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March 30, 2014

I’ve used all three of the major browsers (IE, Chrome, and Firefox) over the past few years, and ultimately the one that I liked to use the most has been Firefox. Mostly because of the sheer number of useful addons, and for the fact that AdBlock Plus actually works as it should on Firefox*.

* Adblock Plus doesn’t REALLY work on Chrome It just pretends to be working. It doesn’t block the ads from being downloaded onto your computer, it just hides them from being seen. This means that you are still wasting bandwidth to download the ads, and it’s slowing down everything you are doing.


Adblock Plus – Nothing is more obnoxious than slow-loading ads that surround everything you are trying to actually see, and god forbid you accidentally click on one of them, you’ll be buried in pop-up advertisements. Adblock Plus has become essentially a mandatory download.

WOT or Web of Trust – A good way to pre-screen the sites. While there are plenty of wannabe eco-terrorists that give mining and oil companies negative WOT ratings (which cause false alarms), I otherwise find the WOT ratings to be more reliable and up-to-date than any of the other services that are supposed to keep you safe from potentially dangerous websites.

XMarks Sync – I’ve tried using the Google Sync and Firefox Sync, and both are pretty terrible at managing your links, especially if you use folders to organize your links. Both end up with plenty of duplicates and are hard to manage. XMarks I’ve not had a major issue with so far, it is fantastic and keeping your links in order.

Scrollbar Search Highlighter – The thing that I missed most about Chrome was how it highlights search hits on your scrollbar, so you know where to look, and where the highest densities of your search phrase can be found. This addon usually manages to do that. It’s a bit sloppy and doesn’t work all the time, but it’s better than having nothing at all.

Gmail Watcher – This is the ONLY version that works right now. There are quite a few clones, but none seem to work anymore except this one.

InstantFox – This unifies your search bar and your address bar – similar to how Chrome operates. You can also use a search prefix to search from a specific site, such as starting a search phrase with “w” will search Wikipedia, “a” will search Amazon, and so on. Fully customizable – allowing you to search whatever sites you frequently visit.

Download Status Bar – This is another addon with several non-functional clones, this is the real McCoy. It functions the same way that the Chrome and Internet Explorer download status bar works. Why Firefox lacks this feature is beyond me. <shrug>

Bookmark Deduplicator – Should Xmarks or another syncing service cause a gazillion duplicate bookmarks, this will help you manage with the duplicates. It’s very primitive in how it operates, but it works.

Video DownloadHelper – So far this is only one of two working add-ons that helps with downloading YouTube videos. There are plenty of one-off versions of this, but most are full of bugs, advertisements, or key tracking software (I’m not making that up).

YouTube Video and Audio Downloader – Similar to the one listed above, I tend to prefer this one lately. I listed both since I’ve actually gotten quite a bit of use out of both.






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