Web browsing with Firefox

The powerful and secure Mozilla Firefox web browser is included in Ubuntu. Firefox features tabbed browsing, pop-up blocking, built-in search, and live bookmarks. Also supported are popular plug-ins such as Java, Flash, and RealPlayer.

Firefox can be launched by clicking ApplicationsInternetFirefox Web Browser.

Get addons for your Firefox

Addons extend Firefox's capabilities, such as automatically removing adverts or altering the behaviour of menus.

To view a list of currently-installed plugins in the Firefox Web Browser , open ApplicationsInternetFirefox Web Browser and click ToolsAdd-ons.

Quickly install common plugins

It is possible to install a whole set of commonly-used restricted plugins at once, by installing the Ubuntu restricted extras package.

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Restricted plugins are those which cannot be distributed with Ubuntu because of legal issues surrounding their use in some countries. Check that you are allowed to use this software before installing it. See the Ubuntu website for more information on restricted software.

  1. Open ApplicationsAdd/Remove....

  2. Select All Available Applications from the Show: drop down.

  3. Tick Ubuntu Restricted Extras.

  4. A warning appears which you must agree to to install, click Enable or Cancel.

  5. Click Apply Changes.

  6. Click Apply.

  7. You are asked for a password, then the plugin is downloaded.

As well as plugins and multimedia codecs, Java and a set of Windows fonts will be installed.

The following plugins and codecs are installed by the Ubuntu restricted extras package:

  • flashplugin-nonfree

  • gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly

  • gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly-multiverse

  • msttcorefonts

  • sun-java6-plugin

Audio and video plugins

Many different multimedia formats are used on the Internet and you may find that you are unable to play some audio and video files without installing an appropriate plugin.

Quicktime, Real, WMV and many others are available.

  1. Open ApplicationsAdd/Remove....

  2. Select All Available Applications from the Show: drop down.

  3. Tick the applications you require.

  4. A warning appears which you must agree to to install, click Enable or Cancel.

  5. Click Apply Changes.

  6. Click Apply.

  7. You are asked for a password, then the plugin is downloaded.

Flash multimedia plugin

  1. Open ApplicationsAdd/Remove....

  2. Select All Available Applications from the Show: drop down.

  3. Tick Macromedia Flash Player.

  4. A warning appears which you must agree to to install, click Enable or Cancel.

  5. Click Apply Changes.

  6. Click Apply.

  7. You are asked for a password, then the plugin is downloaded.

Java browser plugin

Some websites use small Java programs, which require a Java plugin to be installed in order to run.

  1. Open ApplicationsAdd/Remove....

  2. Select All Available Applications from the Show: drop down.

  3. Tick Sun Java 6.0 Plugin.

  4. A warning appears which you must agree to to install, click Enable or Cancel.

  5. Click Apply Changes.

  6. Click Apply.

  7. You are asked for a password, then the plugin is downloaded.

Changing the default font size

If you find that the size of text in Firefox is too small to read comfortably, you can increase the default font size.

  1. Press EditPreferences and select the Content tab

  2. Under Fonts & Colors, change the Size to a larger number (around 20 tends to be quite comfortable to read)

  3. Text on web pages should immediately look larger. Press Close

To temporarily increase the size of text on a web page, press ViewText SizeIncrease. Alternatively, hold down the Ctrl key and scroll down with your mouse's scroll wheel, or press Ctrl++.

To return the text to its normal size, press ViewText SizeNormal.