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Resize Your Firefox Browser Automatically

by eric on July 26th, 2006 in: Web Design

Need to test your site with different monitor resolutions? The Firefox Web Developer Extension allows you to simulate this by resizing your browser automatically.

Another cool tool in the Firefox Web Developer Toolbar is the Resize button, which lets you automatically resize your browser window to match common resolutions used on different monitors.

I test sites to see how they’ll look to visitors with resolution as low as 800×600. Since my main PC runs at 1920×1200, it’s easy to forget how things would look to users with lower resolutions. Rather than change display settings back and forth in the operating system, the Resize button instantly simulates other resolutions.

By default, the Firefox Web Developer toolbar’s resize feature is set only to 800×600, but you can easily add other resolutions:Resize your Firefox browser window

  1. Click on the Options button on the toolbar
  2. Choose Options (yes, again)
  3. Click Resize in the left column
  4. Use the Add button to enter new target resolutions.

Some resolutions I’ve added:

  • 1024×768
  • 1280×1024

Although some designers gripe that we should move away from designing for people who use 800×600 resolution, I’ve found that it’s quite common for people who want larger text on screen to just adjust the resolution in their operating system (like Windows) because that’s the only way they know how to increase text size.

Through browser education and more flexible operating systems, we may one day be able to move entirely to designing for 800×600, but in the meantime, it’s good to make sure users can still view your site without horizontal scrolling.

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