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All-in-One Sidebar for Firefox review

While going through the best Firefox add-ons list here on ComTek4u I noticed that I missed to review some of them. The first add-on that caught my eye was All-in-One Sidebar for Firefox, a browser extension that improves the sidebar in the Firefox browser in several ways.

Reason enough to review it. As you may know, Firefox is one of the few modern browsers that is still supporting sidebars. While the feature is not really that advertised by Mozilla, you can display the history or bookmarks as a sidebar in the browser.

The easiest way to do so is to press Ctrl+h or Ctrl+b on the keyboard to display it, but you can also add an icon to one of the toolbars to toggle it this way.

All-in-One Sidebar extends the Firefox sidebar by adding new sidebars to it. Instead of displaying only the bookmarks and downloads, it adds options to display the add-ons manager, page info and error console in the sidebar as well.

It displays a small toolbar on the left side of the browser window by default. You can remove it completely if you are not interested in a permanent toolbar there, or customize it instead so that it displays exactly how you want it to.

firefox all-in-one sidebar

  • Display Icons, Icons and Text or only Text.
  • Use small icons.
  • Flexible buttons
  • Where to display the panel bar.

What is interesting here is the customize link. It opens Firefox's customization interface which you can use to drop any icon the browser makes available to the sidebar panel.

So, if you want the private browsing icon there, you can place it here to invoke its functionality with a click right away.

If you open the options the add-on makes available for the first time, you will notice how powerful it is. First thing you may want to do is click on settings to enable the advanced mode to display all preferences in the interface.

all-in-one sidebar options

It makes available four preference icons which are further divided into tabs. Here is a quick overview of what each group allows you to configure:

  • General allows you to change the appearance of the sidebar, whether it is displayed on the left or right side of Firefox, the width, its behavior when it is loaded and in full screen, how the sidebar is toggled,  and whether you want it to be displayed automatically and as a thin version.
  • Panels define what a click on a panel icon, e.g. downloads, does.
  • Menus defines the locations the All-in-One Sidebar icon and link is displayed in.
  • Shortcuts enables you to change or add keyboard shortcuts.

Incompatibility

All-in-One Sidebar is currently incompatible with beta versions of Firefox 31 and newer. The author has yet to upload a version that corrects the issue.

To get it to work in Firefox 31 and newer, it is required that you modify a single file inside the All-in-One Sidebar xpi file that you find in the extensions folder of the Firefox profile you use.

Open the file aios.xul and make the following changes to it:

  • Replace downloads.tooltip with downloads.label
  • Replace bookmarksButton.tooltip with bookmarksButton.label
  • Replace historyButton.tooltip with historyButton.label

You need to extract the xpi file using a zip software such as 7-Zip or Bandizip, and pack it again after the operation. Make sure it is listed as a xpi file in the end.

I have uploaded a modified version to our server for your convenience: aios-modified.zip (141 downloads)

Verdict

Adding links, icons and information to Firefox's sidebar improves what you can do with the browser and highlights once again that Firefox is the most customizable browser out there right now.

This article was first seen on ComTek's "TekBits" Technology News

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