Profiles are one of the best kept secrets around
regarding Mozilla Firefox (my browser of choice).
In the role of web site designer, I find it useful
to have Firefox set up with various Extensions
for helping test compliance, keep track of Google
Adsense earnings, checking PageRank and Alexa
However, when I am simply surfing the internet,
I don't want to be weighed down by all these tools,
cluttering up my status and toolbars. I like a
slick, simple browser that looks good and works
Fortunately, I am able to have both of these
scenarios in Firefox, through the wonder of Profiles.
How do Firefox Profiles work?
Firefox allows multiple users to set up the browser
to suit their own specific needs and tastes, from
Themes and Extensions to Bookmarks and Home Page.
Upon startup of Firefox, you are able to choose
which user profile you would like to use.
So, you can now have a profile for your web development
needs, one for your personal surfing, and even
one for the kids (allowing you to increase Firefox's
Each profile is independent of the others, so
it's like having a new installation for each user.
How do I activate Firefox Profiles?
1. Firstly, find the Firefox shortcut on your
desktop (or create one from the .exe file).
2. Right-click it, and select properties.
3. Lastly, in the Target box, add ' -p' without
the apostrophes to the end of the target line
(so that it reads something like 'C:\Program Files\Mozilla\Firefox\firefox.exe
-p'), and click OK.
Now when you start Firefox through this shortcut
you will be prompted with the Profiles Manager
box (as long as you do not already have an instance
of Firefox open). It's all self-explanatory from
For faster start-up, I advise that you keep two
shortcuts on your desktop - one to load up Firefox
as normal, and this new one to execute only when
you want to change profile.
About the author:
Rob Barrett is a professional web designer based
in Dorset, England.
To read more free articles on Web Design and Mozilla
Firefox & Thunderbird, visit: http://articles.rob-barrett.com
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