Switch To Firefox's Old Default Image Style - gHacks Tech News

Switch To Firefox's Old Default Image Style

If you have been running a recent version of the Firefox web browser on your computer you've probably noticed that the image viewer has changed considerably in recent time. A click on an image link in the browser displays the new image now centered on the screen with a black background. Veteran Firefox users know that the image previously was displayed on the regular browser background without being centered in the browser.

The new feature has seen heavy complaints from part of the Firefox user base. Users who did complain about it did not like the black background, and only to a lesser degree the centering of the image in the browser window. Some users noticed that the new style had issues displaying transparent images with a lot of alpha correctly in the browser. And while those may be minor issues, it is still not really clear why Mozilla did not add a switch, or an about:config parameter, to enable or disable the feature.

firefox image viewer centered black background

According to Bugzilla, the original request has been filed in 2007 to display images on a neutral background (and not white). Makes me wonder why dark gray or black has been selected, and not a neutral grayish background.

Especially the switching from a light-themed website to the black image background is something that a growing number of users feel is not pleasing to the eye.

Old Default Image Style is a Firefox add-on that returns the display of images to the way it has been in the browser. The images are again displayed on a white background in the upper left corner of the screen.

firefox original image viewer

Firefox users who like the centering of images can enable that option in the add-on preferences. Here they can also change the default white background to another color. The background color input field supports both hex color values as well as HTML colors (so red and #cecece both work).

Especially the ability to change the color of the background comes in quite handy for Firefox users who do not want images displayed on a dark background in the browser. The extension itself is restartless, and changes to the background color are immediately visible on "direct" image tabs in the browser.

We need your help

Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.

We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats or subscription fees.

If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:

Comments

  1. Zeus said on March 24, 2012 at 1:33 am
    Reply

    Thanks for the tip! This is actually one of my favorite features, but it’s always nice to know when things can be disabled.

  2. WebHybrid said on March 24, 2012 at 1:54 am
    Reply

    Another great tip. The black background did bother me, but I had no clue how it had shown up.

    Looks much better now with a custom gray.

  3. Transcontinental said on March 24, 2012 at 9:52 am
    Reply

    “Some users noticed that the new style had issues displaying transparent images with a lot of alpha correctly in the browser”
    1- I haven’t noticed this up to now, either because it is not systematic either because not met the event yet.
    2- The dark gray background was no problem here and centering image allowed me to remove a userstyle that performed that very same centering.
    A switch for both would have been welcomed, indeed.
    Perhaps I’ll install the add-on for reason (1), even if as most of us I guess installing an extension when only aiming to workaround is disturbing.

  4. bastik said on March 24, 2012 at 11:05 am
    Reply

    I noticed that images get displayed different since some time. I was not aware that it was related to Firefox. I saw this (image centered and dark background) with JavaScript or CSS before so I just assumed the sites would be using this technique.

    I like the change.

    Good to know that it can be controlled. Bad that Mozilla does not make it easy to do so. In fact I think there are many hidden treasures in about:config, but it’s unwise to temper with all values. Would be good if FF would be more open for configuration.

  5. fokka said on March 24, 2012 at 6:05 pm
    Reply

    thanks for the info, i’ve been wondering about the new style lately. however, i like the change, i also changed the backgroundcolor to black in the default windows foto viewer.

  6. xFrost said on March 24, 2012 at 9:51 pm
    Reply

    Thank you for this! I use the Feedly addon and the only problem with the new styling for me is that my Feedly button gets centered and overlays on the image.

    The Old Default Image Style addon fixes that issue and even provides the option to adjust the background color. Very nice!

  7. Ken Saunders said on March 25, 2012 at 12:57 am
    Reply

    I’ve been using ImageTweak for a long time now and it’s initial appeal to me was the ability to change the background color and center images. Now it has several other options (rotate, fill window, etc), so I’ve stuck with it. I use it more often with local files than on the web.

    I have a brief overview of it at the following.
    http://www.accessfirefox.org/ImageTweak.php

    My guides aren’t always as thorough as yours ( :) ), but the intended audience is different.

  8. smaragdus said on March 25, 2012 at 1:47 am
    Reply

    Mozilla will end up forcing users to install thousands of add-ons just to restore features that have been removed. Ridiculous.

  9. Ken Saunders said on March 25, 2012 at 2:03 am
    Reply

    Well, at least there are options unlike other browsers where you have to live with what is dictated to you.

  10. smaragdus said on March 25, 2012 at 2:17 am
    Reply

    There were options, but Mozilla development team removed the most useful (RSS icon from the URL Bar, the Status Bar, etc), leaving no option for the users to decide whether they need them or not. The GUI has also been ruined (mimicking Chrome is not a wise decision). The new versions with ridiculous numbering are released without much testing and therefore they teem with bugs and many plug-ins become incompatible (the add-on developers should virtually dedicate all their spare time to be able to keep up with this inundation of releases). These are some of the reasons that pushed me away from Firefox and forced me to switch to SeaMonkey (I have been using FF for years).

  11. Ken Saunders said on March 25, 2012 at 2:17 am
    Reply

    For what it’s worth, the following can be added as a userstyle or added to a userChrome.css file to get back the old image display behavior.

    @media not print {
    body {
    background-color: #FFFFFF !important;
    margin: 0 !important;
    }

    img {
    position: relative !important;
    margin: auto !important;
    top: 0 !important;
    right: 0 !important;
    bottom: 0 !important;
    left: 0 !important;
    }
    }

    1. Pedro Rosso said on May 26, 2012 at 10:37 am
      Reply

      Thanks for the information how to reconfigure. (added here below)

      But there is some kind of instruction lacking where to place it – what to do with it exactly.
      I guess these lines should be inserted into a style sheet file xxx.css , and there probably at the end?

      When checking here in Ubunto Linux for such a file for Firefox, I could not find something like this – at least not by my rapid search.

      Many thanks for helping me.

      Now for the comments and opinions:
      —————————————————
      I hate black background. It is computing like in the 80ies, when monitor technology required for doing so. Totally outdated in my opinion. And in general, such features should in my opinion be submitted to configuration options in about:config .

      My images .jpg are mainly text documents (photos or scanned), Whlle balck background might be a frequently preferred option for photo art, it is a horror for business environments with typical tasks like this. In addition, it violates the rule that the printer normally should print what is on the screen.

      It violates also the rule that the screen should only show something what is supplied for display. There might be images which due to size ratio re-formatting have black segments / e.g. left or right or both. If this is the case, I want to be able to know it.

      ====== copied from above, not modified =======
      ======================================

      Ken Saunders says:
      March 25, 2012 at 2:17 am

      For what it’s worth, the following can be added as a userstyle or added to a userChrome.css file to get back the old image display behavior.

      @media not print {
      body {
      background-color: #FFFFFF !important;
      margin: 0 !important;
      }

      img {
      position: relative !important;
      margin: auto !important;
      top: 0 !important;
      right: 0 !important;
      bottom: 0 !important;
      left: 0 !important;
      }
      }

  12. Ken Saunders said on March 25, 2012 at 2:25 am
    Reply

    Whether or not I agree with Mozilla’s decisions isn’t the point here because I may agree with you on some things, but my greater point earlier is that unlike with IE, Chrome, and Opera, if there’s something that’s changed, added, or removed, with Firefox, there’s more often than not a way to fix it.

    All of the UI issues that you mentioned can be fixed with add-ons and/or simple CSS.
    Add-ons are compatible by default now and add-on developers are notified well ahead of time about all of the upcoming changes to Firefox that may affect their add-ons so they have plenty of time to update their add-ons.

    As far as I’m aware, SeaMonkey also now follows the same rapid release schedule as Firefox, Thunderbird, etc.

    I understand your frustrations, I do, but again, at least with Firefox, there are options.

  13. smaragdus said on March 25, 2012 at 3:17 am
    Reply

    It would be easier of it was possible that the users have the option to choose which bars they want to see, like it was before. Why should I waste time to search add-ons in order to restore simple things that I like and use and that have been wiped out. For example Mozilla developers have motivated their decision to remove completely the RSS icon from URL bar with the results of a survey that showed that only 10% used and knew what RSS is. In my opinion this is ridiculous, why should power users be punished? Those who do not know what RSS means most probably would not notice the change, while those who have built their entire surfing around RSS would suffer a lot. About the GUI, those who like Chrome won’t begin to like Firefox because it resembles Chrome while those who have been using and recommending Firefox for years would become frustrated with the new GUI. The Mozilla team say that they want to provide more space for content, well, there is F11.

    About SeaMonkey, is seems that this browser is more thoroughly tested and that it does not follow this insane ‘Catch-up-with-Chrome’ game (the latest release of SeaMonkey is 2.8). It is not only the bare numbers, these version numbers do not represent the actual development and Chrome was the worst example to follow. My only problem with SeaMonkey is that not all developers of Firefox add-ons make these add-ons compatible with SeaMonkey.

    In my opinion Mozilla developer should have concentrated on optimizing the engine, the rendering, the general performance, giving the users the freedom to customize the interface to their own liking and needs. It is pointless to elaborate more upon my frustration with Firefox, I will not install the new releases because I do not like them and I am not willing to search for third party add-ons in order to recover destroyed functionality. Forums swarm with comments of unhappy and disappointed users but it seems that the Mozilla developers are deaf and blind.

    I have many favourite applications but not a favourite browser. In conclusion I would like to cite someone who exclaimed:

    ‘I dream of a browser that does not suck.’

    Further reading about the RSS and its removal from the URL bar:

    http://camendesign.com/blog/rss_is_dying

    http://forum.camendesign.com/rss_article

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.