Animated GIFs

Here is a handy tip for dealing with a site that has animated GIFs, pressing ‘ESC’ key will pause animated GIF’s on a page (broken with Firefox 20 and newer). This works in both Firefox and Internet Exploiter.  Note: in order to ‘resume’ the animation you will need to refresh/reload the page. You can test this out with the image below:

Additional options via an about:config tweak:

  1. In a new tab type about:config in the address bar and press enter
  2. In the filter field type animation
  3. In the results listed double-click on image.animation_mode
  4. In the pop-up box type in one of the following:
    • none — will prevent image animation
    • once — will let the image animate once
    • normal (default) — will allow it to play over and over

Note: Once setting does not appear to work in later builds of Firefox 2 and does not work at all in Firefox 3.

Tip Source: CyberNet News

19 Comments on Animated GIFs

  1. The ‘ESC’ key works great for me! Wish I’d known about that a long time ago. Thanks! 🙂

  2. Need help to get my gifs to animate.
    I checked the above and it is set to normal so it should animate, but gifs do not for firefox 2.09 nor my explorer 7.0.

    Any help would be appreciated.

  3. Well i just change my config for 1. thanks

  4. Animatd GIFs in my firefox broweser run faster than IE. Any ideas?

  5. This may sound strange, but could you tell me the name of the person who created the animated gif in your entry, so that I know whom to credit on my livejournal userinfo?

  6. Is there a way to restrict the image.animation_mode setting to a specific domain?

    E.g. image.animation_mode = none
    for domain foo but

    image.animation_mode = normal
    for all other domains.

  7. @Bob, interesting idea. I don’t know of any way at this point. I am not sure if it is something that could be possible via a GreaseMonkey Script or an add-on.

  8. Firefox 3 users do in about:config


  9. My Firefox won’t play gifs, it only shows the first frame, there’s no animation, is there anyway to fix it? I’ve tried the about:config, it’s set to normal.

  10. I looked at the picture 10 minutes, each man lived his life 🙂

  11. Very useful, especially when Firefox uses all that unnecessary CPU power for off-screen GIFs

  12. you’re king, thanks for this! 🙂
    1-2 regularly visited sites were driving me mad: these anim gifs slowed the scrolling, etc down like hell.
    These animgif-heavy sites sometimes feel like when a 4 years old waves one of those swirly-sparkly-whatsitcalleds right in front of your eyes…

  13. Using “loop” in the FireFox 3.5 about:config to animate the GIFs works for me.

  14. To pause GIFs save them AND PLAY IN QUICKTIME VIEWER. This is the best solution I have found.

  15. I would also like to know how to restrict GIF animation by domain in Firefox. The Opera browser has this built in under “Edit Site Preferences”.

  16. Oh dear lord.. the internet just became more bearable. That’s a truly fantastic thing to know. Thanks

  17. Thank you! This is just what I was looking for.

    For reference, typing “once” works perfectly in FF 6.0.2.

  18. doug maenpaa | February 3, 2012 at 10:14 AM |

    I tried the technique in my firefox browser, but it did not work. I even tried restarting firefox. These GIFs are maddening.

    Doug maenpaa

  19. As of FireFox 20.0 (2013-04-02), ESC-to-stop animations was purposefully disabled. In its place, you can install the SuperStop addon which allows you to use Shift-ESC to stop animated GIFs.

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