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Despite the fact that there are plenty of ways to create a 404 error page more usable and fun How To Make a Great 404 Error Page & 10 Examples How To Make a Great 404 Error Page & 10 Examples Read More , most web developers still never bother to and you land on a totally boring error page that suggests no other option other than leaving it. Or sometimes (when you mistype the URL) you end up on a standard Firefox’s fail page which is not that much more fun.

Back in 2008, Tina did a great job listing three addons that enhances Firefox’s page failure Enhance your Firefox Page Failure Options Enhance your Firefox Page Failure Options Read More but some of them have been updated and besides, a few more have appeared which are worth a mention. So here they are: the 6 ways to enhance FireFox’s error page and make it more useful (especially if you really need to load the page).

1. Override Mozilla Firefox Guidance

Override Mozilla Firefox Guidance is a humorous FireFox addon that actually does nothing useful but can remove your stress from landing on an error page. It randomly implements several essentially unhelpful – yet almost funny – error pages, when a website cannot be reached.

2. Resurrect Pages

Resurrect Pages is the FireFox extension that enhances FireFox’s “Server not found” fail page with links to big page cache/mirrors:

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  • Google Cache (and Google’s Text-only Cache)
  • Yahoo! Cache
  • Bing Cache
  • The Internet Archive
  • Gigablast
  • WebCite

3. ErrorZilla Plus

ErrorZilla Plus is another FireFox addon (its previous edition has already been mentioned by James in his post on faster browsing 5 Speedy Tips For Faster Browsing In Firefox 5 Speedy Tips For Faster Browsing In Firefox Read More ) with the similar to the above one functionality but additionally it allows to:

  • Try again;
  • Use a server to ping the target server;
  • Look up who owns the website;
  • Use your custom web proxy to connect.

4. 404-Error?

404-Error? redirects you to the archived copy of a non-existent page (if archived page exists in Wayback Machine at archive.org).

Unlike the above one, this extension works best for removed pages (it won’t show up if you mistype an URL and get to the standard FireFox’s “Server not found” page).

Prior to redirecting, it asks you to confirm if the page really doesn’t exist and if you want to see its archive.org version:

funny error messages

5. Fierr

Fierr is another nice option that adds the following buttons to the error page:

  • Back (to go back to wherever you came from),
  • Reload (the page will automatically attempt to reload in ten seconds, the button allows to stop the reload)
  • Search (to run Google search and see if Google has any records for that page):

6. Down for everyone?

This is a Greasemonkey Greasemonkey Makes Firefox Unbeatable Greasemonkey Makes Firefox Unbeatable Read More script that inserts a link to downforeveryoneorjustme.com in the ‘Page not found’ error page, making it really easy to check whether the connection problems are local to you.

You can also use it in combination with another script that checks your router. Note that by default, it’s using 192.168.1.1 for router IP address. To change it to your router’s IP, right click the Greasemonkey icon on statusbar, select “User Script Commands…“, select “Set your router IP“.

Here’s how the two scripts look when installed:

Any addons I missed here? Or any other ways to make the FireFox’s failure page more fun?

  1. Mark O'Neill
    April 17, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    I used ErrorZilla for ages and it was an extremely helpful page. Highly recommended.

  2. RealityRipple
    April 15, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Just a note, but Fierr also detects if your browser is working offline and shows a Go Online button. And though the screenshot shows it, you didn't mention that it attempts to reload the page after ten seconds.

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