Firefox 3.0 Beta 1 – How to make Add-Ons play nice.

Mozilla has (finally) released Firefox 3.0 Beta 1. Any anyone who has installed it knows that virtually all of the add-ons won’t load. Or will they…..?

Turns out, you can hack many of the existing add-ons, allowing Firefox to install them without error, although I can safely say that many still won’t work, and those that do may exhibit some odd behaviour. CONTINUE AT YOUR OWN RISK!

First thing to do is hit the Mozilla Extensions page. Select your Add-On of choice. Now, right-click on ‘Install Now’ and choose ‘Save Link As’, pick a location (try to remember it, OK?) and click OK.

Now for the good part. All Firefox add-ons are zip files — just change the .XPI extension to .ZIP, and double-click to open in Windows explorer (or Winzip, or..whatever).

Extract the file ‘INSTALL.RDF” and open with a text editor (if you are prompted to convert to DOS text, choose ‘no’).

Look for this:

    <em:targetApplication>
      <Description>
        <em:id>{ec8030f7-c20a-464f-9b0e-13a3a9e97384}</em:id>
        <em:minVersion>1.5</em:minVersion>
        <em:maxVersion>2.0.0</em:maxVersion>
      </Description>
    </em:targetApplication>

Change  the maxVersion from 2.x.x (whatever it is) to 3.0.*

Save the file, add back in to the original ZIP (Yes, overwrite the original), and change the file extension back to ‘.XPI’.

In Firefox, choose FILE|OPEN FILE, navigate to and select your newly-hacked XPI. Then install as usual.

Which Add-Ons will work with this hack:

  • Greasemonkey
  • IE Tab
  • Mouse Gestures
  • Web Developement
  • GoogleBar (not the one from Google’s site, the pseudo-google bar
  • Resurrect Pages

What won’t:

  • Tab Mix Plus
  • Google Toolbar (the official one)

If you find any more that work/don’t, leave them in the comments.

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