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Get more from web browsing with Firefox and Safari

Hidden features and third-party apps to make life easier

Getting frustrated with keeping track of tabs, or pages that just won't load when you're browsing the web? These tips will help you ensure your time on the net is spent far more efficiently.

While surfing the web can be a great way to wile away the hours, there are a number of problems that can occur. Whether its keeping track of hundreds of tabs, navigating bookmarks or just dealing with pages that won't load – the internet can be frustrating.

However, we've rounded up a number of hidden features and third-party apps that can help you tackle these troubles whether you're using Apple's Safari 3.0 or Mozilla's Firefox 2.0 or version 3.0.

Keep tabs on your tabs

Safari's and Firefox's tabbed browsing features let you open multiple sites within a single window, thereby reducing screen clutter. But some aspects of tabbed browsing are less obvious.

Keep track of search results

Say you've just performed a Google search. You now have a results page, which probably includes tons of links you'd like to visit.

You could simply click on a link to view that page in the current window, and then click on the Back button or the SnapBack icon in the Search field to return to the results. But an easier way is to right-click on each link (in Firefox), and select to open the pages in new tabs or even windows. You can continue navigating your search results in the original page.

Restore tabs automatically

After hours of browsing, you often end up with several open windows, each with its own set of carefully culled tabs. Sod's Law dictates that this is the moment your browser will crash.

But you don't need to find all those pages again manually. In Firefox, choose Firefox: Preferences and click on Main; from the When Firefox Starts pop-up menu, choose Show My Windows And Tabs From Last Time. From now on, Firefox will keep track of all open tabs and windows, and restore them automatically when the browser restarts. (When restarting Firefox after a crash, click the Restore Session button.)

Although Safari doesn't have an auto-restore feature, you can manually regain sites by selecting History: Reopen All Windows From Last Session. To restore sessions automatically, try Hetima Computer's free SafariStand 3. Once you've installed it, choose Stand: SafariStand Setting. Under General, from the Restore Method at Launch pop-up menu, select Automatically Reopen Last Session (Safari).

Note that the software uses an unofficial method to alter Safari's behaviour. It could stop working after an update to Safari.

NEXT PAGE: Tips for finding web pages

  1. Keeping tabs on your tabs
  2. Tips for finding web pages
  3. Keep bookmarks in sync
  4. Improve website support

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