OSNN Firefox Optimization Guide


Electronica Addict
Political Access
3 Feb 2002

In this guide we'll take a vanilla install of Firefox and:

1. Make navigation smooth and clutter-free

2. Throw in some must have extensions to make your Internet browsing a more pleasant experience (more speed and more convenience).

Before (Firefox 2 Vanilla Install)


After (Firefox 2 with OSNN's Patented Formula™)


You'll notice that:

1. The back/forward, home, stop, refresh, and go buttons are gone. Don't worry! The back/forward/stop buttons will appear dynamically and only in cases where you will have an option to go back, forward, or stop. As for the rest - they were removed because they are redundant if you use keyboard shortcuts.

2. The text menu has been consolidated under "Menu".

3. I have no bookmarks because I use del.icio.us (hence the single "tag" icon). However, you can use the bookmarks toolbar folder there instead if you like.

4. There are a lot of things that can't be shown in the screenshot with regards to tab settings and session manager settings. Read on to find out more!


I know after seeing the before and after shots you can't wait to get started :p

1. First you'll obviously need the latest version of Firefox.

2. The rest of us that have a superior intellect and good looks (thus; we already have Firefox) will want to backup our current settings.
Mozilla have a great guide on how to backup and restore your profile.
Now with the preparation out of the way we can actually go ahead and make some changes.

1. Navigation

Toolbar Edits

Combining the Navigation Toolbar with the Menu Toolbar

1. Go to View -> Toolbars -> Customize...

2. Once you get the Customize Toolbar dialog box, drag and drop buttons one by one from your Navigation Toolbar onto your menu toolbar. So gradually you should have the
back, forward, stop and home buttons, the address bar, and the search bar on the menu bar.


3. Remove the throbber in the upper right corner.

4. Check "Use Small Icons".

5. Download and install the TinyMenu Extension. This extension will allow you to put the text menu underneath one "Menu" heading


5. Optional: Right click on the Bookmarks Toolbar and click on the "check" besides it to get rid of it. Otherwise you'll be left with a blank bar. (Thanks Android412!)

userChrome.css Edits

Now we're going to be playing around with userChrome.css to change the appearance of the navigation buttons in Firefox. Actually, I've uploaded a userChrome.css that you can throw into you your Firefox installation so you don't have to manually make changes.

DOWNLOAD (OSNN.net Sample userChrome.css)

Copy that file into C:\Documents and Settings\[User Name]\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\xxxxxxxx.default\chrome

However, if you've previously made some changes to userChrome.css and don't want to lose those use the following bits of code:

Removing Disabled Back/Forward Buttons:
[FONT=System]/[FONT=Courier New]* Remove Back button when there's nothing to go Back to */
#back-button[disabled="true"] { display: none; }

/* Remove Forward button when there's nothing to go Forward to */[/FONT] [/FONT] [FONT=Courier New]#forward-button[disabled="true"] { display: none; }[/FONT]
Removing Disabled Stop Button:
[FONT=Courier New]/* Remove Stop button when there's nothing to Stop */
#stop-button[disabled="true"] { display: none; }[/FONT]
Removing Home Button:
[FONT=Courier New]/* Remove Home button */
#home-button { display: none; } [/FONT]
Removing Go Button:
/* Remove Go button */
#go-button-stack, .search-go-button-stack {
  display: none !important;
Removing Magnifying Glass Button from Search Box:
[FONT=Courier New]/*Remove magnifying glass button from search box*/
.search-go-button-stack { display: none !important; } [/FONT]
2. Extensions + Settings

Download and install the following extensions:

1. Download Status Bar:
View and manage downloads from a tidy statusbar - without the download window getting in the way of your web browsing.

2. Fasterfox: Performance and network tweaks for Firefox.

3. IE Tab: View sites using the Internet Explorer engine inside a Firefox tab.

4. PDF Download: Allows to choose if you want to view a PDF file inside the browser (as PDF or HTML), if you want to view it outside Firefox with your default or custom PDF reader, or if you want to download it. No more browser crashes just because you clicked on a PDF link!

5. Resizeable Form Fields: Resize HTML form fields, including textareas, select boxes, and text fields.

6. Tab Mix Plus: Saved the best for last. Tab Mix Plus enhances Firefox's tab browsing capabilities. It includes such features as duplicating tabs, controlling tab focus, tab clicking options, undo closed tabs and windows, plus much more. It also includes a full-featured session manager that is better than the one that comes bundled with Firefox.

Extension Settings (click on thumbnails for full view):

Only extensions that require further setting changes are explained below. Otherwise they work great out of the box.

Download Status Bar:


Under extension options, click on "Turbo Charged". It is recommended to turn off "Enhanced Prefetching" while on a work computer.

PDF Download:

Tab Mix Plus:

Problems and Feedback

If you have any problems, please post below. If you've got any suggestions to improve this guide or tips of your own, please post below.
Last edited:


OSNN Veteran Addict
Political Access
25 Aug 2004
What about Adblock Plus? For me its the most important plugin for FF.

Good Guide though! This should bring some more traffic to the site too. :)


Rest In Peace
12 Apr 2002
Since this is in the Vista Applications section, here's a related link to a guide I had posted in January - Make Firefox Look Better in Windows Vista.

Shame on you for still using an OS X theme, Omar. Even Leopard's starting to look more like Vista now. *hides* :p

Do you still use that hide menu button thinger?

I use an extension which hides the menu bar till you press ALT (a la IE7 :cool: ) and its nice and clean :D


Glaanies script monkey
Political Access
16 Feb 2003
IE 7 guide?

I have one:

1. Open IE

2. Type in the location bar "mozilla.com"

3. Hit Enter

4. Click on "Download Firefox" and save to desktop.

5. Double click the file to install Mozilla Firefox

6. On first run, make sure to check "Make Firefox my default browser"

7. Live happily ever after.


Electronica Addict
Political Access
3 Feb 2002
What about Adblock Plus? For me its the most important plugin for FF.

Good Guide though! This should bring some more traffic to the site too. :)

Omg, can't believe I forgot about it :yowch:


2 Feb 2004
Cool guide! This and deleting the 16 copies of my roaming profile off of this workstation (thanks Securom!) makes things much faster :)


OSNN Veteran Addict
Political Access
22 Oct 2006
What about Adblock Plus? For me its the most important plugin for FF.

Good Guide though! This should bring some more traffic to the site too. :)

whats the difference between adblock and adblock plus? i've always used regular adblock and thought it was great, does the plus version offer any good extras/improvements?


Woah.. I'm still here?
Political Access
26 Apr 2004
excellent.. have one of matt's cookies..

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Also Hi EP and people. I found this place again while looking through a oooollllllldddd backup. I have filled over 10TB and was looking at my collection of antiques. Any bids on the 500Mhz Win 95 fix?
Any of the SP crew still out there?
Xie wrote on Electronic Punk's profile.
Impressed you have kept this alive this long EP! So many sites have come and gone. :(

Just did some crude math and I apparently joined almost 18yrs ago, how is that possible???
hello peeps... is been some time since i last came here.
Electronic Punk wrote on Sazar's profile.
Rest in peace my friend, been trying to find you and finally did in the worst way imaginable.

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