[CentOS] [OT] Firefox loses plugins, anyone else? Bug? Known?

William L. Maltby CentOS4Bill at triad.rr.com
Mon Dec 22 23:49:35 UTC 2008


SYNOPSIS: Bug between Firefox and

   gnome-default-applications-properties

somewhere.

When FF is set to check to see if it is the default browser and it is
not and the user selects "Yes" to make it the default, FF writes the
full path to the /usr/lib instance in the command and sets the preferred
browser to "Custom".

This causes the symptoms that have been seen, including the truncation
of pluginreg.dat.

If the user responds "No" when FF asks if it should be the default
browser, the settings that were selected in 

  gnome-default-applications-properties

hold and the adverse symptoms are not seen.

WORKAROUND: tell firefox "No" or to _not_ check to see if it is the
default browser after running gnome-default-applications-properties and
selecting it there.

CONCLUSION: The gnome-default-applications-properties apparently gets
the binary in /usr/bin while FF itself bypasses this binary and goes
directly to the /usr/lib/ firefox instance. In this case the adverse
symptoms are seen.

Bug somewhere, I presume FF since the

   gnome-default-applications-properties

settings work OK and it accesses the binary in /usr/bin.

More detail that you ever wanted to know follows.

I presume this completes the triage process? Now, who reports and where?

:-)

Bill
On Mon, 2008-12-22 at 22:43 +0100, Matej Cepl wrote:
> On 2008-12-22, 17:58 GMT, William L. Maltby wrote:
> > Other folks chimed in at various points, so you might want to 
> > take a gander at those too.
> 
> I think I saw couple of these in our bugzilla now and I wonder 
> whether it is the same. Try to run 
> gnome-default-applications-properties and take a look at what's 
> set as your browser application. If it is 
> /usr/lib/firefox*/firefox or something like that, then select the 
> default Firefox and it should work.

This A.M. a new FF appeared for update. Now running Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U;
Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.9.0.5) Gecko/2008121911
CentOS/3.0.5-1.el5.centos Firefox/3.0.5

Taking a slightly different tack that what you suggest first (I'll do
yours too) I went into preferences, did the check to see if FF was the
default browser. It was _not_.

Exited FF, clicked a link in T'bird and it gave an expected message in
the dialog box, "Error showing url: There was an error launching the
default action command associated with this location".

The pluginreg.dat was still OK at that point.

I then went to FF, went to preferences and set FF to the default
browser. Exited FF again, fired up T'bird, clicked the link and FF
started up.

The pluginreg.dat was then "empty", essentially, again.

$ ls -ltr *plug*
-rw------- 1 bill bill 4939 Mar 16  2008 pluginreg.dat-
-rw------- 1 bill bill 5450 Dec  5 17:18 pluginreg.dat-2
-rw------- 1 bill bill  290 Dec  5 17:29 pluginreg.dat-4
-rw------- 1 bill bill  290 Dec  5 17:29 pluginreg.dat-3
-rw------- 1 bill bill 6042 Dec  6 19:14 pluginreg.dat-5
-rw------- 1 bill bill  290 Dec 22 17:36 pluginreg.dat

So, regardless of the new FF, behavior is consistent with that
previously seen. BTW, the "empty" occurs upon entry to FF, apparently,
as thge ls was done while still in FF.

Now that we have a starting base that is known "good", I'll exit FF,
restore the pluginreg.dat from the -5 version, try what you asked and
give it a shot again.

Ran gnome-default-applications-properties and the dialog showed "Custom"
for web browser and the "Command" box contained

   /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.5/firefox "%s"

which is the same (IIRC) as what I showed in one of my previous posts
except the path portion was not there.

Please recall that one of the items I felt _might_ be affecting this was
that T'bird did not have the "%s" (although IIRC it was "%u"?).

However, in the "Web Browser" drop-down menu, there is a FF Icon. When I
select it, it drops the path (equivalent to basename applied to the full
path) and the "Command" drop-down is inactive and the contents show only
"firefox %s" (no quotes, of course).

$ whereis firefox
firefox: /usr/bin/firefox
$ ls -l /usr/bin/firefox
-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 4526 Dec 20 14:33 /usr/bin/firefox
$ file /usr/bin/firefox
/usr/bin/firefox: Bourne shell script text executable

Upon cursory inspection of that script, it looks in the usual places,
sets the usual variables (looks like it goes to /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.5
but I didn't really check closely since it looked so familiar).

I closed the preferred applictions dialog, fired up T'bird RATS!

There was an available Acrobat Reader Plugin Available. That might scrog
the test. I downloaded it, FF started up and a "Default Browser" dialog
appeared saying "Firefox is not currently set as your default browser.
Would you like to make it your default browser?"

This surprised me since I had just run the 

   gnome-default-applications-properties

and set the default - the only difference I would guess is the full path
vs. the basname.

Hm,... Tell it yes? I guess that's the best choice. Before I clicked yes
the pluginreg.dat still looks OK.

FF fired up, I closed the ad the new browser started, looked at the
original desired web page in the FF tab and pluginreg.dat is still OK.

CLUE? I'll try to verify, but this is the first time, AFAIK, that both
the FF is the default browser in the FF files (since it did the check
and I clicked yes) and in the gnome preferences, because I ran that
command you suggested and selected the FF icon, which wiped out the
previous "Custom" entry containing the full path name.

If this is really a clue, we probably ought to gripe at someone that
selection in either of the two places ought to work, don't you think?

I'm going to try and duplicate this now.

Exit FF, pluginreg.dat is still good. Exit T'bird, pluginreg.dat still
good.

Start T'bird, pluginreg.dat still good. Click link, pluginreg.dat is
"empty" again.

$ ls -ltr *plug*
-rw------- 1 bill bill 4939 Mar 16  2008 pluginreg.dat-
-rw------- 1 bill bill 5450 Dec  5 17:18 pluginreg.dat-2
-rw------- 1 bill bill  290 Dec  5 17:29 pluginreg.dat-4
-rw------- 1 bill bill  290 Dec  5 17:29 pluginreg.dat-3
-rw------- 1 bill bill 6042 Dec  6 19:14 pluginreg.dat-5
-rw------- 1 bill bill  290 Dec 22 18:21 pluginreg.dat

Before exiting anything, ran the

  gnome-default-applications-properties

again. The dialog box again shows "Custom" and the command again has the
full path,

   /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.5/firefox "%s"

So it looks os if the FF check to see if it's the default affects the
preferred applications settings.

I'll cycle this again and _not_ let FF set itself as default and see
what happens.

I exit FF, pluginreg.dat is still "empty", exit T'bird pluginreg.dat is
still "empty", I select FF icon in preferred applications, pluginreg.dat
still "empty".

I cp -a the -5 pluginreg.dat to pluginreg.dat, start T'bird,
pluginreg.dat still good, click link, FF starts and asks if I want to
make it the default browser. I say no. Pluginreg.dat is still good.

Exit FF, pluginreg.dat is still good. Ran 

  gnome-default-applications-properties

and the preferred applications box still shows the "short form".


> 
> Does it help?

Only if I don't select "Yes" when FF asks if I want to make it the
default browser.

> 
> Matěj
> <snip sig stuff>

-- 
Bill



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