Firefox: Open links and media in external browsers and players

Martin Brinkmann
Jul 26, 2012
Firefox, Firefox add-ons

Sometimes I want to open links that I have in front of me in the Firefox web browser in other programs. This can be Flash-based contents that I can't play in the web browser because I do not have the Flash plugin installed in it, or an Internet Radio stream that I want to play in my favorite music player AIMP3 and not the Fox itself.

Copying and pasting links works most of the time, but it means to tap on a few keys and to click a few times with the mouse to do so.

Enter Browser View Plus, an extension for the Firefox web browser that reduces the process to two clicks. Once you have installed the extension in Firefox and restarted the browser afterwards, you are ready to send links to web browsers and external programs.

The add-on detects installed browsers, media players and download managers automatically and adds all programs that it finds to the selection menu. While this works well for popular choices such as Chrome, Internet Explorer or the excellent VLC Player, you may notice that it does not detect all of your favorite programs automatically. That's however not an issue, as you can open the program's preferences to add those programs manually to it.

browser view plus

Here you can add up to five web browsers and up to five media players and download managers. A click on the browse button opens the file browser that you need to use to pick the program executable. Once done enter a menu text that you want to be listed in the selection menu when you invoke the add-on's feature, and you are ready to go and use the new program as well.

You are not limited in the selection of programs that you can add to the extension, and as long as they can process links, you should be fine doing so. It may require some tinkering though to find out which programs work and which do not.

When you are on a page with a link that you want to open in another browser or program, you simply right-click the link and select open with from the context menu. I have tested it with a handful of different types of links, YouTube video links, general web links, Dailymotion, Shoutcast radio links, and a selection of downloads and other media type links.

open link with


Browser View Plus is a handy extension for the Firefox web browser for users who sometimes or even often want to open links they see in the browser in other programs. The automatic integration of programs should get you started with the add-on right away, and there is enough room to add your own programs to the mix and hide existing ones you do not need.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Aron said on July 28, 2012 at 12:17 am

    For Youtube videos you can simply drag and drop the video url onto VLC to play the video externally. Without any plugins.

  2. cezi said on July 27, 2012 at 4:21 am

    If someone wants mostly forward links to browsers = much better is Open With addon = no 5 limit + can be manually added portable browsers .
    Also “not 5browsers”part of (former versions) B.V. P. had some conflicts…

  3. boris said on July 26, 2012 at 8:04 pm

    Excellent extension. Only problem is that it ads to my collection of 70 extensions. All of them useful, but they slow down Firefox quite a bit.

  4. Joe said on July 26, 2012 at 7:44 pm

    Could this be used to send a link to a networked HTPC running XBMC and initiating playback
    on my TV?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on July 26, 2012 at 8:00 pm

      I do not think that this is going to work. While I was able to select programs in shared folders, they would not open when selected. But for a definite answer you would have to try it yourself.

      1. Joe said on July 26, 2012 at 8:10 pm

        Thanks Martin, I’ll try this when I get home after work. Maybe with enough fiddling…….

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