14 Mozilla Articles to Help Make You a Better and Safer User of the Firefox Browser


"Do you use Firefox as your Internet browser? It turns out that even regular users are often unfamiliar with the rich resources available at Mozilla. There are many articles there that can help make you a better user of Firefox. Areas covered include installation, configuration, security, privacy, maintenance, and other areas of Firefox use. Here are 14 of my favorite links from the Mozilla collection. Read these and you can become a Firefox ace. ... "
Updated 14. July 2014 Source: Gizmo's
 14 Mozilla Articles to Help Make You a Better and Safer User of the Firefox Browser

Greasemonkey 2.0 released, introduces changes that may break scripts

"The development team behind Greasemonkey has just released version 2.0 of the extension. As always, it takes time before the new version is made available to all existing users and users who visit the Greasemonkey page on the website.
"Interested users can install the new version of the extension on the "versions" page of it on the website where it is already made available.
"The new version introduces several changes that may make some scripts incompatible with version 2.0 of Greasemonkey. ..."
Source: gHacks Technology News
Details  Greasemonkey 2.0 released, introduces changes that may break scripts

Here is what Firefox for Android’s new Hubs feature is all about

Overview of Home Panel add-ons

"Firefox 30 got released a couple of days ago and with it came a new feature for the Android version of the browser that Mozilla named Hubs.
"While it launched with Firefox 30, it is not really advertised in the mobile browser itself which means that you will have to do some research on your own to find out more about it.
"The Hubs feature more or less adds an API to Firefox for Android to add contents to the browser's home screen.
"As you may know, the home screen of the browser displays top sites, the browsing history, bookmarks and the reading list by default.
"All of the information are available as tabs on the home screen that you can switch between with a flick to the left or right.
"A Hub add-on adds another tab or multiple ones to the display. You do need to install add-ons for the functionality that only work on the Android version of Firefox. ..."
Source: gHacks Technology News

Details  Here is what Firefox for Android's new Hubs feature is all about

Firefox 30 Released

Mozilla release the next update for Firefox with Firefox 30.0 on June 10th, 2014. This update includes a couple new features:
  • Sidebars button in browser chrome enables faster access to social, bookmark, & history sidebars
  • Mac OS X command-E sets find term to selected text
There were several fixes included in this update and those can be found in the Release Notes. Depending on update settings, users will be prompted to update to version 30 or can do so via Help > About Firefox or going to getfirefox.com where they can download and manually install the latest version of Firefox. The next planned release is in six-weeks and will be Firefox 31 on July 22nd, 2014.

Flash Video in New Window Jumps back to Previous Window

This is an oddity I have run into many of times. Open a new Window in Firefox (not tab) and load a Flash Video for the first time and suddenly Firefox jumps the focus back to the previous window. The window with the Flash Video is still open, it just in the background now. This even happens if the new window is a Private Browsing Window. Like I said, I've been dealing with this for a long while and just learned to deal with it. Recently though, someone posted about this at Go Firefox! My co-author, Gareon happened to find a solution at Mozilla Support. It seems to be a glitch with Firefox and Adobe Flash's "Protected Mode" on newer versions of Windows:
"Starting in Flash 11.3 the plugin runs in Protected Mode on Vista and above. This has been causing problems for some Firefox users." (Our issue is however not listed on that KB page.) By adding the line ProtectedMode=0 to "C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Macromed\Flash\mms.cfg"
I have had this issue in Windows 8 as well back when I was running Windows 7 (Flash version 11.3 was released in August 2012). This seemed like a simple fix so I went ahead and tried it. Bottom line, editing that file and adding that one line of code to file did fix my issues. However, trying to edit (more like save) the file was not so simple. Not sure about Windows 7, but in Windows 8 default security permissions on this file do not allow for editing by ANY user (including administrator). I ended up having to modify the security permissions, by giving my user permission to modify the file. Looking back, I am wondering if I could have edited/saved the file without having jumped through all those hoops had I run Notepad++ as administrator. Nonetheless, when I went back into Firefox and opened a new window and then went to play a Flash video, Firefox did not "jump" to the previous window.  

Prohibiting Pasting of Passwords

We have been told over and over and over again to use strong passwords. If you can remember your password then it is too weak. Because of this, many people use password vaults or password managers to store their super strong impossible to remember passwords. When they need to log into the site, they simply paste the password from their vault or use their password manager to fill-in the password field. Seems like a good security practice as the users have a very strong password...apparently not. Some sites are no longer allowing you to paste in your password (some may or may not allow your password manager software/extension to work) via JavaScript in which the onpaste event, a non-standard event defined by Microsoft for use in Internet Explorer (which also works in Firefox, Chrome, Safari, etc) is returning false. This "false" is treated the same as the user not putting in a password at all. Some sites such as British Gas claim the reason they have disabled pasting in passwords is they would loose their security certificate as it exposes them to brute force (hacking) attacks. GE Capital just says "for security reasons". Well apparently someone didn't think this through very well. If people are not going to be allowed to paste in their super secure passwords...guess what is going to happen? They will use a (less secure) password they can remember, which kinda defeats the claim "for security reasons". Some claim that Malware could be installed by hackers that could intercept the Windows clipboard thus allowing hackers to gain your password in that manner. However, it is much easier for a hacker to put keystroke tracking Malware on someone's system. Which is why people opt to paste their password or use a password manager. So now these companies that think they are doing their users a favor by forcing them to type in their password (given the assumption that pasting isn't secure) are actually making their users less secure...Brilliant! Source: The “Cobra Effect” via grand stream dreams.

AdBlock Plus is a Memory Hog?

Ever wonder why your Firefox is using so much memory? Turns out AdBlock Plus could be the cause behind this. Mark Wilson with betanews performed an experiment using both AdBlock Plus for Firefox and Chrome:

"So this morning I fired up Firefox. One tab open -- BetaNews, of course -- finds memory usage sitting at around 184MB (Chrome, for comparison, eats up about 112MB for the same). OK, so let's get AdBlock Plus installed to check out these claims.

Instantly, memory usage for Firefox rocketed to 383MB -- so more than doubling -- although it did drop slightly to 350MB after a few minutes. It was a very different story in Chrome where installing the same extension seemed to have no effect on memory usage whatsoever."

For those that are interested in more details about this issue can follow Bug 988266 which was filed back in March of this year.

Source: betanews (via grand stream dreams)

Firefox 29.0.1 Released

Mozilla released the first incremental update for the 29 Stable branch on May 9th, 2014. Firefox 29.0.1 includes such changes as:
  • disable seer
  • fix crash in java
  • rename Send Tab activity
  • re-enable Send Tab on Beta
  • don't let invalid sessionstore.js files break sessionstor.
Depending on individual's update settings (Tools > Options > Advanced >Updates) users should be prompted for an update within the next 24-48 hours or can go to Help > About Firefox to trigger the update or download and manually install via the gofirefox.com site. The next planned update will be Firefox 30 on June 10th, 2014.

How to turn the new Firefox 29 into the old Firefox

" Firefox 29 will introduce changes to the web browser that will rock the world of some users of the browser. The version of Firefox ships with Australis, a design, layout and feature change that introduces major changes to Firefox and is in my opinion comparable to the major switch from Firefox 3 to 4.
"So what are those changes? ..."

Source: gHacks Technology News
 How to turn the new Firefox 29 into the old Firefox