Installing Firefox Metro In Windows 8.1

By now, you’ve likely heard about the release of Firefox Metro for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. For those who missed the big news, Mozilla released the Metro version of Firefox browser to the Aurora channel about a week ago and is now available for download.

Firefox Metro sports a clean interface, shows address bar (Awesomebar) at the bottom of the screen, and tabs appear at the top of the screen. Just like the desktop version, it lets you pin your favourite webpages to the new tab page, and sync password and bookmarks across your devices.

Firefox Metro for Windows 8.1

It also lets you pin your favourite webpages to the Start screen, open webpages in desktop version of Firefox, search for words in the webpage using Find in page option, and more importantly, it supports Windows 8/8.1’s touch and swipe gestures.

The other cool thing is that Firefox Metro displays a large Plus button at the right-edge of the screen so that you can quickly open new tabs when using Firefox on a touch-screen device.

Despite being a preview build, Firefox Metro is pretty stable and works flawlessly. Unfortunately, you can’t get Firefox Metro working just by installing Firefox Metro on your Windows 8/8.1 machine.

You need to set Firefox as your default web browser in order to see Aurora tile on the Start screen. That also means that if you have set any other browser, say, Internet Explorer, as your default browser, then clicking Firefox Aurora tile on the Start screen/Apps view will launch the desktop version and not the Metro version of Firefox.

Firefox Metro for Windows 8.1 Picture

The other catch is that once you set Firefox Aurora (Metro) as your default browser, you won’t be able to launch and run Internet Explorer Metro version.

If you’re not sure how to install and set Firefox Metro as your default web browser, follow given below instructions:

Step 1: Visit this page of Mozilla and download Firefox Aurora setup.

Step 2: Fire-up the installer, follow on-screen instructions to complete the installation. The setup will automatically pin Firefox Aurora icon to the taskbar.

Firefox Metro version

Note that you can install Firefox Aurora on your PC even if you already have installed stable version of Firefox.

Step 3: Once installed, click on the Firefox Aurora tile on the Start screen to launch Firefox Metro. And if clicking on Aurora is launching the desktop version of the browser, it’s because you have set a browser other than Firefox as your default web browser.

In order to set Firefox as your default web browser, start the desktop version of Firefox Aurora clicking on the Aurora tile in the Apps view or the icon on the taskbar. Upon launching the browser, you’ll see the following dialog box asking your permission to set Firefox Aurora as your default web browser:

Firefox Metro for Windows 8.1 Picture2

Click Yes button, when you see How do you want to open this type of link, select Aurora from the list to set Firefox Aurora as your default web browser.

Firefox Metro for Windows 8.1 Picture3

Step 4: Switch to the Start screen and click on the Firefox Aurora tile (in Windows 8) or Firefox Aurora tile in the Apps view (in Windows 8.1) to open Firefox Metro browser (click the small Down arrow located at the lower-left bottom to reveal the Apps view).

Firefox Metro for Windows & Windows 8.1

That’s it! Good luck.



  1. John R. Sellers says


    Is there any LOGICAL reason for all this hostility toward Laurence? He is simply giving his opinion.

    I have been running Windows 8.1 on my PC for about a month so far, so I’ve spent a good amount of time trying to get used to the Start Screen, and I DO like some of its features, but there are a few things I don’t. I’m currently using 8.1 in desktop mode with Classic Shell installed; gives me a more Windows 7 feel to it.

    I DID like that when I installed 8.1, I didn’t have to bother re-installing my DSL modem driver/ethernet controller, video adapter, or even my printer driver. Windows 8.1 detected them all.

  2. Rocco says

    Laurence if you cannot understand why and how the two versions are able to work with each other to help you get more done then either you are one of those people who does not like to have any thing change in their lives ever and thus anything that is new and interesting and better is automatically crap or you are just an idiot. There is nothing about metro that is complicated. All you have to do is quite whining about how “I DONT LIKE IT ITS HARD” and actually take the time to LEARN something new rather than being stuck in the golden perfect world that you have lived in for years and years and which you believe will never fade away. Also PLEASE for the love of Pete before you EVER comment on anything online ever again learn how to properly phrase your English, if you are going to be part of our culture please learn to speak and phrase the language properly otherwise your comment is effectively invalidated.

  3. laurence says

    I find this distinction between the version from deskop or the one from Metro 8.1 startpage very troublesome to handle with. I still do not understand how it works differently between the two and do not understand why things with metro have become so complicated…

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