Note: Yet another list of Firefox extensions... Just read it though.
After a while using a netbook, you start to feel the cramped nature of the small screen, and then find ways to maximize the usability of it. In this vein, I want to share with fellow users the optimizations I've used to make my web browser more effective and useful, while reducing clutter and making best use of the screen.
I run Firefox, as currently I find it's easiest to extend and modify through the multitude of available 3rd party extensions. Here is a list of the specific extensions that I'm using to create my perfect browser, what they do and why I use them:
Download Manager Tweak- https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/256
Opens the downloads window as a tab rather than a separate window.
Fission - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1951
Adds load progress indicator to the address bar.
Hide Caption - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/9256
Hides the title bar that windows normally have at the top, and adds buttons to the toolbars in Firefox for minimize/restore/close etc.
Locationbar^2 - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/4014
Lets you control the appearance of the url in the address bar, highlighting domain etc.
Omnibar - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/8823
Combines the address and search boxes into one 'omni' box, a la Google Chrome.
Personal Menu - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/3895
Adds a single button to the toolbar that displays the top level menu contents, and therefore allows you to hide the menu toolbar.
SearchLoad Options - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/3544
Gives you more control over the search box behaviour.
Smart Stop/Reload - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/7401
Reduces the stop and reload buttons to a single space, as you generally don't need to reload a page if its loading, and dont need to stop a page if its loaded.
Tree Style Tab - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/5890
Allows you to eliminate the tabs bar, and have a the tabs as a list at the side of the screen that auto-hides, and learn to use Ctrl+Tab instead most of the time.
And a picture speaks a thousand words, plus I put more words in the pictures!
First pic is fullscreen, and shows the browser in it's normal state.
This is just a slice of the top to show how a new tab looks
This is my tab list, I use it maybe half the time, or I use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Tab instead of moving the mouse.
I have a few other extensions I use of course, but they don't relate to making the browser easier to use on a netbook so I've omitted them from this.
Hope this helps somebody.