Firefox extension for web development servers?
February 17, 2008 10:47 AM   Subscribe

Is there a Firefox extension for switching between the same page on different domains?

At the company where I work, we have two separate development servers for testing edits to the website before uploading them to the real site.

When I look at the same page in all three environments in a web browser, the URLs might look like this:

Comparing one page in the various environments is a huge part of my job, so I type the domains into the URL boxes hundreds of times per day.

A few days ago, it hit me that someone, somewhere must have made a firefox extension for switching between different environments. Ideally, it would let you browse to an alternative version of the same page, or instantly open multiple versions in tabs.

This isn't that uncommon of a need, is it? Other places where I've worked have had similar setups. It would save only a few seconds each time I used it, but I would use it a lot.

I've searched on Google and in the Firefox extensions page, and can't seem to find what I'm looking for. If anyone has any ideas of where I could find something like this, it would be much appreciated.
posted by roll truck roll to Computers & Internet (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I had a similar situation but never found anything browser-based. I ended up getting a snippet utility. I've found it to be of immense value when I incorporated it into the rest of my workflows as well. - OSX only
posted by crustix at 10:59 AM on February 17, 2008

Best answer: How about a bookmarklet? Gives you a button in your toolbar, e.g.

<a href="javascript:document.location=document.location.replace('','devserver1');">Switch to Server 1</a>
posted by idb at 11:10 AM on February 17, 2008 [1 favorite]

idb has it.

Manipulating the address bar is meat & drink to Javascript, seems apt to have it as a simple bookmarklet instead of a full mozilla plugin
posted by puddpunk at 11:20 AM on February 17, 2008

Or just create a bookmark folder with all three links in it, then right click and open all in tabs.
posted by cdmwebs at 11:34 AM on February 17, 2008

I have a slightly more robust bookmarklet that will prmot you for the domain/server to switch to (, devserver1, devserver2), and then switch to the same file on that server. Drag it to you bookmark bar and you'll be good to go.

Switch Env

If you're comfortable editing the source, you can change teh default value in the prompt by replacing the text "devserver1".
posted by alan at 12:26 PM on February 17, 2008

Best answer: Hurmmm, metafilter ate the link above (stupid untrustworthy web). Here's a page with the bookmarklet on it.
posted by alan at 12:28 PM on February 17, 2008

I use AutoHotkey to do something similar, but the bookmarklet solution looks good.
posted by Idcoytco at 1:12 PM on February 17, 2008

I have the same kind of bookmarklet for switching between servers at work.

Mine work by toggling -- it does "if we're on, switch to;if we're on, switch to" which makes things easier. And if you click it by mistake when you're on another server, nothing happens at all.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 3:55 PM on February 17, 2008

We do this at my work with proxy servers, which allows us to have as many environments as we want. It's a more laborious solution, but also a lot more powerful and a lot more flexible. Basically for each environment that we have (dev, QA, staging, etc...), we have a proxy server. This means that all I have to do is install a proxy-switching extension (I use SwitchProxy for FireFox) and everything will work great.

So if I go to with my proxy set to my dev machine, I'll get my dev version. Then, if I just set my proxy to none, I can see the same thing on the production site. It's a great solution and it allows us to set up every environment so that it is an exact reproduction of the production site.
posted by atomly at 6:30 PM on February 17, 2008

Best answer: What you're looking for is the Server Switcher Firefox extension. I haven't used it in about a year, but it worked quite well then.
posted by o0o0o at 8:40 PM on February 17, 2008

seconding server switcher. its very useful.
posted by garius at 6:17 AM on February 18, 2008

Response by poster: Just wanted to come back and belatedly say thanks to everyone. We ended up going with Server Switcher just for the fast convenience of it, and the ability to change the servers just by going into the plugin settings. But clearly the bookmarklet is a perfect solution too.
posted by roll truck roll at 5:06 PM on January 21, 2009

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