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New tab page FF13.0 doesn't show thumbnails of sites, only empty box but site is mentioned.

  • 37 replies
  • 1188 have this problem
  • Last reply by cor-el

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Updated to this version but the new tab page didn't save my most visited sites as is the intention. Dragged my most used websites over there and worked but there is no thumbnail-picture or anything to show, just empty boxes with just below the site described as in my bookmarks.

Chosen solution

The thumbnails on the about:newtab page are generated from the cache, so if the page is not in the cache or otherwise can't be rendered as a PNG image then you will get an empty box.
Do not use Clear Recent History to clear data when you close Firefox.
If there is no history then you get an about:newtab page with empty boxes.

Read this answer in context 👍 31

All Replies (17)

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Chad It worked immediately. You are a genius. Thanks

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Glad I could help anyone whom I did. Following my own procedure above, I noticed another related problem: My procedure worked while Firefox was open, but when I'd close it, and restart it, my icons were blank again until I reloaded the pages during that session. Must have been a bug with upgrading. I've noticed a couple of times since using Firefox since it first came out that sometimes upgrading can causes minor problems like this. When that happens, the fix is to:

1. Uninstall Firefox, leaving personal information intact during the uninstall.

2. Run CCleaner, using the registry and file cleaning features (both): CCleaner home page It's safe and effective.

3. With another browser, download and install Firefox.

After doing these steps, the problem was gone. Now, after all of my New Tab icons are all filled-in, I can close Firefox, open it again, click the New Tab button, and all my icons are still there.

In summary, I always upgrade Firefox from within Firefox, but if I have an upgrade problem, I always do the procedure above, which involves downloading the full .exe and it has worked every time.

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Where do you have an Orange Firefox tab? Mine are grey.

The browser.cache.disk.enable tip solved it for me. Somewhere out there is a different problem that I have re-created by setting it to true, but I guess I will find it one day.

Modified by crm911

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It's not Firefox tabs, it's THE Firefox tab, which won't show if you have the Menu bar showing. If you do, click View, Toolbars, Menu bar, uncheck Menu bar, and then you will see the orange Firefox tab at the top left of the browser. I do not know the technical name for the orange tab.

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Thanks for explaining it. I can't imagine not having the Menu bar, as I am often using the Tools menu, so I enabled it.

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The Firefox Button is not always Orange, look at it using private browsing or other OS s.

Also even with the Firefox Button in use there is often an option to temporarily use and display the file-menu-toolbar, often by pressing or holding the keyboard Alt key.

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To crm911

Are you on Linux?

On Linux you have a gray Firefox button on the left hand side of the Taba Bar.

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Corel said: Future Firefox versions will use its own thumbnails folder to store the thumbnails to avoid this choice, but that won't happen in Firefox 13.

   bug 744388 - [Page Thumbnails] implement a custom storage, don't use the file cache 

Thanks to Corel for this information.

I agree with Cashsimpson, "[I] like having my cache cleared and all i want is a there no way to have both?".

I like having the New Tabs feature, and it was nice having the thumbnail pictures until they disappeared. But I can still use New Tabs because I can read the text on the bottom of each rectangle. All these solutions sound like a lot of trouble for something that isn't totally necessary. After all, we did survive all our lives until we got the New Tabs! And apparently all the correction methods may have to be repeated unless I uninstall FF and reinstall from a different browser.

So I'm just going to wait for the next Firefox version to have my pictures back.

UNLESS someone develops a simple Add-on for this problem. Anyone?

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I think the new cache for the thumbnails as per bug 744388 is currently aiming for Firefox 16, and they still seem to be needing to sort out bug 754671 - [Page Thumbnails] size of thumbnails directory (in profiles directory) keeps growing infinitely

From my reading of the bug I think the new method will keep thumbnails if cache is cleared but not if history is cleared. (That is how it worked on a Fx16 nightly version I tried not long ago)

Modified by John99

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Thank you chad for the walk-through regarding enabling caching, and preventing clearing the history. However this didn't provide a fix in a single step for my setup, I am using firefox 13 on xfce/fedora linux. However I did manage to work-around the problem by additionally enabling on disk caching via the about:config preferences editor.

The new tab page appears to require the cache to be stored on disk, the preference for which is called "browser.cache.disk.enable". This preference is by default "true" so some add-on probably resets it to false causing this problem.

You can access and edit this preference via the about:config preferences editor, by pasting about:config into the URL address bar and then using the search bar to locate the browser.cache.disk.enable key and reset the value to true.

I guess it could be summarised as that at least the following 3 conditions are required to see the thumbnails;

  1. Caching must be enabled for the pages that appear in the tabs
  2. The cache must be stored on disk, see browser.cache.disk.enable
  3. firefox must not clear the cache on shutdown

Some privacy tools and settings see disk cache as a potential security threat and hence clear the cache such as CCleaner.

According to the Browser.cache.disk.enable knowledgebase wiki, the default for this setting is true, hence it is likely that some plugin or extension has changed the preference from its default. hence there may be a consequence for plugins such as firebug or web developer.

Modified by tolland

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Modified by tolland

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If the advice and any links from this thread do not help please start your own thread by asking a question. Please provide as much info as possible, including: when prompted: pasting in your troubleshooting information,

and consider mentioning in this thread IF you ask a new question, as others may be interested.

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Yes, I understand your points made and was attempting something along those lines.

Unfortunately the "reply" link below each comment implies that when you are replying, you are doing so in context to each comment (hierarchically), but the reality is that each question has a flat comment structure and context is lost unless you explicitly copy and quote the comment you wish to reference.

However it is only when you click submit you discover that the comment reply is to the original post, and not to the comment, and has lost the sense of the post if you were relying on that for details.

I tried to delete the post, and retry that process, however it seems also I cannot delete a post.

After this step, I got annoyed and gave up.

Edit: I previously said this, but I was being idiotically dickish Obviously I value the free time and effort gone into creating firefox and the support forums, but users providing feedback and full details of the current issues also requires time and effort. If the support forum is unintuitive and hard to use, then this discourages optimal feedback and and reduces the quality of feedback, and ultimately quality of the firefox product.

But I think there would be value in improving certain UX features of the support pages, but mostly its very good. Thanks.

Modified by tolland

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Hi tolland,

The forum may be far from perfect, and operated effectively as a question and answer service, although it may be also be viewed as a forum. The general idea is that a single question should be asked per thread.

This particular forum does not have any quoting feature, although

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may be used.

I was not intending to be critical of you posting in this thread, only suggesting you would do better to start a new thread if you yourself have a problem. Obviously if you have suggestions as a solution continue posting in this thread, but if you also have a problem I suggest you post another question.

Modified by John99

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Hi John99,

Sorry, I've updated both of my previous post to eliminate some of comments which made me look like an unhelpful idiot ;-)

There needs to be a disk cache enabled via the browser.cache.disk.enable preference;

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"I have this problem. I tried the options above (keep history), let linked pages load completely, and also clearing cache (in case the cache was full - suggested here: None worked so far. I'm using Firefox on Kubuntu." - tony2murray

I have this same problem, also on Kubuntu. Absolutely nothing in this entire thread is helping. The thumbnails used to work fine, but they've randomly stopped working for 6 of my 9 saved pages, and for the 3 they do work with, that babby thumbnail barely has time to cry before it's wiped again. This wasn't triggered by an update, a new add-on, or anything else that I could've done. It just started happening.

I have another Firefox profile on my Windows computer that I've created manually and side-by-side to mirror my Kubuntu one, without actually ever copying profile files between the two. There was never a time that it DIDN'T have this problem (with the same behavior for the same groups of 6 and 3 sites), so I don't think it's specific to any OS.

Modified by Cadeyrn

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Create a new profile as a test to check if your current profile is causing the problems.

See "Basic Troubleshooting: Make a new profile":

There may be extensions and plugins installed by default in a new profile, so check that in "Tools > Add-ons > Extensions & Plugins" in case there are still problems.

If the new profile works then you can transfer some files from the old profile to that new profile, but be careful not to copy corrupted files.


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