Firefox isn’t the only browser for power users anymore, but that didn’t stop it from having a great year of updates, extensions, and tweaks in 2010. Here’s a look back at the most popular Firefox extensions and posts.
Photo remixed from an original by Matt Katzenberger.
We’ve been pretty excited for Firefox to go through a major update for a while, and earlier this year they started releasing betas for the new Firefox 4. After the first beta came out, we took a tour of the new look and features, including an interface overhaul and some cool new HTML5 support.
By far the most talked about Firefox extension this year was the privacy -invading Firesheep, which can steal usernames and passwords from Facebook, Twitter, and other accounts of the folks using open Wi-Fi networks. We showed off the extension and discussed a few ways you can keep yourself safe from it.
Oh, the politics of Facebook. If you suspect people are starting to unfriend you on your favorite social network, you can keep track of them with Firefox extension Unfriend Finder. Just install it, and it will notify you of everyone that unfriends you in the future.
While our first look at Firefox 4 was our most popular Firefox post this year, you guys also went crazy about the near-final beta of Firefox 4 that presented one of its best features—seriously increased speed. This beta also featured hardware acceleration, Sync, and the new Tab Panorama feature.
If you’re a devoted Firefox user but don’t like Firefox’s sluggish nature, Pale Moon is a Windows-optimized Firefox build that is quite a bit faster than regular old Firefox. Most of your old extensions should still work in Pale Moon, too, and it will even pick up your existing Firefox profile.
While there was a lot of talk about Firefox 4 this year, Firefox 3.6 released in January and brought a bunch of nice new features to the browser as well, including faster performance, one-click themes, safer add-ons, and a bunch more.
One of Firefox’s most popular extensions, Adblock Plus, is useful for more than just blocking ads. We went through a way to use it for malware blocking too—showing why even if you don’t block ads (which we at Lifehacker thank you for, by the way), Adblock is still a great extension to have.
During Lifehacker’s Deal Week, we went through some of the best Firefox extensions to save you money all over the net, including those that monitored your favorite sites for deals, found coupons, and managed wish lists.
In their effort to continue taking over the internet this year, Facebook made a lot of people pretty unhappy. One of their more annoying flops was allowing other sites to access your data. We went through a way to keep this from happening using Firefox’s Adblock Plus extension.
Sitting at a desk isn’t exactly the most comfortable way to browse the web. If you’d prefer to use Firefox from a distance, we went through a few CSS tweaks, plugins, and themes to keep it easy to use from far away.
If you find you have too many extensions and Firefox tweaks bogging down your browser—especially when some are used for tasks you’re not even working on—using another Firefox profile may be the answer. We went through how to set up Firefox with multiple profiles dedicated to specific work to keep you productive and organized.
We really liked the new look of Firefox 4, but if you aren’t into using the beta (the final version of which has been delayed), you can give its stylish new look to your installation of Firefox 3 with extension Strata40.
It’s hard to keep track of all your email, especially when you need to follow up on certain things at a later date. Firefox extension Boomerang schedule when you send and receive your emails so you don’t forget to do it later.
Despite all the toolbar hate we’ve formed over the years, Google’s toolbar actually has a few neat features. Instead of making you install a toolbar, though, we showed you how you can get all its coolest features in Firefox without taking up all that extra screen real estate.
We all have a lot of inboxes around the internet nowadays. Extension Poyozo turns Firefox into a universal inbox by pulling your contacts, calendars, notes, photos, and more from services all around the net, organizes it, and even gives you useful statistics on your activities.
Whether you’re unhappy with Facebook’s new small font size, layout, navigation, or pretty much anything else, Firefox userscript Better Facebook will let you tweak it to your liking with over 75 useful options.
One of Safari 5′s coolest new features is a Reader button that strips down and reformats articles for easy reading. It isn’t built into Firefox, but we showed you how to get that same functionality in your favorite browser with a simple add-on.
If you love using your keyboard and avoid the mouse whenever possible, Firefox extension gleeBox makes your Firefox web browsing more keyboard-friendly with intuitive (and customizable) keyboard shortcuts that do pretty much anything you want.
Despite declining popularity with some of you, Firefox sure showed us it’s stuff in 2010—and with Firefox 4 just around the corner, 2011 is likely to be no different. If you have a favorite Firefox post from 2010 that didn’t make the cut, share it with us in the comments—and be sure to check out Firefox’s most popular posts from 2009, too.
Send an email to Whitson Gordon, the author of this post, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Most Popular Firefox Extensions and Posts of 2010 Video