Downloads Progress in Firefox

It seems that every time a program is updated these days some useful feature disappears. This has recently been the case for the Firefox web browser, where for some inexplicable reason, not only is the downloads progress bar not displayed any more, it isn’t even available as an option through the main program.

Now, it may just be me, but I quite like to see that the file is actually downloading, how big it is, and how long the download is likely to take. So, I set out to see if it was possible to re-establish a progress bar.

There is certainly a lot of discussion – some would call it a flame war – about the wisdom of taking away features that users have become accustomed to. In particular, there is great dissension on the issue of completely removing features rather than making them optional.

However, I’m pleased to note that, rather than spend time bemoaning the fact that a feature has disappeared, some users just sit down and develop an add-on utility that restores the function. This is certainly the case for the downloads progress bar in Firefox.

A user (ungram) has provided the “Downloads Window” add-on. Installing this add-on restores the functionality of a dialogue box indicating the files that are being/have been downloaded and a progress bar for the download process. Perfect!

So, if you are pining for a downloads progress bar in Firefox, navigate to Tools – Add-Ons – Get Add-Ons and search all add-ons for “Downloads Window”. At the time of writing, Downloads Window 0.4.5 will be the first item in the list of hits.

References:

Downloads Window 0.4.5
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/downloads-window/

Firefox 26 Has Completely Removed Download Progress Display
https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/979052

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