Firefox 3 for the Mac

I tried Firefox 3 on Windows and I liked it there, but on the Mac? Bleah. It looks like a bad knockoff of Safari but without the attention to detail that signifies Apple products. A lot of the icons are ugly, and off by just a pixel here or there. You’d think one pixel wouldn’t make that much difference but it does. Plus I actually preferred the traditional Firefox 2 chrome to the Safari style brushed metal widgets.

Plus it’s perceptually much slower than Firefox 2. I’m a 20 WPM typist at best and I’m typing faster than Firefox can enter text into this form. The characters are several words behind where I’m typing about half the time.

Firefox 3 was supposed to only remember passwords after you’d successfully logged in, but on Mozilla’s own Add-Ons site, that’s not working. It asked me to remember a failed password.

Always Remember Password no longer works, but these instructions I found on the Web might:

Always remember password hack for Firefox 3

If you’re on Firefox 3 you can just edit your Firefox installation to get the “Always remember password feature” without having to run some JavaScript code on every page load:

  • Shutdown Firefox
  • Backup the file PATH_TO_YOUR_FIREFOX_INSTALLATION/components/nsLoginManager.js.
  • Edit PATH_TO_YOUR_FIREFOX_INSTALLATION/components/nsLoginManager.js with your favorite text editor and find the following lines:


                if (element && element.hasAttribute("autocomplete") &&
                    element.getAttribute("autocomplete").toLowerCase() == "off")
                    return true;

    On the GNU/Linux version of Firefox 3 Beta 5 this code is inside the private method _isAutocompleteDisabled, on the Windows version of Firefox 3 Beta 5 this code can be found inside the local helper function autocompleteDisabled which is part of the private method _onFormSubmit.

    To let Firefox password manager always remember passwords those “autocompleteDisabled”-methods have to always return the value false.

    All you have to do to achieve this is remove the lines above or comment them out like this:

    //            if (element && element.hasAttribute("autocomplete") &&
    //                element.getAttribute("autocomplete").toLowerCase() == "off")
    //                return true;
  • Save your changes and close the editor.
  • Restart Firefox – Firefox password manager should now always remember passwords ignoring the autocomplete=”off” attribute.

Plus Firefox still hasn’t learned some basic principles of the human interface guidelines, like “If a menu item brings up a dialog instead of taking immediate action, its label ends in …” or that icons do not change the left alignment of menu item labels:

Can I have Firefox 2 back please? There’s a theme that tries to make Firefox 3 look like Firefox 2, but why the hell do they want me to login to get it? Once I install this theme, Firefox 3 is better, but still not quite right. Some of the fonts are still a little off.

3 Responses to “Firefox 3 for the Mac”

  1. Firefox 3 for Mac is Ugly at Bad Assembly Says:

    […] I’ve been a big fan of Firefox since the very beginning but the look of FF3 for Mac is just unacceptable. Just look at that massive back button. Check out those upside down tabs. The browser doesn’t even display Google properly (note the overlaping of the buttons with the search form). The worst part is that FF3 for windows is much better looking. It’s almost as if Mozilla just settled on a half-hearted attempt to copy Safari. And I’m not the only one who feels this way. […]

  2. amin Says:

    no updated extensions, no way to backup, and half the themes dont have scroll bars. (mac osx leopard)

  3. ghee22 Says:

    I cannot find this file on OSX 10.4. I tried using Spotlight. What is the default installation location if you drag Firefox over to Applications?

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