Open Bug 216931 Opened 16 years ago Updated 2 years ago

"Advanced" panel in prefs is not good UI


(Firefox :: Preferences, defect)

Not set





(Reporter: levon, Unassigned)


(Blocks 1 open bug)


(Keywords: ux-discovery, Whiteboard: p=0)


(1 file)

Spin-off from bug 187989 as requested.

Firebird recently acquired an "Advanced" panel. This is bad UI for the
following reasons :

o it does not label the contents semantically (user does not know what's
in there, and will end up searching it)
o definitions of what "Advanced" means vary between users. Why is enabling
auto-scrolling advanced ? Why am I an "advanced" user if I want to load tabs
in the background ?
o it humiliates the user ("you're too stupid to see what's in here"). This
sounds like a frivolous point, but it is not.
o Advanced panels historically tend to encourage "dump any and all prefs there
without regards to design"

A solution would require a re-working of the current categories in all
likelihood, and some thought about future expansion. As the current plans
seem to be to add lots and lots more prefs by default, there's little point
attempting a redesign currently (but of course, this does not invalidate
the bug itself)
Adjusting OS and Hardware. John, you have a good point here, but I think this
can be tackled by 1.0 at the earliest, because the UI will be in a state of flux
before that.
OS: Linux → All
Hardware: PC → All
At least make the Advanced panel UI consistent with Privacy settings please.
Everything is initially collapsed and expanded panel has yellow background (only
one panel could be expanded at a time).
(In reply to comment #2)
> At least make the Advanced panel UI consistent with Privacy settings please.
> Everything is initially collapsed and expanded panel has yellow background (only
> one panel could be expanded at a time).

Yeah i noticed that too. I was on my way to file bugs [checking if it was
reported already] when i saw your comment. Anyway, bug 247100 and bug 247102
have been created for this.

Yes, the yellow backgroud on Privacy but not Advanced is very annoying. One
other problem with the advanced dialog is the grey backgrounds on the heading
under Certificates and Validations (for instance, "Client Certificate
Selection"). It doesn't need to be like that and looks quite ugly.

Another problem with the advanced panel is the fact Languages has been set in there.

While languages may be an "advanced" option for people in the US or those that
have a nicely configured localised build for the rest of the world this is a
general option.  There is in fact space for languages to move to the General tab.

Personally I'd move the updates tab in advanced to it's own
top-level-with-an-icon and shift security to privacy.  (You have security
because you *want* privacy).
comment #5 is just a symptom of the wider problem with having a tab called
"Advanced" at all. Frankly, it's more like "Miscellaneous" pretending it isn't.
Assignee: firefox → nobody
QA Contact: mconnor → preferences
I'm searching for open bugs to work on and found this one. I've noticed that this modification request is quite old and has not been done. Moreover, the Firefox versions have changed a lot... So, I suggest to mark this bug as "CLOSED".
It's been almost a month since my last comment and nobody replied. This feature has changed a lot since 2003.  The original report is very old and was probably for Firefox 1 or less. 
May someone close this bug please?
Old bug, this issue does not occur anymore on Firefox 9.0.1 at 2012.
Closed: 8 years ago
Resolution: --- → FIXED
The complaints from comment 0 still apply to our current preferences pane.

We're going to be revisiting the preferences pane in bug 718011, though, so we can take those arguments into account. It's difficult to completely remove "Advanced" or other "grab bag" pref groupings, but it's worth trying.
Depends on: 718011
Resolution: FIXED → ---
Keywords: ux-discovery
Having several tabs in advanced is also making it hard to display search results as per bug 782599

While testing the search mechanism, I quickly moved all the content into a single pane like the other preference categories.
Blocks: 782599
Flags: firefox-backlog?
Flags: firefox-backlog? → firefox-backlog+
Whiteboard: p=0
@Jack & Tina,
This is a meta bug for the Advanced panel in the Preference page. Please take into consideration in your UX design, thanks.
Flags: needinfo?(thsieh)
Flags: needinfo?(jalin)
Per meeting with UX, this bug will be taken into consideration in the Preference re-design project. So move under the bug 75271.9
Blocks: 752719
No longer blocks: 782599, 1271779
No longer depends on: 718011
Flags: needinfo?(thsieh)
Flags: needinfo?(jalin)
You need to log in before you can comment on or make changes to this bug.