Those of you who browse local files (on your own computer, not on the internet) or those who enjoy the simplicity of editing an Internet file you're looking at and saving it locally as well, will miss this ability when you switch from Internet Explorer to Firefox. I will now tell you how to get it back.
Firefox has once again decided to do something completely different from what people are used to doing in Internet Explorer. You're probably getting tired of it, so am I. I wish they would knock it off. So here are the instructions to get back that ability to edit your web page in Notepad (or whatever) while you're browsing it.
In Internet Explorer, as you're working with a file locally, and say you want to edit it's HTML (it is after all your own local file), you can always use the View Page Source function to pull up the file in Notepad or whatever editor you've assigned to that function, modify the HTML and save it back to from where it came. For some bizarre reason, Firefox has not implemented this. However you can. It involves editing your configuration file, and changing one Boolean preference, and another text field. I'll tell you how.
You edit your Firefox configuration file, by simply typing in the URL (address bar) field
You will first get a message "This might void your warranty!" which is quite likely one of the stupidest things I've ever seen. Just click on the button that says "I'll be careful I promise", and next time you run across a Firefox programmer, tell them they're an idiot.
Now a page will come up, with tons and tons of preference settings. You want to use the filter by typing in
The items now displayed will only be those that include the alphabetic string "view"
Near the bottom of the list you will see one that reads
Right-click on this, and set it to True by selecting Toggle. You will now see it display True where it had previously said False.
This setting turns on the ability to specify an external Editor to use, whenever you select View Source.
Now we're going to tell it what external editor to use.
In that same about:config listing, you will see, probably on the very next line, the preference setting
It would be nice if when you right-click this, it would allow you to browse for it, but no.
("You want everything!" Yes I want everything, now give it to me.)
At any rate, you need to find the "real" path to your program. Most people who use Notepad will find it quickly in the Start menu quicklinks, but you might have to do Start > Search and then type in Notepad or Notepad.exe to find where it lives on your computer. You might find for example that it is living at
Now test it. From any webpage, select from your browser Menu, View > Page Source (Or Ctrl-U) and the page contents should open inside a Notepad file. You are now free to edit the HTML and save it, and then refresh your browser page, and you should see your changes immediately, just like IE does (without the need for the user to know all this junk).