Web Browsers: Vivaldi Features and Firefox News

This post continues a series on exploring new browsers (last few posts):


About 4 years ago I decided to start exploring various web browsers. Eventually I settled on Vivaldi as my main browser both on Windows and Linux. When I first installed Vivaldi, I mentioned that vertical tabs are very helpful on a wide screen monitor. I also really like the ability to tile my tabs and to name my tab stacks (because other browsers like Chrome have also added tab stacks) While at PyConUS I posted to Mastodon:

(in case this blog survives longer than Mastodon, it’s essentially about the topic I’m about to talk about next – combining Vivaldi’s workspaces and tab stacks)

Some time ago Vivaldi introduced the idea of Workspaces. These are collections of tabs you are grouping together. Here are the workspaces I have on my laptop:

By themselves workspaces aren’t any more useful than tab stacks (at least in basic functionality), But I use them in the same way that I use activities and virtual desktops in KDE Plasma. (See this article and this article for some of the ways I use them) For example, take a look at my D&D workspace where I have organized some tabs into tab stacks. 

Prior to Workspaces, even if I had these spells in a tab stack, I might have some 30 or so tabs open if I was in the middle of something else when the kids wanted to play D&D.

I had one tab stack I set up so that I wouldn’t have to keep looking up the details of a player’s magic spells.

Another tab stack involved tabs I needed while running a campaign for my kids. 

I find this two-dimensional way of grouping tabs to work best with the way my mind works. In a programming workspace I might have tab stacks based on projects I’m working on or topics I’m researching.

Also, that window view that’s showing my stacks is great if you have so many tabs open that you can’t see what they are anymore. On my main computer I like vertical tabs, but I find that horizontal tabs work better on my laptop. But in this semi-contrived situation (I’ve opened up a few extra empty tabs to show the situation), the window pane helps me see what tab I’m actually selecting:

This week I also started making use of the reading list tab.

I had been emailing myself articles to read and my inbox was getting ridiculous. Now I have a set of sites to read that is ostensibly synced between my laptop, desktop, and phone. In practice, the sync seems to be a little bit laggy or require shutting down one of the browsers, but it’s a pretty good idea.

I still have some features I’m not taking advantage of like the notes pane. Perhaps I’ll find some use for that feature in the coming weeks.


If you’ve read any of my previous articles, you know that I was a long-time user of Firefox on Windows and Linux. I recently put it on my phone, but I haven’t really made too much use of it there. It was supposed to easily sync the tabs from phone to computer, but the one time I really wanted to try it, it wasn’t working and it was easier to just email myself the link. There were a couple bits of Firefox news over the past couple weeks that I wanted to cover.

First off, one that doesn’t really affect me. Firefox 126, which I just installed on my laptop this morning, now has HDR support if you have an nVidia graphics card. Since I use AMD cards for all my Linux computers (and my laptops are usually Intel chips) this doesn’t really help me. I do have an nVidia card on my gaming computer, but as I posted in the past, I don’t really do any web browsing on that computer. 

What’s more relevant to this post is from this article covering the Mozilla roadmap. Specifically:

Firefox will soon get native support for tab grouping, vertical tabs, and an improved sidebar to better handle tab organization. There will also be a new profile management system, providing users with an easier way to separate and manage school, work, and personal browsing data.

Alfonso Maruccia for TechSpot

This sounds pretty similar to what I love using in Vivaldi. However, I’m not sure I would want to use profiles vs Vivaldi’s workspaces if they require restarting the browser. That’s just a bit more friction than I’d prefer. However, I could see it useful to someone who wants to separate their bookmarks, add-ons, and other features based on whether they’re doing personal browsing or work browsing. I will definitely check Firefox out when these features hit and see if they can lure me back from Vivaldi (and other Chromium-based browser) land. They will definitely have to up their mobile game, though, because I do really love being able to sync back and forth.