will only see the links which have the word "ghacks" in the URLs. Sadly, Link Gopher does not offer any customization whatsoever. I'd have preferred to have an option to open links in a new tab by default, well nothing a control + click (or middle-click) won't do. That being said, the add-on is meant to do one job and it excels at what it does. Link Gopher is open source, but I couldn't find the source of version 2 of the add-on. Mozilla has marked it as a recommended add-on which is a good sign. Source: Link Gopher is a Firefox add-on that can extract links from webpages (gHacks)
  3. Mozilla says in an update to the Firefox 69.0.2 changelog that downloading files from the Internet may not work for Windows 10 users who have the Parental Controls feature toggled on and are part of a family group. The problem is described on Reddit [1, 2, 3] and Mozilla's bug tracker in an issue reported three days ago, on October 4, saying that all web downloads are failing when using Firefox on Windows 10. Don't update to 69.0.2 or 70.0b11+ Following these reports and the bug tracker issue, Mozilla published a support page where it advises Windows 10 users to refrain from updating their Firefox installation to 6.9.0.2—the web browser's latest stable version released last Thursday—or Beta 70.0b11+ until a fix is available. "There is a known issue in Firefox 69.0.2 and Beta 70.0b11+ that causes downloads to fail in Windows 10 when you have parental controls or content restrictions on," says Mozilla. "If you haven't already updated to 69.0.2, please avoid doing so until we've shipped a fix." While a patched version is not yet available in the Stable or Beta channels, the releases affected by this issue, Mozilla recommends users that, "in the meantime, you can work around this problem by turning off content restrictions [..]." This can be done using a step by step procedure described in this Microsoft support article and designed to remove members from a family group via the family.microsoft.com portal: 1. Go to family.microsoft.com. 2. Sign in with your Microsoft account, then: • To remove a child, scroll down and select Manage my child's profile info, select the child, select Remove consent for this child's account, and confirm. Then, go back to your family’s page, and under the child’s name, select More options > Remove from family, and confirm. • To remove a child because they’re now an adult, or if an adult account has been misclassified as a child account, verify the account. • To remove an adult, under that person's name, select More options > Remove from family, and confirm. • To leave the family group if you’re the only adult in the family, remove all children first, then find your name, select Leave family, and confirm. You must be over the statutory age to remove yourself. • If you're incorrectly listed as a child when you're an adult, see How to change a birthdate on a Microsoft account. Users who have already installed the impacted Firefox versions will have to downgrade to a previous stable version that is not affected by this bug (69.0.1 or 68.0.2 might do the trick according to some user reports). Fix coming in a future release While Mozilla can use hotfixes to patch some browser issues, it seems that this one might have to wait to get fixed as part of future releases in the Firefox stable and beta channels. "A patch to the parental controls service that makes it return that downloads are allowed instead of throwing seems to fix the problem," says Mozilla Platform Engineer Matt Howell. "That would require a new release; I'm not sure what our current hotfix capabilities are, but I would guess that anything we could do to fix this would fall outside of them." Until then, Firefox users with Windows 10 devices can either leave any family groups they're in or downgrade to a previous release not yet affected by this bug. Source
  4. Firefox 69.0.2 is out, here is what is new Mozilla released Firefox 69.0.2 today; the stable channel update fixes two potential crashes in the web browser and fixes the detection of Parental Controls on Windows 10. The update is already available via the web browser's built-in automatic updating functionality. Firefox users should receive update notifications when they run the browser. Users who want to speed up the process -- it may take a bit of time before the browser runs the check for updates -- may run a manual check instead. To do that, select Menu > Help > About Firefox. The browser displays the installed version and runs an update check. The new version is either downloaded and installed automatically or manually depending on the browser's preferences. Firefox 69.0.2 is the second minor update of Firefox 69.0. Mozilla released Firefox 69.0 on September 3, 2019 and pushed out the first minor update, Firefox 69.0.1, on September 18, 2019. Firefox 69.0.2 Firefox 69.0.2 is a bug fix release that addresses two crashes in the browser. Fixed a crash when editing files on Office 365 websites -- The first issue affected Office 365. Mozilla's release notes highlight that the issue could crash the tab when editing files on Office 365 websites. Some reports suggest that the tab could also crash when navigating pages on Office 365 websites. Firefox 69.0.2 fixes the issue, tabs should not crash anymore on Office 365 sites. [see bug 1579858] Fixed a Linux-only crash when changing the playback speed while watching YouTube video -- The second crash affected Firefox on Linux only. Firefox users who changed the playback speed on YouTube while watching videos on Linux could encounter freezes or tab crashes when doing so. [see bug 1582222] Fixed detection of the Windows 10 Parental Controls feature being enabled -- Mozilla fixed the detection of the Parental Controls feature on Windows 10 devices. The issue affected the rollout of the DNS over HTTPS feature in the United States that started in September. Firefox was designed to keep DNS over HTTPS disabled if Parental Controls were used, and the bug affected that logic. [see bug 1584613] Firefox users who are affected by any of the issues may want to upgrade the web browser immediately to resolve the crashes. There is no hurry for users not affected by the issues to install the update as the fixes will be part of the Firefox 70 release on October 22, 2019. Source: Firefox 69.0.2 is out, here is what is new (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  5. FoxyTab is a highly customizable tab manager extension for Firefox There is no shortage of tab managers for Firefox but FoxyTab is one that goes all out for customization. It's a very user-friendly extensions that adds nifty little options that you may find handy to improve your workflow in one way or another. Tip: check out our Firefox Tab Mastery guide for getting the most out of the browser. Once installed, the add-on's icon is placed on the toolbar and will immediately display a badge; it represents the number of tabs that are currently open in the browser. You can optionally disable this or change the badge/text colour from the extension's options. Clicking on the add-on's icon will only let you access the options or recount the tabs. The real interface of FoxyTab is in the tab bar. Or to be more precise, right-click on the tab bar and you will see a new context menu called FoxyTab. These are the options that are available in the context menu. Duplicate Tab Close Duplicate Tabs Close Tabs to the Left Merge all Windows Close Other Windows Save Tab as PDF (Not on macOS or pre-Firefox 56) Create Desktop shortcut Copy Bookmark Host Sort Reload Most of these are self-explanatory so we'll focus on the ones which are special. The Copy option lets you copy the tab title, URL, or tab title and URL. You can also use it to copy all URLs from open tabs or all the Titles, or both. There are even options to copy URLs and Titles from the tabs to the right or the left of the current tab so that every possible use case should be covered by these options (except for selecting individual tabs). These options save you a ton of time and can be used to save an entire session to a text document (very handy if you are a OneTab user). In addition to those, you can also use the Copy IP option to find out the IP address of a website really quickly. You can define your own parameters for the Custom Copy menu using these placeholders: {ip} {title} {url} {date} {time} \n \t Note: You'll need to refresh a tab if you loaded it with the undo closed tab option to find the IP. The Bookmark option lets you save tabs to the Left/Right of the current tab. This can be a great way to save a ton of pages with a single-click of the mouse and it complements Firefox "bookmark all" option nicely. The Host menu is for closing all the tabs, other than the one that is in view, or the one that you right-clicked upon to access FoxyTab. Sort Tabs is one that I found to be a rather niche option. If you want to sort the list of tabs in ascending or descending order of the URL or Title, well you can do that. I did like the move options which can be used to move tabs to the left or right in a new window. It also works with private windows without hitches. The Reload menu has 3 settings: reload all tabs, or just the ones to the left or right, and reload tab every few minutes (can be customized). That could save the F5 key, for e.g. when you are waiting for the end of an auction on eBay or the time an item becomes available online. You can disable or enable any of the context menu items from the add-ons preferences to create a cleaner menu that focuses on the options that you need. Speaking of which, You can import and export the add-ons preferences. I recommend using this one to backup your settings in case you want to refresh Firefox or use different installations or profiles. The Hidden options FoxyTab has a few extra settings that you can choose to enable such as a Clock, Date or Month. You can customize these, and even use multiple clocks with different time zones if you want to. Firefox Multi-Account Container add-on users can configure FoxyTab to open domains in specific containers. Closing Words FoxyTab is a helper extension for Firefox that may improve productivity by extending Firefox's tab-based capabilities. Whether it is an option for you depends on your Internet usage and how you use the Firefox web browser. Source: FoxyTab is a highly customizable tab manager extension for Firefox (gHacks)
  6. How to import tabs from Chrome to Firefox and vice versa So, you have decided to switch from Chrome to Firefox, or maybe it's the other way around. The problem is you have a lot of tabs opened, and you can't abandon the session. Or, you use both web browsers regularly and want to push tabs from one browser to the other; this may also be useful for developers who need to test their sites in different browsers. What do you do? Manually copy and paste each URL from one browser to the other? That could take a long while depending on the number of tabs that you want to push to the other browser. The browser extension OneTab offers a solution that improves the process especially if you need to push multiple tabs to the other browser. Things you will need: Firefox and Chrome OneTab extension for Firefox and Chrome. Tip: you can check out our OneTab review for Chrome here. How to import tabs from Chrome to Firefox and vice versa Note: Please be advised that the following process will close all of your tabs and save the session to a list. But don't worry, you can restore the entire session just as easily. 1. Once you have installed the add-on, you should see its icon in the browser's toolbar. 2. Click on the button to open OneTab (this closes all open tabs) 3. Select the "Export/Import URLs" option on the right side of the page. 4. You should see an Import/Export tab that has a list of all the tabs that you had opened. It has the URL and web page title for each tab. 5. Copy this list to the clipboard. 6. Open Firefox and repeat steps 2 and 3. 7. Now you should be on the Import/Export tab. Paste the list of tabs from step 5 in the Import text field. 8. Click on the import button. OneTab should open a new tab which displays the tabs that you just imported. Click on the "Restore all" option, and the add-on should open all the tabs at once. You can also choose to restore only the ones that you want, by clicking on the tab titles individually. That's it. How simple was that? The process works the other way too, i.e., if you want to export tabs from Firefox to Chrome. Note that it is theoretically also possible to send the list of exported URLs to a contact. May be useful to share research or let someone pick off where you stopped. Another use for this method: Backup your sessions I use this method for a different purpose. Over the course of a week or two, I accumulate several dozens of sites in tabs that I find interesting or have opened for future research purposes. When I don't have the time to go through the list just yet but want to start fresh because the browser's tab bar gets convoluted, I use the extension to save the entire list of open sites in a text document. You can use the import option to restore the tabs anytime you want to. You can even backup your session, clear the browser's data and cookies and restore the tabs right back. This has been helpful for me quite a few times over the past few years. Note: OneTab hasn't been updated for a while on Chrome, but it still works perfectly. The Firefox version is updated frequently. There is an open source alternative for OneTab, called better-onetab, which I haven't used much since it was pulled and re-released by the developer. This post was inspired by something I saw on reddit's Firefox sub yesterday. It was an interesting post, but they used the developer console to move tabs from Chrome to Firefox and it also involved using two different extensions which made it a slightly more complex method. Source: How to import tabs from Chrome to Firefox and vice versa (gHacks)
  7. Mozilla disables TLS 1.0 and 1.1 in Firefox Nightly in preparation of deprecation Firefox maker Mozilla disabled support for the protocols TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1 in recent versions of the Firefox Nightly web browser. Major browser makers such as Mozilla and Google announced in 2018 that support for the decade-old standards would be dropped in 2020 to improve the security and performance of Internet connections. Back then it was revealed that TLS 1.1 was used by 0.1% of all Internet connections; the number has likely gone done in the meantime. Transport Layer Security (TLS) is a security protocol used to encrypt Internet traffic; TLS 1.3 Final was published in 2018 and companies started to integrate the final version into browsers shortly thereafter. Mozilla started to enable TLS 1.3 in Firefox Stable in 2018, and other browser makers such as Google added support for the new protocol version as well. Tip: here is a way to determine if your browser supports TLS 1.3 and other security features. Firefox and TLS 1.0 and 1.1 deprecation Mozilla disabled support for TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1 in Firefox Nightly in preparation for the deprecation in Firefox Stable in 2020. A quick check on a SSL Labs test site confirms that TLS 1.2 and 1.3 are the only supported protocols by the browser. Sites that support TLS 1.0 and/or TLS 1.1 but not TLS 1.2 or newer will fail to load and throw a "secure connection failed" error instead. The error code is SSL_ERROR_UNSUPPORTED_VERSION. Firefox users may override the limitation in the following way currently but that option will likely go away once the change lands in Firefox Stable in early 2020. Load about:config in the web browser's address bar. Confirm that you will be careful. Search for security.tls.version.min. The default value of the preference is set to 3 which means that Firefox accepts TLS 1.2 and higher only. Change the value to 2 to add support for TLS 1.1, or to 1 to add support for TLS 1.0. The screenshot below shows the default value of the preference. Sites, including the dashboard of modems, routers and other local peripheral devices, that support only TLS 1.1 or TLS 1.0 will load after you make the change. Closing Words TLS 1.0 and 1.1 support will be removed from browsers in early 2020. While that should mean minimal interruption for most users, some, especially those working in local Intranets and other non-Internet environments, may run into issues connecting to certain sites and devices that don't support newer protocol versions for one reason or another.Some browsers may keep support for TLS 1.0 and 1.1 enabled, and it is also possible to use an older version of a browser to connect to these sites. Source: Mozilla disables TLS 1.0 and 1.1 in Firefox Nightly in preparation of deprecation (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  8. Here is the the score of browsers to see how much of HTML5 technologies and features they support. In order of highest to lowest. Edge insider Canary Version 79.0.286.0 (Official build) canary (64-bit) Highest Score Google Chrome Canary Version 79.0.3924.0 (Official Build) canary (64-bit) FireFox version 71.0a1 (2019-09-26) (64-bit) Edge classic (EdgeHTML) Microsoft EdgeHTML 18.18990 Microsoft Edge 44.18990.1.0 Internet explorer 11 version 11.1.18990 Internet Explorer 11 (latest version) obviously has the worse score, but it's the only browser that can manage to get the perfect 100/100 score from Acid3 test among all these browsers tested. the rest of the browsers can only get 97/100. By the way, Acid3 is an old test. https://html5test.com/ http://acid3.acidtests.org/
  9. Mozilla will release a new Firefox version every 4 weeks from 2020 on Mozilla announced on September 17, 2019 that it will speed up the Firefox release cycle from 2020 onward for all Firefox channels. New Firefox versions get released every six to eight weeks currently after Mozilla switched to a variable release schedule in 2016. The browser maker started to ship new versions of the browser every six weeks in 2011 when it switched to a rapid release cycle. Mozilla uses a phased released system that moves new code from cutting edge Nightly versions of the browser through Beta and Developer editions before they reach the stable version and the majority of users. So-called Firefox ESR (Extended Support Release) versions are maintained for Enterprises and organizations that follow the same release cycle but with less frequent feature changes. Starting in the first quarter of 2020, Mozilla will release a new version of the Firefox web browser every four weeks. The organization wants to introduce new features including new Web APIs into Firefox more quickly. We’re adjusting our cadence to increase our agility, and bring you new features more quickly. In recent quarters, we’ve had many requests to take features to market sooner. Feature teams are increasingly working in sprints that align better with shorter release cycles. Considering these factors, it is time we changed our release cadence. Mozilla won't change the release cadence of Extended Support Releases. New ESR releases will be released every 12 months with a three month support overlap between soon-to-be-retired versions and the new ESR version. New ESR releases will be released every four weeks however instead of every six to eight weeks; the decision increases the number of ESR releases of a particular version of the browser, e.g. Firefox 68.x, however. A shortened release cycle has risks associated with it and Mozilla wants to maintain release quality and reduce these risks through careful planning, testing, quality management and staged rollouts. One of the planned changes increases the number of beta builds that Mozilla produces in a week up from two similarly to how Firefox Nightly updates are handled by the organization. Staged rollouts play an important role in the new strategy to help "minimize unexpected (quality, stability or performance) disruptions to our release end-users". The release cycle is moved slowly from the 6-8 week cycle that is currently used down to five and then four weeks over the next quarter and the first quarter of 2020. We have updated our Firefox release schedule overview to reflect today's announced changes. Closing words A four week release cycle is a massive undertaking for Mozilla; if the organization manages to keep up the quality of releases while introducing new features more quickly to the Firefox audience, it could be a win-win situation for everyone. ESR administrators will have to adjust to a faster release cycle as well but since the move to new major ESR versions remains the same, it should not be too problematic. Source: Mozilla will release a new Firefox version every 4 weeks from 2020 on (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  10. Hello, As u all know, to create a website shortcut on your desktop, all you need to do is click on the website icon, drag and drop it on the desktop. I am using Firefox 69.0. I don't know if this issue began with the latest Firefox update or its was I who turned off a specific option in the settings. Does anyone know how to fix this issue ? Thank you
  11. FireMonkey uses Firefox's official API for userscripts and userstyles FireMonkey is a new browser extension for the Firefox web browser that enables users to manage userscripts and userstyles using the userscripts API that Mozilla introduced in Firefox recently. The extension offers similar functionality to established userscript extensions such as GreaseMonkey, TamperMonkey or ViolentMonkey as well as userstyle extensions such as Stylus on first glance. One of the core differences, at least right now, is FireMonkey's use of the new UserScripts API that Mozilla implemented in Firefox recently. Mozilla revealed that it created the API to address performance, reliability and security issues in regards to user scripts in Firefox. The API is designed to run userscripts in their own sandbox to isolate them; traditional extensions such as GreaseMonkey execute the scripts in the same process. Note: Mozilla changed the default behavior for userchrome.css and userContent.css files in Firefox 69. These files are not loaded by default anymore. Users need to enable the loading manually to restore the functionality. FireMonkey requests lots of permissions during installation; the developer explains why these are needed on Mozilla AMO. It requests the same permissions that other userscript extensions request. FireMonkey Current versions of Firefox support the UserScripts API. You can check whether that is the case in the following way: Load about:config in the Firefox address bar. Confirm that you will be careful. Search for extensions.webextensions.userScripts.enabled. If the preference is set to TRUE, it is enabled. A value of FALSE means it is not enabled. You may load userscripts and userstyles in the extension. The process is a manual one right now. Click on the extension icon and there on the add icons to add a new script or style to Firefox. You may also use the export and import options that you find in the extension's settings. Adding scripts or styles is not as comfortable right now as you need to copy the code, click on the add button, paste it before you click on save. Still, the process worked flawlessly when I tried it using scripts posted on Grease Fork. Options to save userscripts in disabled state or with auto-updating enabled are provided in the editor. You may edit userscripts and userstyles at any time using the extension. The extension supports GreaseMonkey GM3 and GM4 functions and functions provided by the Firefox API. Some scripts may not work properly when you create or import them; the Firefox API does not allow wildcard top level domains (TLD) which means that something like http*://www.google.*/* is not supported. It may be necessary to adjust scripts accordingly so that they may be imported without issues. FireMonkey comes with a Help file that explains differences and provides examples. It is a good place to start your investigation if something does not work as expected. The extension icon displays the number of scripts and styles that run on the active site. A click on the icon displays the active scripts and styles, and an option to disable or enable any with a single-click. The developer of the extension added a number of helpful features to the extension to improve management and identification of scripts. Script errors reference the name of the script in the console for improved identification and notifications from scripts display the script's name as well. Closing Words FireMonkey is a promising new extension for the Firefox browser that has a lot to offer even in the initial version. You can load, manage, edit, and create userscripts and userstyles using it, and it is using the new userscripts API that Mozilla will certainly put the focus on in the future. The extension would benefit from a few nice to have features, e.g. direct imports from other userscript extensions that are installed or recognition of the "install" button on popular userscript repositories. Source: FireMonkey uses Firefox's official API for userscripts and userstyles (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  12. With Firefox 69 released and Firefox 70 entering beta, here are some fresh web browser benchmarks between Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome from Ubuntu Linux. On the Firefox size, Firefox 68, 69, and 70 Beta were tested with and without WebRender being enabled and compared to Google's current Chrome 76 stable release. With the ARES-6 web browser performance there wasn't any measurable change between the Firefox releases tested while Google Chrome remained a great deal faster than Firefox on Linux for this benchmark. For the aging Octane benchmark, Firefox 69 and 70 Beta actually regressed the performance slightly compared to Firefox 68. Google Chrome 76 meanwhile was about 11% faster than Firefox 68. The WebXPRT benchmark is one of the few cases at least on the Linux desktop where Firefox beats out Google Chrome albeit by a small margin. With the Basemark browser benchmark there is a small boost in performance from having WebRender enabled but that is still beat out sharply by Google Chrome. JetStream is another one of the rare cases where Firefox beats out Chrome currently, at least from the Ubuntu 19.04 operating system stack. With CanvasMark, Chrome returns to offering its significantly faster performance on Linux. MotionMark is one of the benchmarks showing Mozilla's WebRender to its full potential. In addition, it shows the nice evolution of WebRender from Firefox 68 through the brand new Firefox 69 and the Firefox 70 Beta delivers another big step up in performance as it tries to eventually close the performance gap with Chrome. With the Speedometer benchmark the newer Firefox 68/70 builds were slightly faster than Firefox 68 but Chrome 76 still maintained a healthy lead. Lastly is the geometric mean of all the results shown in this article for the different browser benchmarks. Chrome 76 was 48% faster than Firefox 70 Beta but that shrunk to 25% when WebRender was enabled thanks to the healthy improvements found in the relevant benchmarks like MotionMark. There's still a ways to go for Firefox to close the performance gap on Linux with Chrome, but at least these Firefox 69 and Firefox 70 Beta benchmarks show progress is being made. Source
  13. Mozilla plans to roll out DNS over HTTPS to US users in late September 2019 Starting in late September 2019, DNS over HTTPS (DoH) is going to be rolled out to Firefox users in the United States. DNS over HTTPS encrypts DNS requests to improve security and privacy of these requests. Most DNS requests happen in the open currently; anyone listening to the traffic gets records of site and IP addresses that were looked up while using an Internet connection among other things. DoH encrypts the traffic and while that looks good on first glance, it needs to be noted that TLS still gives away the destination in plaintext. One example: Internet providers may block certain DNS requests, e.g. when they have received a court order to block certain resources on the Internet. It is not the best method to prevent people from accessing a site on the Internet but it is used nevertheless. DoH is excellent against censorship that uses DNS manipulation. Tip: check out our detailed guide on configuring DNS over HTTPS in Firefox. Mozilla started to look into the implementation of DoH in Firefox in 2018. The organization ran a controversial Shield study in 2018 to gather data that it needed for the planned implementation of the feature. The study was controversial because Mozilla used the third-party Cloudflare as the DNS over HTTPS service which meant that all user traffic flowed through the Cloudflare network. Mozilla revealed in April 2019 that its plan to enable DoH in Firefox had not changed. The organization created a list of policies that DoH providers had to conform to if they wanted their service to be integrated in Firefox. In "What's next in making encrypted DNS-over-HTTPS the Default", Mozilla confirmed that it would begin to enable DoH in Firefox starting in late September 2019. The feature will be enabled for some users from the United States and Mozilla plans to monitor the implementation before DoH is rolled out to a larger part of the user base and eventually all users from the United States. We plan to gradually roll out DoH in the USA starting in late September. Our plan is to start slowly enabling DoH for a small percentage of users while monitoring for any issues before enabling for a larger audience. If this goes well, we will let you know when we’re ready for 100% deployment. While DNS over HTTPS will be the default for the majority of Firefox installations in the United States, it won't be enabled for some configurations: If parental controls are used, DoH won't be enabled provided that Mozilla detects the use correctly. Enterprise configurations are respected as well and DoH is disabled unless "explicitly enabled by enterprise configuration". Fall back option if DNS issues or split horizon configuration cause lookup failures. Network administrations may configure their networks in the following way to highlight to Firefox that the network is unsuitable for DoH usage: DNS queries for the A and AAAA records for the domain “use-application-dns.net” must respond with NXDOMAIN rather than the IP address retrieved from the authoritative nameserver. How to block DNS over HTTPS You have two options when it comes to DoH in Firefox. You can change the default provider -- Cloudflare is the default -- to another provider (for whatever reason) or block the entire feature so that it won't be used. If you don't want to use it, set the value of network.trr.mode to 0 5 on about:config. Source: Mozilla plans to roll out DNS over HTTPS to US users in late September 2019 (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  14. Firefox Add-ons Warning: This extension isn't monitored by Mozilla Firefox users who open the official Firefox Add-ons repository may notice a new warning message displayed on most extension pages. The warning reads: "This extension isn't monitored by Mozilla. Make sure you trust the extension before you install it". A read more link points to a support page that explains the concept behind the Recommended Extensions program. The warnings were not displayed before on Mozilla AMO, the name of the add-ons repository, and you may wonder why the warnings are displayed right now. Mozilla announced the launch of the Recommended Extensions Program for Firefox in early 2019. The main idea behind the program was to create a list of featured extensions that Mozilla would promote in various ways including in Firefox itself but also on Mozilla AMO. Extensions and their developers had to meet a number of criteria including that extensions needed to be safe and relevant, that the developer was committed to the extension, and that they needed to be "really good" at what they offered. Due to the curated nature of Recommended extensions, each extension undergoes a thorough technical security review to ensure it adheres to Mozilla’s add-on policies. Additionally, extensions would would be carefully monitored by Mozilla. Unlike the rest of the extensions, Mozilla would analyze the code of each of the extensions and of any update before allowing it to become available to users of the browser. The process is not all that different from the process that Mozilla used several years ago sans the promotional effects. The organization used to verify each extension before as well but switched to an automated system since then with manual checks after extension availability. Recommended Extensions have a higher level of trust associated with them because of the extra vetting. The yellow warnings are displayed for any extension on the Firefox Add-ons website that is not recommended by Mozilla. While it may make sense on first glance to inform users that an extension is not monitored, it seems likely that at least some users will be put off by the warning. Extension installations may suffer because of that and it is likely that extension developers are not happy because of that. The warning is displayed on pages of very popular long-standing Firefox extensions such as Tampermonkey, User-Agent Switcher, Adblock Plus (the extension with the most installs by far), or Avast Online Security. Even some of Mozilla's own extensions, e.g. Easy Screenshot by Mozilla Online, Firefox Lightbeam, or Notes by Firefox, are listed with the warning. Firefox Multi-Account Containers is not recommended but one of the few exceptions to the rule as the warning is not displayed for that extension. Closing Words Mozilla is right when it states that a particular extension is not monitored by the organization. That's not really the fault of the extension developer on the other hand. Then there is the question of finding out if an extension is trustworthy. Mozilla provides no guidance or information on that, and most Firefox users can't analyze the code of extensions to verify that the extension is trustworthy. And even if they could, the analysis would not include any of the updates that may be pushed out by the developer. Source: Firefox Add-ons Warning: This extension isn't monitored by Mozilla (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  15. Eyes Alarm is a nice take-a-break add-on for Firefox and Chrome We discuss many Firefox add-ons and Chrome extensions here on gHacks, but the majority of those are either related to security or productivity. Today we take a look at a different category: health. More specifically, eye care. A lot of users work in front of a computer for long hours every day and unless precautions are taken to take enough breaks, it can lead to health issues. Try to observe (or ask someone) how often you blink naturally, you may be surprised by the result. This is a result of too much time spent staring at a monitor. To counter this, you should look away from the screen from time to time as it relaxes the eyes and helps prevent the issue. Tip: we reviewed several programs for Windows that assist you in taking breaks and prevent eye strain. To name just a few: Eye Guardian, Eyecare, and Eyes Relax. Eye Alarm Eyes Alarm is an add-on for Firefox and Chrome that can help you with this. You can also use it as a break reminder to stretch your legs or maybe get a glass of water to drink. It's very user-friendly and has a few options that you can customize. When it is time for you to take a break, the add-on will display a notification on your desktop that informs you about it. Coming to the add-on’s UI, Eyes Alarm adds a clock icon to the toolbar that you may click on to display a pop-up menu. It has a timer (explained below), a reset switch and a gear icon. The reset switch can be used to restart the timer and the gear icon lets you access Eyes Alarm's settings. By default, Eyes Alarm reminds you to take a break once every 50 minutes. That's what the "timer" is for, it displays the time that has passed since the previous break. You can set it to as low as 1 minute or as high as 180 minutes. Next you have the break timer which is set to 10 minutes. And just like the reminder timer, this too can be configured from 1 to 120 minutes. There is an option to change the notification title which reads “Time to break” by default but you can set it to anything you want to. You can also modify the notification content. The default line is “How about a cup of tea?”. This feature allows you to use the add-on for reminders for things to do (on a short-time basis) as well. I don't think it is a good idea to use it for medical purposes like taking pills. Note: Once the break timer runs out, it starts the alarm timer automatically. What if you miss the notification though? Eyes Alarm has an optional notification sound setting which is disabled by default. It allows you to set a custom volume level for the sound. As for the sound itself, it does ship with one (a gentle bell chime). You can use custom sounds too by pasting a URL into the field. I tried setting it to use a different local audio but it didn’t work for me in Firefox or Chrome (Microsoft Edge Chromium Beta). What did work was setting a direct URL to an mp3 audio file. One issue which I was concerned about was the "access your data for all websites". The developer's note at the add-on's page state that permission is required as you can put in any path for custom sounds. That does make sense but these global permissions are still nerve wrecking in my opinion. Note: Modifying any of the settings restarts the alarm timer even if you didn’t alter the timer’s settings. Closing Words Eyes Alarm is an open source project; you can find the source code on GitHub. Apart from the odd grammatical error or two, the add-on is quite good. You can also use programs like F.lux or Lightbulb to reduce eye strain in all applications and not just your browser. These programs are not break reminders though but they change the light of the computer screen instead. Eyes Alarm worked well during tests. Source: Eyes Alarm is a nice take-a-break add-on for Firefox and Chrome (gHacks)
  16. How to locate a noisy tab in Firefox and switch to it instantly This article isn't about annoying auto-playing videos. You know that Firefox displays a speaker icon on tabs which are playing audio and that you can mute those easily with a right-click on the tab and the selection of mute tab from the menu, or a click on the audio icon directly. But, what if you have a lot of tabs open and can't spot the icon in the current view? It happens that media tabs can become hidden in the background if you happen to open more than a dozen or so tabs. You could try using an add-on like Auto Mute Plus to silence all the tabs, and then search for the one which played the audio. Or you could hit the mute key on your keyboard too or turn down the volume. Is that really a solution though? There is still the problem of finding the tab. Unfortunately, there is no feature for this task in Firefox at the moment, not even one that you could enable from about:config. Add-ons do come to the rescue. Tip: You can configure Firefox to mute all tabs by default, and mute individual sites as well. Chrome users can check out the complete Chrome muting guide. How to locate a noisy tab in Firefox and switch to it instantly Here are 2 extensions which I tried. You can use either one. Tabhunter Install Tabhunter and click on its icon in the toolbar. Click on the check box next to "Audio Only". This lists each tab which is playing audio/video. Select the one you want to switch to. Click on the "Go" button. It should take you to the tab. There is no need to search for the speaker icon or manually locate the noisy tab anymore but you may still need to activate mute or pause playback. Tabhunter's GitHub hasn't been updated in over a year but the add-on was updated recently. Switch to audible tab This is a fairly recent add-on which seems to have been written for that one purpose Switch to audible tab lives up to its name. Once you install the add-on you will see its icon on the toolbar. You can click on it and it will instantly jump to the tab which is playing the audio. You can also use the shortcut key combo Alt + Shift + A to switch to the tab. In case you have multiple media tabs, using the Switch to audible tab shortcut/button will cycle through all of them. Closing Words People use Firefox for streaming music, videos, or podcasts in the background all the time. While this is not an issue that demands immediate attention, it would be nice if it was addressed by Mozilla. Maybe they could add a button on the toolbar which only appears when a tab is playing audio in the background, a bit like the play button that Google tests in Chrome currently. Here's what inspired me to write this. About a week ago, I had set a reminder on a YouTube video (live stream) to write about the launch of a device on another publication. Since the event was scheduled to start in a few hours, I worked on other articles in the meantime. A couple of dozen tabs later, I forgot that the stream's tab was open (and that it would auto-play). You can guess what happened: when the stream went live the tab started playing some music. For a second I didn't have a clue what was happening because the 20+ tabs which were visible on my monitor didn't have the "speaker icon" on them. The audio wasn't the issue, locating the tab was. I used TreeStyleTab to scroll the list of tabs to find the noisy tab and switch to it. This took half a minute though, and I wanted a better solution. That's when I discovered Tabhunter and Switch to audible tab. Source: How to locate a noisy tab in Firefox and switch to it instantly (gHacks)
  17. Two years after Firefox Quantum's release, Mozilla devs said they fixed Firefox's battery-draining problem. Mozilla teased today an upcoming update for Firefox on macOS that they say will reduce power consumption by a factor of up to three. The primary beneficiaries of this upcoming update are Macbook users, who can now expect longer battery lives while using Firefox. Firefox's increased battery consumption has been a problem for Mozilla, and a black stain on the Firefox Quantum release -- a revamped, performance-centric version of the older Firefox browser. While Firefox Quantum has received praises for its increased page loading speeds, Macbook users haven't been that delighted, especially when they're mobile and have to rely on the notebook's battery as long as possible. As reported countless of times on Reddit [1, 2, 3, 4, 5], HackerNews and various blogs, Firefox Quantum on macOS has been quite the battery hog, making life difficult for users on the go, who, despite loving Firefox, often had to rely on other browsers to avoid draining their batteries. But according to Mozilla engineer Henrik Skupin, Firefox devs have finally made a breakthrough, and believe they fixed Firefox's power consumption on macOS. Skupin said that a current fix for the battery drain issue has been deployed on Firefox Nightly, where it managed to reduce power usage by three times. The fix is expected to land in the stable version of Firefox in late October 2019, with the release of Firefox 70. According to Firefox statistics, nearly 7% of Firefox's 100 million monthly active users are running a macOS version. Not all may be running on Macbooks, but those who are will most likely be interested in giving Firefox another go in the coming months, knowing the browser won't eat away at their battery at a much faster pace than Chrome or Safari. Per a Bugzilla entry, at the technical level, Mozilla engineers managed to cut down Firefox's power consumption by switching browser page rendering operations to Core Animation, the graphics rendering and animation engine that's built into both iOS and macOS. Source
  18. DownThemAll WebExtension now available for Firefox The classic DownThemAll extension for the Firefox web browser is now available as a WebExtension which makes it compatible with all recent versions of the Firefox browser. DownThemAll came to fame years ago as one of Firefox's many useful browser add-ons. The extension added mass downloading capabilities to the browser to download multiple files from websites. It supported filters and lots of handy features to control and customize the downloading in one way or another. You can check out our review of DownThemAll which we published in 2013 for additional details. The author of DownThemAll did not port the extension to Firefox's new WebExtensions system that Mozilla launched in 2017 officially with the release of Firefox 57. The main reason was a lack of APIs to create a copy of the extension; with many APIs not ready at the time and some features not being considered at all, it looked as it DownThemAll was dead for good. The developer made an announcement this month that a WebExtensions version of DownThemAll would be released after all. It took less than two weeks to go from the initial beta release to the first final release. Firefox users may point their browser to the Firefox Add-ons website to install the new version in the browser. The WebExtensions version of DownThemAll is not a 1:1 copy of the classic version. Core features, namely the downloading of multiple files from sites, filters, and some other handy features, are supported. Other features, e.g. segmented downloads, error handling, conflict handling, or speed limiting, are not supported because of missing capabilities. The extension adds its icon to the Firefox toolbar during installation. A click on it displays options to open the settings and to download files from the active site. A new interface is displayed when you select the download option; it displays all links found during the scan of the page. Each link is listed with its path, title if available and a description. Filters are displayed in the bottom half of the interface to quickly select certain file types, e.g. images, videos, or archives. You can select files manually instead as well if you prefer that, or use the advanced filtering options to quickly select custom file name and extension combinations. A click on download starts the download process; DownThemAll attempts to download all checked files from the linked resources. All files are downloaded to the default Firefox download directory. The DownThemAll settings provide extensive customization options. You can launch them with a click on the icon and the selection of preferences, or from the Firefox add-on manager. There you may turn the toolbar button to a one-click button instead. It is still possible to right-click to access other functionality that the extension provides. The preferences list options to disable notifications and tooltips, create your own filter groups for use when selecting files, or change the number of concurrent downloads from four to another number. Closing Words The new DownThemAll supports core functionality and that may be sufficient to users who just want to download files faster from sites. It is certainly still excellent for that. It is clear, on the other hand, that the WebExtensions version will never be as powerful as the classic version of DownThemAll. For that to happen, Mozilla would have to extend API functionality and it looks as if this is not going to happen for certain required features. Source: DownThemAll WebExtension now available for Firefox (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann) EDIT: Changed addon link to point to English version, was German.
  19. Firefox add-on DownThemAll makes a comeback Several add-on developers criticized Mozilla in 2015 when the maker of Firefox revealed that it would drop the classic Firefox add-ons system to replace it with a new system based on WebExtensions. That switch happened with the release of Firefox 57 in 2017. One of the developers was Nils Maier who maintained the popular download add-on DownThemAll. We reviewed DownThemAll in 2013 for the first time and found it to be an excellent extension to mass-download items on websites. The extension would parse webpages to display links, pictures and media, and other download options to the user when run. Firefox users could use it to download all images, archives, audio files, or any other type of file from sites with a simple operation. Maier criticized Mozilla for making the switch when WebExtensions API were not mature enough or even available; an extension like DownThemAll would be severely feature-limited and the decision was made not to port the extension. Extensions like Download Star were created in the meantime that supported some of the functionality of DownThemAll but they too are limited by WebExtension APIs. The developer published the source code of the WebExtensions version of DownThemAll on GitHub recently stating that the release of a beta version is just around the corner. The WebExtensions version is a complete rewrite of the extension. The developer notes that the extension will lack features that the original DownThemAll extension supported because of WebExtension limitations. Additionally, some bugs that got corrected in the legacy version will return in the WebExtensions version as there is no way to deal with them at the time. What this furthermore means is that some bugs we fixed in the original DownThemAll! are back, as we cannot do our own downloads any longer but have to go through the browser download manager always, which is notoriously bad at handling certain "quirks" real web servers in the wild show. It doesn't even handle regular 404 errors. The To-Do list, sorted into priorities, highlights upcoming features and features that cannot be implemented because of limitations. Chrome support is planned, as is localization support, support for drag and drop operations, importing and exporting, or download priorities. Features that most likely won't be implemented due to limitations include segmented downloads, file conflict management, speed limiting, download referrer sending, request manipulations, checksum or mirror support. The WebExtensions version supports selecting and downloading multiple files from webpages using filters and other tools to aid in the process. What we can do and did do is bring the mass selection, organizing (renaming masks, etc) and queueing tools of DownThemAll! over to the WebExtension, so you can easily queue up hundreds or thousands files at once without the downloads going up in flames because the browser tried to download them all at once. Closing Words The WebExtension version of DownThemAll supports the core functionality of the legacy version for the most part but will lack lots of features that made DownThemAll one of the most popular Firefox add-ons. Fans and long-time users of the add-on will give it a try probably regardless of that. Source: Firefox add-on DownThemAll makes a comeback (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  20. Enhancer for YouTube is an add-on for Firefox and Chrome which offers a ton of customization There are a lot of quirks in YouTube, but we have plenty of workarounds for most issues. Most of these are possible thanks to add-ons. Today, we take a look at Enhancer for YouTube. It is an add-on for Firefox and Chrome, that can change the way you experience the streaming service. The extension adds a ton of features including better playback controls, removal of advertisement, and an option to detach and pin the player. Tip: Check out our guide on fixing choppy video playback on YouTube. Enhancer for YouTube When you install the add-on, a settings page (and a help page?) should open. You can always access the settings from the toolbar icon. It has a ton of options and we'll discuss the most important ones here. Enhancer for YouTube displays a toolbar on every YouTube page, and it has some buttons which let you control the video player. You can use the add-on's settings page to enable/disable the buttons which appear on the toolbar. The Remove ads button disables advertisements from the videos. If you're using Ublock Origin or another content blocker, just ignore this setting as ads are taken care of already. If you wish to support your favorite channel you can whitelist them so that ads are displayed if the channel uses YouTube's monetization options. The film reel icon is for enabling the cinema mode while the arrows icon is for resizing the video player. Detach Video Player This is one of the best features in Enhancer. The "detach video player" option (icon with the 2 squares) opens the video player in a separate window. You can scroll pages while watching the video in the pop-up player, but, if you click inside any window, the pop-up player shifts to the background. If you want to pin it, i.e. stay on top on other Windows (including another Firefox Window), you will need to use a third-party app, AutoHotKey, to execute a script. This is not the add-on's fault, but because of limitations for extensions. The pinned player's size and position can be customized as well. (Firefox users, refer to the closing words section for a better option.) Volume Booster This option is disabled by default because using this disables another feature (controlling the playback speed). But the volume booster can be priceless when you're watching a video that has low audio levels or when you are used to changing the volume using the mouse wheel. Themes Enhancer has many built-in themes to choose from which changes the appearance of the YouTube website. You can also use custom CSS themes: just paste the script in the add-on. The video player can also be themed but it only works in Cinema mode. To do so just pick a colour from the palette and set the opacity. Automatic video settings You can set the default playback, volume and resolution that videos should play on YouTube. In fact, you can even set your second, third and fourth choice of resolution and the extension picks the first that is available based on your priority. The add-on can optionally remove all annotations from a video. You can set the add-on to enable Theater mode, expand video descriptions, and sort comments from recent ones from the settings page. These settings are all automated once set; there is nothing that you need to do after you enable them in the settings of the extension. Custom Scripts The add-on supports custom Javascripts that you want to be executed when YouTube is loaded; this is an advanced feature of the extension and probably only useful to a handful of users who want to add or change functionality on YouTube even more. Other options Loop mode can be enabled to replay the same video endlessly. Useful, if you have an ear worm (the musical kind, obviously). You can use Enhancer for YouTube to set the following filters: Gaussian blur, Brightness, Blur, Contrast, Grayscale, Hue rotation, colour inversion, Saturation and Sepia. Tip: To access the filters, you need to right-click on the filters button. Keyboard Shortcuts and Mouse wheel You can hit Space to Play/Pause the video while the tab / video player is active. Use the Up/Down arrow keys to increase/decrease the volume, and the left/right arrow keys or "J" and "I" to rewind/fast-forward. The official support portal lists all the shortcuts (there are far too many to list here) that work with Enhancer. To change a video's speed, hold the control key while using the mouse wheel. You can play it at 0.1x speed and over 100x. The audio controls aren't enabled be default. So, you need to check the "Control the volume level with the mouse wheel......" option to change the volume quickly using the mouse wheel. Closing words Enhancer is really good, and feels like it has the features that YouTube should've had by default. Mozilla is working on a built-in option for Picture-in-Picture support for videos. It was originally planned to be included in Firefox 68, but a Mozilla engineer has confirmed that it will remain in Beta/Developer Editions and Nightly for the foreseeable future. You can manually enable it from about:config. How to enable Picture in Picture mode in Firefox If you're on Firefox 68 or above, you can search for the following keys and set them to true: media.videocontrols.picture-in-picture.enabled media.videocontrols.picture-in-picture.video-toggle.enabled media.videocontrols.picture-in-picture.video-toggle.flyout-enabled Firefox's PiP mode works on other sites too, like Twitch for example. Tip: you can check out other YouTube add-ons that enhance your experience. Check out the review of Iridium as a start. Source: Enhancer for YouTube is an add-on for Firefox and Chrome which offers a ton of customization (gHacks)
  21. Tab Session Manager is an add-on for Firefox and Chrome that saves your windows and tabs Firefox may be configured to restore the browsing session using its Session Manager. The feature works well for some but not for all users; those who experienced Session Manager issues in the past may have switched to a third-party session manager solution to avoid further complications. Mozilla revealed plans recently to improve the native session management functionality of the Firefox browser. Mozilla changed the add-on system that Firefox supports in Firefox 57; Session Managers need to use the WebExtension API which limits what the extensions may offer. One add-on which I have been relying on for saving my tabs is Tab Session Manager. It isn't new, and some of you may already be using it. For the rest, let me walk you through its core feature set. Tab Session Manager The add-on saves your sessions automatically from time to time so you don't lose your tabs. When you install it, you will see a new floppy disk icon on the toolbar; this is how you access Tab Session Manager. Click on the icon and a pop-up menu appears with all your recent browsing sessions saved. Every session has the following details: the name of the last active tab, the total number of tabs, along with the date and time when the session was saved. You have 2 in-line options next to each saved session: Open and Delete. Clicking Open will start a new tab and load the entire list of tabs that were saved. Delete, as the name suggests, erases the corresponding session. You can configure the Settings to change the way the Open button works, i.e., to load in the current window (replaces current tabs) or add to current window. Alternatively you can use the three-dot menu next to each session and choose how to load it. The search bar can be used to quickly find a session if you remember which tab was open, for e.g. type gHacks and it will display the sessions which had the blog opened in the final tab. Other options in the interface include sorting the list of sessions and viewing sessions based on some conditions (browser exited, auto-saved, regularly saved). You can manually save your session from the pop-up menu at anytime. The plus button can be used to add a tag to a session to improve identification. Clicking the gear cog icon takes you to the Tab Session Manager settings page. You can customize the add-on quite a bit. Options that are available here include Tab lazy loading, the saving of private windows, an option to restore window positions. The add-on supports the tree state of Tree Style Tab, if you're using it. (I do, but don't use this option). You can define the auto-save settings of Tab Session Manager. By default, it saves the session once every 15 minutes and stores a maximum of 10 sessions. There is a backup option in the add-on which saves the sessions when you start Firefox and stores it in the download folder. This option is not enabled by default and you need to enable it in the options. You can also manually export your sessions to your computer to save sessions in the JSON format. Similarly, you can import previous sessions that you saved locally. In addition to this, you can import a list of URLs (like in OneTab) to create a session. Closing Words Tab Session Manager is an open source project, and the extension is also available for Chrome. The Firefox add-on is compatible with the Chrome extension, i.e., you can restore the session from one browser, in the other. You can also try Session Boss, which is quite similar to Tab Session Manager. I use Tab Session Manager along with OneTab, which I use to export all URLs to a text document. While I haven't lost a session in a while, the last time it happened was when I shared an article on social media. The pop-up window which usually closes after sharing the link, somehow stayed on in the background, and I didn't notice it when closing my main browser window. It had about 3-4 dozen tabs and, yeah I lost those with no option to recover them. I think that's probably when I started using OneTab, and later added Tab Session Manager to the mix. I still miss Michael Kraft's Session Manager and Tab Mix Plus. Source: Tab Session Manager is an add-on for Firefox and Chrome that saves your windows and tabs (gHacks)
  22. Mozilla revamps Firefox's HTTPS address bar information Mozilla plans to make changes to the information that the organization's Firefox browser displays in its address bar when it connects to sites. Firefox displays an i-icon and a lock symbol currently when connecting to sites. The i-icon displays information about the security of the connection, content blocking, and permissions, the lock icon indicates the security state of the connection visually. A green lock indicates a secure connection and if a site has an Extended Validation certificate, the name of the company is displayed in the address bar as well. Mozilla plans to make changes to the information that is displayed in the browser's address bar that all Firefox users need to be aware of. One of the core changes removes the i-icon from the Firefox address bar, another the Extended Validation certificate name, a third displays a crossed out lock icon for all HTTP sites, and a fourth changes the colour of the lock for HTTPS sites from green to gray. Why are browser makers making these changes? Most Internet traffic happens over HTTPS; latest Firefox statistics show that more than 79% of global pageloads happen using HTTPS and that it is already at more than 87% for users in the United States. The shield icon was introduced to indicate to users that the connection to the site uses HTTPS and to give users options to look up certificate information. It made sense to indicate that to users back when only a fraction of sites used HTTPS. With more and more connections using HTTPS, browser makers like Mozilla or Google decided that it was time to evaluate what is displayed to users in the address bar. Google revealed plans in 2018 to remove Secure and HTTPS indicators from the Chrome browser; Chrome 76, released in August 2019, does not display HTTPS or WWW anymore in the address bar by default. Mozilla launched changes in Firefox in 2018, hidden behind a flag, to add a new "not secure" indicator to HTTP sites in Firefox. Google and Mozilla plan to remove information that indicate that a site's connection is secure. It makes some sense, if you think about it, considering that most connections are secure on today's Internet. Instead of highlighting that a connection is secure, browsers will highlight if a connection is not secure instead. The changes are not without controversy though. For more than two decades, Internet users were told that they needed to verify the security of sites by looking at the lock symbol in the browser's address bar. Mozilla does not remove the lock icon entirely in Firefox 70 and the organization won't touch the protocol in the address bar either at this point; that is better than what Google has already implemented in recent versions of Chrome. The following changes will land in Firefox 70: Firefox won't display the i-icon anymore in the address bar. Firefox won't display the owner of Extended Verification certificates anymore in the address bar. A shield icon is displayed that lists protection information. The lock icon is still displayed, it displays certificate and permission information and controls. HTTPS sites feature a gray lock icon. All sites that use HTTP will be shown with a crossed out shield icon (previously only HTTP sites with login forms). Mozilla aims to launch these changes in Firefox 70. The browser is scheduled for a release on October 23, 2019. Firefox users may add a "not secure" indicator to the browser's address bar. Mozilla, just like Google, plans to display it for sites that use HTTP. The additional indicator needs to be enabled separately at the time of writing, it won't launch in Firefox 70. Load about:config in the Firefox address bar. Search for security.identityblock.show_extended_validation. Set the preference to TRUE to display the name of the owner of Extended Validation certificates in Firefox's address bar, or set it to FALSE to hide it. The new gray icon for HTTPS sites can be toggled as well in the advanced configuration: On about:config, search for security.secure_connection_icon_colour_gray Set the value to TRUE to display a gray icon for HTTPS sites, or set it to FALSE to return to the status quo. Source: Mozilla revamps Firefox's HTTPS address bar information (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  23. Goodbye Firefox Quantum, Hello Firefox Browser The Firefox web browser has had a few names since the release of the first experimental build back in 2002. First known as Phoenix, a name Mozilla had to drop because of a trademark dispute with Phoenix Technologies, and then known as Firebird, another name that Mozilla decided to drop because of the database server Firebird, Firefox was the third and final name of the web browser for a long time. The release of Firefox 57 brought another change to the name; better, an addendum to the name as Mozilla called the browser Firefox Quantum with that release. The name Quantum was selected because it was an effort to push new technologies in the browser to improve all aspects of Firefox and reverse the downwards trend user-wise. Firefox users who open the About page of the web browser right now will notice that Firefox Quantum is still used as the name of the browser. Starting with Firefox 70, another name is displayed when users open the About page. The new name is Firefox Browser. The stable version will just display Firefox Browser whereas development versions will add the channel name underneath it, e.g. Nightly or Developer. Firefox Nightly displays the new name of the browser already on the about page. Firefox users may notice that the logo changed as well. Mozilla selected a new logo for the Firefox browser and that new logo will be shown on the about page, on Mozilla's website, and other places. Why Firefox Browser and not Firefox Quantum or just Firefox? It was clear from the get-go that Firefox Quantum was just a temporary name to highlight the major changes in the new versions of the browser. Plain Firefox would not make much sense anymore either because of other projects that carry the Firefox brand. Mozilla launched plenty including Firefox Monitor, Firefox Send or Firefox Lockwise in recent years and plans to launch even more, e.g. Firefox Proxy, in the future. To better distinguish the browser, Mozilla had to add something to the Firefox name; browser is the obvious choice and Mozilla decided to select it for the name. Mozilla plans to roll out the changes when Firefox Stable hits version 70; Mozilla aims for a October 23, 2019 release according to the release schedule. Closing Words Firefox Browser is without doubt a better name than Firefox Quantum as it describes exactly what Firefox is. It does not come as a surprise that Mozilla picked Firefox as the name for all the products that it creates and not Mozilla as the brand awareness is much higher. Source: Goodbye Firefox Quantum, Hello Firefox Browser (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  24. Mozilla launches Site Compatibility Tools for Firefox Site Compatibility Tools is a new extension for the Firefox web browser by Mozilla designed to find and report site compatibility issues experienced in Firefox. If you take Internet Explorer and the old Microsoft Edge out of the picture, as they are not the focus of development anymore, you are left with Firefox and Safari when it comes to browsers with a sizeable user base that are not based on Chromium. With Chrome's huge market share on the desktop, it is becoming a trend seemingly that certain websites or services don't work well in Firefox or not at all. Google plays a role here certainly, as it is not uncommon to find the company block browsers from accessing updated products or services, or even new ones, at least for a period of time. A few examples: the new Google Earth release of 2017 was Chrome exclusive, the new Chromium-based Microsoft Edge was blocked from accessing the new YouTube, or accusations that Google made YouTube slower for other browsers deliberately. Mozilla is very aware of the implications; the organization launched several projects and initiatives to tackle the issue from different angles. It launched a Web Compatibility page in Firefox recently that lists changes that Firefox makes to certain sites to get them to display and work properly in the browser. Site Compatibility Tools Site Compatibility Tools is another tool that has just been released. Web developers are the main audience but anyone may download and install the extension. The first version of the extension supports reporting functionality and provides site compatibility news for Firefox versions. Mozilla plans to extend that in the future by integrating a site compatibility checker in the extension. Once launched, it would give webmasters and developers a tool at hand to test websites for compatibility issues directly in Firefox. The extension is compatible with all recent versions of the Firefox web browser. Launch the Developer Tools after installation and switch to the Compatibility tab to display its set of tools. It starts with a list of site compatibility changes in different Firefox versions. The links point to Mozilla's Firefox Compatibility Site and provide further information on the change. The only other feature that is available in the initial release version is the reporter. It displays options to report problems with sites to Mozilla via Twitter (openly or via direct message), GitHub, or by using email. It is a rudimentary feature at the time of writing. Firefox users may report issues to Mozilla using the Web Compatibility reporter as well. It is linked in Nightly but can be accessed directly as well. Closing Words The initial version of the Site Compatibility Tools extension has limited uses; this will change when compatibility checking is integrated into the extension as it may help developers find issues on webpages and sites in an automated process. Source: Mozilla launches Site Compatibility Tools for Firefox (gHacks - Martin Brinkmann)
  25. Restores Twitter's old interface with GoodTwitter, an extension for Firefox and Chrome You may remember my previous article about how to disable Twitter's new design. I had been using those tricks to avoid the new interface until yesterday when Twitter disabled the options for my account. In case you are in the same boat, there's good news. There is an alternative way to get the legacy interface back. Here's how to do it. GoodTwitter GoodTwitter is an extension for Firefox and Chrome which restores Twitter's old interface. It is a new add-on but that is understandable considering that Twitter started to roll out the new design just recently. For those worried about the permissions, it is an open-source project, the source code is available at GitHub. Take a look at the code, and you will see that the method it uses (which I have highlighted) to restore the old Twitter interface. It spoofs the user agent that is sent to Twitter which sees the browser as Internet Explorer. This essentially tricks Twitter to load the website in a design that is compatible with IE which is the old design. Download GoodTwitter from the Firefox add-ons repository, or the Chrome Web Store. That's it, you don't have to do anything else. There are no settings to tinker with. I tested the extension in Microsoft Edge 77.0.223.0 and Mozilla Firefox 68.0.1, and it works fine. Note that some functionality may be limited on the site as Twitter "thinks" the browser that is used is Internet Explorer. Non add-on method Now some of you may not want another add-on to make this work. I hear ya! All you need to do is configure your browser to spoof the user agent for Twitter.com. As far as I can tell, Chrome doesn't have a permanent per-site user agent switch. The only method I know that does not involve the use of an extension is a temporary one, which uses the Developer Tools > Network Conditions > Set User Agent option. You're better off using GoodTwitter instead. If you are using a User Agent Switcher extension which allows site-specific settings, you can copy the user agent string from the method below. Check out extensions such as Chameleon for Firefox or User Agent Switcher for Chrome mentioned here. This trick is exclusive for Firefox users. Open a new tab, and type about:config. Hit enter and select the "I accept the risk" button. You know the drill Right-click anywhere in the tab, and select New > String. Paste the following text in the "Enter the preference name" field, and click ok: general.useragent.override.twitter.com In the "Enter string value" field, paste Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 9.0; WOW64; Trident/7.0; rv:11.0) like Gecko and hit ok. Refresh the Twitter tab (might have to do it a few times, try Ctrl + f5). Chrome users may want to check out Google Chrome's powerful override feature. Et voilà! The good old, usable interface is back. And we used the exact same trick that GoodTwitter uses. Source: Restores Twitter's old interface with GoodTwitter, an extension for Firefox and Chrome (gHacks)
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