Stop / Disable Going To Previous Page If Backspace Button Is Pressed In Firefox

December 15th, 2010

Easy Technique For Disabling Or Enabling Backspace Key As ‘Go Back’ Function In Mozilla Firefox

If you are running a Windows Operating System on your computer and using Mozilla Firefox, you must have noticed that the moment you press the backspace key on your keyboard while browsing a website, you are directed to the previous web page. The same thing happens if you hit the “Back” button in IE and Firefox browsers.

Again in Firefox, if your press “Shift+Backspace” keys together, you will go forward to the next web page. This happens because, in Mozilla Firefox, the “backspace” key on the keyboard is mapped to the “Back” function. In Windows OS, this helps in maintaining consistency with IE.

On the contrary, incase of Linux, Mozilla Firefox does not map your keyboard’s “backspace” key to its “Go Back” function in order to maintain better uniformity with other applications which are running on Linux. In this case, if you press “Backspace”, the web page scrolls up and if you press “Shift+Backspace” keys together, the web page scrolls down.

However, you may disable the backspace key from acting as a “Back” button while using Firefox browser in Windows Operating System. Windows OS users can disable or turn off the mapping of back function to the backspace key and Linux users can enable or turn on the backspace key by mapping it to the Back function by using the below mentioned Firefox preference.

  1. Within the Firefox Location Box, type in “about:config”. You will see a warning message on the screen. You need to just confirm to the message.
  2. Check for the preference name mentioned below:
  3. “browser.backspace_action”

  4. Once you locate it, change the value of “browser.backspace_action” to any of the following so as to reflect your preference on the behavior of the Backspace key.
  • “0” – If you press [Backspace], you will be taken one page back as in the Firefox’s session history. Pressing [Shift]+[Backspace] will take you one page forward (In Windows, this setting is present by default).
  • “1” – If you press [Backspace], the page/ document will scroll up. Pressing [Shift]+[Backspace] will make the page scroll down. Camino however doesn’t implement any action for value “1” (In all makes of Linux before 2006-12-07, this setting is present by default).

If you change the value of “browser.backspace_action” to any other integer, the backspace key will be simply unmapped from the Back function in Mozilla Firefox. In all makes of Linux after 2006-12-07, the value is “2” by default.

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