I like using the keyboard as much as possible because it makes me feel more productive. In my opinion, moving your hand over to the mouse is unnecessary the majority of the time because most applications provide very convenient keyboard shortcuts. Today we will discuss the most useful Firefox keyboard shortcuts that will allow you to navigate the Internet faster, thus getting more work (or play) done.
I have decided to provide the keyboard shortcuts in an order which will allow you to start Firefox, navigate a couple of your favorite websites using multiple tabs, then close Firefox once you are done. The first step is to actually open Firefox as you normally would (with your mouse). Although there are plenty of ways to open applications without the use of a mouse, we are concentrating specifically on Firefox keyboard shortcuts.
Alt + D / Ctrl + L
Selects the location bar. This will allow you to go directly into the location bar (sometimes referred to as the address bar) and type in the website address that you wish to navigate to, such as http://www.maketecheasier.com.
CTRL + Enter (.com) / Shift + Enter (.net) / CTRL + Shift + Enter (.org)
Once at the location bar we are used to typing an entire URL, such as www.maketecheasier.com. These three shortcuts make life a bit easier because they will complete the .com, .net, or .org addresses for you. For example, typing maketecheasier in the location bar, then pressing CTRL + Enter will automatically complete the address www.maketecheasier.com and load the website.
ALT + Enter
Opens the address in a new tab. This will allow you to open up the website in a new tab opposed to interrupting the page that you are current viewing.
CTRL + R
Reloads the current page. Did your Internet connection get interrupted or is the website simply responding a bit slower than usual? Try pressing the ESC key to stop loading the page, then this shortcut will attempt to reload (or refresh) the page with hopefully better results.
Full screen. If the menu, toolbars and Windows (or Linux) taskbars are getting in the way, then toggling full screen mode is a great idea. Press it once to enable it, then press it again to disable it.
Once you have arrived at your favorite website and spotted a link that you would like to follow, the Tab key will help you jump over to and select that link, then pressing Enter is the equivalent of clicking on the link with the left mouse button.
CTRL + F
Find a specific word on the page. If know that there is a specific word on the page will take you directly to the paragraph or link that you are interested in reading, this shortcut will allow your to search for that word. Once you have started searching, use F3 or CTRL + G to find the next instance of that word, until you have found the correct one.
CTRL + T
Opens a new tab. If you are like me, you will be browsing multiple websites at once for multiple reasons. This shortcut will allow you to open a new tab, and combined with the location bar shortcut navigate to a different website.
CTRL + Tab
Selects the next tab. Now that you have probably opened up about five tabs to research a couple of different issues, you may need to navigate back and forth between the tabs. This shortcut allows you to move to the next tab to the right. However, you can actually navigate left and right by using CTRL + PG UP and CTRL + PG DN, respectively. Even better, you can CTRL + (1 to 8) to select a specific tab (as long as you have no more than 8 tabs open) since CTRL + 9 takes you directly to the last tab on the right.
ALT + Left Arrow / ALT + Right Arrow
Equivalent to clicking on the Back and Forward buttons to navigate within a website. Basically, once you have tabbed over to a link and explored it, you can use these shortcuts to go back to the page were arrived from or forward again.
CTRL + D
Bookmarks the current page. This shortcut will help you bookmark the page that you are currently view, which gives you the ability to access it in the future. If necessary, use CTRL + P to quickly print the current page and take it with you on the road.
ALT + Home
Guess what? This shortcut takes you back to your home page, which is the page that opens when you first launch Firefox. Maybe your home page is your favorite search engine or maybe it is your favorite technical website; this shortcut will take you there.
CTRL + W
Closes the current tab. Once you have read a couple of paragraphs and bookmarked the page, you may want to close the current tab by using this shortcut.
CTRL + Shift + T
Undo closing of a tab. Did you close the wrong tab by mistake. This shortcut will get it back for instantly and reloads the last page that was in that tab.
CTRL + Shift + DEL
Clears your private data. If you are like me and like keeping your browsing history, cache and cookies clean, then this shortcut will help you keep your Firefox sessions clean.
ALT + F4
Closes the window. This final shortcut will close the entire Firefox session once you have closed all of your tabs and are done browsing the Internet.
The above listed shortcut keys are some of the more useful one that you can use for everyday tasks. However, we know that you won’t be satisfied with an uncompleted list, that’s why we have prepared for you a Firefox shortcut keys cheatsheet where you can print out and reference to easily.
The cheatsheet covers all the shortcut keys for the various OS. It’s free of charge, download the Complete Firefox Shortcut Keys Guide now.
Photo credit: psd