Firefox Extensions

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Firefox Extensions

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The official documentation is at:

Third Party Extensions


Extensions allow programmers to add new features to Mozilla applications or allow existing features to be modified. Typically, extensions modify the “chrome�? of their target application—the user interface and the scripts that add functionalty to that interface. However, it is also possible for extensions to include compiled code in the form of XPCOM components.

Extension Technologies

The following technologies are used when writting Firefox extensions:

  • XUL (XML User-Interface Language). Used to define the onscreen layout of the UI and to attach scripts and style to the interface.
  • Javascript. The primary scripting language in Mozilla and the language in which most extensions are written.
  • DOM (Document Object Model). Used to manipulate XUL in real-time as well as any HTML documents loaded.
  • XPCOM/XPConnect. Mozilla packages together useful functions into XPCOM (Cross-Platform Component Object Model) components, which may then be accessed from external code, including Javascript via XPConnect. This allows the extension developers access the preferences database, the filesystem, and many other pieces of Mozilla technology.
  • CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). Used to style the interface and to attach XBL bindings to XUL documents.

More advanced extensions may require the following

  • XBL (XML Binding Language). Used to extend XUL, allowing the creation of new types of widgets and associated behaviors.
  • RDF (Resource Description Framework). Used as a data-storage format in some parts of Mozilla and in some extensions.

Alfresco's CIFS/SMB Extension

A Firefox extension for the 'Open Network Folder' icon in a space is available at

The extension named alfrescoext-0.91.xpi is not compatible with Firefox 3.5.5.