Even though I think IE 7 is a big step-up from its predecessor, I still prefer Firefox for its versatility, even on Windows Vista. But the fact is, while IE 7 looks like a native Vista application, Firefox doesn't quite fit in. The default Winstripe theme was fine on XP, but I think it looks out of place with Vista's new Aero UI.

Fortunately, we can fix that pretty easily and have it looking like this in no time...

Firefox on Vista

1) The first step is to skin the browser chrome. "Vista Firefox" is a work-in-progress theme that looks great already. Download and install it. Then, right-click the toolbar and select "Customize" to move the buttons around. You can arrange them like I have in the screenshot, or do what works best for you.

2) I prefer to keep my toolbar as uncluttered as possible, so I install the Stop-or-Reload Button extension. This combines the two buttons into a single one - Stop while a page is loading, and Reload after the page has loaded (since the Stop button would be greyed out at this point anyway). I place this combined button to the right of the address box, just like it appears in IE 7.

3) The IE folks had the right idea when they turned off the menu bar, in my opinion. I hardly ever use it in Firefox either, so I decided to hide it to keep things minimalistic. To do this, add the following line to your userChrome.css file:

#toolbar-menubar { display: none !important; }

However, unlike IE 7, Firefox doesn't automatically show the menu bar when you hit the Alt modifier key. So I installed the Compact Menu Blue extension, which allows you to place a button on your toolbar that expands out to display the File, Edit, View, and other menus. The blue globe you see to the right of the search box in my screenshot is the Compact Menu button.

And that's it. Firefox should now look much better on your Windows Vista setup. :)

Edit: Some of you wanted to know how to get the blue Google page. That's easy too. Just install the Stylish extension and get this user-style for Google.

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