#322 Are You In Control? (of Your Web Browser Tabs)

Does your browser do what you want it to? Besides maybe fetch you a cup of coffee and your favorite slippers. Even if you’ve never given it any thought a few quick tweaks could save you thousands of clicks over time.

If you haven’t yet, one thing you might want to do is change your browser’s start page. Set it to anything you like to start your day with. The weather, stocks, news, or even your own customized version of a mission control launch page.

StartPage

One of the nicest features of new browsers is the ability to use tabs for opening multiple websites at the same time.  If you’re not familiar with them yet, there are several ways to open a new browser tab and test them out.

Opening a New Tab

To open a new tab, you can click the small blank tab or if you’re a keyboard kind of person do a CTRL + T . (This works in all modern web browsers. Firefox, Chrome, etc. )

NewTab

Opening Links in a New Tab

Another great use for tabs is to open links from one page into a new tab.  Just right-click the link and pick the option to Open in New Tab.

Navigating Tabs

Now once you’ve got a bunch of different tabs open, how are you going to navigate between them? I think the best way is to use your keyboard.

One way is using the CTRL key plus the number of the tab you want to jump to. For example, CTRL + 3 will take me to my third tab.

If you just want to cycle through tab-by-tab you can do CTRL + TAB

Controlling Tab Behavior

If you’re still with me and want to see even more about what you can do with your browser tabs, you might want to peek into the tab settings for your browser.

Here’s where to look in Internet Explorer. Firefox, Chrome and others all have similar settings.

1. Click the Tools menu and then click Internet Options.

IE-TabSettings

2. On the General tab, find the Tabs section, then click the Settings button within that section.

IE-TabSettings2

From here you’ll see a collection of choices for managing your browser tabs. I don’t like having a bunch of different windows open so one of my favorites is to “Always open pop-ups in a new tab” and “Open links from other programs in: A new tab in the current window

What about you? Are you a fan of browser tabs? Why or why not? Leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.

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