We all know about group policies in Windows – these are some settings that control how different features in Windows work. For example, you can stop Microsoft Edge web browser from displaying the search suggestions through the group policies. So far only Microsoft related applications could be controlled through the group policies, but now Mozilla has released the group policy files for Windows users through which you can control various settings for the Firefox web browser. The group policy for Firefox works for Firefox version 60 and above including the ESR versions.
Here is how you can install and use the group policies for Mozilla Firefox:
- Download the group policy files from https://github.com/mozilla/policy-templates/releases. Download the latest version so that it works with the latest version of the Firefox web browser.
- Open the folder C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions in Windows File Explorer. This folder holds all the group policy files for your Windows PC.
- From the downloaded ZIP file (step 1), extract all the files firefox.admx, mozilla.admx and folders en-US, de-DE, it-IT and es-ES into the folder C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions (opened in step 2).
- Press hotkey Win+R to open the Run dialog, type gpedit.msc in the Run dialog and press Enter.
- In the Group Policy Editor, navigate to Computer Configuration → Administrative Templates → Mozilla → Firefox to access and change the policies for Firefox web browser.
There are over 40 different settings (at the moment of writing this) that you can change through the group policies for Mozilla Firefox. But the group policies take effect only after you relaunch the web browser. Therefore, after making the changes to Firefox policies, you must close all the running instances of Firefox, wait for 10 seconds and then restart it once again. These policies do not affect the Firefox web browser versions released before version 60. Similarly, these policies do not affect various Firefox based web browsers like Palemoon or Waterfox.