Select links text in Firefox easily

Has it happened that you need to select some text from a link? It can be a very delicate procedure: you have to carefully look for the end or the beginning of the link, click just next to either of them and then drag until the wanted text is selected. Then you paste it somewhere and remove the unneeded words.

Asa Dotzler brings up an alternative hidden method: press the Alt key while making a selection over the link just like it was regular text.

He has also suggested to improve it mimicking Opera’s behavior that autodetects whether you are trying to drag the link somewhere or making a selection based on the direction of your movement. Of course this doesn’t solve the discoverability problem completely but would be a step forward.

Edit: Due to an ugly bug when you Alt select text within a link it will also save the link to your default location. This is a conflict with another modifier: Alt + click on a link and the target will be saved automatically.


  1. David Naylor April 26, 2007 3:16 pm 

    Didn’t you write previously that they have fixed this on the trunk?

  2. WulfTheSaxon April 29, 2007 8:26 pm 

    You can select parts of links very easily by positioning your cursor just below the link and selecting as usual.

    • Alek Zandre October 28, 2009 10:31 am 

      Work, but not anywhere. Try to do it with link above, for example, select ‘mozillalinks’

  3. Mario May 27, 2008 9:14 pm 

    The method of WulfTheSaxon is the best. It woks. Thank you.

  4. or October 28, 2008 7:19 am 


    The ALT key doesn’t work on linux, because it is already used to move the window (at least in kde 3.5).

    Any other workaround?

    • meh September 28, 2009 9:16 pm 

      > The ALT key doesn’t work on linux

      Try CTRL+ALT. Works for me.

  5. browny January 13, 2009 9:42 pm 

    Thanks for “SONSiVRi”
    It does work, nice trick!

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