Tridactyl tutorial

Hello. If you've just installed Tridactyl for the first time, welcome! Tridactyl has something of a learning cliff. If you haven't used an add-on like it before, such as Pentadactyl or Vimperator, we strongly recommend you spend the 10-15 minutes it will take you to read through this tutorial. If you're already familiar with add-ons like this, we still suggest you skim through everything as there are a few things we do differently. Without further ado:

Welcome to the Tridactyl tutorial. Here, you will learn how to get started with this extension. If you ever want to get back to this page, just type :tutor.

It will not cover advanced topics. For those, :help is always at hand. You might also find the unofficial Tridactyl Memrise course (requires login) useful for memorising binds.


The idea behind Tridactyl is to allow you to navigate the web more efficiently with just the keyboard. Tridactyl turns Firefox into a modal browser, meaning it has several different modes of operation, like Vim. Each tab can only ever be in one mode at a time and each of these modes could have a wildly different operation. You can think of it a bit like a Transformer, if you like. There are five main modes you will want to be familiar with:

Almost all of the modes are controlled by series of keypresses. In this tutorial, a sequence of keys such as zz should be entered by pressing the key z, letting go, and then pressing the key z. There is no need to hold both keys at once, if that were even possible. (zz resets the zoom level to the default, so it probably didn't seem to do anything). Sometimes help refers to a command that must be entered in command mode; it should hopefully always be clear from context which we mean.

Note for users of other Vim-style browser tools

Tridactyl defaults to using J to switch to the previous tab and K to switch to the next tab, which may be different from what you're used to if you're coming from Vimperator/Pentadactyl, qutebrowser, or similar projects. You can run :bind J tabnext and :bind K tabprev to switch the two around if you prefer.

Normal mode

The tutorial for normal mode starts on the next page. You could try following the link by using hint mode: press f (if there is only a single link on the screen, it will be followed; otherwise type the characters that appear above the desired link, in lower case. They are only displayed in upper case for ease of reading).