How to make Firefox as nice as Google Chrome on macOS
AKA We are one Firefox away from a monopoly: A year later
It’s official: The new Microsoft Edge is based on Chromium. Today is the day to switch to Firefox.
Firefox fresh after installation:
After applying the instructions below:
How to achieve that
Import your data from Google Chrome
Close Google Chrome. Open Firefox. Select “File” from the menu bar. Choose “Import From Another Browser…” If you see more than one browser in the list, choose Chrome. Click “Continue” twice. Enter your password. Click “Done,” and voilà, your data from Google Chrome is in Firefox. You’ll find your bookmarks in Bookmarks → Bookmark Toolbar → From Google Chrome.
Set your preferences
If you’re like me, you’ll want to turn off “Check your spelling as you type.”
I don’t know about you, but I like to save files directly to “Desktop” instead of “Downloads.” No matter what your download preferences are, this is where you can express them.
Search “pdf” and change the default action related to “Portable Document Format (PDF)” from “Save File” to “Open in Firefox.”
New Windows and Tabs
Change “Firefox Home (Default)” to “Blank Page.” Less is more in this context.
Default Search Engine
Change “Google” to “DuckDuckGo”—the search engine that doesn’t track you.
Relax, it’s not as huge a change as you may think. Google will still be at your fingertips: Start your search query with “!g” (like “!g greg wolanski”), and Firefox will show you search results from Google.
Turn off “Provide search suggestions” if you’re not 100% sure that they’re essential to you.
Remove every search engine except DuckDuckGo.
Privacy & Security
Do Not Track
Change “Only when Firefox is set to block known trackers” to “Always.”
Login and Passwords
Consider turning off “Ask to save logins and passwords for websites” and using 1Password instead.
Firefox Data Collection and Use
Turn off “Allow Firefox to send technical and interaction data to Mozilla.”
Sign in to Firefox Sync even if you use only one computer. You’ll thank yourself when you’re forced to change computers. Let’s face it: Configuring web browsers isn’t fun. Firefox Sync can help you avoid doing it again.
Customize the toolbar
Right–click the toolbar and choose “Customize Toolbar…”
Remove “Home,” “Library,” “Sidebar,” “Firefox Account,” and “Flexible Space” from the toolbar. You can do so by dragging the icons into the grid of items below.
It’s up to you, but I prefer my computer in dark mode. If you do as well, set the theme to “Dark.”
Set the density to “Compact.”
If you use an Apple computer with a touch bar, remove all items from the touch bar to prevent yourself from accidentally going back in your browser history.
You might want to install:
Now, you’re ready to set Firefox as your default browser. Go to “Preferences” and click “Make Default…” Enjoy! :)
See also: Migrate to Fastmail from Gmail