If you frequently want to switch between your local development instance of your web application, and the production version, or perhaps another version like an integration or QA installation, the Server Switcher Firefox plugin may be useful to you. With this plugin, you simply assign both URLs to each other in the Options tabe for the plugin and an icon will appear in the URL field of your browser. Clicking it will toggle you between the two URLs.

For example, if I was running an application on my local machine at http://localhost:8080, and the live version was at www.brianburridgecom, I would enter each in the plugin’s options under Development Server and Live Server respectively. When I got to either web site, I get an icon. A construction hat when working locally, and a server when on the “live” server.

The plugin supports ports, subdirectories, local files (specified with file://). Ctrl-Shift-X can be used to toggle with the keyboard.

I have found this plugin very useful during web site development. I don’t always have the “live” server set for a true production install, but instead to switch between my local development instance, and an integrated development server to perform some QA on both and compare the differences between them.

The plugin can be found here.