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I've always used firefox, but I got myself a Virtual OS set up and I figured I'd run some apps I normally never do.

I installed SeaMonkey 2.0 beta 1.

I can't seem to find the settings menu, like there is on firefox. It's kinda confusing, so my question is: what should a firefox user know about Seamonkey? The differences in settings, way of doing things and what the programs are meant for.

Also, Seamonkey doesn't have tabs??? WTH?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

You should find the settings under Edit -> Preferences, I believe (unless it has changed a lot).

Also, it certainly has tabs, just hit Ctrl-T to open a new one. (It has had them since David Hyatt committed the first version of that functionality in some pre-0.9.5 version of Mozilla back in 2001 — when the application was still called that.)

What should a Firefox user know? Well, there aren't many prerequisites for using it, really; you could think of it as Firefox, Thunderbird, Chatzilla and an HTML editor all in one suite, with some differences in UI compared to the standalone apps. The core (rendering engine) of SeaMonkey's web browser is the same as that in Firefox, Gecko.

For more, you could start at:

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Re tabs:

It has tabs. It also has this cool "preview/thumbnail" of the tab when you tooltip the tab label.

Re Preferences:

It might have varied by OS, what OS are you using. I tested Seamonkey years ago, I can't remember :)

Re: confusing

Well yeah, that's why we have Firefox!

The idea of having a multi-module browser/mail/chat/addressbok/news/LDAP application was probably not a good idea. (Does anyone use "works" packages these days?). Netscape had also done a lot of damage to the implementation due to its various commercial requirements. "Mozilla" was the open version of the code that Netscape->AOL funded because it was going to re-implement the functionality in Communicator 4.x. So, it had to have most of everything that Netscape wanted, minus the branding.

But overtime, the community has done a lot of great work to improve Seamonkey. Some of that is work in Gecko, which benefits Firefox as well, but a lot of it is in the Seamonkey side.

Some people thought Mozilla Application Suite would die when switched to developing Firefox-only, but I always believed that a smaller power-user audience would need a swiss-army knife version of the Gecko browser. I just thought Netscape had picked the wrong kind of tools.

A couple examples:

  • explicit support for profiles. (Firefox added this back later...), but if you test or develop, you can flip back and forth from everything in your profile (cookies, cache, etc).

  • menu access to Cookie Manager. When I test cookie related problems in Firefox, I keep grumbling about having to go into Prefs just to blow away one thing.

Some of this might be in newer extensions, but Firefox+Thunderbird can never be as strongly integrated as the modules in Seamonkey (after all that was the original appeal of a single multi-module application).

...So give it a try, depending on your work tasks, you might prefer it.

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+1 for some good points. I also remember the location of Preferences varying by OS, but later on I think it was changed back to Edit -> Preferences (on Windows & Linux at least); I'm not sure though :) – Jonik Aug 24 '09 at 21:33
For me personally, one small but great feature about Mozilla (and by extension, SeaMonkey) UI was the tab/window specific Go menu. It makes keyboard only navigation so much handier than in Firefox! This was one of the main reasons why it me so long to switch from Mozilla to Firefox as the main browser. (I never really got that into SeaMonkey — partly because I hated the forced brand change from Mozilla to SeaMonkey...) – Jonik Aug 24 '09 at 21:43
Jonik: if the prefers were made consistent on allplats, I'm sure it was a contributor that fixed it. As for the Seamonkey name, did you know that was the original, internal name for Mozilla Application Suite? In fact, the "mozilla" name was very unpopular internally because: 1- it was not very original (it followed Netscape's very creative decision to rename "Netscape Communicator 4" to "Netscape 6"), 2- the mozilla already owned bugzilla and a dozen other small, viable projects, so the name marketed them as a one-trick pony. – benc Aug 25 '09 at 7:39
Yeah, I'm aware it was an internal codename for Mozilla. As a brand name it sucks though. :) – Jonik Aug 27 '09 at 6:01

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