Lesson materials for installing the Menu Editor extension, and using it to modify one of the simplest of context menus - The Tab Context Menu, and additional informtion for new user on Tab setup.

Lesson - MenuEditor - Tab Context Menu

Location: http://www.mvps.org/dmcritchie/firefox/lessons/menueditor/tab_context_menu.htm
Home page: http://www.mvps.org/dmcritchie/firefox/firefox.htm
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Obtain the Menu Editor Extension

My home page includes listings for a number of Firefox extensions most of which can be obtained at addons.mozilla.org.  My description for Menu Editor there is as follows: 

Hide/unhide/rearrange menu items and separators.   Mandatory extension to reduce the bloat and rearrange your context menus to find items faster.  In advanced mode you can drag and drop menus, and separations to rearrange menus.   My immediate eliminations from the context menu:  Bookmark This Link.., Save Link As..., Send Link, Copy Email Address, – Back, Forward, Reload, Stop, – Book This Page, Save Page As, Send Link, – Undo, – Cut, Copy, Paste, –, Select All.   Used as an aid to bypass a pre Firefox 1.5 bug in positioning and non scrolling of context menu especially impacted by lots of extensions in use.  MozillaZine thread.   (More of my notes and on another page pictures of how I have rearranged my context menus, and a side-by-side comparison of pictures of my context menus to your own. [ext. Options] (related: 'Organize Status Bar', 'More Tools Menu' to move items to a Tools submenu) –

When you look for extensions at AMO, be sure to read the developer's comments, know where to find the author's home page if he has one.  Look for the home page in the Developer's comments, and in the link to the author at the top of the Extension.  Pay careful attention to the size of the download.  Excessive size and not much there would indicate a bloated extension. 

The Menu Editor extension is one of the more complex extensions, and one that really proves useful, not only to rearrange default Firefox menus, but to reorder and edit menus that are affected by installing a lot of extensions.  It is a 60KB download, so is what I would consider a large extension (over 35KB download) but well worth it's size, and one of the more complex extensions.

Pictures on using Menu Editor

Pictures related to the main context menu and other context menus can be found elsewhere on my pages, but what is included here is just the Tab Context Menu changes.

Convert an unstructured Tab Context Menu, to one that can be used with Tab operations limited to the Mouse.  We can Open a new tab simply by double-clicking on the tab bar, or clicking on the New Tab menu button, so no need to prioritize them in the context menu.

Unstructured (Before)


  Structured (After)


Several of the items in the Tab Context menu actually have keyboard shortcuts that do not appear on the context menu.
  New Tab [Ctrl+T], Undo Close Tab [Ctrl+Shift+T], Reload Tab [F5], Bookmark This Tab [Ctrl+D]
Bring up the Menu Editor, from the Tools menu, and then edit the Tab Context Menu


(Click for extreme example of tab context menu)



The Tab Context menu as seen in the Menu Editor is shown on the left before making changes.  The view on the right was expanded with the Advanced button which gives access to separators and to other menus that could be included, but you would have to be very careful in copying items from any other Context menu to a context menu.  The view on the right shows the final arrangement for the completed Tab Context menu that we achieved.
_tab_step2_edit.jpg  _tab.jpg

Color underbars for Active/Read/Unread Tabs (#color)

userChrome code changes for Bookmarks Bar with folders in blue, and filenames in red; and Tabs Bar underlining as inactive tab, active tab, and unread tabs, and a smaller font size on all toolbars.

Install the "stylish" extension and use the following or obtain from Stylish (if available).

@namespace url(http://www.mozilla.org/keymaster/gatekeeper/there.is.only.xul);

/* Tab Color underscore markings active/read/unread   (DM) */
/* ===================================================== */

/* leaving background  and focus rings alone so that background color
   for Perma Tabs extension will prevail, but prefer Flat tabs usages */

/* Change underline color of active tab  - RED */
tab[selected="true"] {
   border-left: solid 1px #FF0000   !important;
   border-bottom: solid 2px #FF0000   !important;
   color: #000000 !important; }

/* Change underline color of normal tabs  - BLUE */
tab:not([selected="true"]) {
   border-left: solid 1px #0066CC   !important;
   border-right: solid 1px  !important;
   border-bottom: 2px solid #0066CC   !important;
   color: black !important; }

/* Change text and underline color of unread tabs - GREEN */
/* http://kb.mozillazine.org/Change_the_style_of_tab_markers */
 #content tab:not([selected]) {
  color: #005500 !important;
  border-bottom: 2px solid #00BB00  !important;}

This is just a portion of my userChrome.css changes presented as a userstyle for underscore to Tabs

The above can be used in Stylish or in userChrome.css, and represents a portion of what I am doing with changes to userChrome on my Tabs page.  Stylish allows you to test changes by turning a style on/off without restarting Firefox.

Setting up Multiple Profiles   (#profile)

Setting up multiple profiles is beyond what most people would do in an initial setup, but if you want to test without affecting your normal setup, this is what you would need to be doing, and it would be well to understand the principles beforehand.

You can set up multiple profiles, please be aware that profile names are case sensitive and will not be found if you have capitalization incorrect.  Note only one of the profiles can be your default. Your default profile is what will be used by external applications such as your mail program, or launching a browser from Windows Explorer (My Computer).

Additional information concerning Profiles on my own pages ===

Suggested Extensions and Configuration changes for this Lesson (#ext)

Extensions   (#ext2)

Before installing an extension, always read about the extension, look for size of extension, description of extension, developer's comments, user comments, user ratings, author's home page, many extensions have a forum page for comments.  You will have to determine if the extension has options, context menus, tools menu, or buttons, documentation is sometimes sparce in these areas.

About:config changes   (#config)

The following changes can be made by typing about:config on the location bar, use of the Filter: extensions and Filter: editor will narrow the scope.

Some extension may require turning off compatibility and/or secure site tests. See Compatibility Testing Disabled.
  extensions.checkCompatibility         create as Boolean and set to False
  extensions.checkUpdateSecurity     create as Boolean and set to False

Configuration Changes to tie into Notepad with Ctrl+U
  view_source.editor.external set to True
  view_source.editor.path set to c:\winnt\notepad.exe   [use \windows\ in Vista instead of \winnt\]

More tab related (see Tabs configuration)
  browser.tabs.closeButtons set to 3 for one close button at right (default is 1 for close on each button)

Bookmarklets;  There are a lot of links on this page.  The following BookMarklets (Favelets) will distinguish between internal or external links.  First click on "highlight links",  and then on "int/ext links".  Your browser's Reset button (F5) will reload the original unmodified web page. 
This page was introduced on July 4, 2008. 
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Main Firefox pages (on-site):  [Customizations, Extensions],  [Tabs],  [Bookmarks],  [Keyword shortcuts],  [Context and other menus

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