Search Support

Avoid support scams. We will never ask you to call or text a phone number or share personal information. Please report suspicious activity using the “Report Abuse” option.

Learn More

Intermittent issue with Firefox windows going invisible

  • 13 replies
  • 1 has this problem
  • 44 views
  • Last reply by jscher2000

more options

This is a hard one to provide steps for reproduction. The next time it happens I will take a screenshot.

The issue is as follows:

I'm on a 64 bit Ubuntu 18.04.2 LTS machine, with Firefox 66.0.3 installed. Every now and then (roughly once every 1 or 2 hours) I will do something in the browser, whether that be open a new tab, press play on a YouTube window or something else, the window will turn invisible. The frame of the window with the name of the tab up the top is still there, and I can drag it around no problem, but the actual content of the window is not there, I can see straight through it. At this point I've sort of ruled out it being an OS related issue, as Firefox is the only program on my system that seems to have this issue.

Any help would be much appreciated.

All Replies (13)

more options

This is a screenshot. You can see the window is present but the content is see through and the desktop is visible.

more options

It seems the entire toolbar area missing as well as the web content; you just have the top part of the window frame.

(It reminds me a bit of the Aero peek feature on Windows, but that couldn't be triggered by an activity in the application.)

Are other Firefox windows affected, for example, if you pop up a new window using Ctrl+n (or whatever the shortcut is on Linux)?

more options

The next time the issue occurs I will give this a go and get back to you.

more options

Opening a new window via keyboard shortcuts seems to work in opening a new working window that isn't suffering the issue, but the previous window stays as it is

more options

It's difficult to guess what is happening...

If you use the keyboard shortcut to cycle through tabs in the transparent window (Ctrl+Tab) are all of the tabs invisible, or does that trigger Firefox to repaint?

more options

No it seems so stay the same. It's cycling them because the frame of the window changes text as the tab changes, but the window is still transparent.

more options

Any results from trying to force Firefox to repaint the window contents from:

I wonder if there is some kind of transition or animation that went wrong? One transition that comes to mind is going to full screen on a video, but I have no idea whether that might be relevant.

more options

By the way, if you right-click in the area where you might expect to find a tab, do you get a tab context menu, some other menu, nothing?

more options

jscher2000 said

By the way, if you right-click in the area where you might expect to find a tab, do you get a tab context menu, some other menu, nothing?

Actually, maybe the menu will be invisible. If it is a tab context menu, this key sequence would pop it out into a new window. I don't know whether this is applicable to Linux:

right-click a tab > v > w

more options

Looks like a window with most of the chrome hidden with only a title bar. Extensions are able to open such a window (*).

Start Firefox in Safe Mode to check if one of the extensions ("3-bar" menu button or Tools -> Add-ons -> Extensions) or if hardware acceleration is is causing the problem.

  • switch to the DEFAULT theme: "3-bar" menu button or Tools -> Add-ons -> Themes
  • do NOT click the "Refresh Firefox" button on the Safe Mode start window
more options

jscher2000 said

jscher2000 said
By the way, if you right-click in the area where you might expect to find a tab, do you get a tab context menu, some other menu, nothing?

Actually, maybe the menu will be invisible. If it is a tab context menu, this key sequence would pop it out into a new window. I don't know whether this is applicable to Linux:

right-click a tab > v > w

Right clicking within the transparent window brings up a visible context menu.

more options

Any more ideas on this? I have found that restarting my shell fixes this, although only temporarily. It's not a normal thing to have to do a browser for it to function correctly

more options

Sorry, I'm hoping a Linux person can think about this one.

(Everyone is a bit distracted right now with the add-on problem.)