Minh Truong

Mozilla Firebird has loads of features that often go unnoticed or unused. Some of these features are Mozilla Firebird exclusive. Features like popup blocking and tabbed browsing will greatly improve your web experience.

Don't have Mozilla Firebird browser and you want to take advantage of these incredible features?

Firebird Layout


  1. Tabbed Browsing
  2. Popup Blocking
  3. Keywords and Bookmarks
  4. Themes
  5. Customizable toolbar
  6. Search
  7. Image and Flash Blocking
  8. Find As You Type
  9. Autocomplete
  10. Extensions

  1. Tabbed Browsing

    Tabbed browsingInstead of opening multiple windows to view various pages, you can open up each page within one window as a tab. Tabs works similarly to the Taskbar. Clicking on the tab brings that page to the front.

    Open a blank new tab
    • Select File > New Tab from the menu near the top of the browser.
    • Simultaneously press Crtl and T keys.
    • Click New Tab from toolbar near the top of the browser if it is showing.
    • Double click on an empty area in the tab bar.
    Open a link in new tabs
    • Middle click on a link.
    • Right click on a link and select Open Link in New Tab.
    • Hold down the Ctrl key and click on a link.
    Extending Tab BrowsingCapabilities
    Firebird's implementation of tab browsing is designed to be simple and easy to use. This may not enough for some users who desire more tab browsing related features. There are extensions which will allow you to add more capabilities.
    • Tab Browser Extension
      (undo close tab, reorder tabs, lock tabs, move tab bar, close unselected tabs, force link to open as tabs/windows, reuse tabs, change tab size, close button on tabs)
    • Tab Browser Preference
      (force link to open as tabs/windows, reuse tabs)
    • Close Other Tabs
      (close unselected tabs)
  2. Popup Blocking

    Popup blockingPopups that loads when a page load are blocked automatically by Mozilla Firebird. Popups that you open by clicking will load normally. A blue circular icon on the bottom left side one browser will appear if Mozilla Firebird has successfully blocked a popup.

    Enable or disable popup blocking
    1. Select Tools > Options from the top menu.
    2. Click Web Features.
    3. Check or uncheck Block Popup Windows.
    Disable popup blocking for certain sites (Method #1)
    1. Select Tools > Options from the top menu.
    2. Click Web Features.
    3. Within the popup blocking box, click on the buttons available to add or remove sites.
    Disable popup blocking for certain sites (Method #2)
    1. When a site is blocked, you can click the blocked icon to bring up a list of blocked popups.
    2. Then select the site where the popup originated and click Unblock Site.
  3. Keywords and Bookmarks

    KeywordsEach bookmark can have keywords associated with it. This allows you to type the keyword into the URL bar and go to the bookmarked page as if you had typed in the whole address.

    Creating bookmarks with keyword (Method #1)
    1. Visit a page that you want make a bookmark for.
      • Press Ctrl and D keys simultaneously or select Bookmarks > Add to Bookmarks from the top menu. Choose name and directory location for the bookmark and click Okay.
      • Alternatively, drag the icon on the right URL in the address bar to Bookmark in the top menu and location of your choosing.
    2. Select Bookmarks from the top menu and find the bookmark that you want to add a keyword to.
    3. Right click and select Properties.
    4. Enter a keyword and press Okay.
    5. Type in your keyword in the address bar to go the bookmarked page associated with it.
    Creating bookmarks with keywords (Method #2)
    1. Select Bookmarks > Manage Bookmarks from the top menu.
    2. Select within the bookmark list where you want the new bookmark to be placed.
    3. Click on the New Bookmark button on the top left corner.
    4. Choose name and address for the bookmark and click Okay.
    5. Find the bookmark that you want to add a keyword to.
    6. Right click and select Properties or highlight the bookmark and click the Properties button on the top menu bar.
    7. Enter a keyword and press Okay.
    8. Type in your keyword in the address bar to go the bookmarked page associated with it.

    Additionally, keywords can have variable substitution. For example, if you want search directly from the addressbar, but don't want to have to go to http://yahoo.com/ and type in the search terms. With Mozilla you can create a keyword that, when followed by search terms, will automatically initiate a Yahoo search using the terms provided.

    Creating bookmarks with variable substitution (Example)
    1. Go to http://yahoo.com. Search using Yahoo for the term mozilla
    2. Make a bookmark of the search page.
    3. Open the Properties of the bookmark you just created. Find the word mozilla in the Location field and replace it with %s. The address http://search.yahoo.com/bin/search?p=mozilla will become http://search.yahoo.com/bin/search?p=%s. Note: that the %s is a variable which stands for the string to be subsituted.
    4. Next add the keyword yahoo to the bookmark by viewing its Properties.
    5. Type in yahoo mozilla into the address bar. Mozilla will open a Yahoo search for the term mozilla.
    More on keywords
  4. Themes

    Themes SampleMozilla Firebird has the ability to change the its appearance, icons, buttons and colors.

    Download themes
    Install themes via the web
    1. Visit one of the sites above and download a theme.
    2. Once installed, select a Tools > Options from the top menu.
    3. Click on Themes and select a theme.
    4. Cick Okay and close the browser.
    5. Restart the broswer.
  5. Customizable Toolbars

    Costumizable ToolbarMozilla Firebird's toolbar can be costumize easily. Many of the icons, toolbars and components can be added, removed, or moved.

    Costumize Toolbar
    1. Right click on the Navigation toolbar.
    2. Select Costumize.
    3. Drag icons and components to different location on any on the toolbars. Or drag icons and components onto the toolbars from the items box or off the toolbar to the items box.
  6. Search

    Search BarOn the top right corner of Mozilla Firebird, there is a search bar. It can be made to search the page itself or search the web using Google and Dmoz. To search, simply click on the search icon and choose the type of search you desire. Type in your search terms and press Enter. The search bar supports other search engines by installing search plug-ins

    Download Searches Plug-ins
    Resize Searchbar
  7. Find As You Type

    Find As You TypeFind As You Type is a feature that allows you to navigate web pages. It is helpful if you don't have access to a mouse or can't use one. Find As You Type is automatically on. To use Find As You Type, just type the text link on the page. A link matching watch you type will be highlighted in green. If several links begins with same letter, pressing the first letter of the links multiple times will cycle through them.

    Find As You Type can also be used to search text within a page. Press the / key before typing in the word you want to find.

    More on Find As You Type
  8. Image Blocking and Flash Blocking

    Mozilla Firebird can block unwanted images and other media.

    Block images
    • Right click on the image you want to block and select Block Images from this Server.
    Unblock images
    • Right click on the image that you have blocked previously and select Block Images from this Server again.
    Hide images
    Block Flash
  9. Autocomplete

    AutocompleteAutocomplete is a feature which recommends matches for addresses which you have already visited. For example, if you have visited http://mozilla.org. The next time you want to visit http://mozilla.org and enter the letter m, autocomplete will suggest sites that you have visited which begins with m.

    The more letters you type, the better the match. moz will more likely suggest http://mozilla.org than m. If your match appears lower on the list of suggestions, scroll down using the arrow keys to the match and hit Enter or select the match with the mouse. Mozilla Firebird's autocomplete is more intelligent than most browser. It does not primitively sort matches alphabetically. Mozilla Firebird sort by the fequency at which you visit a site. The more often you visit a site, the more Mozilla Firebird will suggest it first.

    Additionally, autocomplete helps you fill out forms and searches. Autocomplete will remember what you typed last time.

  10. Extensions

    Mozilla Firebird is designed to simple and intuitive, but it doesn't mean functionality was sacreficed. Instead of including every bell and whistle into one bloated package, Mozilla Firebird is modualized. Each person can costumize Mozilla Firebird to include only the features they want by installing extensions.

    Installing Extensions
    1. Visit an extensions site.
    2. Click on the link to install an extension.
    3. Answer the prompts concerning the installation.
    4. Restart Mozilla Firebird.
    Extensions Download Sites
    Disable or Configure Extensions
    1. From the menu bar select Tools > Options.
    2. Press the Extensions button.
    3. Click on the extension you want to modify.
    4. You can either deactivate the extension by clicking on the Disable button or configure it by clicking on the Settings button.

  11. This is a draft and it undergoing many revisions. I am also focusing this page to discuss about Firebird's features instead of Mozilla. Mozilla's documentation will depreciate soon, once Firebird goes mainstream.


    • Since I add this page to my project, I had to turn Mozdev.org branding off. Mozdev.org CSS is different from mine. That means I have to redesign whole the site from scratch. What I missed about Mozdev's branding is that it has server side included.
    • More tips: My goal is to add 1 or 2 a day.
    • The floating "jump to top" link on the bottom right corner only works in Mozilla and Opera. Internet Explorer sucks. It doesn't do in CSS "position: fixed; bottom: 5px; right 20px;". It just anchors to the page. Any workarounds?
    • Spell checking
    • Add images and revise site design

  12. Thank you both.

    To be added:

    • Privacy
    • Profiles
    • History/Bookmark/Download Sidebar
    • Smoothscrolling
    • Image Resizing