Table of Contents

What are Tabsets

Tabsets are sets of tabs related to some task. A particular task may involve browsing news, checking web mail, conducting a search, and so on. Tabsets let you focus on a task by hiding tabs unrelated to the task. By focusing on tasks, tabsets make it easy to have a large number of tabs open.

How to create a new Tabset

A new tabset is typically created indirectly by opening a group. Opening a group creates a new tabset with the same name as the group. Groups can be opened via the Groups Button in the Categorize toolbar.

The Groups Button

Try opening a new tabset now! Open the groups menu, and click the menu item labelled News.

The News group is part of several predefined groups that are provided to help you get started. You can explore some of the other predefined groups by using the Groups menu.

New tabs opened by the user get added to the active tabset. The active tabset is the tabset whose tabs are unhidden. Only a single tabset can be active at a time and all other tabsets are inactive. Inactive tabsets have all their tabs hidden.

New tabsets may also be created via the Open Tabset button in the Show Tabsets View.

The Open Tabset button

The Tabsets View Button

The Tabsets View button is the button next to the groups menu button in the Categorize toolbar.

Show Tabsets Button

This button’s appearance indicates the number of open tabsets. For instance, the image below indicates four open tabsets.

Show Tabsets Button when four tabsets open

The Tabsets View

Clicking the Show Tabsets Button opens the Tabsets View. This popup lists all open tabsets and their tabs. In this popup, the selected tab for each tabset is marked by green text.

The Tabsets View can also be toggled via the <Ctrl+Space> or the <Ctrl+9> key combination. Both these key combinations are equivalent but the <Ctrl+Space> key combination is not available under Mac OS X.

Keyboard Navigation

The <Tab>, <Shift+Tab> and the arrow keys can be used to navigate in this view. An alternate keyboard navigation scheme based on the vi text editor navigation keys is also available. This scheme uses j and the k keys for up/down navigation; and the h and l keys for left and right navigation.

Tabsets View

Opening new tabsets

A new tabset can be opened adjacent to an existing tabset by pressing the Open Tabset button in the header of the appropriate tabset. The same can be done via the keyboard by pressing the o or the O keys. The o key opens a new tabset after the target tabset, while the O key opens a new tabset before the target tabset.

Joining Tabsets

Two adjacent tabsets can be joined together by using the Join Tabsets button in the header of the first tabset. The same can also be accomplished via the keyboard by pressing the J key (Note: j won’t work as it is a navigation key).

Changing Orientation

Apart from the default horizontal orientation, the tabsets view also supports a right aligned vertical orientation for tabsets. This orientation can be toggled by the Toggle Orientation Button at the bottom left corner of the tabsets view. Clicking the button again switches the orientation back to horizontal. The orientation can also be switched via the keyboard by pressing the : key.

Vertically Oriented Tabsets View

Slim Mode

The Tabsets view can sometimes obscure important information on a web page. To make this less of an issue, the Tabsets view supports a slim mode. In this mode, only the favorite icons for open tabs are shown. The slim mode is toggled via the Toggle Slim Mode button at the bottom right corner of the tabsets view. The slim mode can also be toggle via the ; key.

Vertically Oriented Slim Tabs

Closing Tabs

The Close tabset button closes all the tabs in a tabset. Tabs can be closed individually as well. To close a specific tab, click its close button on the right.

Closing Tabs

Tabs can also be closed in the Tabset View by either pressing <Delete> or the x key. The X key has the same effect as the Close button and can either be used to close all tabs in the tabset or only the marked tabs.

Reloading Tabs

Tabs can be reloaded by pressing the r key. The R key reloads all tabs in a tabset or all the marked tabs in a tabset, if it contains any marked tabs. The Reload tabset button in the tabset header has the same effect as the R key.

Marking Tabs

Tabs can be marked and manipulated as a set. To mark a tab, click its favorite icon button in the Tabsets View or press the m key. Clicking the button again, or pressing the m key unmarks a tab. Pressing the M key, inverts the marked tabs for a tabset.

Tabsets view with several marked tabs

Marking one or more tabs changes the behavior of the Open, Join, Reload and Close tabset buttons. Clicking the Open tabset button now moves the marked tabs to a new tabset. The Join tabset button moves/joins the marked tabs to the target tabset. While the Close button closes and the Reload button reloads all marked tabs in the target tabset. The keyboard shortcuts o, O, J, X, and R behave similarly.

Moving tabs to a new tabset

To move tabs to a new tabset, mark the tabs that you want to move, and click the Open Tabset button of any tabset. This will move the marked tabs to a new tabset adjacent to the target tabset.

Reloading Tabs

To reload a tab in a tabset, select it via the keyboard and press r. The R key reloads all the tabs in a tabset.


The Tabsets View has an options toolbar at the bottom that allows customization of some behaviors.

Tabsets View Options Toolbar

The very first button in the toolbar selects the orientation of the Tabsets View.

The next two buttons determine the tab selection behavior of the Tabsets View. The Mouse Select button when toggled, forces left clicks to select and focus tabs without closing the Tabsets View. When not toggled, left clicks focus the tab as usual but also close the Tabsets View. The Keyboard Select when toggled causes all navigation keys to focus the tab for the currently selected tab button. When untoggled, navigation keys do not change tab focus.

Tabsets View Mouse Select

In the next set of buttons, the Cross button determines whether close buttons for individual tabs are shown.

How to switch between Tabsets

Tabsets can be switched via the Tabsets View. To switch tabsets, click the Show Tabsets button to open the Tabsets View, and click a tab button. This will select the tab button, focus the tab associated with the button, and make the owner tabset of the tab active. You can now close the tabsets view by clicking the selected tab button again.

To quickly switch between tabsets, use the <Ctrl+Space> keyboard shortcut to open the Tabsets View and press a number from 1-9. The tabset corresponding to the number pressed will be made active. For instance, <Ctrl+Space> followed by 3 will switch to the third tabset in the tabsets view.

How to close a Tabset

You can close a tabset by closing all the tabs in the tabset. You can also close a tabset in the Tabsets View by clicking the close tabset button of the appropriate tabset.

Close tabset button