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I used to be able to copy a url before the page had loaded, now i can only copy a url once the page has loaded - i use this a lot for work and its a pain - fix?

  • 19 replies
  • 3 have this problem
  • 934 views
  • Last reply by cor-el

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If I click on the link I want (as per the image) I would instantly be able to copy the link and paste it in an email. I now can't do this. I now have to wait for the page to be fully loaded, which is a pain as I like to work quickly and this takes time when I have slow internet connection. I also reply to email etc without internet connection sometime so this is not ideal Any ideas?

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Chosen solution

Do you want to try a different workaround? I don't know whether this will work better for you, but if you prefer your old style of working, it might work better. That would be to switch from the new Quantumbar code to the old address bar code:

(1) In a new tab, type or paste about:config in the address bar and press Enter/Return. Click the button accepting the risk.

(2) In the search box above the list, type or paste URLB and pause while the list is filtered

(3) Double-click the browser.urlbar.quantumbar preference to switch the value from true to false

I don't remember whether that takes effect immediately, or only in new windows, or only after quitting and restarting Firefox.

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All Replies (19)

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Hi SShalgi, if I understand what you're saying, you click a suggestion from history or bookmarks, and Firefox starts loading that page, but if you try to copy the URL from the address bar while it is still loading, it doesn't work correctly.

What are you seeing: does Firefox capture about:blank or the previous URL instead of the new one?

When I want to copy a URL from the drop-down, I actually don't click it. This is my method:

  • Use the down arrow key on the keyboard to select the history item -- Firefox shows its URL in the address bar
  • Select the entire URL in the address bar (for example, Ctrl+A on Windows, Command+A on Mac)
  • Copy the URL
  • Press the Esc key to return the URL bar to its previous status (for example, the address of the current page).

Maybe using that approach would save you some unnecessary/unwanted page loads?

(I use Windows, but hopefully you'll be able to use a similar trick on Mac.)

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You can use cursor Right to copy a selected item to the location bar without opening this link.

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This is still unfortunately a longer process than how it used to be for me. I don't know what happened and why i can't just copy the link before the page loads like I used to. Any other ideas?

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Hi SShalgi, what ends up on the clipboard when you try to copy the URL while it's still loading: does Firefox capture nothing, or "about:blank", or the previous URL instead of the new one?

(I'm having trouble testing because using the method you described, it takes longer for me to focus the address bar and copy than it takes for the page to load.)

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It has the previous thing I copied so it doesn't even copy anything

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Chosen Solution

Do you want to try a different workaround? I don't know whether this will work better for you, but if you prefer your old style of working, it might work better. That would be to switch from the new Quantumbar code to the old address bar code:

(1) In a new tab, type or paste about:config in the address bar and press Enter/Return. Click the button accepting the risk.

(2) In the search box above the list, type or paste URLB and pause while the list is filtered

(3) Double-click the browser.urlbar.quantumbar preference to switch the value from true to false

I don't remember whether that takes effect immediately, or only in new windows, or only after quitting and restarting Firefox.

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You absolute beauty! Thank you that worked a treat. (No need to restart firefox). Thanks!

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The workaround works, but why it happened at all? I think that many people are starting to type something in address bar just to copy URL without opening the history... That's very confusing from UX point of view that copy command doesn't work as intended, even if you use contextual menu and select Copy.

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Hi alexott, you still should be able to copy addresses from history using the address bar.

The way I do it is:

  • type text in the address bar to match a history item
  • press the down arrow key on the keyboard to highlight that item and bring its address into the address bar
  • select all and copy (on Windows, Ctrl+A, Ctrl+C)

I do this frequently to paste links into replies here and haven't noticed any difference in recent versions of Firefox.

However, I do not start loading the page, so that might be different from what you guys are doing.

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That's not necessary happens with the loading of the page + copying - this happens sometimes when you just select address, press Cmd-A, then Cmd-C - it's quite hard to reproduce each time, otherwise I would report it into Firefox's issue tracker. Thank you for workaround with disabling quantumbar - now I have less problems.

P.S. Firefox in iPad (and maybe on Android) also has related problem, that also doesn't happen every time - if you select "Copy address" then it's often copies into clipboard the address of previous page, not actual, although it was already loaded. So to copy current address you need to reload the page. This happens often with HackerNews discussions - you want to copy link to discussion, but gets the top-level URL.

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This has started happening again. I tried the same solution as before but it doesn't work? :( Any ideas

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Hi SShalgi, the older setting from Firefox 68-69 is obsolete; the old code is gone now. You'll need to use a different workaround.

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thanks jscher2000. Does anyone have any tips on how to do this? Otherwise it seems I will need to leave Firefox and go to Chrome :(

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SShalgi said

thanks jscher2000. Does anyone have any tips on how to do this?

You could try the method I mentioned before: populate the address into the address bar using the down arrow and copy without submitting it (without loading the page).

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Sadly this takes too long as I do this lots during each day. Looks as though I will need to move to chrome. Thanks for your help!

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SShalgi said

Sadly this takes too long as I do this lots during each day.

Hmm, I think it's better because you don't have to load the page, but each person has their own preference.

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Why don't you use the history sidebar and its search bar to find a web page ?

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Because I have 100s of links that i need and then i need to search. its too time consuming for the work i do. I am now on chrome so problem sorted

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As long as you do not press the Enter key of (double) click an entry in the drop-down list you shouldn't open the link. The selected entry should appear in the location/address bar and you can double-click in the location bar to select the URL and then use the right-click context menu to copy the text to the clipboard.

There are two prefs that determine what happens if you click or double-click in the location bar.

  • browser.urlbar.clickSelectsAll (false)
  • browser.urlbar.doubleClickSelectsAll (true)