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why am I getting chinese characters on webpages?

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I am suddenly getting all Chinese characters on one site - publicdomainpictures.net. Changing the encoding doesn't fix it and I can't seem to get auto-detect to turn on (it's off). When I view the page info, the html code says the page language is "cn" which I assume is Chinese. How can I prevent this from happening and how do I fix it now?

Chosen solution

Many site issues can be caused by corrupt cookies or cache. In order to try to fix these problems, the first step is to clear both cookies and the cache. Note: This will temporarily log you out of all sites you're logged in to. To clear cache and cookies do the following:

  1. Go to Firefox > History > Clear recent history or (if no Firefox button is shown) go to Tools > Clear recent history.
  2. Under "Time range to clear", select "Everything".
  3. Now, click the arrow next to Details to toggle the Details list active.
  4. From the details list, check Cache and Cookies and uncheck everything else.
  5. Now click the Clear now button.

Further information can be found in the Clear your cache, history and other personal information in Firefox article.

Did this fix your problems? Please report back soon.

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Sometimes a problem with Firefox may be a result of malware installed on your computer, that you may not be aware of.

You can try these free programs to scan for malware, which work with your existing antivirus software:

Microsoft Security Essentials is a good permanent antivirus for Windows 7/Vista/XP if you don't already have one.


Further information can be found in the Troubleshoot Firefox issues caused by malware article.

Did this fix your problems? Please report back soon.

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Chosen Solution

Many site issues can be caused by corrupt cookies or cache. In order to try to fix these problems, the first step is to clear both cookies and the cache. Note: This will temporarily log you out of all sites you're logged in to. To clear cache and cookies do the following:

  1. Go to Firefox > History > Clear recent history or (if no Firefox button is shown) go to Tools > Clear recent history.
  2. Under "Time range to clear", select "Everything".
  3. Now, click the arrow next to Details to toggle the Details list active.
  4. From the details list, check Cache and Cookies and uncheck everything else.
  5. Now click the Clear now button.

Further information can be found in the Clear your cache, history and other personal information in Firefox article.

Did this fix your problems? Please report back soon.

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There are other things that need your attention:

Note that your System Details List shows multiple Flash plugins.

  1. Shockwave Flash 11.9 r900
  2. Shockwave Flash 11.7 r700
  3. Shockwave Flash 11.4 r402

You can check the Flash player installation folder for multiple Flash player plugins and remove all (older) version(s) of the plugin (NPSWF32) and (re)install the latest Flash player.

  • (32 bit Windows) C:\Windows\System32\Macromed\Flash\
  • (64 bit Windows) C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Macromed\Flash\

You can find the installation path of all plugins on the about:plugins page.


Note that your System Details List shows that you have a user.js file in the profile folder to initialize some prefs on each start of Firefox.

The user.js file is only present if you or other software has created it, so normally it wouldn't be there. you can check its content with a plain text editor if you didn't create this file yourself.

The user.js file is read each time you start Firefox and initializes preferences to the value specified in this file, so preferences set via user.js can only be changed temporarily for the current session. If you do not keep changes after a restart or otherwise have problems with preferences, see:

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