Tech Talk: How many browser tabs?


I’m not sure how many of you are “fans” of browser tabs – that are relatively new features to modern day web browsers…

how many browser tabs do you keep open - Tech Talk: How many browser tabs?

Browser tabs are the best invention yet for the web

Not sure how I managed before tabs became a feature. I vaguely recall myself having a few windows open – but never to the degree that I do in today’s day and age.

Tabs are the single best function of today’s browsers. They serve may purposes. Less windows, great reminders (I often keep tabs open for weeks – to serve as a visual “pokes” that I have an open item to attend to), and your “circuit” of regularly visited websites (social, gossip, email, weather, search and so on)…

But how many do you typically use? Because since web browsers are seemingly (and constantly) in a state of development – it can create problems if you’re a mega-power user and look at hundreds of sites daily.

On average – I have between 45-60 tabs open at a given point (see that graphic above? – it’s the 50 I had open when I wrote this piece)

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Lastly – are there any “tips” for managing browser tabs that you’d like to share with the community? I only ask, because I haven’t been able to find a “perfect” plugin that allows me to “rotate” through distinct functions on my Firefox browser yet… to the point where I can switch between “functionalities” in my daily life… I’d love to be able to flip back and forth between: Work, Tech, Data, Fun, Future, Followup, and so on – but all the ones I found didn’t quite fit the bill – is there anything out there that works perfectly?

The only reason I brought that up – is because some browsers start getting “annoying” when you push them to their limits… it’s amazing that after all the years – they cannot figure out a lightweight way to handle the number of sites you like or need to read – without smashing your system and eating gobs of memory.

Besides RSS readers or other centralized viewing platform – how do you manage your daily internet surfing?

PS – Sorry if this entry is WAY beyond your tech usage – I’m just trying to reach out to the local Hoboken tech-savvy folks!

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Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson

@hoboken411 wrote:
I’d love to be able to flip back and forth between: Work, Tech, Data, Fun, Future, Followup, and so on … is there anything out there that works perfectly?

Ubuntu and Mac OS X have multiple workspaces/spaces or virtual desktops. You could have one space for Work, one for Tech, etc each with Firefox and its own set of related tabs.

I don’t know if your version of Windows has the same thing, but if it doesn’t, you could run multiple Windows virtual machines on Ubuntu with VirtualBox, and each Windows VM could be dedicated to Work, Tech, etc.

A separate VM for Banking or Finance would keep you safe from XSS exploits.


Safari has the ‘Merge All Windows’ function. I’ve accidentally clicked before with many already multi-tabbed windows.


If you are in Windows, why not have separate FireFox windows open and have them each set-up for your “class” of tabs; one FireFox instance for WORK tabs, one for FUN tabs, one for SMUT, etc.

That way, you can Alt-Tab between the actual windows and then Ctrl-Tab between the tabs.

Also, get more monitors. Or get a big monitor. I left my multiple monitor setup for a 30″ screen with 2560×1600 resolution.


Whether you’re on a desktop or small wide-screen laptop/netbook, you likely have more things competing along the screen’s vertical real estate than the horizontal. And a row of squished tabs in your browser cuts into the viewing area for a website, which is probably only using a freaction of the window’s width.

When using Firefox, I find the Tree Style Tab plugin is indispensable. It converts that row of tabs into a left-hand column (however wide you like — no more missing titles) and orders them intelligently. There’s a great option to indent new tabs under the parent tab from which their link was opened. Works perfectly with Firefox’s crash-recovery feature as well (all tabs/indenting are remembered).