JavaScript and Skydiving

Blog / Two simple settings that make Firefox usable on OSX

Yep, it's kind of a click-bait title. Sorry about that. To make up for it, here's the information you're after, right up front:

gfx.compositor.glcontext.opaque TRUE
browser.tabs.20FpsThrobber TRUE

As suggested here. And don't forget to restart Firefox.

I've been growing more and more uncomfortable with how much I depend on Google on a day to day basis; and their announcement of plans to cripple ad-blockers was the last straw. Google appears to be trying to walk that back now, but for me at least, the damage is done. I'm working hard to make Firefox work as my go-to browser.

You'd think it would be an easy process... Copy over bookmarks, install a few extensions, and go, right?

Well, gmail works so poorly in Firefox (at least on OSX, at least on my machines -- I tested on two!) that it almost makes me want to believe that it's intentional, anti-competitive behavior. Could it be? Sure. Is it? I have no idea. Would I be surprised? Not at all.

So I did what you do in 2019 when things are crappy: I complained on Twitter about it. And unlike most of my other complaint tweets, I never thought I'd get any help from it. But I did!

Thanks, Random Firefox User.

I'm not actually using a scaled display (as I write this on my hackintosh), though I was originally using a scaled display on my Macbook Pro with its external monitor. It was happening for both. But I figured it was worth a shot and simple enough to revert if it didn't work out.

Since it's mentioned in the post they linked, I should mention that I'm not using a nightly build of Firefox (I'm currently on 67.0.2 in the stable channel). I also didn't read that entire (and very long!) thread. I did have to create the 20FpsThrobber setting, but that was easy enough.

If you're wondering how to change these settings, open up a Firefox tab and type about:config in its URL bar. Then search for these settings in the search field at the top of the tab body.

And with that, Firefox is now my go-to browser.