Here we have compiled our list of the best Firefox add-ons available. When you have a browser as customizable as Firefox and the Mozilla guys literally holding your hand as you download add-ons or extensions for Firefox, there’s no excuse to be had for not trying out at least a couple of them. To download plugins is as simple as hitting the Add-ons tab from the drop down menu that hangs from the orange Firefox button or accessing it from Tools, if you have the Menu bar on display. The Add-ons Manager will pop up in a separate tab and you’ll know what to do from there. For those of you who haven’t bothered personalizing the browser, here’s our list of Firefox add-ons to start with.
1. Personas: Need to jazz up the way your browser looks? Firefox lists a horde of every imaginable design amounting to over 30,000 themes to color up the browsing experience. Nature, Justin Bieber, Full Metal Alchemist, Harry Potter, Halloween, you name it. These don’t show up within the Extensions section and when users want to go back to plain old Firefox colors, Personas can be disabled from the Appearance tab in Add-ons Manager.
2. RSS Ticker 8: Ever since the Mozilla browser ditched the feed button, add-ons like the RSS Ticker 8 have been coming to the rescue. True to its name, it runs a ticker at the base of the screen for providing updates from the sites users subscribe to. Hovering over one of the headlines offers a preview of the article as well as the option to open it in a new tab. Though a couple of users seem to be reporting CPU issues, we weren’t troubled by any sort of lag. Feed nerds, give it a go.
3. AdBlock Plus: The add-on is supported by more than forty filter subscriptions which intuitively configure it to eliminate online advertising and block known malware domains. Now we know for a fact that advertisers may not love this Firefox extension, but it’s an efficient answer to getting all those advertisements out of your face while web surfing.
4. Video DownloadHelper: Next in our list of the best Firefox add-ons is something for those who download a lot of video content from various websites, the Video DownloadHelper will be happy to oblige. Surf the web like you’d do on a regular day and when the utility detects it can lend a hand, the icon gets all lively and eager to serve. We downloaded an 8.1MB high-res video from YouTube in under a minute after hitting the little icon appearing beside the clip’s title with no glitches at all.
5. CoolPreviews: This Firefox add-on is an easy way of previewing and sharing links without leaving the web page you’re on. It’s quick and articles can be temporarily bookmarked and easily accessed with stacks, doing away with the need to open separate tabs for posts. Additionally, there’s the option to sub-search stuff on Google, YouTube, Wikipedia or Twitter right from the CoolPreviews pane.
6. Puzzle: Like to have a go at brain teasers now and again? Puzzle is a fun game add-on which lets you break up just about any image on the web or stored locally into puzzle pieces. It’s a neat way to pass time on a boring afternoon if you’re the kind who’s into simple board games. Mind you, we don’t promise it’s as addictive as Angry Birds.
7. Boo.ly Shopping: Labeled ‘Your personal shopping assistant’, the makers of Boo.ly Shopping have done a tidy bit of work with this add-on and hence it’s in our list of Firefox add-ons. After you install it, the moment you look up a particular product on the web, a clickable red tag delivering relevant shopping data is added to the search results page. So you don’t have to visit different websites to view and compare prices when it can be done right from a single pop up.
8. Read It Later: All right, so Firefox does have a convenient bookmarking and tagging function. But what it does not have is a Safari Reader-like facility. The ability to save pages, read them later without any visual distractions, peruse such content in offline mode, bookmark pages after reading them, sync your list to its mobile apps and more are extended by the Read It Later add-on.
9. AddThis: The AddThis extension is all about helping people bookmark and share web pages, news, blogs, photos, views and other content in one click. Because not all domains will have those Facebook ‘Like’, Google +1 or Twitter buttons for convenient sharing. Admittedly, it looks a bit messy, but it comes in very handy and each option can be enabled or disabled separately from add-on preferences.
10. Destroy the Web: It may sound like a slogan mouthed by virtual world anarchists, but Destroy the Web is actually a superbly entertaining game add-on. The mouse pointer turns into the crosshair as players bust down every element of any web page in 30 seconds. You get scored for it and there’s the option to show off by submitting your points to the online leaderboard. Be warned, you’ll be disappointed by your first few scores because apparently, there are a lot of people out there with nothing but time on their hands.
Go ahead and try a couple or more from our list of Firefox add-ons and tell us which one’s your favorite. But remember, too many heavy add-ons could spoil the browser experience and render it sluggish. So keep an eye out for that.