The Best Firefox Extensions, Addons and Extras

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I love Firefox. I despise IE. I use IE only long enough to ensure that my own webs and my client’s site resolve properly using that browser. Then, lickety-split, I’m back to FireFox where I can browse in tabs, where I can worry less about security issues, where I can customize my browser to serve me the way I work, and where I can be a part of a community of software developers and users that create objects for their peers. It’s a geeky community, but an enjoyable one.

Yeah, I know the new IE 7.0 offers its own “tabbed” browsing, but they are too late to this party, IMHO.

I could wax poetic about Firefox for hours (I’m verbose that way, at times…)

But, rather than doing that, I thought you may be interested in what Firefox add-ons I use and why I love them. That way, if you want to give Firefox a spin, you will know some of the bells and whistles you can add. And, if you already adore Firefox, you can peruse a list of “must have” add-ins that are tried and true (and won’t crash your Internet sessions).

  1. Want to know all the cool stuff that the new release offers (for those of you that have an old release, or those that have never used Firefox)?Get the Scoop Here!
  2. Want to give it a spin? Download the latest release Firefox 2.
  3. Want to waste about six hours of your life reviewing all the widgets you can get that will customize the devil outta your own copy of Firefox? Visit the add ons Page.

Or, perhaps… you would prefer to see some of the top Ad ons — the ones I’ve tried and found to be true? Well here they are…

Google Toolbar for Firefox – Want to know your page rank, be able to spell check forms you fill in online? Or a number of other little tools? Download this first essential addon. (BTW, the new Firefox version marks those with tiny little red dotted underlines and offers a quick right-click to correct)

What follows are my picks – and where they are found on the Firefox official pages:

  1. StumbleUponhttps://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/138/ – allows you to discover and share great Web content matched to your personal preferences. I simply adore “stumbling” as does everyone I’ve introduced to this addictive little plug-in. It can quickly become a bad habit, so download it at your own peril!
  2. New Tab Homepage https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/777/ – automatically loads your homepage when you pop up a new tab. I like this because I usually pop open a new tab for another search on Google. Since Google is my home page, it saves me a click.
  3. VideoDownloader – https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/2390/ – lets you download embedded objects on a webpage.
  4. IE Tab – https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/1419/ – lets me open up an IE “tab” in FF for those areas that still require the MS product. I use this only under duress :0)
  5. MileWideBackhttps://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/334/ – I’m a tab power user, and this helps me to keep things moving without stacking tabs into multiple rows.
  6. Grab and Draghttp://grabanddrag.mozdev.org/ Enables Adobe Acrobat-style Grab and drag scrolling in Mozilla applications. This one is especially important on a tablet, so I can drag down the screen with my stylus.
  7. GeckoTiphttp://geckotip.mozdev.org/index.html – provides Tablet PC and UMPC support and enhancements in Mozilla Apps.
  8. Download Statusbarhttps://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/26/ – by Devon Jensen – Let’s you manage your Internet downloads from a toolbar, without the download window getting in the way of browsing. Compact and useful. It auto-hides when not in use. I simply love this little add-on!
  9. Web Developerhttps://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/60/ – by Chris Pederick – Adds a toolbar of web developer tools and a menu to your standard browser.
  10. Firebug https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/1843/ – by Joe Hewitt – lets you look at the inner workings of the web pages you visit and helps you to troubleshoot your own (or your client’s) webpages using debugging tools and help.
  11. Mouse Gestures – https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/39/ – lets you execute common commands in Firefox using mouse (or stylus) gestures.
  12. Tab Mix Plus – https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/1122/– Must Have add-on for the tabbing power-user.
  13. Aging Tabs https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/3542/– makes it easier for those of us who look up to discover that there are over twenty tabs open in the current window — and we need to remember which ones we have viewed recently.

If you want to customize the way Firefox LOOKS, not just the way it works, you should visit the Themes Page for Firefox and try on a new “outfit” for your browser.

You will also need to install the plugins you need to enjoy the multimedia experience you want (like having Java and Adobe work in this browser). Download essential Foxfire plugins.

Note: All those listed above are compatible with the Firefox version 2 — but all those listed in the addon pages are not. Be sure to check for compatibility before downloading and using any addons.

If you are a Firefox fan too, please logon and share your own favorite Foxfire addons, themes or extensions!

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