Reader Carol wrote about a problem she was having with Firefox 3:
Is there anyway I can get rid of the irritating history memory (of favorites/bookmarks) at the right hand side of the address bar in the new firefox 3.0. I know I can do it via getting rid of temp files etc. but it is long winded and , I just don’t want to have a list keep popping up at the side, even if they are MY favorites in MY favorites/bookmarks….I would like to have the choice of whether I want to see them all the time or not.
I wrote back to Carol with instructions tellingn her how to hide the bookmarks list and the history list in Firefox 3.
However, I also asked what she meant about "popping up"
Dear Terry ,
Thank you for your reply., but I have already tried what you suggest — it seems to be A NEW feature of Firefox that you cannot get rid of the history at the side of the address bar. Just to refresh you, in the address bar there is the address ( of course)then at the right side a star which is the new easy to bookmark the page facility and then to the right of the star ,the downward pointing arrow, which lists the history — it is this history which I cannot get rid of.
I just wondered if you could confirm that Firefox has in fact stopped people from getting rid of this history list — ( I think it is mainly history that is already bookmarked — Firefox seems to think that if it is in your favourites , why should you not want to list it — the problem is when other people use the computer . they too can see the list).
Just wondereing if you know any more about this or a way of getting rid of it.
The problem, or challenge (if you want the positive term) is that Firefox 3 has a new predictive tool for guessing at addresses that you type into the address bar.
The data that it uses to guess are the URLs that you have visited by typing them into into the address bar, the URLs that you have visited by clicking on web page links, and all the bookmarks you have (IE users – that’s what Firefox calls Favorites).
You can easily tell the visited links (typed and clicked) from the bookmarks — the bookmarks have gold starts near the right end.
This use of the bookmarks for matching is causing the most confusion — Firefox 3 actually does provide the mechanism for deleting the manually typed entries and those entries created by clickingon links.
My normal Firefox 3 privacy settings for the Clear Private Data dialog box ( Tools > Clear Private Data…) are shown in the image below:
The important one, for this purpose, is the Browsing History checkmark.
If all you want to clear is the Browsing History, without changing other items like Cookies, just uncheck the items you want to keep and check the ones you want to delete. Press the Clear Private Data Now button to clear your data.
At that point, the only URLs you will find in the address bar are those belonging to your Bookmarks.
The antispyware program I use VIPRE Antivirus Premium also has a powerful tool for cleaning your private data, including your Firefox 3 history. It will clean the manually-typed and clicked URLs from the address bar. This History Cleaner tool is available on the Tools tab in VIPRE and can clear a lot more private data, too.
UPDATE: In Firefox 3.6.8, one of the Options solves the problem. Go to Tools > Options > Privacy.
Then, use the pull-down options menu to indicate what sources you want Firefox to use when suggesting locations for the address bar: History and Bookmarks, History, Bookmarks, or None.