Searching for the Moon

Shannon Clark's rambles and conversations on food, geeks, San Francisco and occasionally economics

Posts Tagged ‘firefox’

Fixing the missing downloads window in Firefox (Mac)

Posted by shannonclark on August 26, 2008

This evening I encountered an odd problem running firefox on my Mac. I went to Flickr to download a photo of mine to use as a new desktop background. (cc license so you are free to do the same)

But when I went to pop open the downloads window to see the file name to open it, I couldn’t get my downloads window to open. It appeared as a window option on the windows menu, but nothing I did would cause it to actually, in fact, be visible.

So I poked around a bit online and then into the innards of firefox a little bit and I found a very simple, few second solution to this problem.

Search for the following file:


It should be present in your firefox profile directory (if you have multiple users on your computer be sure to delete the one from your current user’s profile).

I chose to delete it, which had the side effect of losing my download history (which I didn’t mind) if you want to preserve that this solution won’t be ideal. To delete I simply moved the file from the folder it was in to the trash.

I then closed Firefox (choosing the “save all tabs first” option). Note this is in the latest stable release version of Firefox for the Mac 3.01 as I write this, the “save all tabs first” option is a new one in the 3.0 release.

On rebooting Firefox I was able to open the downloads window as usual, Firefox rebuilt the downloads.sqlite file without what I can only assume was some form of file corruption.

So that is it, a very simple solution in the category of “get rid of corrupt config files”.

Posted in geeks, internet, mac | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

Fixing “Chrome registration failed” error on Firefox

Posted by shannonclark on November 1, 2007

Since the update to Firefox I have been experiencing a problem of three “Chrome Registration Failed” error messages being presented to me every time I restarted Firefox.

With today’s update to Firefox I had hoped that the problem would have been resolved.

Nope. Instead it only got worse, whenever I tried to update my add-ins and then edit their options, the add-ins pane froze. Looking on I found one suggestion for a fix (delete the extensions.ini, extensions.cache and extensions.rdf files from your profile). On doing that however not only did it NOT fix my problem, but in fact it made it worse – every single add-in I had installed was reset to a “needs restart” and even after a restart the add-ins were not installing.

So on experimentation I tried the following:

(all this is on Windows Vista)

Right click on the Firefox icon on your desktop.

Select “run as administrator”

And poof – problems gone, all add-ins installed and working.

I then closed Firefox and restarted it (figured running as administrator is not a good general practice).

But count me as in the “pox on both your houses” camp here – to both Microsoft and to Microsoft for having such a clunky OS that occasionally you have to run processes as administrator (i.e. as “root”). And for two serious bugs – first error messages that are BEYOND useless – reporting on an error WITHOUT NOTING WHAT CAUSED THE ERROR. And second, for building a USER application (a browser) which for some reason does something during the installation process of components (i.e. add-ins) which requires administrator rights.

Seriously bad coding somewhere.

And this is a case where Google failed me. Nothing I found after searching almost literally 100+ websites and online discussions had this fix, not even discussions on (which reported inaccurate fixes for this problem in fact).

So hopefully this will help someone and the last two hours of my life which was wasted on fixing this will at least help someone else.

Update – some of the comments make it clear I was unclear in the above. After initially running Firefox as administrator I have not had to do so again, something about that one running fixed what I can only suspect were either permissions or registry issues. This fix has survived reboots and subsequent installations of additional Firefox plugins. Glad it has been helpful to a few of you (about 100 people or so a day have been reading this due mostly to Google searches)

Posted in customer service, geeks, internet, microsoft | Tagged: , , | 476 Comments »