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Chapter 1. Getting Started > What Makes Firefox Unique?

What Makes Firefox Unique?

Firefox has an exceptional collection of features:

  • Popup blocking— Firefox’s built-in popup blocker is very effective at stopping most popup ads completely.

  • Tabbed browsing— Tabbed browsing lets you view multiple web pages in a single instance of the browser. You can also use this feature to open links in the background: while a link is loading in one window, you can continue working in another window.

  • Privacy and security— Firefox has been designed with privacy and security in mind. Not only does Firefox not load potentially harmful ActiveX controls, but it also has a comprehensive set of tools to keep your online activity private.

  • Search features— Google Search is built into the browser. Firefox also has Smart Keywords that let you customize quick searches with your favorite websites so you can just type a short keyword, add the information you want to look up, and there you are! Another great search feature is the Firefox Find bar, which finds text as you type without covering up anything on the screen.

  • Live bookmarks— Firefox has built-in RSS capabilities that let you read the latest news headlines and updates to any of your favorite websites that are RSS-enabled.

  • Download Manager— Firefox’s Download Manager downloads files and automatically saves them to your desktop. You can also open a file directly from the Download Manager.

  • Easy bookmark management— You can use the Firefox Bookmark Manager to organize bookmarks quickly. The Bookmark Manager lets you select groups of bookmarks and folders and move, copy, or delete them.

  • Fast setup— Because Firefox is very compact (less than 5MB for the Windows version), downloading it is fast even on a slow connection. There isn’t a whole CD of software to be installed, copied, and verified. You can typically download and install Firefox in just a few minutes. The installer’s Easy Transition system imports all your settings, including favorites, passwords, settings, and other data from Internet Explorer and other browsers, so you probably won’t even have to do any initial configuration.

  • Built-in web developer support— A set of web development tools is built into Firefox, including a powerful JavaScript and CSS error/warning console and an optional document inspector for analyzing your web pages.

  • Customizability— While the default capabilities of Firefox are powerful and very easy to use, you may want to customize the browser to better suit your needs. Product settings are accessible and easy to understand. You can also customize and augment Firefox with product extensions and themes. Hundreds of Firefox extensions and themes add features and options to the program and modify the program’s look and feel.

  • Compatible email program— The Thunderbird email program is a powerful adjunct to Firefox.



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