Workspace - Firefox extensions

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Introduction

FirefoxFirefox is the browser of choice for many keen Internet users and is one of the best browsers available (if not the best). It comes from the Mozilla organization, who have been involved in browser creation for longer than most.

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What is so great about Firefox?

Firefox has a number of advantages:

  1. Firefox is open-source. That means anyone can contribute, view the source code and even develop their own versions of Firefox! This openness makes the quality extremely high.
  2. It is standards-compliant. It does actually view a web page in the way browsers are supposed to. It's easy to create web pages for it as very few additional workarounds are needed.
  3. Firefox is more secure than the older generation of browsers. This is important now as online threats are also stronger. There is no such thing as a perfect software application, or a totally secure one - but the important points are the quality of the core application, and the speed with which newly-found vulnerabilities are patched. In both these areas Firefox is hard to beat.

As a matter of fact it comes with overwhelming features out of the box, and yet, you can make it even better by adding extensions to it to suit your needs. Note that there will also normally be a major beta version of Firefox in parallel existence at any time, so we need to install the addons which are compatible with the Firefox version being used. Firefox add-ons are of two broad classes, Extensions and Themes, and there are also plug-ins. Anyone can create a Firefox add-on or theme, even you can give it a try if you invest the time in understanding how it all works!

We are constantly updating this list with our most reccomended addons we think you should have! If you have one that isn't on this list, feel free to share it in the comment section below.

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Discussion
GENERAL/BEST

NoScriptNoScript - There's a browser safer than Firefox... It is Firefox, with NoScript!

The NoScript Firefox extension provides extra protection for Firefox: this add-on allows JavaScript, Java, Flash and other plugins to be executed only by trusted web sites of your choice (e.g. your online bank), and provides the most powerful Anti-XSS protection available in a browser. NoScript's unique whitelist based pre-emptive script blocking approach prevents exploitation of security vulnerabilities (known and even not known yet!) with no loss of functionality. Although whitelisting your favourite websites may seem an annoyance at first, this addon really does shine when you accidently stumble upon a 'bad' website.

 

Adblock PlusAdblock Plus - Ever been annoyed by all those ads and banners on the internet that often take longer to download than everything else on the page? Install Adblock Plus now and get rid of them!

Adblock Plus combined with Adblock Plus: Element Hiding Helper can create magic. It allows user to select HTML content of the page, and so it enhances the advertisement filter scope to virtually full. For example, using element hiding helper one can remove sections from GMail, Orkut, Facebook, etc. showing advertisement content. The extension provides user with simple and advance view modes, with preview facility. And if you find something which you have trouble blocking; a couple of clicks later and you can send a screen and report to the makers who will do there best to fix it.

 

Redirect RemoverRedirect Remover mainly has two purposes:

  1. Speed up browsing by de-proxyfying images and directly jumping to link-target
  2. Increase transparency on some links by showing "real" link-target

It doesn't increase privacy a great deal but where it does shine is stopping redirects. Ever been on a website and you constantly get redirected to another 10 websites? This stops this! If you would like to test your Redirect Remover installation, have a look at the test page with all kinds of links containing redirects, special characters and so on.

 

FoxSaverGreaseMonkey is a Firefox extension which allows you to modify the way web pages display by utilizing JavaScript code. Thousands of unique scripts tailored to a large number of sites are available free of charge. New scripts are published daily by a very active developer community. Users are also given the ability to write their own scripts.

Basically it is an extra addon service which will probably meet any of your needs to do with browsing. If you want it then there will probably be a script which does that. Hell, there will be a script which you don't know you want yet.

Examples of these scripts are; one which removes download wait time.; another is one which embeds youtube videos into most websites, from 4chan to techsupportalert.

Just remember if you do install you need to find a site to download scripts - I recommend UserScripts.org

Here is an article about the best GreaseMonkey Scripts.

 

Add-on CollectorAdd-on Collector - A Mozilla-given way to organize your addons.

Its features include capabilities to recommend, share and sync addons; and the simple, 3-page interface provides an effective way to do so. Browse all add-ons collections at: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/collections, set the collections you like as favorite, or create your own.

Beware of some of the Addons recommended (i.e Babylon Toolbar)

Below are simple steps you can follow to install add-ons from your favorites, create your favorites, publish your favorite add-ons to your collection and get notifications when your favorites are updated.

  1. Create account at: https://addons.mozilla.org
  2. Install Add-on Collector
  3. Restart browser to complete the addon installation
  4. Go to Tools-->Add-ons-->Select Add-on Collector-->Click Options-->Subscriptions
  5. Enter your login details created in step 1
  6. Now you will see 'Subscriptions' tab in Tools-->Add-ons
  7. This tab will provide list of add-ons from your favorites
  8. On selection of your installed add-on in the mail window (Tools-->Add-ons), it will show 'Publish To' button to publish selected add-on to your own collection.
     

LazarusLazarus: Form Recovery - Recover those forms the easy way!

This addon secretly saves everything you write into a form and keeps it secure within it's own 'form history'. A number of things can happen when you're writing on the internet; browser crashes, server timeouts, accidently clicking back pretty much anything! This let's you simply go back to where you were writing, right click, 'Recover Form' and done! You can paste back exactly what you were writing.

This becomes a real lifesaver if you use webmail, forums, editing content, anything at all! This is a worth-while addon you can simply install, forget and use when needed.

My current problem is that for me atleast, on some webpages it doesn't seem to work. An example of this is techsupportalert or the new beta YahooMail, where the option doesn't appear.

 

Add-on CollectorDownloadHelper - Download any media file on basically any page!

The easy way to download and convert Web videos from hundreds of YouTube-like sites.
This works also for audio and picture galleries.

DownloadHelper is a tool for web content extraction. Its purpose is to capture video and image files from many sites.
Just surf the Web as you are used to, when DownloadHelper detects it can do something for you, the icon gets animated and a menu allows you to download files by simply clicking an item.
For instance, if you go to a YouTube page, you'll be able to download the video directly on your file system. It also works with MySpace, Google videos, DailyMotion, Porkolt, iFilm, DreamHost and others.

Since version 3.1 (it's on 4.9.5, with more features than ever), you can setup the extension to automatically convert the downloaded movies to your preferred video format and then automatically into a certain folder. This however requires you to instal converthelper (a fully safe application) which will do these features, but will place a watermark on converted videos.

In negatives I have heard of people say it slows down firefox.

 

Honorable Mentions

MyWOT - This is a great litle utility which provides an extra layer of security to your browser with a web based service which rates every single website. With a community of millions you can probably find out whether a website is bad by one click. The problem with anybody being able to rate is that it can be easily manipulated by rivals, friends or employees. So of course this cannot be a 5* addon while you can pay WOT for a 100% excellent rating (yes, bad sites can actually pay them off)

 
Quick Selection Guide - Best Free Firefox Add-ons in General

 
 
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Tags

firefox add-ons, firefox extensions, free browser addons, best free addons, open-source, Mozilla Firefox addons

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