...making Linux just a little more fun!
By Raj Shekhar
The developers of Firebird started out with the aim of creating a browser to provide an efficient (speedy, easy to use, useful) web access. According to the Mozilla Firebird 1.0 Development Charter:
The goal was, and is not to have more or less features than any other client (Mozilla included) but to have the right set of features to let people get their jobs done.From what I see, I must congratulate the developers on a job very well done.
After downloading the RPM, you can install it from the command prompt
rpm -ivh <package-name>
If you had installed Mozilla or Galeon earlier, you should have no dependency problems. Otherwise, you may have to search, download and install other packages too to solve the dependency problems. Again the best places to find the packages are rpmseek, Rpmfind.Net and Rpm pbone.
If you installed Firebird using the RPM package provided by Dag
Wieers, then you can launch Firebird by giving the command
mozilla-firebird. If you installed using the package provded by
some other repository, type
rpm -ql <package-name>|grep -i
/usr/bin. That will provide you the command to launch Firebird.
You can get Firebird from the Mozilla Firebird download page. At the time of writing, the website recommends to install Mozilla Firebird 0.7. There are downloads available for GTK (9.1 MB) and GTK2 and XFT (8.6 MB). Read the How To Install section to learn more on installation.
I will give a brief outline of the installation process. After you
have downloaded the appropiate tarball from the above mentioned links,
root. Unzip the files into the directory
`/usr/lib/'. Next, issue the command
chown -c -r
In case you unzipped the tarball into a different directory, remember to substitute the proper name of the directory. That's all to the install process. To launch your brand new browser, issue the command
However, if you want to make it your default browser in GNOME and want to avoid the hassle of typing the full path every time, see the next section.
#!/bin/sh /usr/lib/mozilla-firebird/MozillaFirebird -remote "openURL($@, new-tab)" || exec /usr/lib/mozilla-firebird/MozillaFirebird "$@";
chmod a+x /usr/bin/firebird-remoteto assign everyone the permission to execute the script. That is all the work required by you as root.
In case you are wondering what this shell-script does, here is a brief explanation. When Firebird is invoked with the `-remote' argument, it does not open a window, but instead connects to and controls an already-existing process. The argument `openURL (URL, new-tab)' creates a new tab displaying the specified document. If you would rather have it open a new window, use `openURL (URL, new-window)' instead. The page remote control of unix mozilla has more explanation about this. Thie above script first checks if we already have a Firebird running and displays the page in a new tab. If it does not find one, it creates a new process and displays the page in it.
Next, if you wnat to make Firebird your default browser in GNOME, you have to edit the file `~/.gnome/Gnome'. You will find it contains a directive
[URL Handlers] http-show=nautilus "%s" https-show=nautilus "%s" : [ other non-interesting suff ] :
[URL Handlers] http-show=firebird-remote "%s" https-show=firebird-remote "%s" ftp-show=firebird-remote "%s" : [leave this portion unchanged] :
Firebird stops annoying popup windows dead in their tracks. This is a good example of a good thing implemented in a very non-intrusive manner. When it blocks a popup window, it displays an icon in the status bar. Clicking this icon shows a breakdown of the popup that Firebird stopped when loading the current page. You can then allow some or all of the popup windows to be shown.
Quite a few people think Free Software means an ugly user interface. Firebird is aesthetically designed, with nice icons and colors. If you are not happy with the default look-and-feel, checkout the themes collection on display. Some themes simply change the colors of Mozilla Firebird, others can change every piece of the browser appearance. I have switched from the default theme to the LittleFirebird theme, which reduces screen-space usage.
Firebird allows enhancing of the basic browser by use of extensions. If there a particular feature which you think Firebird lacks, check out the extensions available. In all probability, you will find what you need there.
target="_blank"or the illegal
target="_new"properties.) you can tweak your settings to do this. In the address bar, if you type
about:config, it takes you to the browser's settings page. Use the `Filter' to find the string
browser.block.target_new_window, right click on it and
Modifythe value to
There are more tips on the Tips & Trick page.
This document was generated on December, 4 2003 using texi2html
I work for Yahoo! Bangalore (and I think it is the best place to work
:-) ) as an Operations Engineer.
I work for Yahoo! Bangalore (and I think it is the best place to work :-) ) as an Operations Engineer.