Firefox 3.6 Tab Opening Behaviour

I just updated to Firefox 3.6, yay! It took me approx. 30 seconds before I wanted to stab myself because they’ve made the default tab opening behaviour so that when you middle click a link it opens in the tab next to the tab you’re viewing, rather than at the end of the tab bar.

This probably pleases a lot of people.. I know people with extensions to do that. But it drives me crazy. I know my new tabs are supposed to be at the end, because all my tabs are in a certain order, and most of them I never close…

Anyway, if you want your Firefox 3.6 tab opening behaviour to be the same as Firefox 3.5, do this:

  • Type about:config in the address bar
  • Close the warning about screwing up your install
  • Search for “browser.tabs.insertRelatedAfterCurrent”
  • Double click it to change it to “false”.

Voila! Your tabs are back to normal. No need to even restart.

10 thoughts on “Firefox 3.6 Tab Opening Behaviour”

  1. Genius! I was banging my head against the keyboard for a week now. That new behaviour was driving me crazy Thanks a million!!

  2. I cannot tell you how much I love you right now! I was about to pull my hair out or go back to the previous version… Now if only I can figure out how to make my bookmark window infinitely resizable like it was way back in FF 2.x

    (I use bookmarks a lot, and I used to squeeze them down til they were very narrow and a scroll bar would appear at the bottom — then I could move them over so I could still see them… now the window only goes part way down, and I can’t shift the bookmarks over to the left, so there’s this big empty white space to the left of my bookmarks, that doesn’t give me info.) Since I work on a laptop, space is at a premium… If someone could tell me how to do that and still keep a modern, secure browser, I’d be their slave forever! hehe…

    Anyway, thank you so much for helping me fix tabbing hell. That made me so annoyed. The last time I was this annoyed at FF, I downloaded Opera, but I hate that almost as much as IE. Why is it that FF seems to think we want things like Microsux IE? They keep making the product more like IE, meanwhile, IE’s finally figured out it needs to be more like FF… which it really does need to be… FF is doing what Netscape did when it was dying… ‘improving’ all the good stuff out of the program.

    Peace, Thank You!


  3. Absolutely brilliant! I have just spent the best part of two hours trying to figure out the problem. To whoever changed the default in the first place: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

  4. That’s amazing. Something else that has changed in FF 3.6 is that when you close a tab, FF selects the tab left-adjacent to it. FF 3.5 used to select the tab right-adjacent to it.

    Anyone know how to switch that back?

    I can’t even understand why anyone would even want this behavior. You open a page, you middle-click a bunch of links, then you step to the right tab, read, and close, hoping to move on to the next opened tab. instead you’re back to the parent tab – or, if you’ve already closed it – to an unrelated tab to the left. wtf?

  5. Thank you! Sometimes it even seemed like tabs would open in the middle if pages hadn’t loaded all the way.. so disorienting.

    In the about:config page, scroll down a few more to “browser.tabs.selectOwnerOnClose” and change it to false. Now when you close a tab, firefox will select the tab to the right.

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