Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Firefox Web Browser

Last week we learned how to use Google's Chrome web browser. Chrome is a lot of fun because you can add some great apps!
During this course, you will also use the Firefox web browser to visit websites on the Internet. Today, you will learn how to customize the Firefox browser to make it even more useful to you. You will open the "Preferences" pane to customize your browser. You will not learn everything there is to know about customizing Firefox, but you will learn a great deal to start!

First step:
Click on the "Applications" folder in your dock, and scroll up to and click on Firefox. After Firefox opens, you will see the "browser window."

To configure the Firefox browser, you will access the Preferences pane to customize your browser settings. Click "Firefox" in the menu bar at the top of your screen and drop down to "Preferences."

There are 8 sections in the Preferences pane:

Use this tab to tell your browser what web page you want Firefox to open when you begin, and to manage your browser's add-on programs.

To change your home page in the Firefox browser:
  • Open Firefox
  • Go to www.spurgeoncougars.us
  • Click "Firefox" in the menu bar
  • Drop down to "Preferences"
  • Click the "Main" tab in dialog box that appears (1st tab)
  • Click "Use Current Page"
  • Close the dialog box
  • Test by opening Firefox
On your own machine at home, if you want a different home page, go to any web page instead of www.spurgeoncougars.us and follow the above directions.

Use this tab to manage how your browser opens different websites. Using tabbed browsing opens new websites in successive tabs along the top of the browser's viewing area.
  • Select "Open new windows in a new tab instead"
  • Select "Always show the tab bar"
  • Select other options as you see fit
Use this tab to set up the type of content you want to allow.
  • If you have a slow Internet connection, you may "deselect" (uncheck) the "load images automatically" box. The web page will now load faster because it will not need to load the images.
  • Java and JavaScript are programs that run in the browser. They can be very useful programs, but sometimes you do not want them to run if you do not trust the source of these programs.
  • You may also block "pop-up windows" here if you wish.
This tab shows the "plug-in" applications you have installed in your browser.

Use this tab to protect your privacy while browsing.
  • Check the box that says "Tell websites I do not want to be tracked."
  • Under History - select the number of days you wish to remember the websites you have visited.
  • Select "Accept cookies from sites" and "Accept third-party cookies" if you want to use websites that rely on cookies (stored data) to run.
  • Select "Always clear my private data when I close Firefox" if you wish to clear your private data every time you quit Firefox.
  • Click on "Settings" to select the type of data you want cleared for this function.
  • Click on "Clear Now" to clear your private data immediately.
Use this tab to monitor your security settings.
  • Select the three boxes to warn you of web forgeries, attack sites, or software installs
  • Do not select the "Remember passwords for sites" if you do not want other people who use your computer to have access to your passwords.
Use this feature to sync your Firefox preferences with multiple devices. This accesses Firefox's "cloud computing," just like Chrome accesses the Google Chrome's cloud computing.

This section is for advanced users and is beyond the scope of this course. That does not mean that you can't research it on your own and configure it as you like, though!

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