Image of the glider from the Game of Life by John Conway
Skip to content

Firefox 2 Backspace

In case you are unaware, or you were caught with your pants down, Firefox 2 has changed the preference to how the backspace key acts. By default in 1.5.0.* or earlier, the backspace key used to take you back/forward through pages. Now, it acts as PGUP/PGDN. This seem a little counter intuitive to me. Why would a key with the work 'back' in it, go up or down?

At any event, luckily, this can be changed fairly easily. Pull up about:config in your address bar, and change browser.backspace_action from '1' to '0'. Any other number will have no behavior when pressed.

Hope this helps.

{ 8 } Comments

  1. eggdrunk | November 8, 2006 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

    It works! Thanks a lot for this.

  2. InspirationDate | November 9, 2006 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    You're a lifesaver.

  3. Ralph | November 9, 2006 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    thanks for that hint! I prefer the old backspace 🙂

  4. Loffe | November 17, 2006 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    Thank you. This is an easy fix if you know where to look. Now I can go back again 😀

  5. Nicolas Raoul | November 17, 2006 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

    Thanks a lot ! I can't fathom why they would change this key's behaviour... I mean, the PgUp/PgDn keys are on the keyboard for something, is it too easy ?

  6. reversial | November 29, 2006 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    i thought it was just me 🙂
    and thanks for the fix

  7. Michael | May 5, 2007 at 10:52 pm | Permalink

    Fast forward: Firefox2 has been out a while, and it seems the default of the backspace is once again to do a "back" (ie, alt+left). Or perhaps my old ff 1.5 settings override the 2.0 defaults, I'm not sure.

    Personally, I don't care for this "feature": so, I was glad to find this entry to reset it back to "page up". Personally, I don't want every key on my keyboard to do some mystical type of navigation. I'm a 100% keyboard user (a la unix, even on windows) and keep finding myself going "back" when I really want a *backspace*...! (Eg, tabbing through form fields, backspacing to delete, then between fields do an inadvertant backspace.. whoops! everything's gone...)

    Anyway, I'm glad to set the backspace key to "page up", just to prevent "back"ing up unintentionally....

  8. Aaron | May 6, 2007 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Michael- However, when one behavior works a certain way, for quite some time, and then the developers change it, it brings inconsistency to the product. If the change improves the product, then that's ok, but if not, as is the case with the backspace key, then it shouldn't be changed.

{ 1 } Trackback

  1. Backspace no Firefox 2.0 » | November 20, 2006 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    [...] Encontrei um blog tratando do assunto e também a documentação oficial, pena que ambos em inglês. Então, lá vai minha versão tupiniquim: [...]

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared.