Adds a button to the browser's toolbar.

A browser action is a button in the browser's toolbar.

You can associate a popup with the button. The popup is specified using HTML, CSS and JavaScript, just like a normal web page. JavaScript running in the popup gets access to all the same WebExtension APIs as your background scripts, but its global context is the popup, not the current page displayed in the browser. To affect web pages you need to communicate with them via messages.

If you specify a popup, it will be shown — and the content will be loaded — when the user clicks the icon. If you do not specify a popup, then when the user clicks the icon an event is dispatched to your extension.

You can define most of a browser action's properties declaratively using the browser_action key in the manifest.json.

With the browserAction API, you can:

  • use browserAction.onClicked to listen for clicks on the icon.
  • get and set the icon's properties — icon, title, popup, and so on. You can get and set these globally across all tabs, or for a specific tab by passing the tab ID as an additional argument.

Types

browserAction.ColorArray
An array of four integers in the range 0-255 defining an RGBA color.
browserAction.ImageDataType
Pixel data for an image. Must be an ImageData object (for example, from a <canvas> element).

Functions

browserAction.setTitle()
Sets the browser action's title. This will be displayed in a tooltip.
browserAction.getTitle()
Gets the browser action's title.
browserAction.setIcon()
Sets the browser action's icon.
browserAction.setPopup()
Sets the HTML document to be opened as a popup when the user clicks on the browser action's icon.
browserAction.getPopup()
Gets the HTML document set as the browser action's popup.
browserAction.openPopup()
Open the browser action's popup.
browserAction.setBadgeText()
Sets the browser action's badge text. The badge is displayed on top of the icon.
browserAction.getBadgeText()
Gets the browser action's badge text.
browserAction.setBadgeBackgroundColor()
Sets the badge's background color.
browserAction.getBadgeBackgroundColor()
Gets the badge's background color.
browserAction.setBadgeTextColor()
Sets the badge's text color.
browserAction.getBadgeTextColor()
Gets the badge's text color.
browserAction.enable()
Enables the browser action for a tab. By default, browser actions are enabled for all tabs.
browserAction.disable()
Disables the browser action for a tab, meaning that it cannot be clicked when that tab is active.
browserAction.isEnabled()
Checks whether the browser action is enabled or not.

Events

browserAction.onClicked
Fired when a browser action icon is clicked. This event will not fire if the browser action has a popup.

Browser compatibility

Update compatibility data on GitHub
DesktopMobile
ChromeEdgeFirefoxOperaFirefox for Android
ColorArrayChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
ImageDataTypeChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
disableChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
enableChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
getBadgeBackgroundColorChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
getBadgeTextChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
getBadgeTextColorChrome No support NoEdge No support NoFirefox Full support 63Opera No support NoFirefox Android No support No
getPopupChrome Full support YesEdge No support NoFirefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android Full support 57
getTitleChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 15Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android Full support 55
isEnabledChrome No support NoEdge No support NoFirefox Full support 59Opera No support NoFirefox Android No support No
onClickedChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45Opera Full support YesFirefox Android Full support 55
openPopupChrome No support NoEdge No support NoFirefox Full support 57Opera No support NoFirefox Android No support No
setBadgeBackgroundColorChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45
Full support 45
No support 45 — 58
Notes
Notes Tab-specific badge background color is not cleared when a new page is loaded.
Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
setBadgeTextChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45
Full support 45
No support 45 — 58
Notes
Notes Tab-specific badge text is not cleared when a new page is loaded.
Opera Full support YesFirefox Android No support No
setBadgeTextColorChrome No support NoEdge No support NoFirefox Full support 63Opera No support NoFirefox Android No support No
setIconChrome Full support Yes
Notes
Full support Yes
Notes
Notes Before Chrome 23, `path` couldn't specify multiple icon files, but had to be a string specifying a single icon path.
Edge Full support 14
Notes
Full support 14
Notes
Notes This call is not persisted.
Notes The imageData parameter is not accepted.
Notes The path parameter is required.
Firefox Full support 45
Full support 45
No support 45 — 58
Notes
Notes Tab-specific icons are not cleared when a new page is loaded.
Opera Full support 15Firefox Android No support No
setPopupChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 14Firefox Full support 45
Full support 45
No support 45 — 58
Notes
Notes Tab-specific popups are not cleared when a new page is loaded.
Opera Full support YesFirefox Android Full support 57
Full support 57
No support 57 — 58
Notes
Notes Tab-specific popups are not cleared when a new page is loaded.
setTitleChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 15Firefox Full support 45
Full support 45
No support 45 — 58
Notes
Notes Tab-specific titles are not cleared when a new page is loaded.
Opera Full support YesFirefox Android Full support 55
Full support 55
No support 55 — 58
Notes
Notes Tab-specific titles are not cleared when a new page is loaded.

Legend

Full support  
Full support
No support  
No support
See implementation notes.
See implementation notes.

Example extensions

Acknowledgements

This API is based on Chromium's chrome.browserAction API. This documentation is derived from browser_action.json in the Chromium code.

Microsoft Edge compatibility data is supplied by Microsoft Corporation and is included here under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.

Document Tags and Contributors

Last updated by: wbamberg,