I have picked up a few new tricks and tips with Firefox 3.0. I’m not sure if these were available prior to 3.0 (I know at least one of them was), but they’re worth mentioning regardless. Anything posted here will work in 3.0, but it’s up to you to try them in 2.x versions.
Duplicate Tab Plugin: one of my most-used plugins. I can duplicate a tab in the same window, duplicate it to a new window, or I can now (in the latest version) detach a tab from a window and open it in its own window. This plugin has keyboard shortcuts, although I still need to learn them all. A shortcut? Hold down CTRL while you drag a tab, and a “+” sign will appear…drag it anywhere to duplicate your tab.
Drag and Drop Tabs: you can rearrange tabs in Firefox by clicking and dragging them on the tab bar. What I discovered with 3.0 is that I can now drag tabs into another window. For instance, if I use the plugin above to detach a tab, I can now drag related tabs to the tab bar in the new window I’ve created. All you do is grab a tab in one window, and watch the cursor turn into a “moving item” icon (an arrow with a box beneath it). Drag this onto an empty spot on the tab bar in the new window, and you’re good to go.
Mouse Wheel Shortcuts: there’s now an even easier way to open a link in a new tab (or window, depending on your FF settings), or close tabs. You can click on your mouse wheel! If you are browsing a page and see an interesting link, but don’t want to lose your place, wheel-click on the link and it will open up in a new tab. Likewise, you can click on the icons in your bookmarks toolbar, and the new site will open in a new tab. Want to close a tab without even switching to it? Point to the tab and wheel-click on it. The tab will close! This was around in FF 2.0, so if you’re still on that version, go wheel-click crazy!
Resizeable Search Bar: you can now resize the search bar by dragging a handle between the address bar and the search bar. Hover your mouse over the space between the two bars until your icon turns into a left/right arrow, and drag it to size. It was always too small…now you can resize it to whatever you wish!
Quick Search Bar: here’s another shortcut that’s been around for a few versions. To quickly find text on a page you are viewing, tap the forward slash (“/”) key. The “find” bar will open up temporarily for you to enter your search term, and hide itself automatically when you’re done. (Unlike Ctrl-F, which leaves the bar open, albeit with a few additional options.)