Advanced panel - Accessibility, browsing, network, updates, and other advanced settings in Firefox

Note: This article describes the Advanced panel in Firefox OptionsPreferences for Firefox version 55 and below. OptionsPreferences panels have been reorganized in current Firefox versions.

This article explains the settings available in the Advanced panel of the Firefox OptionsPreferences page. These are settings that aren't used very often, such as proxy settings and various other advanced settings that only some people need.

General tab

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Accessibility

  • Always use the cursor keys to navigate within pages: When this setting is enabled, Firefox will display a movable cursor in web pages, allowing you to select text with the keyboard. This mode is known as Caret Browsing and you can toggle this mode by pressing F7.
  • Search for text when Iyou start typing: When this setting is enabled, Firefox will find within the current web page what you type as you type it. While you are finding typed text in the page, the Find Toolbar will automatically display at the bottom of the window to show information about what you've found.
  • Warn meyou when websites try to redirect or reload the page: When this setting is enabled, Firefox will prevent websites from redirecting you to another page, or automatically reloading.

Browsing

  • Use autoscrolling: Autoscrolling is a useful feature which allows you to scroll the page by clicking the middle mouse button (usually the scroll wheel) and moving the mouse up or down. Some people find this annoying, so autoscrolling can be disabled with this setting.
  • Use smooth scrolling: Smooth scrolling can be very useful if you read a lot of long pages. Normally, when you press Page Down, the view jumps directly down one page. With smooth scrolling, it slides down smoothly, so you can see how much it scrolls. This makes it easier to resume reading from where you were before.
  • Use hardware acceleration when available: Firefox can use your computer's graphics processor to display some pages with video and animation. This makes Firefox faster since your computer's graphics processor is much better than your computer's main processor at displaying these types of things. This box is checked by default but the feature isn't available for all graphics processors. Firefox will enable it when possible. Read more about hardware acceleration.
    If you change this setting you must restart Firefox.
    To restart Firefox:
    1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and then click ExitQuit Close 29 .

      Click the Firefox menu Fx57Menu , then click Exit. Click the Firefox menu at the top of the screen, then click Quit Firefox.Click the Firefox menu Fx57Menu , then click Quit.

    2. Start Firefox the way you normally do.
  • Check my spelling as I typeCheck your spelling as you type: When this setting is enabled, Firefox will check your spelling and offer possible corrections as you type in web forms. Note that you may need to download a dictionary; to do so, right-clickpress Ctrl and click on any text field, enable spellchecking if necessary, and then use the provided Languages menu to download a dictionary.

Data Choices tab

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  • Enable Firefox Health Report: The Firefox Health Report (learn more) provides you with information about your browser’s performance and stability over time. This setting is enabled by default. Mozilla uses this data to provide you with meaningful comparisons and tips. Mozilla also aggregates the data that everyone shares to help improve Firefox.
  • Share additional data (i.e., Telemetry): Also enabling this setting will send anonymous data (learn more) to Mozilla about the real world performance of Firefox. This information will be used to make Firefox better.
  • Enable Crash Reporter: If Firefox crashes, the Mozilla Crash Reporter will appear, asking you if you want to report the crash to Mozilla. When this setting is enabled, the Tell Mozilla about this crash so they can fix it check box in the Mozilla Crash Reporter window will be checkmarked by default.
  • Allow Firefox to send backlogged crash reports on your behalf: If Firefox crashes, the Mozilla Crash Reporter will appear so that you can tell Mozilla about the crash. In some cases, there may be reports for earlier crashes that were never submitted. When you enable this setting, Firefox will automatically send those backlogged reports to Mozilla.

Network tab

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Connection

Your organization or Internet service provider may offer or require you to use a proxy, which acts as an intermediary between your computer and the Internet. Proxies are used to improve performance, filter requests, and hide your computer from the Internet to improve security. Proxies are often part of corporate firewalls. For more information on changing your Firefox connection settings to use a proxy, see Connection settings in Firefox.

Cached Web Content

Pages you view are normally stored in a special cache folder for quicker viewing the next time you visit the same page. You can specify the amount of disk space the cache can use here. You can also immediately clear the contents of the cache.

  • Clear Now: Immediately clears the current contents of the cache, freeing the disk space used by the cache.
  • Override automatic cache management: Checking this box allows you to specify the maximum size, in megabytes, of the cache on your computer.

Offline Web Content and User Data

  • Clear Now: Immediately clears data that is being saved by websites for use when you are offline.
  • Tell me when a website asks to store data for offline use: Allows websites to store data necessary to be used without an internet connection. If you have previously blocked a website from storing data for offline use and changed your mind, you can click the Exceptions… button. Select the site you want to stop blocking, and click Remove. To remove all websites in the list, click Remove All Sites.

Update tab

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Firefox updates

  • Automatically install updates (recommended: improved security): Firefox automatically downloads and installs found updates.
    • Warn me if this will disable any of my add-ons: If you wish to be prompted if the downloads will disable any installed add-ons, select that setting.
  • Check for updates, but let me choose whether to install them: Firefox lets you choose if you want to download and install updates. If you do not choose to do so, you can download them at a later time.
  • Never check for updates (not recommended: security risk): Firefox will not check for updates.
    Warning: If you select this setting, you will not receive critical security updates that may keep you safe online unless you frequently do a manual check for updates.
  • To review the history of updates that have been downloaded and installed, click Show Update History.
  • Use a background service to install updates: Firefox will use the Mozilla Maintenance Service when installing updates. This will remove the need to authorize Firefox to make changes to your computer through the User Account Control dialog in Windows 7 and Vista.
Note: You must be running Firefox as an administrator or as the user who originally installed Firefox to install Firefox updates.

Automatically update

  • Search Engines: Check this to receive automatic updates to your search engines.
Note: Firefox update options may be absent if updates are controlled by your Linux package manager.

Firefox updates

  • Automatically install updates (recommended: improved security): Firefox automatically downloads and installs found updates.
    • Warn me if this will disable any of my add-ons: If you wish to be prompted if the downloads will disable any installed add-ons, select that setting.
  • Check for updates, but let me choose whether to install them: Firefox lets you choose if you want to download and install updates. If you do not choose to do so, you can download them at a later time.
  • Never check for updates (not recommended: security risk): Firefox will not check for updates.
    Warning: If you select this setting, you will not receive critical security updates that may keep you safe online unless you frequently do a manual check for updates.
  • To review the history of updates that have been downloaded and installed, click Show Update History.
Note: You must be running Firefox as an admin or as the user who originally installed Firefox to install Firefox updates.
Note: You must be running Firefox as root or as the user who originally installed Firefox to install Firefox updates.

Automatically update

  • Search Engines: Check this to receive automatic updates to your search engines.

Certificates tab

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Certificates help perform encryption and decryption of connections to websites.

  • When a server requests my personal certificate: Some servers ask you to identify yourself with a personal certificate. In order to do so, they ask Firefox to generate one for you. When you visit the site in the future, Firefox will ask you for which certificate to use. If you wish to have Firefox automatically choose a certificate for you, select the Select one automatically setting.
    Note: A personal certificate can contain personally identifiable information, such as your name or address. It may therefore harm your privacy if you select the Select one automatically setting. If you do, you will not be alerted when a website request your personal certificate, and you may lose the ability to control who can access your personal information.
  • Query OCSP responder servers to confirm the current validity of certificates: Firefox may ask an OCSP (Online Certificate Status Protocol) server to confirm that a certificate is still valid. By default, Firefox validates a certificate if the certificate provides an OCSP server. You will most likely only need to change this if your Internet environment requires it.
  • View Certificates: Click this button to view stored certificates, import new certificates, and back up or delete old certificates in Firefox.
  • Security Devices: Security devices can encrypt and decrypt connections and store certificates and passwords. If you need to use a security device other than the one in Firefox, click the Security Devices button.

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