An IT Professional’s Must Have Firefox and Chrome Add-ons

image The high  number of Browser add-ons we’ve covered here in the past few weeks ( from add-ons that add functionality to the Browser, to those that promise to provide additional security), has led to a number of readers asking essentially the same question. Which add-ons do I really need?

Not a surprising question really; with the huge number of Browser extensions available, it can be difficult for users to determine which ones to consider adding – the choices seem unlimited.

I could sit down and write an article on those Browser add-ons that I wouldn’t be without. But, let’s try something a little different this morning.

Regular reader Georg L., an IT Professional from Vienna, Austria, who’s experience ranges from the days of DOS to the present, has laid out a list of Browser extensions (for Firefox and Chrome), which he has installed to boost Browser security, and in some cases, to increase Browser functionality.

Firefox 3.6.8:

Adblock Plus 1.2.2

Better Privacy 1.48.3

BitDefender QuickScan 0.9.9.30

Flagfox 4.0.8

Flashblock 1.5.13

FoxyProxy Standard 2.21.4

Ghostery 2.3

GoogleSharing 0.19

HTTPS-Everywhere 0.2.2.

KeyScrambler 2.6.0.0.

NoScript 2.0.2.3

PDF Download 3.0.0.1

Perspectives 3.0.3

Qualys BrowserCheck 1.0.115.1

Search Engine Security  1.0.6

SkipScreen  0.5.7amo

Chrome 6.0.472.41

AdBlock 2.0.24

AntiAds 0.4.0

BitDefender QuickScan 0.9.9.34

ChromeFlags 1.4

FastestChrome – Browse Faster 3.1.2

FlashBlock 1.2.11.12

Ghostery 2.0.0

Google Analytics Opt-out 0.9.0

Google Dictionary 1.0.2

Mini Google Maps 1.0.2

Secbrowsing 1.7

SmoothScroll  0.6.1

Ultimate Google Docs Viewer 0.8.4.7

Wikipedia Companion 1.6.5

Not surprisingly, both Georg and I have installed essentially the same add-ons. Particularly those add-ons designed to increase Browser security.

Georg is an accomplished professional who contributes here regularly, most often at a private level, and I can safely say, this list of Browser add-ons will resonate with readers who recognize the need to elevate Browser security.

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20 Comments

Filed under Browser add-ons, Browser Plug-ins, Chrome, Don't Get Scammed, Don't Get Hacked, downloads, Firefox Add-ons, Freeware, Google Chrome, Internet Safety Tools, Safe Surfing, Software, Windows Tips and Tools

20 responses to “An IT Professional’s Must Have Firefox and Chrome Add-ons

  1. Bill,

    Thanks for these… I have experimenting with many of Chrome add-ons (extensions) and you actually saved me some work. Basically, if you are giving them a “thumbs up”, then their OK in my book, as well.

    Rick

  2. I confess to not using some of these tools because I’m not sure what they do or – more importantly – how they might change what I see or can do on a webpage. I understand Adblock’s impact, but something like flashblock…? Will it block a flash-rendered video I want to see? Is there even such a thing as a “flash-rendered video.”

    I guess I’m saying I need things spelled out (in small words please) before adding them to my browser.

    I’m also saying I’d rather risk malware than reduced functionality – which isn’t sensible, but there it is. :)

    • Hey Wendell,

      None of these add-ons reduces Browser functionality in the broadest sense. It’s true, that certain of these add-ons might require additional users interaction. For example, you mentioned FlashBlock which stops all flash driven videos, or applications, from running. However, you then have the choice of allowing any, or all, flash content on the page to run, by choosing to do so. While this may not suit your particular surfing style, FlashBlock definitely enhances Browser security.

      An additional step may be frustrating to some users, but that pales in significance compared to identity theft, or a malware infection that leads to the loss of valuable data.

      Clicking on the link of any Add-on will take you to the authors page, where things are spelled out (in small words). :)

      Bill

  3. Mal

    Hey Bill,

    I pretty much use all of the security enhancing addons mentioned. Noscript is absolutely essential in my opinion.

    I’m not much into browser enhancing addons, I like to keep things simple. However, that’s me, others do like them.

    Cheers

    • Hey Mal,

      Totally agree. If I was restricted to only one add-on, NoScript would be my hands down choice. It’s simply the most important add-on yet developed, in my view.

      Keeping things simply is always a winner, but there are enhancements I just couldn’t do without. Webmail Notifier is one that comes to mind – indispensable for me.

      Best,

      Bill

  4. Liam O' Moulain

    Thanks Bill, for this great list.

    I already use some of these add-ons but there are some here I’ll check out.

    Liam

  5. dar

    g’day All,
    -here are some more add-ons, netbook friendly[ which are features in Opera ]
    f2 & chrome: SpeedDial
    chrome: SwitchImages
    f2: Image Block
    cheers

  6. TeXaCo

    Hey Bill,

    Thanks for this article Bill, I have switched over to Chrome from Firefox and it’s a great collection of plugins. Some I had not heard of.

    Chrome still needs to get a few more useful plugins like firefox especially like NoScript.

    Tex

    • Hey TeX,

      Take a look at NotScripts The NoScript option for Chrome, which was released just a few days ago. I haven’t had a chance to test this, but it looks interesting.

      Best,

      Bill

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  8. Hey Bill,

    Been reading your blog for awhile and have it on RSS.

    Good lists, I’ve been a Firefox user for awhile but not up on all the Chrome extensions yet.

    I have a question about Flashblock vs Noscript, it seems redundant. I have tried Flashblock, it’s a fine program but found it too aggressive in that I had to click to allow the map of a flash based MMORPG I play…which is several times per login session. How likely is it a trusted site is going to serve up malicious Flash content? Do I really need both?

    Cheers,

    Eric

    PS. Web Of Trust should be on the list I think :)

    • Hey Eric,

      Flash *can* serve up malware, particularly in Flash based banner ads. I do understand why you find FlashBlock aggressive though. Your own sense of risk assessment, should be your guide here.

      As for trusted sites – on any given day, any “trusted” site can be compromised. Just today, it was reported that TecCrunch (Europe), is serving up malware. This is a site that has always been on my list of trusted sites.

      Noscript does in fact block both scripts and Flash content, which is why I no longer use FlashBlock, since, as you point, out running both together is redundant.

      Your point on WOT is well made. Personally, I wouldn’t connect to the Net without WOT up and running.

      Best,

      Bill

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  11. Marcus

    Hi Bill,

    Is the Flash cookie deletion option in Ghostery not as effectiv as BetterPrivacy?

    • Hey Marcus,

      I can’t give you a definitive answer. Both applications will delete Flash cookies as you know – but efficiency and effectiveness? I have to assume they are equal.

      Bill

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