Mozilla employee Alex Limi published an interesting article in March 2013 about an analysis that he conducted about several preferences of the Firefox web browser that were publicly available. Checkboxes that kill your product highlighted several issues that were caused by modifying preferences in the browser including some that rendered the browser unusable.
Limi's conclusion was that Mozilla needed to take a close look at the preferences currently listed in Firefox's settings dialog to decide on a per-preference basis whether it made sense to remove it from that dialog.
Lets take a look at the options that Limi mentioned in his analysis:
While changes to some of these preferences may have an effect on the browsing experience and usability, I'd prefer them to stay available in the browser. For me, it is like saying "our users can't be trusted with making decisions on their own, therefore we need to make decisions for them". While I never touched the SSL or TSL setting, I'd like other options to remain accessible in the browser. Lets take overriding cache management as an example. While it may slow down the browser, it also provides users with an option to prevent the browser from saving files to the cache. While there are other ways to achieve the same goal, running the browser in private browsing mode, using a RAM disk as the cache location or clearing the browser's history on exit, I think it is something that users should be able to decide on their own.
If you are using the latest Nightly version of the Firefox web browser, which is at version 23 right now, you may have noticed that Mozilla has started to remove some of the preferences mentioned above from the browser.
Take a look at the following preference screenshots and see if you can spot the settings that Mozilla removed in the browser.
Some of these options are still available on a per-site basis. You can right-click and select View Page Info, and there permissions to allow or block images for example.
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 (video ads) or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.