Make "Recently Closed Tabs" pane more easily accessible




11 months ago
4 months ago


(Reporter: bytesized, Unassigned)


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11 months ago
For the first time since installing Nightly, I wanted to access the "Recently Closed Tabs" menu pane. It took me some time to locate the "History" pane, as it has been moved from the top level of the menu to under the "Library" grouping. I do not find this to be at all intuitive.

"Library" is an existing term in software applications. In my experience, it almost always refers to something like a media library. I could get behind "rebranding" the "Bookmarks" system as the "Bookmarks Library", because that is a list/hierarchy of entries organized according to the user's preference. However, this does not describe "History" at all! I only looked for it under "Library" because I had already looked everywhere else twice.

Additionally, navigating to the "Recently Closed Tabs" pane has gone from 2 menu clicks to 4. One of these clicks is because "Recently Closed Tabs" now gets its own pane, under "History" instead of continuing to share the "History" pane. The other click is due to this new "Library" grouping.

I can live with "Recently Closed Tabs" being its own pane. It seems like that will allow it to display more entries, which I like.

The "Library" grouping, however, I strongly object to. There are only 3 entries in it: "History", "Bookmarks", and "Synced Tabs". Therefore, the top level menu would only be 2 entries longer if we got rid of the "Library" grouping and moved the contents to the top level menu. Or move one or two of the other entries to the "More" grouping. I find that to be more intuitive than "Library" anyways. Or just remove them altogether and let them be added back in the "Customize" interface.

Speaking of which, my first attempt at fixing this was to add "History" to the top level menu in the "Customize" interface. But apparently that does not work (adding it seems to have no effect).

I strongly believe that "Recently Closed Tabs" is *the* most useful menu pane (in part because it is one of the few features that seems to be accessible exclusively through the menu). I am not at all excited to see that it has effectively become twice as slow to use and much harder to find.

Comment 1

11 months ago
Jared -- I know that this is probably largely too late for this conversation (looking at bug 1354533, for example), but this is kind of buried for Windows users[1]. Is this a UX conversation and who's the right person for that?

[1] on Mac OSX, I typically use the title bar menus (because they're always shown). On Windows, the title bar isn't even shown by default (anymore? I haven't used it in ages) so unless you ride Alt to show them or are addicted to hotkeys, you have to go through the hamburger menus, and that's a solid several clicks. It's a little faster if the Library icon is exposed on my toolbar, but even in that case it'd be nice to have Recently closed tabs as a first child of Library than under History (or additionally so).
Flags: needinfo?(jaws)
We do have the History button that can be placed in the nav-bar, and clicking on that puts Recently Closed Tabs on the first level. Is that not good enough?

Bryan Bell is doing UX for the "structure" component. Redirecting needinfo to him...
Flags: needinfo?(jaws) → needinfo?(bbell)

Comment 3

11 months ago
Hmm. I appreciate the comment that the history button can be placed directly in the nav-bar. That does seem better than nothing. Personally, however, I will not use this method. I prefer to have as few buttons in the nav-bar as possible to keep it from looking cluttered and so that I can find things quickly.

Really, the only reason that this is a big deal for me is that AFAIK, the "Recently Closed Tabs" pane is the only thing in the menu that is not more easily accessible in another way. I believe that almost every other feature in the menu can be accessed via a hotkey, context menu, or by typing in the Location Bar. My ideal menu, therefore, would contain these two entries: "Customize..." and "Recently Closed Tabs".

This is why it frustrates me to see that the "Recently Closed Tabs" pane has sunk so far into the menu.


10 months ago
Summary: Get rid of the "Library" menu grouping → Make "Recently Closed Tabs" pane more easily accessible

Comment 4

10 months ago
It looks to me like the Library grouping is, if anything, being made more prominent. Therefore, I will change my suggested fix for my problem.

Rather than removing the "Library" grouping, I think that "Recently Closed Tabs" should be directly under "Library" rather than being an entry in "History". I would also suggest being able to put "Recently Closed Tabs" directly in the nav-bar.

Comment 5

10 months ago
Created attachment 8898966 [details]
Placing this option in the menu example.

I designed this menu structure, and while access to Library>history isn't as buried as it seemed to be in its incomplete form, I'm sympathetic to your concerns that this might be a feature deserving of more prominence.  

Moving it out of History and placing this in the Menu might be an option. But it's going to take more thought and consideration than we have time for before 57 Ships.  (see attached example)

I'll put this on the list of things to consider in 58
Flags: needinfo?(bbell)
Priority: -- → P5
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