Out of the umpteen extensions I have tried, I ultimately chose a few that I continue to use every day. What follows is a list of the extensions I installed in Firefox, what I like about each extension, and where to find it.
You don’t like ads? This extension is for you.
Latest release page install size: 229 KB
I think this is the most powerful extension there is for Firefox. Simply put it manages all of you sidebars with one interface and adds sidebars you never even knew existed. One thing I really like about this extension is that it adds a toolbar to the left side of the browser.
Latest release page install size: 367 KB
This extensions allows you to control cookies on a site-by-site basis. I have it set up to block all cookies unless I specifically enable them. This may sound a little paranoid, I really don’t like sites tracking what I’m doing, especially with third party cookies.
Latest release page install size: 192 KB
This is a neat build your own extension I found. Instead of downloading a gigantic extension to add tons of toolbar buttons for common tasks, this page allows you to choose only the toolbar buttons you want to use.
install size: 47K
This extension used to replace Firefox bookmarks. Now it leaves the standard Firefox bookmarks alone and creates another sidebar and toolbar where you can access your del.icio.us bookmarks. I use del.icio.us exclusively for bookmarking but I still use Firefox bookmarks for sites that I open in the sidebar (there’s no way to tell del.icio.us bookmarks to open in the sidebar yet).
Latest release page install size: 256 Kb
I have a love hate relationship with this extension. Every time I find that I can’t live without it anymore and reinstall it, I find that Firefox’s memory footprint starts slowly creeping up until it starts taking 250Megs+ of memory and becomes really sluggish. I have no memory leak problems when I uninstall it. The benefits seem to be worth having to restart my browser every day though.
Greasemonkey allows you to run script on specific webpages to change the way they look and behave. For example Google Autopager allows you to scroll through all the result pages as if they were one long page. I am planning another post describing my favorite scripts.
Latest release page install size: 99 KB
I just found this little gem. I previously used Tiny Menu to save toolbar space, but now I can hide the menubar completely without losing it’s functionality. If I really need to use a menu, I just press the ALT key when Firefox has the focus and the menubar temporarily pops back into place.
Latest release page install size 11 KB
I read about this extension over at lifehacker.com. I like using Firefox to store passwords for my online accounts, but I get nervous about the fact that once I enter the master password for a session it unlocks all my stored passwords until I close the browser. Normally this would be OK, but it keeps the stored passwords unlocked even if you hibernate and resume. Somebody could steal my computer while it was hibernating, boot it up, and have access to my online accounts. Now I have a strong password to log into my account after hibernate, but I’m scared by how easy it is do download and use software to crack windows passwords.
This extension give me a little extra piece of mind when I’m using the Firefox password manager.
Latest release page install size: 4 KB
It is surprising how many sites run scripts from a third party. Do you really want to give a site you didn’t visit permission to run scripts on your computer. Install this extension and you will be amazed at how much this occurs.
Latest release page install size: 195 KB
Tab Mix plus is a way to control just about every aspect of tabbed browsing. The feature that I find indispensable is the ability to see a list of the most recently closed tabs and to selectively reopen one.
Latest release page install size: 329 KB
This plugin makes it simple to download the flash videos from youtube.
Latest release page install size: 14KB
Extensions I still want to try
Vertigo moves the tabs from on top of the browser window to the side, accomplishing two things, First you can see many more tabs open and the tab width stays the same so you can read what the contents of the tab are. Second, you gain slightly more space at the top of the tab.
Latest release page install size 15 KB