Firefox blocks the Backspace-key to go back action by default


Level 14
Thread author
Top poster
Jan 21, 2018
As of Firefox 86 the ability to go back in history by hitting the backspace key has been disabled by default - Firefox 86 will block the Backspace-key to go back action by default - gHacks Tech News

It is possible to configure the browser so as it functions this way again, or to use alternatives like ALT + left arrow key in Windows, which is what I am trying to train my brain needs to be done. But, after many years of using this keyboard shortcut, and never, as far as I recall, having the issues given as the reasons why Mozilla disabled this shortcut, I'm finding it quite frustrating. Hit backspace > wonder why nothing happens!

I'll get there in the end, I hope! Do others find this type of change to a long possible, and frequently used by some, shortcut as frustrating as I do? Or is it just my brain being stuck in a past era?! What I find strange is that I've long used ALT + right arrow key to go forward in history. Teaching old dogs new tricks!!


Level 27
Top poster
Jun 14, 2011
The article you have linked to, says how to restore Backspace key functionality:

Restore Backspace-key functionality in Firefox​

firefox backspace key navigate back

Firefox users who do use the Backspace-key to navigate back can restore it in desktop versions of Firefox.

  1. Load about:config in the Firefox address bar.
  2. Confirm that you will be careful.
  3. Search for browser.backspace_action.
  4. Change the value of the preference to 0.
Doing so restores the classic Backspace-key action to navigate back a page.