Using the Firefox Browser.Startup.Page

Access hundreds of advanced preferences in the about:config screen

red home symbol in circle; firefox graphic
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Mozilla's Firefox web browser has a reputation for being configurable, but if you look in the Firefox Preferences screen, you may not think that it has any more options than the next browser. Perhaps you're unaware of the about:config screen, a tucked-away collection of hundreds of additional preferences and configurations you can use to personalize the browser.

The browser.startup.page is one of those hundreds of Firefox configuration options you can access by entering about:config in the browser's address bar.

How to Find Browser.Startup.Page

Before you go to the about:config screen, you need to be aware that many of the settings you'll see can completely mess up your browser. You want to go in, do your job carefully, and get out. Here's how:

  1. Open Firefox.
  2. Type about:config in the address bar and press Return or Enter.
  3. A warning opens to advise you that changing the advanced settings can be harmful to the stability, security, and performance of the application. Click or press I accept the risk!
  4. You are presented with hundreds of preferences listed in alphabetical order. Scroll down to browser.startup.page. Like every other preference, it has a Name, Status, Type, and Value.

How to Use Browser.Startup.Page

The browser.startup.page preference allows the user to specify which web page(s) to open every time the Firefox browser is launched. The value of browser.startup.page can be set to one of four integers: 0, 1, 2, or 3.

  • When the value is set to 0, a blank page named about:blank opens upon launch.
  • The default value, which is 1, causes Firefox to open whatever page is set as the browser's homepage.
  • When the value is set to 2, the web page that the user last visited is opened.
  • When the value is set to 3, the user's previous browsing session is restored.

To modify the value assigned to browser.startup.page, double-click on browser.startup.page in the Name column, enter a value in the pop-up screen, and click or press OK.