How to Make a Firefox 3 Theme for Firefox 4

Dennis Faas's picture

Firefox 4 was released to the public just a few days ago, and like many, I was quick to jump on this most marvelous upgrade.

Firefox 4 is definitely faster than 3, and it surely uses less memory. However, the layout has been driving me absolutely nuts for the last few days.

Wanted: Firefox 3 Theme for Firefox 4

Call me old fashioned, but I really, really, *really* liked the button layout of Firefox 3 much better than 4. The home page and refresh buttons, for example, have been moved and things are much more condensed. I also didn't care for the new color scheme.

By the end of the day, I was ready to pull out my hair because I'm accustomed to surfing the web and flicking back and forth between pages at the speed of light, but Firefox 4's layout changed that.

How to Make Firefox 4 Look Like Firefox 3

Last night, I did some research and found a list of things you can do to make Firefox 4 look more like 3, and it involves a few things, namely:

  • Swapping out the new orange Firefox menu for the old Menu Toolbar (File, Edit, View, History, Bookmarks, etc)
  • Using a Firefox addon to get the icons and color scheme back to Firefox 3
  • Adjusting the layout / moving buttons of Firefox 4 to look like Firefox 3

Steps to Make a Firefox 3 Theme using Firefox 4

First, get the old Firefox 3 menu back: click the orange Firefox menu (top left) -> Options -> Menu Bar (check mark). To get the orange menu back (if you want it), click View -> Toolbars -> Menu Bar (uncheck).

The next step is what made things look a bit more familiar. You'll need to surf over to Mozilla's Addon  page for Firefox. I found an addon called Firefox 3 theme for Firefox 4 made by Jeremy Morton. I liked it so much, I contributed $5 for his work, though it's not mandatory. To get this addon installed, simply click the green Add to Firefox button after you've surfed over to Jeremy's addon page. You'll have to restart Firefox after this, so bookmark this page and then come back.

The last step involves moving the buttons around and the picture below illustrates everything described.

To move your Firefox buttons, click View -> Toolbars -> Customize. A new "Customize Toolbar" window will appear. Ignore the new Customize Toolbar window for the time being and look at the top of your browser (where your home, back, forward buttons are). Now, take your mouse over top of the Home button and left click (and hold), then drag it over to the left and drop it where it normally goes, and release.

Keep moving around your buttons until you get all your buttons looking like the one below. Click the picture below to make it bigger.

If you want even bigger icons, you'll need to select Show: Icons and Text from the Customize Toolbar window.

Don't Forget: Only Roboform Version 7 Works with Firefox 4

If you've moved over from Firefox 3 to Firefox 4, you may need to upgrade some of your addons. Roboform (Version 6), for example, is not compatible with Firefox 4. The only way to get it working with Firefox 4 is to upgrade to Roboform Desktop 7. I mentioned this in a previous article.

Why use Roboform with Firefox or Internet Explorer?

In short, Roboform is an indispensible tool for securely remembering website passwords, filling forms, and is a *huge* time saver. Firefox and IE both have a password manager built in to the browser but Roboform has them beat hands down, with way more features. Note that Roboform works with both Internet Explorer (IE) and Firefox.

Without Roboform I wouldn't use Firefox because almost every web site I visit requires a password. Thus, I opted to upgrade to Roboform Desktop 7, which is compatible with Firefox 4 for a one-time fee of $29.99. Keep this in mind before you upgrade to Firefox 4.

Download / Upgrade to Roboform Version 7

Note that you can help support Infopackets by ordering Roboform Version 7 through our site. If you haven't yet tried Roboform, you don't know what you're missing -- I've been using it since 2003. You can download your free trial of RoboForm here.

Special Note regarding Roboform Version 7 Payment: Note that the Roboform order page defaults to a Roboform Everywhere 7 license, which costs $19 annually. The Everywhere version is different than the Roboform Desktop 7 because it stores passwords remotely on a secure web server and thus makes Roboform 7 accessible anywhere. Most folks don't need to use Roboform from multiple locations, so the local version will do. As such, the cost is priced at a one-time fee of $29 instead of a $19 annual fee. Click here to see a screen capture to see how to get this license from the purchase page. This took me a while to figure out, so hopefully I've saved you the hassle. ;-)

If you found this tutorial useful please pass it on to friends.


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