Fixing Firefox’s Backspace Behavior in Linux

If you are coming from Windows background, you might have hard time adapting to how Firefox behaves under Linux. Basically Firefox does not go back to the previous page when the backspace key is pressed.

After making a thorough search on the web, I came to the conclusion that this is indeed an intended behavior and have some philosophical roots. To make long short, the proponents of this behavior state that backspace key is intended to be used when correcting a mistake. And since going back to a page is not result of an error but simply part of surfing the web it should “not” use backspace for this.

Although I can appreciate the logic behind it, I’m against challenging well-established habits that have no practical implications just to be logically sound.

Here’s how to bend Firefox to respect your old habit.

  1. Type about:config to the address bar.
  2. Start typing “browse” to locate the entry browser.backspace_action
  3. Double-click on the “value” column to change it 0 (it is set as 2 by default)
  4. Done!

Updating from KDE 4.11 to Latest KDE Version for OpenSuse 13.1

OpenSuse 13.1 ships with KDE 4.11 which was not working fine with me. I needed openconnect for VPN access to my institution however, the openconnect NetworkManager plugin was not working properly.

As soon as I installed the plugin along with the openconnect base package, the NetworkManager widget started not showing any connections etc. Plus, I was not able to use the openconnect plugin anyway as it didn’t allow me to type in the VPN server I’d like to connect to.

When I tested openconnect from the terminal, it was working perfectly. Therefore I decided that the problem might be in KDE.

So I decided to upgrade the factory shipped KDE 4.11 to the latest version (4.13 as of now). Below are the instructions I’ve followed.

  1. Add repositories for KDE SC and Extras Packages. The following repositories are from OpenSuse and they point to the latest version of KDE available.
  2. Update the system to use updates from the newly installed repositories. Using --from limits zypper to use updates only from the specified repositories.
  3. Reboot the system to reflect all the changes made.