HOWTO: Speed-dial Favourite Websites in FireFox and Opera

Firefox LogoMozilla FireFox and Opera both have a nifty bookmarks feature which allows you to give a bookmark a shortcut, sort of like speed-dial for websites.

Here’s how it works: Browse to a website you visit often, say this one. Bookmark the site by either pressing CTRL+D or going to Bookmarks / Bookmark this page.

Once you’ve bookmarked the page, go to the Bookmarks menu and locate your new bookmark. Now, right-click on the bookmark and choose Properties. Under the usual title and URL fields, you’ll see a Keyword field. Type ‘gerard’ as your keyword (assuming you’re bookmarking my site!) and click OK.

Now, click into the location bar, type gerard and hit return on your keyboard. The shortcut is instantly transformed into the URL!

Using Nicknames In Opera

As I said, Opera has offered the same functionality for a while now, allows you to assign the keyword at the time you create the bookmark. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  • Bookmark a site in Opera (mine, obviously).
  • When the Add Bookmark dialog appears, find the Nickname field and assign the shortcut you want to use. Test it out by clicking into the location bar, typing the nickname and hitting Return on your keyboard.
  • Done!

It’s not practical to use this for every website you bookmark. I tend to use it for sites I hit frequently to save me typing in long URLs over and over again.

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