Archive for the ‘Web Browsers’ Category

Strange Firefox Errors

October 19, 2009

Most of the time Mozilla Firefox is a very reliable and fast web browser. So I was very surprised to see this error dialog box pop up on my screen.

Firefox Addons May Be Causing Problems

Firefox Addons May Be Causing Problems

I don’t know what the Windows Presentation Foundation is and I have never knowingly installed it. It sounds like a Microsoft product. I clicked on the “More Information” link and got something even more confusing:

This Connection is Untrusted

This Connection is Untrusted

This seems to be some sort of localization failure. I think I told Firefox (or maybe Windows XP) that I use British English. So it was having trouble checking access to the GB version of That’s Firefox’s own maker!

The warnings were ambiguous but worrying so I decided to take the “Get me out of here!” option. I feared it could have been some fiendishly clever spoofing attack and is a bad site. It does look like a strange address.

I tried “More Information” a second time with the same result.

I restarted Firefox as it requested to disable the Windows Presentation Foundation and everything seems to be working okay.

Another proof, as if more was needed, that computers in general and PCs in particular are far too complex. Why did Firefox need a secure http (https) connection to show me that information in the first place?

Google Chrome Annoyance

October 11, 2009

It’s only a small thing but it annoys me. If you close the only tab in the Google Chrome browser (Windows) the application quits without warning.

Chrome About Blank

Firefox is more intelligent. It removes the close button from the last tab so you cannot close it. To quit you have to click the “close” box at the top right like any other Windows application.

If you have more than one tab open then all of them have little close buttons. But when you get to one the close button disappears.

Firefox About Blank

Clearly the Firefox designers anticipated this condition.

I hope somebody will tell me that there’s an option somewhere in Chrome to change this behaviour.

AutoCopy :: Add-on for Firefox

August 30, 2009

AutoCopy :: Add-on for Firefox.

Firefox AutoCopy Add-on

I’m always copying snippets of text from web pages to use on this blog or something else I am writing. This little add-on makes it a bit easier. Every time I select some text it presses Ctrl-C for me and copies it to the clipboard. It only works for text – not images.

It has a useful right-click menu that includes:

  • Undo copy
  • Previous clipboards – a history!
  • Paste to location bar
  • Paste to search bar
  • Search for (whatever is selected)
  • Open in new tab (assuming you’ve selected a URL)
  • Append URL to clipboard

My only problem with Firefox add-ons is that they are very sensitive to the Firefox version. Firefox wants to update itself almost weekly and I almost always get an error message about incompatible add-ons I have installed.

It’s another of those things that make using a PC more complex and stressful than I like. I like to minimize the number of add-ons and utilities I install – but they grow inexorably over time. I lost the lot when my old laptop’s drive crashed and it was nice to start from scratch.

I found a problem with Auto Copy when composing blog posts. When I want to add a URL I usually find the page I want in another browser tab and copy the URL from the address bar. Then I return to the editing window, select the text and insert the link.

But with Auto Copy it replaces what I just put on the clipboard with the text I’d selected in the post. That caused me to wonder what was up until I remembered Auto Copy. The work around is to select the text first and open the link creation window. Then go to the other tab and copy the URL.

Aren’t side effects wonderful‽

Annoying Firefox Error Message

July 3, 2009

“Please check the name and try again.”

Firefox knows that I have accessed this URL before (it’s in my History), so there’s no point in telling me I may have made a mistake typing the address. This will only confuse inexperienced users.

Similarly if I click on a link in a page from a known site and the connection doesn’t work there’s little point in asking the user to check the name and try again.

It’s a trivial point but it happens a lot from Thailand where the Internet is very inconsistent in its performance and connectivity (Being very polite here.)


Other browsers do it too – it isn’t only Firefox.