firefox-fastI’m a lazy person.

I don’t want to waste time and energy for something, if it can be done more easily and efficiently. And because I’m lazy, I made my Firefox install superefficient, so I can do the main tasks with little energy and time wasted.

In this post I’m going to show you how I’ve done that.

It requires a few Add-ons, some tweaking and the learning of some important keyboard shortcuts.

Lazy Tip #1: Use Mouse Gestures

With the use of mouse gestures you can save a lot of time and energy.

Closing a tab is as easy as holding the right mouse button and dragging it down and then right. No aiming at the little “X” button  or pressing Strg + F4 to close a tab, just down and right. Cool, huh?

Download The FireGestures Add-on

Now after you’ve learned how cool mouse gestures are, go download the FireGestures Add-on and install it.

Installed the Add-on? Good. Now go to the options of the Add-on and be sure to enable all gestures on the Advanced panel.

options3

Now it’s time to learn the gestures.

Basic gestures

All these gestures are made by holding the right mouse button and making moves while pressed.

  • Go back: Left
  • Go forward: Right
  • New tab: Left, Right
  • Close tab: Down, Right
  • Restore last tab closed: Right, Left
  • Previous tab: Up, Left
  • Next tab: Up, Right
  • Reload: Up, Down

Rocker gestures

Rocker gestures are performed by clicking one mouse button and then the other simultaneously.

  • Previous tab: Hold right mouse button, click left
  • Next tab: Hold left mouse button, click right

Wheel gestures

Wheel gestures are done by holding the right mouse button and scrolling the middle wheel.

  • Scroll up: Browse the history for this tab in a pop-up
  • Scroll down: Browse the open tabs in a pop-up

Keypress gestures

Keypress gestures are done by holding Shift or Ctrl and then hovering the links by dragging the right mouse button. They come really handy if you want to open or save a bunch of links at once on a page.

  • Hold Shift and hover links with right mouse button: All hovered links are saved as bookmarks
  • Hold Ctrl and hover links with right mouse button: All hovered links are opened in new tabs

Tab wheel gestures

  • Scroll the mouse wheel while hovering the tab bar: Switch through the tabs back and forth

Advanced stuff: Create your own mouse gesture!

With the recently shown mouse gestures now you can do many frequent tasks by just using your mouse at any point. But what if you frequently go to your home page? It would make sense to create a mouse gesture for it, too.

So, head over to the options of FireGestures by Extras > Add-Ons and then scroll to FireGestures and hit Options. Then go to Mapping.

options2

Now double click on Home to edit the gesture for it. A new window appears where you can “paint” your gesture and save it.

options2-edit

In this example, by making the gesture “Left, Up, Right, Down, Left, Up, Right” now I’ll always get to my Home.

There are over 70 actions you can assign a mouse gesture to. If that is not enough, there are plenty scripts to add more actions.

That’s it for the mouse gestures.

Lazy Tip #2: Become The King of The Keyboard

The king of the keyboard has control over his keyboard and knows every keyboard shortcut to make his life easier. He not only uses them because he thinks it is cool, he uses it because it saves him a lot of time and mouse movements.

Some tricks of the keyboard king are:

  • Press F6 instead of clicking on the address bar: You can start typing right away instead of switching your hand to the mouse back and forth.
  • Press Strg + T instead of clicking on the “new tab” button: Same as above, start typing right after the new tab is opened.
  • Press Strg + D instead of clicking on the star: Bookmarking is more comfortable this way.
  • Press F5 instead of clicking on the reload button
  • Press F3 for instant search instead of Edit > Search
  • Press Strg + J instead of Extras > Downloads…
  • Press Strg + B instead of View > Sidebar > Bookmarks

Want to learn more keyboard shortcuts? Head over to the Mozilla knowledgebase article!

Lazy Tip #3: Use FastestFox

The Firefox Add-On FastestFox is really a jewel. It combines so many Add-ons in one, making it the most powerful Add-on fore improving your efficiency on Firefox.

Downloading FastestFox and Configuring

Go to the Add-On page of FasterFox, download it and install it. Then hit the options of the Add-on.

On the General settings you may like to have a more easy copy and paste like in Linux and mIRC. Check “Auto copy selected” and “Paste on middle mouse click”.

FasterFox General Settings

Now copying is as easy as selecting a text and pasting as easy as pressing the middle mouse button.

You also may want to edit the items that show up on the pop-up bubble whenever you select a text. So click pop-up bubble on the FastestFox Options.

FastestFox Popup bubble settings

As I don’t use OneRiot and Twitter Search that often, I unchecked them. This leaves only Wikipedia (which is default) and Google in the pop-up bubble, thus cleaning it up.

Get Known To The Quick Launcher

The qLauncher makes it easy to open your favorite bookmarks in a instance. Just press Strg + Space and then hit the appropriate key to open your favorite site.

qLauncher

Additionally, you can hit space again to perform an inline search in the qLauncher and open the result directly from itself.

Want to add your favorite page? No problem! Just press Strg + Space on the desired page and then press the +  on the last button for your entry. Deleting is as easy as pressing the X.

Lazy Tip #4: Use Your URL Bar For Your Bookmarklets

Firefox has a feature which many don’t know about. You can assign keywords for bookmarks. E.g. you can assign the keyword tj to the bookmark TechJanitor.net. Now if you hit tj and enter in the URL Bar it will directly take you to TechJanitor.net instead of searching it on Google.

This can you save a lot of time if you use it properly.

To do assign a keyword to a bookmark simply right-click on the bookmark and then click Properties.

Screenshot_011

Then just type the keyword you want for your bookmark.

Screenshot_012

So, in my case I don’t only use it for bookmarks, but also for bookmarklets (which are those bookmarks, who execute some stuff to make your life easier). I love the readability bookmarklet (it really makes content more readable, thanks to the guys at the arc90 labs). But I hate to click always on the folder bookmarklets and navigate and so on – you get the picture.

So with the knowledge of 3 paragraphs above you might know now what I did – right! I assigned a keyword to the bookmarklet. Now all I have to do to execute the readability bookmarklet is: Press F6, type “r1″ and hit Enter! No use of mouse, just the keyboard. Pretty neat, huh?

Apply this to every bookmark or bookmarklet you like to give your Firefox the turbo it needed.

Lazy Tip #5: Perform Every Search From Your URL Bar

Another great, but mainly unknown, feature of Firefox is, that you can assign keywords for search engines. I use g for Google, w for Wikipedia, y for Yahoo and so on.

The difference to the method above is though that you perform a specific search by typing the keyword and then the search term. E.g. to search for cats on Google I would type “g cats” in my URL Bar, to search for Internet on Wikipedia “w Internet” and so on.

To access this click on the Google icon on your search panel and then click on “Manage search engines…”

Screenshot_013

Now you see a new window where your current search engines are listed.

Screenshot_014

Now click on the desired search engine and then edit keyword. Type your keyword and you’re done!

Screenshot_015

Conclusion

Sure there are many more ways to make your Firefox more efficient, but these tips are a good start to make you a more productive Firefoxer!

Anyways, do you’ve got an awesome tip to make the Firefox experience more efficient? Then feel free to add it below in the comments section!