Tweaking Portable Firefox For Maximum Usability

Recently Mozilla released Firefox 1.5.0.2 and from my experiences, it runs much much better than 1.5.0.1. I currently use the portable version of this build and it runs like a fox! Memory leaks are very minimal and it is secure like we expect Firefox to be.




The portable version of Firefox has a lot of customization options that many people are not aware of. My goal here is to walk you through how to customize Portable Firefox.

To Start:

  1. Open the directory PortableFirefox -> PortableFirefoxCode.
  2. Copy the file PortableFirefox.ini to the PortableFirefox directory.

Now the Customization:
Now we can get to making some of the changes to the INI file that we just copied over. Begin by opening up the PortableFirefox.ini in the PortableFirefox directory. There are quite a few entries that you can change, but many should not be altered (I only list the ones that new users should use, the other options should only be for advanced users). Here are some descriptions that will help you decide what to change:

  1. By default, AllowMultipleInstances=false which means that you can only have one version of Firefox running at a time. If you would like to run Portable Firefox at the same time as a normal Firefox installation, or if you would like to run multiple Portable Firefox’s side-by-side then change it to AllowMultipleInstances=true. This is particularly useful if you want to run Firefox 1.5 and Firefox 2.0 Alpha 1 at the same time.
  2. If your workplace or another computer is blocking the execution of the firefox.exe file then this might be a workaround (if you do not have any problems executing Firefox then ignore this entry). Go into the PortableFirefox -> firefox directory and rename the firefox.exe to another value. Then change the value in the INI file to FirefoxExecutable=XXX.ZZZ where XXX.ZZZ is what you renamed firefox.exe to.
  3. By default, DisableSplashScreen=false which means that when you start Portable Firefox a splash screen will be displayed every time that you start the program. However, this splash screen can be disabled by changing the value: DisableSplashScreen=true.

If you have multiple Portable Firefox installations then you can copy the PortableFirefox -> profile directory from one installation to another. This will transfer over all of your settings, bookmarks, extensions, stored passwords, and any other personalization that you have done to Firefox.

Overall, the customization and easy transferability is what is so nice with Portable Firefox. There are other settings that you can change in the INI file but other changes could cause Firefox not to run properly. Descriptions of these other features can be found in the PortableFirefox -> PortableFirefoxCode -> Readme.txt file. I hope this helps some people out there maximize the usability of Firefox!

Portable Firefox 1.5.0.2 Download
Portable Firefox 2.0 Alpha 1 Download
Portable Firefox 1.5 Homepage