Mozilla recently released Firefox 2.0. While the esthetics of the changes were minimal, the browser has clearly come a long way. With 2.0, the interface icons are more refined and the tabs look a little more polished. Perhaps the most impressive and long overdue feature to be added is spellchecking. But for all of its refinements, sometimes Firefox still manages to leave me frustrated. In this case, the browsers autofill feature can be problematic.
Firefox’s autofill feature can make filling out web based forms a breeze. It can also drive one quite insane. Since filling out forms can sometimes be tedious, Firefox routinely caches recently used values specific to any given form field. This can be a real time saver for people who need to login to password protected areas of different web sites.
But what happens when mistype your username a single time? Suddenly you visit your login screen and Firefox no longer autofills in your login information. Clicking in the field reveals a list of possible user names where there had once only been your own. Now you must select either the correct login name from the list of options, or your typographical error. Why should you be forced to look at your typo every time you login? Isn’t there a way to deleted the incorrect value?
Search Firefox all you like… you simply won’t find a place to clean up the values stored in the autofill for forms. But if you know the trick, its actually very easy to remove the unneeded autofill options from any given field.
When clicking on the offending field (or sometimes double clicking), a list of autofill options will appear. Simply use the keyboards arrow keys to travel down the list until the erroneous value is highlighted. Then, just hold down the Shift key and strike the Delete key. That value will no longer appear in the form field as an autofill option.
This a simple and powerful feature that is simply not well documented. Autofill options are great time savers, but they can also be the source of great frustration. This simple tip can prevent annoyance while restoring productivity.