Phil Sim

Web, media, PR and… footy

I want Alt-TAB for Firefox

I use Alt-Tab ALOT. Not so much to cycle through apps but more so just to revert to the last window I had open. Well I used to user Alt-Tab alot anyway. My typical day generally saw me zipping between my browser and my word processor or spreadsheet, plus Lotus Notes or an Instant Messenger window.

However, now that I’m back using web-based productivity tools and everything is being lined up in Firefox, which quite regularly is the open application I have open, I’m missing my Alt-TAB functionality like crazy.

I know you can navigate up and down between tabs or even pick a particularly tab, but I’m used to just zipping and nipping between the window I have open and the last one I had opened.

Maybe, there’s an extension that does this and if so can somebody point me in the right direction! Or else can the Firefox crew please add this. Ctr-TAB to switch to last open tab would be fantastic!


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20 Responses

  1. CTRL-TAB does work, and cycles through tabs. I think there is an extension for it.

  2. Phil Sim says:

    Yeh but I don’t want to cycle through tabs if i have 12 tabs open thats just painful, i just want to go to the last tab i was in….

  3. Try the Tab Mix plus extension for Firefox

    Within that you can customize your tab cycling order, it will even display a “Tab List” like the list of icons which show up when you do alt-tab.

  4. John says:

    Tab Mix Plus is a nightmare of feature-glut, and was buggy last time I tried it. Check out lasttab. Unfortunately, neither work on Mac.

  5. Not exactly what you were looking for but I use Tab Catalog.

    It’s like expose for firefox.


  6. Hans A. Koch says:

    What about Ctrl 1, for the first tab, and Ctrl 2 for the second tab.

    Or what about Ctrl page up or Ctrl page down, maybe it’s a firefox extension i have….

  7. James says:

    You think you have it bad? My alt-tab has literally stopped working whilst firefox is focussed – I have no idea why and it really sucks.

  8. bbbobbbo says:

    install “tab mix plus” extension and then go to firefox options > tabs > tab mix plus options > events > tab features and then check the “Ctrl-Tab displays a tab list popup menu” checkbox.

    this will trigger usual “Alt-Tab” functionality

  9. bbbobbbo says:

    ^ when you press Ctrl-Tab in firefox, and trust me on this one, works perfectly for me.

  10. Ben Atkin says:

    I know what you’re talking about and I want the same feature.

    I can’t believe all of the commentors missed the point. On the other hand, I’m surprised Firefox doesn’t work this way. I would have thought that someone on the development team would have had the same issue.

    When you press Alt-Tab on Windows or Linux, it cycles through windows from the most recently active to the least recently active. You can switch to the last window you had open by simply pressing Alt-Tab. You don’t even have to look at the box that comes up.

    Phil and I would like to see the same thing for tabs.

    • Imran says:


      I’m not agree with you, please read carefully, my question, I want how to work ALT + TAB in the same windows, as a example, i open firefox and open many sites, i want how to go one windows to others.

      Note: i find through google, press- CTRL+1,2,3….


  11. ewonk says:

    I’m not sure if the OP missed it but … the solution was already posted.

    ctrl+tab works the same way that alt+tab works … I’ve got tab mix plus

    Nothing pops up at all, if you press ctrl+tab it’ll go to that last window, if you hold down the ctrl button and keep pressing tab over and over it’ll cycle to the previous window, then the next one before that, and so on. If you press them both ctrl+tab at the same time, it’ll just go back and forth between two windows.

    hurray for firefox!

  12. Nate says:

    Shift usually works to do anything backwards, so Ctrl+Shift+Tab will achieve what you want.

    I know that it’s three keys instead of two, but… it doesn’t require any add ons.


  13. Nico says:

    Tab Mix Plus works great for that purpose. I wished I had this kind of behavior for a long time – now I have it and I have no problems (crash etc.) with the latest version 0.3.7 and FF3.

  14. Nitin says:

    on my mac I have started using witch along with Tab killer for Firefox so I open every website in new browser (I hate this)

    I know this is not perfect solution but until something better comes out this is ok solution.

  15. John Kolbert says:

    Wow, this discussion has been carried out a LONG time. Anywyas, since its the first result in Google for what I was searching for, here’s the solution:

    Tab Mix Plu extension for FireFox:

    Works on PC and Mac. Turns ctrl+tab to cycle through the last used order, plus a gazillion other options you can set.

    Problem solved.

  16. brista says:

    Try this Ctrl-Tab add on. It works really well.

  17. Tom says:

    “bbbobbbo says:
    December 8, 2007 at 7:31 pm

    install “tab mix plus” extension and then go to firefox options > tabs > tab mix plus options > events > tab features and then check the “Ctrl-Tab displays a tab list popup menu” checkbox.

    this will trigger usual “Alt-Tab” functionality”

    Thank you!!

  18. Rajesh Iyer says:

    No need for any addons, just install FF 3.6, it works like a charm

  19. Dan Kirshner says:

    None of these do what the OP (and I) want: have Firefox tab-windows show up as separate windows when you hit “alt-tab” (Windows 7). For example, each MS Word and MS Excel file shows up as a separate Window when I hit alt-tab. But there’s always only one Firefox, no matter how many tabs/URLs within Firefox. Nothing in Tab Mix Plus alters this behavior, as far as I can tell.

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