Browsers with vertical tabs

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Well-known member
Sep 30, 2020
I hereby submit a screenshot of Vivaldi's TABS settings screen. The browser is updated to the newest version of Chrome/Chromium.

Chromium-based, this browser has all the nifty tricks in convenient places!
Somehow, while snapping the shot, I managed to cut the left bit off the image. It was unimportant for this purpose, though, unless you wanted to see the Vivaldi-logo (menu) in the upper-left, the left (back) button, or the "open the options menu located on the left side" button at the lower-left. The 16:9 aspect ratio is also altered to remove blank space from the image.

The tabs (at top) have a dark background in this image because I usually use a dark theme, the altering of which didn't change the tabs, for some reason.
Vivaldi Browser's tab-configuration menu
After I heard Steve mention vertical tabs a few times I decided to give it a try as an alternative to all the open Firefox instances and the cumbersome switching process. Now I will never go back.
Your image show the menu bar as vertical and tabs being horizontal. In my configuration the menu bar is hidden and only comes up after pressing the Alt key. The tabs are vertical on the left side and are be organized by folder. I have about half a dozen main folders, and the largest one has subfolders and about 30 tabs, and maybe 70 tabs in total. This could be accomplished with bookmarks and folders but it is just not as convenient. Switching between two tabs is just a Ctrl-tab away, or scroll down the list.
A new tab is opened with Ctrl-T. If it is to be kept it can be dragged to the required folder and position withing that folder. Ctrl-W closes it. One close of X (top right corner) closes everything and starting Firefox again brings back everything.
All this is managed by the "Tree Style Tab" and a bit of customization.
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The options are so diverse that I can't do them justice with one screenshot. I wanted to show merely the options available by default for the tabs, which is all that screenshot can do.

Vivaldi is so diverse and configurable, with everything so readily accessible that it should be at least tried by everyone, regardless of whether they keep it around. It's the only browser I know that can automatically change the theme and color shifting all day long to be easy on the eyes.
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I could never go back to the simple horizontal tabs and want a browser that properly integrates vertical tabs I have 50+ top level folders and at last count something over 300 tabs (though it could be a lot more now). The problem with Tree-Style Tabs is that I have to set userchrome files which Firefox disables these by default to remove the horizontal tab display and clean up the side bar. At each Firefox upgrade I wonder if this will all fail. A few times Firefox suggests to clean up, which simply goes to a blank slate and had to recover from a recent ZFS snapshot.
I've heard Steve talk a few times about his Tab issues and his preference for Vertical Tabs - which I share. So a while ago, I tried out Vivaldi, and almost immediately made the switch from FireFox!

Since this thread is pretty old, and Vivaldi is actively developed, the preceding posts don't really mention a some of its newer features, so here's a screen shot with a bit of explanatory text. (Pardon the blurred bits - Some things are private!)


First, on the left, the tabs. You can now have Tab Groups with a second layer of tabs in them. As shown, each Tab Group displays the number of tabs it contains, and as you can see, when you hover your mouse over a group, you get a preview of the tabs within it. You can click directly on the thumbnails as well.

Almost all the Tab functions, re-arranging, grouping, etc. can be accomplished with drag/drop.

My tabs are fairly complex, so here's the lineup. Pinned tabs automatically go to the top, though you can rearrange them within the section with drag/drop. I created a web page that's basically blank and named with double-lines. I use it to make "divider" tabs and tab groups. So at the bottom of the "pinned" section, you'll see one of those, also "pinned" so it stays up there.

The second section is Tab Groups containing at least one Pinned Tab (you cannot pin a group, but pinning one tab within a group pins the group). I have three of these groups. Then another divider and my "normal" Tab Groups. Note that Tab Groups can be renamed, so I put a colon at the beginning of each and make it all-caps to quickly show it's a group (I started that before the visual "outlining" of groups was added, so it's not really necessary, but still works for me). Below the "Normal" (unpinned) Tab Groups are normal single tabs.

I like to have the second column of tabs locked, so things don't move around and my eyes can find things quickly. It's an option you can activate by clicking on the lock icon at the bottom of the second column. Makes things much easier. If you don't have it locked, then the second level disappears when you're not on a Group.

Another tab function I LOVE is the trash can. Many times some website will open another window with only that site/tab in it. I have Vivaldi set to remember tabs, so if I close the main window, then close the second window, that's what it remembers, so when I re-open Vivaldi, all my tabs are gone! Fortunately, they're in the garbage can, and I can restore them ALL with one click - including placement, pinning and groups.

Vivaldi sync also allows me to "grab" my main browser's tabs in other instances of Vivaldi on other machines. You have to log into your sync account of course, and it's all encrypted. You can see your other Vivaldi instances and how many tabs it has by clicking the cloud icon at the bottom of the 1st row of tabs. I have four machines I use commonly, so this is a huge time-saver as well.

Vivaldi has a lot of other features I love too. For example, the "Panes" on the right. (They're on the left by default, but I find them handier on the right). Each is a "mini browser", and as shown, mine currently has the site selected. I use this a LOT in troubleshooting, so being able to open and use it with a single click - and while the "main" window is still visible - is a huge help.

Another great feature is the Notes, including the fact that the Notes is a built-in "Pane" for easy access. In the pic, the built-in Notes is the active tab, just to show what it looks like. They also sync across instances of Vivaldi.

One more thing I love, that doesn't get enough mention, is the Bookmarks Bar. I use folders in my bookmarks bar to organize them into cascading "menus". Others browsers have this functionality as well. But Vivaldi had a lovely feature the others don't. When I open one of these folders, I can navigate to the correct sub-folder, and THEN, when I know I'm in the right place, there's an "Add Active Tab" link so I can add the current tab to that folder/subfolder without having to click "Save Bookmark" THEN do the navigation. I find this FAR more intuitive. (Second pic).


Finally, I have to mention the Start Page. I've used many Start Page Add-Ons over the years, and Vivaldi's built-in Start Page blows them all away. It's very easy to use, extremely customizable, and supports folders and custom thumbnails. Here's a quick shot of mine, just to give you an idea. The "Google" and "Vivaldi" items are folders with sub-start-page items in them (which are also customizable):

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Edge may be similar to Vivaldi, but I only have 6 tabs with it, so have not explored it. Certainly not as slick as FF as there is no nesting.

What I like with the FF vertical tabs is I have it configured for only 2 top horizonal bars; the main FF with the windows controls on the right, and the address bar below it. The rest of the real estate is for the tabs and the main window. The tabs can be nested. I have some that are 4 deep but it can likely go deeper. Full screen mode is enabled by F1 (hides the vertical tabs) and F11 (hides the two top horizontal bars). F11 works with Edge but not F1.

I use the Tab Session Manage in conjunction with Tree Style Tab. It save a record of all the tabs and their placement. This came in very handy when after a clean install of the OS, and restoring all the tabs after FF was installed.