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Popular Firefox Extensions Reviewed
By: Barzan 'Tony' Antal
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    Table of Contents:
  • Popular Firefox Extensions Reviewed
  • First Half Dozen
  • Second Half Dozen
  • Final Thoughts

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    Popular Firefox Extensions Reviewed - Second Half Dozen

    (Page 3 of 4 )

    Lately, everybody and their dog knows that the storage space of Google Mail is literally huge and still increasing. Even if we have long forgotten the notion of deleting mails from Gmail, I think that most of us are way below 50% of our total storage space. Having this in mind, Gspace is a highly effective and truly ingenious extension. After installation, it acts as an FTP host where your Gmail is the storage.

    The interface is intuitive, as you can see from the attached screen shot above. Basically, your Gmail storage space becomes the virtual FTP host which you have the ability to use for file storage. It's advisable to use the tagging features because it dumps all of the files into your In box, and when you have tagged them you can also quickly reach them and do whatever you want (perhaps filter them out and whatnot).

    Google Toolbar is also worth mentioning. It is one of the Internet's earlier toolbars and technically supports almost all kinds of web browsers. It is basically a toolbar with lots of features such as enhanced search capabilities, the ability to share web pages with friends, bookmarks, custom buttons, and so forth. Give it a try.

    The next extension we're going to talk about here is called IE Tab. It was originally created for web developers because it basically incorporates IE's browsing engine as a built-in feature for which you can opt when you are opening a page in a new tab.

    Web developers could find out quickly how their site would look in Microsoft Internet Explorer thanks to this plug-in. But since we can come across sites that are optimized for IE only, this is where all of us can benefit from using this extension. It's such a shame that some webmasters ignore browsers such as Firefox, Opera, and Safari, focusing just on IE - however, that's mostly their loss. We have the solution!

    Now that we've mentioned web developers, I cannot afford to forget about the extensions called Web Developer. This adds a new menu jam-packed with various useful tools for web developers. Let's enumerate a few: it allows lots of functions to work with CSS, forms, images, cookies, has built-in validation tools and options that can gather dozens of information items from a site, lets you disable and/or specify scripts, edit HTML on-the-go, resize the current web page, display rulers and outline frames, etc.

    I truly believe that this utility shouldn't be left out of the toolkit of any Firefox web developer. As a final note to web developers, but also experienced people in the field, I would recommend checking out Greasemonkey. It allows users to customize the way specific websites are displayed and some parts of them are executed. It works based on "user scripts," and hundreds of them can be freely downloaded.

    Over the years as Greasemonkey was gaining prevalence, lots of developers were creating all kinds of user scripts. Many of them focused on Gmail-simply trying to add enhancements to the powerful Google Mail. Later on, one of the authors decided to compile a collection of Gmail-related Greasemonkey scripts and release an extension that does everything right out of the box. It's called Better Gmail.

    If you are using Gmail's new graphical user interface then you are going to need the new Better Gmail 2. Some of the most outstanding things that turn Gmail into a better place are features such as different skins, attachment icons, and label colors, keyboard macros, saving recently used searches, filter assistant, conversation preview, attachment reminders, and much more. They call it Gmail on Steroids...

    And lastly, let's also cover a multimedia extension: FoxyTunes. In short, FoxyTunes is a media player with a myriad of features that gets integrated into Firefox. You have the ability to configure the face of the player, specifying whether you want to have volume control on the toolbar, see the artist and title of the music that's currently playing, and more. It is very lightweight and works effectively.

    The main features of FoxyTunes can be summed up as follows: integrate with your favorite player, see what's playing, action controls, volume control, seek, collapse panels, show and hide player, and lots of customizable skins. All in all, this is a cross-platform extension which integrates an effective player into Firefox.

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