Internet Explorer New Tab Page In Firefox

Martin Brinkmann
Jul 12, 2009
Updated • Feb 13, 2015
Firefox, Firefox add-ons

You are presented with several choices if you open a new blank tab page in Microsoft's Internet Explorer 8.

Internet Explorer users have the option to open recently opened websites, start an inPrivate session (that's the equivalent to Private Browsing in Firefox) or to use an accelerator.

The Firefox web browser on the other hand displays a blank page unless an add-on is installed that changes this.

One add-on that has been recently uploaded to the Mozilla website is New Tab Page. New Tab Page mimics what Internet Explorer displays on the browser's blank tabs. It offers three options in its current stage of development:

  • Display selected bookmarks
  • A Google search form
  • The option to start a Private Browsing session

You can select the websites that are displayed as bookmarks on every new tab page which is different from Internet Explorer 8 which displays tabs that had been recently open in the web browser.

The Google search form makes it easy to perform a Google search right away although that functionality is covered already either by using the Firefox address bar or a search form in one of the toolbars in the Internet browser.

The option to start a private browsing session is welcome although it is again possible to start one by simply using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl-Shift-P as well.

The add-on is currently in experimental stage which could mean that the developer has the intention to add new features to it. It would for example be nice to be able to select the elements that are displayed on that page. Some elements that could be made available are a list of recent downloads or pages that have been closed recently.

Update: The New Tab Page extension has been discontinued. New Tab JumpStart is a solid alternative with a similar functionality.

Many users find Firefox's native New Tab Page sufficient for their cause either. The browser displays popular sites and s search form on it when opened.


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  1. paulus said on July 12, 2009 at 1:49 pm

    Nice find martin on a what different note i have to wright to you that i really like the new Tab Mix Plus Beta For Firefox 3.5. This one really works with Firefox 3.5.. Like you most likely already now enhances Tab Mix Plus Firefox’s tab browsing capabilities. It includes such features as duplicating tabs, controlling tab focus, tab clicking options, undo closed tabs and windows, plus much more. It also includes a full-featured session manager with crash recovery that can save and restore combinations of opened tabs and windows. The direct link is

  2. Josh said on July 12, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    Thanks, Martin. personally, i find Firefox’s addon “newtabking” ( the most convenient new tab extension. It gives you a bar graph of your most visited websites (so unlike speed dial – you dont need to configure it manually). You also get a list of recently closed tab and application shortcuts. mighty neat. As for – privacy, they have a thing called “boss mode” which is display of “high class” sites like Harvard business :-).
    I’m a fan

    – J

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