How to use Adobe Acrobat-style grab and drag scrolling in Firefox

Grab and Drag enables Adobe Acrobat-style grab and drag scrolling in Firefox, Thunderbird, and Flock. Though it’s not a plugin that anyone with a scroll-wheel mouse would find useful (I don’t think), it is very helpful if you use a one button mouse (iBook/PowerBook/MacBook/MacBook Pro users), a stylus/pen or touchscreen/tablet PC.

grab and drag firefox plugin

  1. Install Grab and Drag as you would any other Firefox plugin (browser restart required). Once Firefox re-launches, you’ll be prompted with a Startup Wizard (pictured below). From here you can set the initial usage options. I would suggest leaving Add a Grab and Drag toggle button to the Navigation toolbar enabled to start – you can always remove it later. Click Finished after you’ve set your preferences.
  2. grab and drag firefox plugin
    click to enlarge

  3. If you thought the setup was done, you were a little bit wrong. Grab and Drag automatically launches the Preferences after you click Finished in the previous step. Though you can click OK and just start using Grab and Drag, it’s a good idea to review the Preferences first. The General tab is actually a great place to learn about the features of Grab and Drag – let alone customize it to your liking.
  4. grab and drag firefox plugin
    click to enlarge

  5. The More Options tab allows you to change the cursors – you may want to experiment with the defaults before you make changes, but go with your gut.
  6. grab and drag firefox plugin
    click to enlarge

  7. With Grab and Drag enabled, your cursor will (by default) change to a ‘hand’ similar the Adobe Acrobat cursor. You can “grab” any part of a web page, and scroll by dragging. If you click a link (again, depending on how much you customized the Preferences) it will open as normal.
  8. grab and drag firefox plugin

  9. To disable Grab and Drag, click the Toolbar icon. Clicking the icon again will re-enable it.
  10. grab and drag firefox plugin
    Grab and Drag enabled
    grab and drag firefox plugin
    Gran and Drag disabled

0 thoughts on “How to use Adobe Acrobat-style grab and drag scrolling in Firefox”

  1. I downloaded grab and drag and clicked the more options tab, then for grabbing cursor selected somethings other than hand, such as 4-way arrow. This however, does not change the grab and drag cursor on maps. The cursor is still the hand one. Is there some way I can use Grab and Drag to change the hand cursor?

  2. Cool. Just the other day I was wishing Firefox had this functionality, particularly for large images. I’m not 100% satisfied with this extension’s implementation–if you set it to use the left or right buttons it interferes with text selection and pops up the context menu, respectively. The middle button seems to work pretty well without interfering too much, however. What I really wish is that I could use Shift + Left Click or Left Click + Right Click or something to drag. Maybe in the next version.

    Anyway, great article!

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