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Firefox displaying JPEG images with green colour cast on Facebook and Flickr, images correct in all other browsers.

Posted

Since an update to Firefox early in the year JPEGs have begun appearing with a green colour bias (very noticeable in black and white images) which isn't in the original image. I first noticed this on photos viewed on Facebook and initially believed it to be a problem specific to that site, but am increasingly seeing it on images from many different websites - including Flickr.

Having searched for examples of people with a similar problem, the only suggested reason I've been able to find for this was that the images were created using the wrong colour profile and should work fine if created in sRGB. However, this happens with images I upload to both Facebook and Flickr myself and having checked, all are already in sRGB.

All images effected display correctly when viewed in other browsers (tested myself using both IE8 and Opera).

I've tried running Firefox in safemode, uninstalling then reinstalling Firefox, and also uninstalling Firefox along with the whole profile to do a completely fresh install and then checking again before any add-ons/themes were installed - under all circumstances the images continue to display with this green tint to them.

The URL I've provided (http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=1062726&l=e70ee32093&id=1424061557) links to a screen capture I took and placed on my Facebook profile to illustrate the problem to others soon after I first encountered it.

Originally I hoped this was a small bug within Firefox that would be fixed with a later update, but this clearly isn't the case as there have been several updates since then without this changing and other people using Firefox have told me that they don't have this problem viewing the same images. Having searched the support pages and forums several times over the months since this first began, and having now found the time to do a completely fresh install of Firefox - all without managing to fix this problem - I'm now drawing a blank as to how to proceed.

Any help would be very gratefully received. I've used Firefox since the days it was known as Phoenix and much prefer it to the other browsers available. Having to keep switching to Opera whenever I need to be sure what I'm seeing and any images I upload are coloured correctly has become really irritating over time.

System specs: Windows XP Professional, SP3 Pentium 4 3.60GHz 1 GB RAM Firefox 3.6.12

Modified by ADBurgess

Additional System Details

Sites Affected

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=1062726&l=e70ee32093&id=1424061557

Installed Plug-ins

  • Default Plug-in
  • Shockwave Flash 10.1 r102
  • CANON iMAGE GATEWAY Mycamera Plugin
  • Next Generation Java Plug-in 1.6.0_22 for Mozilla browsers
  • NPRuntime Script Plug-in Library for Java(TM) Deploy
  • 4.0.50917.0
  • Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) plug-in for Mozilla browsers
  • Adobe Acrobat Plug-In Version 6.00 for Netscape
  • Npdsplay dll
  • DRM Store Netscape Plugin
  • DRM Netscape Network Object

Application

  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.9.2.12) Gecko/20101026 Firefox/3.6.12 (.NET CLR 3.5.30729)

More Information

Application Basics
Name
Firefox
Version
3.6.12
Profile Directory
Open Containing Folder
Installed Plugins
about:plugins
Build Configuration
about:buildconfig
Extensions
Name
Version
Enabled
ID
Microsoft .NET Framework Assistant
1.1
true
{20a82645-c095-46ed-80e3-08825760534b}
Java Quick Starter
1.0
true
jqs@sun.com
DownloadHelper
4.8.1
true
{b9db16a4-6edc-47ec-a1f4-b86292ed211d}
Download Statusbar
0.9.7.2
true
{D4DD63FA-01E4-46a7-B6B1-EDAB7D6AD389}
Tab Mix Plus
0.3.8.4
true
{dc572301-7619-498c-a57d-39143191b318}
Adblock Plus
1.3.1
true
{d10d0bf8-f5b5-c8b4-a8b2-2b9879e08c5d}
Old Location Bar
2.1.5
true
{3205B348-523A-4fac-9BC4-9939CBF583B0}
All-in-One Gestures
0.21.1
true
{8b86149f-01fb-4842-9dd8-4d7eb02fd055}
British English Dictionary
1.19
true
en-GB@dictionaries.addons.mozilla.org
Noia 2.0 eXtreme OPT
3.76
true
noia2_option@kk.noia
BetterPrivacy
1.48.3
true
{d40f5e7b-d2cf-4856-b441-cc613eeffbe3}
Flashblock
1.5.14.2
true
{3d7eb24f-2740-49df-8937-200b1cc08f8a}
Exif Viewer
1.55
true
exif_viewer@mozilla.doslash.org
Modified Preferences
Name
Value
browser.history_expire_days
0
browser.history_expire_days.mirror
180
browser.places.importBookmarksHTML
false
browser.places.smartBookmarksVersion
2
browser.startup.homepage_override.mstone
rv:1.9.2.12
browser.tabs.autoHide
true
browser.tabs.loadInBackground
false
dom.disable_window_move_resize
true
dom.event.contextmenu.enabled
false
extensions.lastAppVersion
3.6.12
general.useragent.extra.microsoftdotnet
(.NET CLR 3.5.30729)
network.cookie.lifetimePolicy
2
network.cookie.prefsMigrated
true
privacy.sanitize.migrateFx3Prefs
true
privacy.sanitize.sanitizeOnShutdown
true
security.warn_entering_secure
true
security.warn_leaving_secure
true

cor-el
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10745 solutions 96692 answers

Helpful Reply

This can be caused by a problem with the color profile for your display monitor or color profiles embedded in images.
You can disable color management to test that.
You can set the pref gfx.color_management.mode to 0 on the about:config page to disable Color Management.

You need to close and restart Firefox or maybe even reboot the computer to make the change effective.
See http://kb.mozillazine.org/gfx.color_management.mode

See also http://kb.mozillazine.org/about%3Aconfig

Question owner

Thank you cor-el, disabling 'Color Management' does indeed make Firefox display the image without the colour distortion.

Having looked at the link you kindly provided about the subject, and also read several of the pages linked to from there (and yet more linked to from those pages, along with a few searches of my own), it seems to be due to embedded ICC profiles. I have to hold my hands up here and say this is getting above my knowledge levels and although I'm trying to understand how to go about correcting this I'm a little confused by the whole thing.

It seems this first began when Firefox updated to version 3.5, which from what I've read is when Mozilla first enabled Color Management for images which were tagged. That makes the origin of the situation clear to me at long last and is a really helpful starting point to getting everything sorted out.

Beyond that it seems I've stepped into a bit of a hornets nest however and I'm not quite so sure where to go from here. It seems the only way I can currently be sure that any photos I create and upload onto the internet will appear correctly - or at least as close to correct as possible - to everyone using Firefox or any other browser which has this feature enabled is to disable ICC embedding within my photo editing software? (But then doing so defeats the whole purpose of the feature being implemented in the first place.)

As I say, I'm somewhat confused by this. I do, however, understand the benefits to me as a photographer displaying photos on the internet and appreciate that with everything working correctly my images should appear more exact when viewed in Firefox when they have an ICC profile embedded. How I'm supposed to track down exactly where the fault lays is another matter unfortunately. I'm also confused by the fact that other people using Firefox (on default settings, so with Color Management on tagged images presumably enabled) have checked and told me that my photos appear as they should to them.

I understand that this may be going beyond the remit of these forums as it's possible that my copy of Firefox isn't reading/displaying photos with embedded ICC profiles incorrectly and the fault may lay elsewhere, but any suggestions from someone with a greater understanding of the subject - and how it relates to Firefox - would be of a huge help? I have read rather a lot on the subject tonight and will continue to try learning more, but this is a rather difficult and specialised subject. I'd really like to find out how to make this work rather than simply completely disable it.

Question owner

After some more reading on the subject and lots of trial and error I've discovered that the Color Management problem with my own photos would appear to be tracked back to the ICC profile embedded by Canon's cameras and 'Digital Photo Professional' software. It turns out that although the ICC profile is described as being sRGB, in reality it's Canon's own version and not the 'standard' sRGB profile. Using different photo editing software to convert the image from "sRGB (Canon)" into "sRGB" now causes Firefox to display my photos with the correct colours when Color Management is enabled within Firefox.

Thanks again to cor-el for pointing me in the right direction. It's been a headache trying to pick up on the subject of ICC profiles, but at least I now know that people using a Color Management enabled browser should see my photos as they were intended.

I have noticed during this period of comparing Color Management both enabled and disabled that having it enabled causes many slight colour shifts across many websites - not just on images where Firefox is picking up on an embedded ICC profile, but also on simple graphical elements such as white backgrounds on sites shifting towards having a yellow-ish tint. I've seen other people comment on this and similar colour shifts when Color Management isn't completely disabled within Firefox while I've been researching the subject too. However, I'm well aware that I'm still barely grasping the whole subject of Color Management, and I know even less about website design and the coding of browsers - let alone how all these things interact with each other - so if there is indeed some issue with how Firefox works in it's current default Color Management setting I'll leave that to people who know and understand these subjects far better than myself to look into.

Thanks again.

cor-el
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You're welcome.

You may have a color ICC 4 color profile.

See https://developer.mozilla.org/En/ICC_color_correction_in_Firefox

Caveats: The new QCMS color management system introduced in Firefox 3.5 currently only supports ICC version 2 color profiles, not version 4.

Question owner

Interesting, just took a look. Thanks.

I note that the description given of how that makes ICC version 4 embedded images appear isn't quite in line with what I'd describe seeing on my screen (looking through the comments on the related bug page there are some examples provided, but unfortunately the best are of an image which is mostly coloured towards oranges, yellows and green-ish tinted grays already - it's much easier to see the problem I get on monochrome images, which clearly turn sepia or green depending upon the tints in the original image), so I'm unsure if it's directly related.

As an aside I've just realised that emails displayed within Thunderbird do the exact same thing as I experience within Firefox. An email I just downloaded containing a colour photo of a person clearly wasn't displaying correctly. Saving this image to my desktop and viewing it within Windows confirmed this, and checking the image via Digital Photo Professional also shows the image with the 'correct' colours - skin tones cease to be green and become natural again, the white background also appears properly white whereas in Thunderbird (and Firefox with Color Management enabled) it has a very slight coloured tint to it. I take it that the current version of Thunderbird thereby enables Color Management in exactly the same way that the current version of Firefox does? I'm not sure how - or even if - it's possible to disable Color Management within Thunderbird however.

I'm increasingly tempted to download Safari so that I'd have another colour managed browser to directly compare Firefox to, although traditionally I'm not that keen on installing Apple software onto my machine.

PaulRivers 0 solutions 1 answers

I recently had this problem myself. I was also using Canon's DPP software to export RAW files.

I was able to get dpp to display colors much closer (maybe the same, haven't checked) to what firefox displays by doing - Tools->Preferences->Color Management tab->"Use the OS settings"

Thus (hopefully) fixing the problem in dpp. Once I did this all my pictures in dpp had the greenish hue just like they did in firefox.

Note that at no time did I run any sort of color calibration tool, so "Use the OS settings" wasn't changing to something I had personally set up, at least.

Question owner

Bit late (sorry about that), but to update with the answer as to what was going on, it turned out to be a corrupted color profile for my monitor. I found this out after starting to use Lightroom which insists upon using the monitor's profile when displaying images, no matter which settings you change. Can't find the required file anywhere to update my monitor's color profile - I'm guessing due to the age of the monitor it's no longer supported - so I used the quick and dirty work-around of picking the sRGB colour profile, which whilst being far from ideal at least means my photos show up identical in all programs and browsers. I'm due for a new system soon so it'll do until I get a much needed new monitor.

I'd recommend that anyone suffering with what I described earlier make their monitor manufacturer's support site their first stop and try to find the latest version of the Color Profile for your specific model. If you can't find the profile for your monitor then go into 'Display Properties', clicking the 'Color Management' tab, and then either select "sRGB Color Space Profile.icm", or if it doesn't show up click 'Add' which should show all the color profiles currently loaded onto your system, where you should find the sRGB file. I only recommend that as a temporary fix so that you can at least be sure that what you're seeing and what everyone else sees is close though. Far better to find the exact correct profile or to calibrate your own using a monitor calibration unit if being sure that colours are represented as accurately as possible is important to you.

Hope this helps someone else and saves them from the headache it caused me.

johnprattchristian 0 solutions 1 answers

Helpful Reply

simply go to "about:config" in the firefox addresss bar. Search "color". Doubleclick on the gfx.color_management.mode option and set the value to 3. Then restart firefox. :)

mblbm 0 solutions 1 answers

johnprattchristian, thank you! Your fix solved my similar problem (red color cast, rather than green) immediately. Again, thank you!

cor-el
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10745 solutions 96692 answers

Firefox 8 seems to support ICC v4 if you enable it by setting the gfx.color_management.enablev4 pref to true (needs a restart).

Then the test image on the test page shows correctly for me on Linux.


Modified by cor-el

Navwolf 0 solutions 7 answers

This is a major bug and nobody seems to want to correct it.

I use a Spyder II densitometer to recalibrate my monitors every couple of weeks - this provides a colour profile that matches up with worldwide icc standards, so the colours and densities I see on my monitors are almost exactly what other people around the world with calibrated monitors also see and what professional labs use to print images.

Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and all other browsers faithfully adhere to these colour standards, so why is Firefox different?

Unless this is sorted out soon I'll not be using Firefox again, and I'm sure I'm not the only person to take this stance.

The attached photograph is a grab from one of my websites. The body 'bgcolour' is set at #B0D3F6 in html, yet the Firefox rendition of this is #b1d3f6. Further to this is the mismatch between the Photoshop background of the image (with the title on it), again set at #B0D3F6, is completely different to the others at #bbd1f8. What on earth is going on?

jscher2000
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2356 solutions 20867 answers

Hi navwolf, could you install the following add-on and see whether pointing Firefox to your color profile solves the problem? Firefox might be having difficulty finding it.

Color Management @ Add-ons for Firefox

cor-el
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10745 solutions 96692 answers

Does that image has an embedded color profile or does it use the standard sRGB color profilee?

Navwolf 0 solutions 7 answers

jscher2000: Thanks for your suggestion, however, the disparity between various colour profiles points to a corruption within the Firefox process. Whenever a webpage defines any hexadecimal colour, this colour should be displayed exactly as defined. In the grab I'd posted the body colour of the page was set as follows, "<body bgcolor="#B0D3F6" onLoad="preloadImages();">", yet Firefox produced this as #B1D3F6. Not only that, but the background colour of the image with the Cartney Woods caption, was also embedded as #B0D3F6 in Photoshop, but Firefox rendered this as #BBD1F8.

In answer to cor-el's question, the image had an embedded sRGB profile that was set in Photoshop.

I always check my websites in different browsers before posting them. Firefox is the only browser that fails to comply.

cor-el
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Does using background-color instead of bgcolor make any difference?

Do you have a test page, so we can check the code?

Navwolf 0 solutions 7 answers

cor-el: Do you have an email address that I can forward the test page to please?

cor-el
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You can send a PM via the Inbox link next to your logged in name at the top right corner.
Maybe Jscher200 like to check it too as he is more of an expert in web development (posting on the MozillaZine forum) than I am.

jscher2000
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You also can send a message by clicking anyone's username, then looking for the Private Message link under their avatar.

Navwolf 0 solutions 7 answers

How do I add attachments please?

jscher2000
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Hi navwolf, when I view the sample page, I get a very close match between the image background and the page background. I am not attempting any color management on my Windows 7 system; I'm just using whatever Microsoft had in the box.

Your image appears to be "tagged" for the standard ICC sRGB color profile. In its default configuration, Firefox will attempt to color manage tagged images, but not other images, so this might explain why the JPEG background color looks different than the page background color on your system.

As a test you could try disabling color management: there is a checkbox for that in the add-on noted above. As another alternative, you could keep color management at its default setting and point Firefox to your monitor profile using the add-on (I suggested this originally, but I can't tell from your response whether you tried it).