My tabs can get as small as the pinned ones on the left (which is the default behavior of every other browser).
There used to be a about:config setting for minimum tab width, but one(!) Firefox developer decided to remove it, because:
"Users can override this using userChrome.css if they absolutely want it. I don't think the prefs are worth it."
Now I have to use a custom user chrome CSS file and disable the tab animations to get the same effect.
I really hope this pointless update won't make me jump through a dozen hoops again. I'm tired of it.
I think the design looks good, I just hope that it will be given the same amount of customization freedom Firefox enjoys pre-Australis.
I expect significant breakage tomorrow / later today.
Tab-scoll, to me, makes a lot of sense as it prevents any confusion over the content of the tabs, especially when those tabs lack favicons: in Chrome, you simply get a blank page icon when the scroll bar overflows.
The only downside to Australis for me so far has been the removal of the "thin" address bars/small icon sets, there is no longer an option within Firefox to enable them, as far as I know.
Oh, man. :/
You might also want to look into Stylish, this is a firefox addon that allows you to add custom CSS, and apply it without restarting.
On OSX, Australis will actually be thinner (once they fix https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=938985) because the window buttons are now on the same level as the tabs.
This update will make it worse it seems and waste more vertical space (apart from the really ugly aliased curved tabs).
The good news is that if you don't like the new look of firefox, you don't need to see it:
Of course there is `s` command to search any of your installed search providers and you can do all of this in new tab, window etc.
Pentadactyl is what keeps me using Firefox. When that stops working, it will take me back to stone age when it comes to speed of navigating and researching content online.
I'm generally OK with a lot of stuff being in add-ons. But, this one is not one of those things. I really don't think I should have to install a plugin to decide not to have a scrolling tab bar (I hate the scrolling tab bar).
BTW: it is annoying the web browsers don't seem to support the -geometry switch under xorg.
(Why? Scaling up page content (via layout.css.devPixelsPerPx) also scales up chrome, including the (already properly sized) icons— so every icon in Fx ends up being four times larger than it should.)
Are you manually changing layout.css.devPixelsPerPx to support a hidpi display?
Yeah— is there a better way I should be doing it?
(Also, as an aside, I've been a huge fan of your work with Firefox for years, so, uh, thanks for everything you've done on it).
Australis looks like it's going to solve all of my problems
When this blatant copying happens (and it happens in many places; it's no wonder all phones look like a variation of the original iphone) I always wonder if the designers really did convince themselves that their design is different or they tried but just couldn't come up with anything better than their inspiration.
I recommend you take another look. They're not really the same at all.
Firefox's designers were not going for the angular and mechanical chrome look at all. They were designing something softer, rounder and more human.
Now, the elimination of the options bar ("File Edit View History ...") on Linux does seem more in line with Chrome, but on Windows it's been that way for a while.
I think this is a classic case of converging designs, not copying. A good idea is a good idea, no matter how you reach it.
 - http://i.imgur.com/m2ozMz3.png
Actually, I recommend you take another look. Chrome's tabs are significantly more rounded than in your illustration.
Here's an actual side-by-side snapshot: <http://i.imgur.com/sUGCX5I.png>
It seems slightly disingenuous to claim that every use of non-square tabs is copying Chrome.
There is only so many way you can make a phone that consists of a big screen with a few buttons along the bottom look. Since the big screen is the main feature, and big screens look like big screens, this is a limit of the function of the phone.
The thing is: there are UX patterns that are better than others. That's not copying, it's just common sense.
When Opera first pioneered tabs they were found on the bottom. It was Firefox that made the drastic (though unsurprising) change of moving them above the page contents. One could argue maybe Chrome should not have employed this "tired" design choice and perhaps placed their tabs on the left (a la Ubuntu Unity). But this whole line of argumentation sounds ridiculous when someone has already figured out a pretty optimal place for those tabs.
Yes obviously Google was not the first one to put that principle to some use, but their browser was the first one among web browsers.
Personally I hated how Opera left a few pixels gap between the tabs and the screen edge (I have no idea if they still do).
A few pixels was just enough to make sure that I had to move the mouse cursor a little bit back every time I wanted to click on a tab.
Clearly, both Firefox and Chrome are copying Avery. They are literally killing innovation.
They just say "hmm, that was a good idea, I think I can do even better" repeatedly, and so UX improves.
I'm happy with the tabs provided with my OS theme and do not want each app to have tabs with a custom shape and wasted space. Do not want a rainbow in my title bar and have not met anyone > 12 that does.
What is it with these people and their obsession with skinz! and constant rearranging of buttons?
You do realise that's an add-on skin, right? The entire point of that system is that people can do whatever the hell they like and you aren't affected by it.
The design people in Firefox lost me as a user when they decided to re-arrange an interface that had looked the same for the better part of a decade. Re-arrange, not improve. Apparently years of users' visual + muscle memory means nothing to these UX guys.
I persevered with it for a while but eventually I just gave up and switched browsers. Shame, since I'd been using Firefox since its first release (called Phoenix back then, later Firebird, finally Firefox).
FWIW, here's the "original" user interface: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/65/Mozilla_F...
And I don't think they really changed it much anyways. Many of the GUI elements are in the same position as before, there's nothing new to learn. A lot of them have been integrated, which is nice and reduces the unnecessary chrome.
I like Australis. To me, it looks more modern, even if it does look like Chrome. It feels like a step in the right direction.
I also don't mind them changing the UI of Firefox because most of the time, this is what I look at: http://d.pr/i/iEtP
which is to say, damn near identical modulo the GTK theme emulation. AND importantly the nightly build linked in the article completely respected my changes.
Apparently I went off and downloaded the nightly just before the australis drop because trying it again today fucked everything up. I'm pissed too now.
Design is extremely subjective.
Design terms like these, when juxtaposed with the "curvy tab" language, get way under my skin.
What is a "comfortable" design, exactly? I suppose a better question would be, what made the other design "uncomfortable"?
What is a clean design? Do you really mean "modern" instead of "clean"? Wouldn't it be better to say the interface elements are more defined, or there are less textures, or whatever?
Perhaps this is Janet Murray speaking through me (GaTech), but using vague terms to describe minuscule changes is somewhat bombastic. Instead, use appropriately narrow and descriptive terms.
I guess the rant is here because the changes aren't really that big of a deal. It's pretty much a nod to Chrome, run through a few iterations, am I right? Or maybe I'm being short sighted.
"In case you wonder, the reason for which Firefox doesn't merge url and search bar is to protect user's privacy. If you prefer a Chrome-style UI, there are a couple of add-ons that provide just that."
In my opinion, they need to think this through a bit more. Each input bar is crippled in some way (one won't autocomplete, the other won't go to addresses), and it's all driven by wanting to keep incomplete searches private (until Enter gets hit). Do users realize that the search bar in Firefox is not private, whereas the address bar is? I'm betting not. Do users expect them to be? Chrome assumes not.
In my opinion, if the privacy thing is so important, they'd still be better off having just one input with autocomplete off by default, and easily toggled to on. I doubt that users understand the current setup as "address bar is private, search bar is not".
I'd actually vote for one change, though: I'd prefer the URL field didn't default to falling back to querying a search engine. One of my pet peeves is mistyping a URL and having my input sent by my system to Google. (That's easy enough for me to change, though, and the Firefox developers seem to be concerned enough about privacy and security to leave the ability to change it intact.)
Essentially, I'm suggesting that they either merge the two fields or make them more distinct. At the moment, it doesn't seem accurate for one to be called "address" and the other to be called "search". The actual function is closer to "private" and "not private". Your suggestion is a good one for one of the directions they could go in, because it increases the distinctness of the fields.
You can restrict location bar matches to bookmarks only, urls only, open tabs only, &c.
I don't know if it counts as an easter egg, but it makes my own life a lot easier.
1) 1-word searches/domains or searches involving a domain-looking piece of text throw it off.
2) cluttering my typed-URL history with search keywords.
Example I always run into:
site:news.ycombinator.com foo bar baz
Not sure how it would work if you wanted to search Amazon or something...
The address wasn't understood
Firefox doesn't know how to open this address, because
the protocol (site) isn't associated with any program.
You might need to install other software to open this
- If the Search Box is in the toolbar, it puts the focus in the Search Box.
- If the Search Box is not in the toolbar, it navigates to Google.com (at least when Google is selected as the default search).
Are you sure you're not getting this from an addon?
With DuckDuckGo, it's easy to prepend/append "!ddg" onto the offending text to force a search. I sometimes have to do this for arithmetic operations, the first operand of which the bar interprets as an address. For me, the small amount of extra time this takes is worth it. A unified search/URL bar, particularly with DDG's bang functionality, feels like a command line. And a command line feels like home.
"blah blah" -> Google: blah blah
"blahblah" -> attempts to find a host named blahblah
"g blahblah" -> Google: blahblah
2) Bothers me to an extent but since FF ranks by usage + weights naked domains higher in the awesomebar it isn't too big an issue.
If you want to get back so quickly there are recently closed, bookmarks, history and plenty of other ways. Always persisting the search term I find very visually distracting.
Edit: On the other hand, the current tab behaviour is more of an irritation. Middle clicking the tab closes the tab unless it's the last tab when it does nothing. This is irritating. Dragging a tab doesn't work well when that tab is maximised. In chrome if you have 2 windows both maximised it's easy to drag a tab from one window to the other. In firefox you have to make one window smaller first to do this.
I'm quite excited to find out if this new interface fixes this.
Works alright for most things though, and I think it's still better than Google's default to Google approach, which is frustrating when you're working on a locally hosted site and keep getting sent to a search page.
I also prefer the way firefox acts with suggestions in the search and address bar being separate, I often find myself messing up where I meant to go because I thought pressing enter would take me to a site but instead goes to a search.
Firefox is easy for me because the address bar acts differently.
Or maybe there's a setting that I missed.
Still, I don't use the search bar and leave it off since I only like to keep the the address bar + the download button to minimize complexity.
So I'm quite sad to see it landing in Firefox.
DISCLAIMER: I don't like chrome.
I don't like Chrome either, but a few parts of it are nice.
The thing I dislike most about recent Firefox releases is that the selected search engine influences URL bar search, which is rather annoying in my opinion, but then I removed the search feature from the URL bar, making them at least somewhat distinct again.
I'll grant you the tab shape and the option icon.
But I won't grant you the tab shape, unless you're the kid that couldn't figure out square pegs and round holes.
I tried using Firefox again a while ago and I went right back to Chrome. Overall, Firefox feels more sluggish than Chrome. In part, whenever pages are loading in Firefox, it seems to make the whole browser feel sluggish -- something which doesn't happen in Chrome.
Different users and configs have different experiences and the memory or speed issues are something from the past even if the features were comparable (You can't beat the amount and quality of FF's addons).
A concerning issue about FF is that it might be drifting away from one of the things that makes it great. The ability to customize.
Disclaimer: Chrome, Firefox, Opera are all great browsers and people should use whatever they like but if you start pushing a case for your subjective choice, be prepared to deal with arguments.
I've compared Firefox with Chrome on different systems, and my perception of the performance was the same in all cases. Chrome is a memory hog, but it does not lag as Firefox does when it's loading pages.
And believe me I have LOTS of tabs (sometimes > 50) open. Firefox handles them much more nicely than Chrome, uses less memory and doesn't crash, EVER.
Chrome is just too happy to show me the sad face randomly during page loads.
A lot of people say this looks a lot like Chromium, but I don't find that to be the case at all. The background tabs aren't rounded at all, while tabs are shown to be rounded on mouse-over. It's a significant improvement over Chromium's approach. I'm not a tremendous fan of the rounded design, but it's certainly an improvement over the previous design.
I notice the tabs aren't sitting up in to the window manager in their Linux screenshot (understandable). I've already hidden the menu bar, then killed the window decorations for FF in KWin, so my tabs touch the top of the screen. In fact, Chrome actually uses a few more pixels than FF for me.
It looks more like Chrome than it does old Firefox.
with the exception of adblock on the right, that's the default layout.
Fyi, I also liked the orange button on Windows :(
It seems like change for the sake of making things "glossier". That inactive tabs have no top border bothers me. As does the fact it seems to completely ignore my native window toolkit tab/widget styles.
I have simplified and totally removed the search bar.
Some tweaks to get just an icon for the menu in the top left and also remove the close buttons in each tab. Probably something else I don't remember.
I thought this australis revision would make firefox look better integrated in the environment, not less, it seems they want to make it look the same in all plataforms...
I'm not a huge fan of that, but I'll wait to see if it can be integrated better of not.
One thing I still haven't seen except in Opera: Tabs on the left or right. With widescreen monitors, I prefer my tabs on the left. Even better, tabs with thumbnails.
My knee-jerk reaction is that I like the old UI better... I do feel that the tab layout is preferable to Chrome's tab layout because the inactive tabs are faded and not round.
Why not just stick with native tab implementation?
Building tarball right now to see if the changes are there
Eugh. That seems silly.
edit: a new update is now available with the new changes, I _like_ it!
edit': a minor quibble though, I preferred the star button when it was directly integrated in the url bar. I find it too excentred from the url for my eyes, I often give a quick look to check if an url is already starred or not.
Here's a brief explanation:
In order of development - some new features may come and go from channel to channel.
Nightly - Under heavy development. Least stable/secure. First tests of new changes/features; some changes/features introduced in Nightly may be removed before Release and other versions. Only for testing. Should only be used by very experienced users/testers.
Aurora - Still under development. More stable/secure than Nightly. Some bugs may still be present that need resolution. Should be used by experienced users only who can post/report reproducible problems and work around issues.
Beta - Final development stage before Release. Usually good stability/security. Major bugs resolved. Working out final bugs. Preview of what Release version will most likely contain in the way of changes/features, though some changes/features can still disappear before Release.
Release - Final channel released to public for everyday use.
Also this only affects the nightly and add-on developers should be testing nightly anyway so they should prepare to update their add-ons in the future to adopt to the new UI.
I have 40 tabs open now, and it's using 1.16 GB which is awesome. I actually want it to take up more because I have 6GB of free RAM not being used, which is a waste.
Compare that to chrome. Using the same number of tabs and it can easily take up more than 3GB of ram on my system, which is expected since each tab is a different process.
I wonder when Firefox's tabs will run on their own separate process. I'm looking forward to that. I think I saw some updates a month ago but I can't find that now.
(fwiw, I have 16GB of RAM)
The only thing about using separate processes is that you increase memory usage, since every tab has overhead, and tabs can't share resources (chrome tends to go process per domain).
bang, you have multiprocess firefox.
a word of warning: it doesn't work so well, so i guess it's experimetal. you'll probably want to revert to false ;-)