Opening bookmarks in new tabs and reusing the current tab

Robert Bücheler rf.buecheler at
Sat Dec 9 09:58:48 UTC 2017

On Sat, Dec 9, 2017 at 12:58 AM, Yuri Khan <yuri.v.khan at> wrote:
> On Sat, Dec 9, 2017 at 1:16 PM, Robert Bücheler <rf.buecheler at>
> > What I understand that @Yuri is saying, is that there should be an
option to
> > switch the current workings of middle- and left- mouse buttons.
> Yes.
> > Currently, provided browser.tabs.loadBookmarksInTabs is true,
> > - middle-mouse button opens BM in new tab
> > - left-mouse button opens BM in current tab (except for pinned tabs)
> No. The behavior you described above is the default, i.e. when
> browser.tabs.loadBookmarksInTabs is false.

Sorry, you're right, my bad

> When true, both left and middle buttons open a new tab, which makes
> opening in the current tab a two-click operation.
> <subjective>
> Having two buttons do the same thing is redundant, and wasting a
> one-click gesture like that is annoying.
> </subjective>

true to a point, alas, if you have a mouse that does not feature a
middle-mouse button, then the loadBookmarksInTabs=true option will ensure
that the bookmark/link will open in a new tab and not in the current window
when you press the left-mouse button, and I believe that's what the
implementation was originally meant for.
But as I write this, I realize that the loadBookmarksInTabs could be used
as the trigger which would invert the workings of middle- and left- mouse
loadBookmarksInTabs does not really convey the idea to "load all Bookmarks
in a *new* Tab", but to load bookmarks in a tab instead of a window.
(although the config settings don't always convey their true meaning...)

> > and with an option (lets say for instance: middlemouse.SwitchWithLeft or
> > just Switch -- to provide the same feature for left-handers)
> > - left-mouse button opens BM in new tab
> > - middle-mouse button opens BM in current tab (except for pinned tabs)
> Yes, that’s the behavior I’m after.

...and it makes sense, and this was also pointed out in Bug 1397372
<> to use the setting
as a switch.

> Left-handedness does not enter the picture. I’m not going to claim the
> feature is needed in the name of accessibility, even if it would help
> further my position.

I believe that the mouse drivers provide left handed accessibility
themselves by internally switching the left-right buttons, so that's taken
care of and not needed to be mentioned any further.

To recap:

browser.tabs.loadBookmarksInTabs was introduced with Bug 658245
<> to enable laptop
users (and users with 2-button mice[sic]) to enable one-click method to
open bookmarks in new tabs.
Bugs 1397372 <> and
1416545 <> were opened
to request a change in the behavior addressing the 3-button-mouse where the
new pref disables the open bookmark in current tab when switching from
touchpad to 3-button mouse. While I could agree with :Dolske that
middle-click should always open in a new tab, having two buttons that do
the same makes less sense than switching middle- and left-click to still
provide the same options if a different mouse is plugged in, which is
customary in laptops.
Since the "enhancement" was designed for a "1-click" feature, the opposite
1-click feature was thus removed. Yes, the context menu is available to
open the bookmark (in the current tab), but the same is true
pre-enhancement to open the bookmark in a new tab.
I am in agreement with the bug reporters that the left-click / middle-click
should be switched if the pref is set, requesting the WONTFIX to be removed.
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