Disable Firefox's Command-Arrows page jump shortcuts

Jan 23, '09 07:30:02AM

Contributed by: palahala

Within some online text editors, such as TinyMCE, Firefox (on a MacBook) will handle Command-Left Arrow as 'go back one page' rather than 'go to the start of the current line.' Likewise, Command-Right Arrow will take you forward a page, but if there's not a page to go forward to, this often results in moving the cursor to the end of the current line after all.

To see this in action, go here, and from that page, go to Examples and then to Documentation. Now, go back one page. On the Examples page, change some text and hit Command-Left Arrow while the cursor is still within the editor. Firefox will take you back another page, losing any changes you made. If you try the same thing in Safari, it would simply move the cursor to the start of the current line. Likewise, for Command-Right Arrow, Firefox takes you forward to Documentation, where Safari would move the cursor to the end of the current line.

The solution is simple -- use the keyconfig add-on. After installing keyconfig, go to Tools » Keyconfig, click on the "Back : Command-Left Arrow" entry, then click the Disable button. Next, select the "Forward : Command-Right Arrow" entry and click Disable. That's all. To navigate from page to page, use Command-[ and Command-].

While we're at the subject, if you don't want Delete/Backspace to take you the previous page when your cursor happens to be outside any textbox, see this hint. You could probably accomplish the same result by using keyconfig by disable the "Back : Backspace" shortcut.

[robg adds: When I tested this hint in Firefox 3.0.5, the modified text in the TinyMCE editor showed up, even after going forward or back away from the page. If you're interested in learning more about keyconfig, this hint explains in a bit more depth about how to use it to set up your own keyboard shortcuts for commands that don't have menu item entries.]

Comments (16)

Mac OS X Hints