Tab Mix Plus WebExtension Development Build is out
The author of the popular Firefox add-on Tab Mix Plus released the first version of the upcoming WebExtensions-based version of Tab Mix Plus yesterday.
The extension is available under a new URL on the Mozilla Add-ons Store to separate the classic add-on from the new.
The extension is a complete rewrite of the legacy add-on using the new WebExtensions system that Firefox supports. Mozilla dropped support for the classic add-on system in Firefox 57 Stable.
Tab Mix Plus WebExtension first look
The only functionality that the first development build of the Tab Mix Plus WebExtension offers is the Links functionality. You can use it to control links and link opening behavior only.
It is required to modify several preferences on about:config for much of the functionality provided as WebExtensions cannot modify existing Firefox preferences anymore.
The options of the extension list five Firefox preferences that users are asked to modify to unlock all available options.
Once done, the following options are provided:
- Open links that open in a new window in: new tab, new window, current tab.
- Use separate preference for links from other applications.
- Open tabs with middle-clicks.
- Start downloads with Alt-Click.
- Prevent blank tabs when downloaded files.
- Force to open in new tab: all links, links to other sites.
- Open links with a target attribute in current tab.
- Open links with target to existing frame in the current tab.
Single window mode is not implemented yet. The WebExtension lacks support for events, sessions, mouse, display and menu functionality.
The release is an early development build and users of Tab Mix Plus should not get their hopes up just yet as it lacks pretty much all the functionality of the legacy add-on.
The author of Tab Mix Plus is held back by missing WebExtensions APIs. Many features of the legacy version of Tab Mix Plus are simply not supported by WebExtension APIs.
Still, the release of the WebExtensions-based version of Tab Mix Plus is a sign of life. While it is uncertain whether the WebExtensions version of Tab Mix Plus will support all the functionality of the legacy add-on, it appears that the developer of the extension will release a stable WebExtensions version eventually.
Now You: Do you think that a near feature complete WebExtension-based version of Tab Mix Plus will be released in the future?