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Does no auto updating remain forever as set?

  • 14 replies
  • 1 has this problem
  • Last reply by confianza

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I wish to know if there is any kind of situation where my Firefox browser set at no auto updates after installation might have that changed without my doing it and without a hacker doing it?

Thank you.

All Replies (14)

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Your settings should remain as they were set until they are changed. What can change the settings? Add-ons, updates, bad-ware . . .

One thing to protect yourself is to create backups of your user profile.

I use an add-on that makes backups of my user profile, Just In Case. Unfortunately, it is not compatible with the current Firefox.

Every now and then, open the profile folder and create a copy of the current profile as is to another location on your hard drive. This way you will have a backup.

If you do this each day, you will not lose much data. This should be done with Firefox Closed.

Note: In case you need to restore from these backups, you may need to overwrite old or corrupted files.

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You will please forgive me for being overly cautious with my understanding of your answer. And thank you for your answer.

You state something about an update can change my settings, yes? But that cannot be done without my knowledge, right?

I don't use add-ons. And I am fully cognizant of the dangers of using the Net, like the bad-ware trouble, so I am overly cautious in all I do.

And that is why I am being overly cautious in analyzing your response.

There is no programming that could be sent from Mozilla/Firefox to my browser software that could change my update settings without my knowledge, correct?

To stop being circumspect, I had a most unusual experience with the Firefox browser some hours ago that caused me to do an emergency shutdown of this unit and then -- in safe mode -- uninstall Firefox.

I want to believe it is just that I made some really stupid blunder back a bit -- months ago, probably -- and that it is my fault. I accidently hit the Firefox browser button some hours ago today and immediately I was seeing that Firefox was going to install an update or updates. I am usually extremely careful about such things and thought I always set everyone to ask me about updates. So, you see, I am taking the route I screwed up really badly when I installed Firefox whenever I did. I don't have those files from my archives handy right now, so I don't know how long ago it was.

BUT before I even think about placing Firefox back on this unit I want to be absolutely sure I was the one that made a stupid mistake and not that Firefox has some weird way of changing my settings and not informing me of the change.

Again, I thank you for your assistance here.

Modified by confianza

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Nothing wrong with being cautious.

Add-ons may change settings for its own uses. Example; It's settings. Bad add-ons, however, change what should not be changed. Homepage, search engines . . .

Firefox updates; Sometimes there are new settings, sometimes old settings are no longer valid.

Currently, al add-ons must be submitted to Mozilla for testing. Firefox will not allow any add-on without Mozilla 'signing' it.

If the settings are changed, the user has no way of knowing unless the change is obvious; homepage, search engine . . .

There were add-ons that would alert the user if there were changes made. I don't know if they work with Quantum Firefox.

It’s very sad, but many software downloaders/ installers will trick you into installing not only their program, but other programs as well.

You have heard of the fine print in shady contracts, right? Well, some installers you need to look at the itsy bitsy teeny weeny fine print.

You are thinking you are giving the installer permission to install the program you want by using the recommended option. But if you use the Manual Option Instead, you discover all kinds of stuff that you do not even know what it is or what it does.

From now on, everyone needs to Use The Manual Option to put a stop to this.

Note that these programs can also change browser/computer settings.

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Sir, I have stated quite clearly that I do not abide by the use of anything that you might identify as an add-on. I run the browser in the most basic configuration that is possible.

So your insistence to continue on about add-ons prompts me to now ask if an add-on can be installed without my being aware of it if I have a Firefox browser installed on one of my units, other than my TRS80?

Thank you for addressing that question.

As for the question at hand, I am beginning to sense that you are informing me that, in fact, there are situations whereby Mozilla engineers could send something to my computer and change my update settings and I would not know about it unless I checked here first.

As I wrote, I am only beginning to sense that, but you seem to be answering with sprays of foggy stuff around the words you use and you are causing me to worry.

So maybe I should ask if there is any possibility of a definite answer of 'no' to my question?

Please excuse me for possibly trying your patience. And thank you for your continued attention to this thread.

I might also ask if anyone else might have something to contribute to the matter? I thank anyone else in advance if they can offer help here.

You see, people, this is exactly the sort of issue that EU regulators are eventually going to get to. Maybe it will be a few more years down the road, but you can be assured the issue has already been brought up about what sort of controls customers of software should be allowed to expect. Key word there is expect and this is not a trivial issue. It is an issue that has already been discussed in other venues, as I believe many of you know.

I am also a member of the ISOC and have been recently been offered an invite to a board meeting and could very well insert a question on this matter at that meeting.

You might confer that this is not just a personal issue with me. Very few things I do on the Net these days remain for very long just a personal issue, unfortunately.

Anyway, any contributions to this thread that can assist me in understanding this matter from the Mozilla Foundation's point of view would be greatly appreciated.

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confianza said

your insistence to continue on about add-ons prompts me to now ask if an add-on can be installed without my being aware of it

The current Firefox does come with pre-installed add-ons from Mozilla.

there are situations whereby Mozilla engineers could send something to my computer and change my update settings and I would not know about it unless I checked here first.

This did happen in the past. Nothing recent as far as I know. Nothing was posted here.

As I wrote, I am only beginning to sense that, but you seem to be answering with sprays of foggy stuff around the words you use and you are causing me to worry.

Sorry, not what I intended.

So maybe I should ask if there is any possibility of a definite answer of 'no' to my question?

Some have reported here that their Firefox was updated even tho their settings were set no to do so. I don't know if that was explained or not.

Please excuse me for possibly trying your patience. And thank you for your continued attention to this thread.

Not a problem.

I might also ask if anyone else might have something to contribute to the matter?

I called for more help. Someone may have better information.

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I do appreciate you sharing what information you have on hand and I do hope that we might have other participation here.

I am hoping that because it seems to me that a very basic <right> we should have is to be able control what is installed on our unit.

If this organization intends to formulate a policy that is counter to that <right> I think that we first need to be sure the members know that; and, second, we should be able to put forth the proposition that it might not be a good policy.

I was just over in Discourse, and that might be the better arena for a discussion of this, but we have started here, so I think we should simply continue here.

On a personal level I am now very concerned whether I will install the Firefox browser on this unit. And that is a surprise, because for some reason I had always viewed this organization of having such high standards of conduct that I didn't have to start analyzing policy as I do in other areas where I work on the Net. I guess to put it bluntly, I am feeling kind of sad at the moment.

Maybe I was just like them race horse animals that have those funny things on their heads that don't let them see another horse alongside them as they race along the track. Or a blind faith thing. I was racing along the Mozilla track and not looking properly around me. Seems like somebody at my age wouldn't be so stupid.

Anyway, I sure hope we see more input here. This actually scares me a bit, too.

And FredMcD, thank you. Don't be a stranger here, please. If something else comes to you on the topic/question, please drop by. Please.

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Hi, unfortunately this will not go far here. You are correct that Discourse would possibly be better if it is to with add-ons. You can also go to the 3Bar Menu --> Help --> Submit Feedback to be reviewed by a team. Or this goes to the same place : Feedback:

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Yes Firefox has been forcing updates. If want to know what is updated in each release can go to Help --> About which of course starts a update if available or can read from this :

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Pkshadow, I sincerely appreciate the help here.

As for the idea of how far to go at any location around here, <> <> <> well, my disappointment is mighty real at the moment.

May I ask for your feelings on the matter, Pkshadow?

Do you think the idea of forcing updates is proper?

That is the reason I refuse to use Chrome.

I feel so very stupid, too. I sincerely had no clue this organization played by the same rules as Mr. Page's folks do.

I really thought this was a People's Place <> <> <> a People's Hall <> <> <> a People's Foundation, so to speak. And now I learn the Google mentality is at work here, too.

This Net World is becoming just like the Masters and Serfs of ages ago, where us low ranking peasant types have no rights. The Masters order and we must obey. Otherwise, out the door with you.

And the justification for installing such a class system is exactly the same as ages ago -- we know better than you. You are too stupid to know what's good for you. So we decide for you.

Let us look at this from the stupid peasant style of thinking and of an old man like me.

If Motorola years ago sent a workman to my house with orders to install some piece of equipment in my new television and the workman told me I had no right to stop that installation from taking place, what do you reckon would have happened?

Of course, your reaction is going to be that my example is so far off and not even close to a good comparison, right?

But we are discussing communications equipment.

And we are into the areas of what rights we have here in/on this Net World.

A People's Foundation. How stupid I am!

Yep, disappointment is the word stuck in my brain at the moment.

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HI, myself I think there is nothing wrong with it especially if it security related. I gather you have not spent much time understanding Windows 10. Just wait as there is no choice. Windows as a Service is the policy. You do not pay there fore you get what we give you, like it or not, try and turn off updating. The good thing is can figure out how to turn most of the crap off and limit their telemetry.

I think you will most software going that way in the future to keep a stable program and stop having thousands of versions being run with thousands of problems to remember and how to fix on each. If everyone is running the same thing then support would be much easier as well as fixing issues.

I think you should read that URL I provided regarding releases and look at what each version release accomplishes.

My personal opinion matters little though other than I can order a hamburger with out ketchup. The fact is you have a choice, use it or do not or hack it.

Eudora is a perfect example of what can happen to a good email program. It's code released this week as open source after years of being sat on by Cisco.

Any ho, this is not the place for discussion. You could try the Firefox reddit page if there is a place for general discussion. Regards.

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"no auto updating" isn't even an option.

  1. "Check for updates but let you choose to install them" - up until recent versions of Firefox the "message" that an update was available, "do you want to install it" all too easily ended up being shoved behind the main browser window where users didn't even see it; then after 10 seconds the update would automatically be downloaded without waiting any longer for a user response. That took me a month to figure out when I was running Nightly development Firefox [with an update every day] when that feature was first introduced - over 10 years ago. As it turned out I was "clicking" to open a bookmark at exactly the same time as Firefox was checking for an update and never saw the "Update is Available" window. First launch each day is when Firefox checks the updates server for a new / updated version. I have recently seen comments here that with the redesign of the UI that "message" appearance and action has been changed. Which I may never see due to my using an old Firefox 38.0 ESR version most of the time. I do have other versions of Firefox installed. I have been spending the last 6 months (since Quantum was released) trying to configure and customize Quantum to my tasted and initially set Firefox 60 as my goal. But as Mozilla is wont to do, they keep "messing with" the new stuff and breaking what I have already customized to suit my tastes. New Tab Page is the most recent set-back for me.
  2. "Never check for updates (not recommended)" in Options seems to work for most users, but it works only so far until the Mozilla Maintenance Service kicks in. Which can override that "Never check ..." preference.
  3. - but the preference to disable MMS was removed from Options recently.
  4. If you delete the updater.exe file from the Firefox Program Files folder - that removes the guts of MMS. That is the first thing I do when I install a new version of Firefox. I update it when I feel like it; usually weeks after it is released, to let the "early adopters" report their complaints before I update.
  5. In about:config if you null the URL for where Firefox gets its update from it can't update. app.update.url = delete the "Value" URL for that pref That's also what I do with my older versions of Firefox and their Profiles.

Bottom line is that Mozilla would rather lose disgruntled users to other browsers than for users continue to use out of date versions that increasing become less secure as each new version with security fixes are released.

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Appreciate the effort you've put into your response, edmeister. Good to see folks willing to go the extra lap for fellow Net Citizens.

So #4 on your list rings a bell for some reason, BUT is there a way I can just move the executable file around, instead of putting it into my recycle bin? I mean, if I delete it, it goes to the recycle bin, I think.

Maybe I can just slide it out of the Firefox Folder and then slide it back in when the times comes to accept an update I have studied and seen is safe.

Rats! I can't seem to get my brain into this properly from the project I was just working on. Maybe you can assist me a tad bit more, please. I like number four, but delete sounds a tad bit of dangerous. Maybe I forget that's in the garbage can and dump all the garbage and BAM bye-bye executable file needed to allow the updating to happen.

By the way, what else is affected in the browser if the executable file is removed?

And, again, sure do appreciate your effort in your first post in this thread. Pretty neat, that!

Oh yes, how do you know you are THE edmeister? That is quite a responsibility. You might be the 2nd one. But being THE one makes it difficult for you, doesn't it? Such a lofty position in the Net World would mean you would have so many duties all over the place. Don't mind me, please. I'm just a tad crazy. Or maybe a tad more than a tad crazy.

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  1. 4 Just rename the file updater-old.exe
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You know something, Pkshadow, I do not recommend getting old. Do something to delay that process. I mean something more than what we already have going on Earth that has folks living longer. Why that advice?

Well, your answer was in my brain from way back, but it didn't show up when needed and it can only be because my brain is way too old.

I think my brain is now like one of my TRS80s ― too slow.

Yep, that renaming business brings back a few memories. Actually, I don't do much code work, anymore. Stuff has gotten way too complicated. When you stop some things other stuff starts to slide into a kind of recycle bin of the mind.

Okey-dokey, good post there, Pkshadow. Thank you. And remember, stop that aging thing, okay? You stay young for about 2 or 3 centuries and later they'll make a neat movie about you. Wait, some Scottish fella did that already, didn't he?

Modified by confianza