Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Too Many Tabs? Firefox Add-ons to manage a TAB JAM

Every Firefox user spends a lot of time dealing with tabs. Thus, improving the tabs directly adds to the browsing experience. You can make them better, faster, beautiful and lot less ovewhelming. So here you go, 7 powerful addons to improve your tabbed browsing.

firefox-tabs.jpg

(1) Vertigo - This awesome extension moves your tab bar to the left side of the browser window and stacks tabs vertically. Highly recommended for people with 20 and above inch screens. You can add a splitter to resize the tab bar to any width you want.

Arrange Firefox Tabs Vertically

(2) ColorfulTabs - Colors tabs into different colors and makes it easier to distinguish and navigate between multiple tabs. Simple yet very useful. Alternatively you may consider numbering the tabs.

Firefox - Colorful Tabs

(3) Tab Scope - Quickly preview tab contents by hoovering your mouse cursor over tab. Preview window shows a mini version of the page and a bunch of navigation buttons (Back/Forward/Reload/Stop). Extremely convenient. Although, I wouldn’t recommend using together with Vertigo. Both of them are great addons, but they just don’t go well together. (Note: Tab Scope doesn’t work on Mac OS X.)

Highlights include:

  • Real-time preview of tab contents.
  • Scroll pages using a mouse wheel.
  • Click links or buttons directly in preview.

Firefox - Tab Preview Extension

(4) Tab Mix Plus - Extremely useful extension that adds lots new features to Firefox’s tab browsing capabilities. Some of the better features include undo closed tabs/windows, line tabs in multiple rows, show tabs at the bottom and crash recovery. (Needs some settings adjustments when used together with above mentioned Vertigo.)

Firefox - Tab Manager

(5) Faviconize Tab - This extension adds a “FaviconizeTab” option to the tab context menu. When it is clicked, the width of the tab becomes small up to the size of the favicon (tiny logo icon). When clicked again, the tab window is back to normal.

Firefox - Faviconize Tab Extension

(6) PermaTabs - This can turn tabs of your choice into permanent tabs. Permanent tabs don’t have close option so can’t be closed accidentaly. Even if you close you tabs accidentally they will reapper in the next Firefox startup. Tabs can be set to (and removed from) permanent mode via right click menu. (Again, may not work on Mac OS X.)

(7) FishEyeTabs - As the number of open tabs increases tabs get smaller and harder to distinguish. Enter Fisheye. It allows user to zoom tab labels by moving the mouse cursor over them.

Fisheye

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