We love wee URLs

Add Google's URL shortening tool to Firefox with this free add-on.

Goo.gl Lite is a free extension that adds Google's Goo.gl URL shortener to the Mozilla Firefox toolbar. When you click the Goo.gl Lite icon, the program automatically generates a shortened URL and copies it to the Clipboard.

Goo.gl Lite installs much like other Firefox add-ons, although once it's installed, we needed to open the Firefox toolbar manager and drag the Goo.gl Lite icon to our browser's toolbar. Clicking Tools/Add-ons let us enable, disable, and uninstall it via the Add-Ons manager. Though the program offered no options, none are needed, since it does a simple but useful thing automatically. Tools that shorten URLs are very simple, even if you've never used one before; they generate a new, shorter URL that automatically links to the longer URL and opens the target HTML page in your browser. They work with both online and offline pages, but they're best for dealing with unwieldy Web addresses. Using Goo.gl Lite couldn't be simpler. We navigated to a Web page and clicked the Goo.gl Lite icon. We opened a new tab, placed the cursor in the address field, and clicked Paste. The Clipboard pasted in the shortened URL, which opened the associated page and expanded the Web address to the original URL as soon as we clicked go. Next, we right-clicked a hyperlink and selected Copy Goo.gl URL for Link Location from the context menu. We opened a new Firefox tab, pasted the shortened URL into the address field, and clicked go. Firefox opened the link location in the new tab and displayed the full URL.

We love Firefox extensions, but some are more useful than others. Goo.gl Lite may be the most essential add-on we've come across. Shortened URLs are great, and Goo.gl Lite just makes them too easy not to use.

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