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Firefox Blink or Quick Screen Flash

  • 5 replies
  • 5 have this problem
  • 891 views
  • Last reply by HowToFixIt

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On common websites such as Facebook and Yahoo! (for example) and many other not so common ones the Firefox browser window will flash or blink briefly. At least for me this happens quite frequently, while performing what I would consider to be pretty basic, normal browsing activities. I might have perhaps anywhere from to 3 - 15 tabs open with no video, no animation, with pretty basic text and pictures.

The blink or flash is almost like a popup window was trying to load but failed to appear although there is no notice of any kind. This is not a repetitive blinking but is more of a very quick flash or screen blink. It is not the monitor. It only seems to only happen once or twice and then will take a bit of a "break", perhaps a few seconds to a few minutes then it will happen again or it may not. For some reason it does seem to happen the most frequently on Facebook but it is not limited to Facebook.

I am currently on build 28.0 of Firefox and Firefox says it is currently up to date. Under Tools > Advanced > General Browsing > Use hardware acceleration when available; is currently unchecked. I have searched through the other threads that have dealt with other “blinking issues” and have tried the solutions there to no avail. I have gone through 'safe mode' and a restart and it has not seemed to work. If it matters I am currently using Windows 7 Professional, 64 bit. I do use Norton 360 as well.

This issue has only appeared possibly with in the last three builds or so and has not ever happened ever before. Does anyone have any suggestions or a fix suggestion? I really dislike Chrome, but may have to switch as this is getting pretty annoying.

Chosen solution

My apologies. I didn't see that you had already tried disabling hardware acceleration


You didn't provide the troubleshooting information though. Can you do that?

  • Click the Firefox button at the top left, then click the Help menu and select Troubleshooting Information from the submenu. If you don't have a Firefox button, click the Help menu at the top and select Troubleshooting Information from the menu.

Now, a new tab containing your troubleshooting information should open.

  • At the top of the page, you should see a button that says "Copy text to clipboard". Click it.
  • Now, go back to your forum post and click inside the reply box. Press Ctrl+V to paste all the information you copied into the forum post.

You might also want to check to see if you have any software that you didn't install yourself via the Control Panel and uninstall it.


To be on the safe side and not rule out anything malicious, you can try these free programs to scan for malware, which work with your existing antivirus software:

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Hi,

I think we have the same problem except mine happens on YouTube during full screen viewing. Quite annoying, really.


Can you post your troubleshooting information? This is non-personal information used for troubleshooting Firefox.

  • about:support | click copy raw data to clipboard then copy and paste it into a new comment in your support thread.

Try disabling graphics hardware acceleration. Since this feature was added to Firefox, it has gradually improved, but there still are a few glitches.

You might need to restart Firefox in order for this to take effect, so save all work first (e.g., mail you are composing, online documents you're editing, etc.).

Then perform these steps:

  • Click the orange Firefox button at the top left, then select the "Options" button, or, if there is no Firefox button at the top, go to Tools > Options.
  • In the Firefox options window click the Advanced tab, then select "General".
  • In the settings list, you should find the Use hardware acceleration when available checkbox. Uncheck this checkbox.
  • Now, restart Firefox and see if the problems persist.

Additionally, please check for updates for your graphics driver by following the steps mentioned in the following Knowledge base articles:

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I am sorry as I stated in my original post I have read fairly extensively the other posts dealing with blinking issues dealing with the hardware acceleration issues. I have followed those instructions to the letter already to no avail. This "seems" to be another issue.


"Under Tools > Advanced > General Browsing > Use hardware acceleration when available; is currently unchecked."

As well I have already updated my graphics card drivers, made sure Windows was up to date and have checked over other hardware issues. The Firefox browser is the only place that this happens.

To clarify the almost instant "blink" or "refresh blink" that I am referring to is almost like a screen shot blink. Like when you take a screen capture. Like how it looks when you hit F6 when using Screen Hunter application or another screen capture tool. It is almost like if I did not know any better I would think someone was taking a snapshot of what was currently on the screen.

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Chosen Solution

My apologies. I didn't see that you had already tried disabling hardware acceleration


You didn't provide the troubleshooting information though. Can you do that?

  • Click the Firefox button at the top left, then click the Help menu and select Troubleshooting Information from the submenu. If you don't have a Firefox button, click the Help menu at the top and select Troubleshooting Information from the menu.

Now, a new tab containing your troubleshooting information should open.

  • At the top of the page, you should see a button that says "Copy text to clipboard". Click it.
  • Now, go back to your forum post and click inside the reply box. Press Ctrl+V to paste all the information you copied into the forum post.

You might also want to check to see if you have any software that you didn't install yourself via the Control Panel and uninstall it.


To be on the safe side and not rule out anything malicious, you can try these free programs to scan for malware, which work with your existing antivirus software:

more options

Application Basics


Name: Firefox Version: 28.0 User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:28.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/28.0

Crash Reports for the Last 3 Days


All Crash Reports

Extensions


Name: DoNotTrackMe: Online Privacy Protection Version: 3.2.1072 Enabled: true ID: donottrackplus@abine.com

Name: Firebug Version: 1.12.8 Enabled: true ID: firebug@software.joehewitt.com

Name: Html Validator Version: 0.9.5.8 Enabled: true ID: {3b56bcc7-54e5-44a2-9b44-66c3ef58c13e}

Name: Norton Toolbar Version: 2014.7.0.43 Enabled: true ID: {2D3F3651-74B9-4795-BDEC-6DA2F431CB62}

Name: Norton Vulnerability Protection Version: 12.2.0.5 - 1 Enabled: true ID: {BBDA0591-3099-440a-AA10-41764D9DB4DB}

Name: HP Smart Web Printing Version: 4.51 Enabled: false ID: smartwebprinting@hp.com

Important Modified Preferences


accessibility.typeaheadfind.flashBar: 0 browser.cache.disk.capacity: 358400 browser.cache.disk.smart_size.first_run: false browser.cache.disk.smart_size.use_old_max: false browser.cache.disk.smart_size_cached_value: 358400 browser.places.smartBookmarksVersion: 6 browser.search.useDBForOrder: true browser.sessionstore.upgradeBackup.latestBuildID: 20140314220517 browser.startup.homepage: http://www.foxnews.com/ browser.startup.homepage_override.buildID: 20140314220517 browser.startup.homepage_override.mstone: 28.0 dom.mozApps.used: true dom.w3c_touch_events.expose: false extensions.lastAppVersion: 28.0 font.internaluseonly.changed: false gfx.direct2d.disabled: true gfx.direct3d.last_used_feature_level_idx: 0 gfx.direct3d.prefer_10_1: true layers.acceleration.disabled: true network.cookie.prefsMigrated: true places.database.lastMaintenance: 1397420520 places.history.expiration.transient_current_max_pages: 104858 plugin.disable_full_page_plugin_for_types: application/pdf 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Graphics


Adapter Description: AMD Radeon HD 6450 Adapter Drivers: aticfx64 aticfx64 aticfx64 aticfx32 aticfx32 aticfx32 atiumd64 atidxx64 atidxx64 atiumdag atidxx32 atidxx32 atiumdva atiumd6a atitmm64 Adapter RAM: 1024 Device ID: 0x6779 DirectWrite Enabled: false (6.2.9200.16571) Driver Date: 12-6-2013 Driver Version: 13.251.0.0 GPU #2 Active: false GPU Accelerated Windows: 0/1 Basic Vendor ID: 0x1002 WebGL Renderer: Google Inc. -- ANGLE (AMD Radeon HD 6450 Direct3D9Ex vs_3_0 ps_3_0) windowLayerManagerRemote: false AzureCanvasBackend: skia AzureContentBackend: cairo AzureFallbackCanvasBackend: cairo AzureSkiaAccelerated: 0

JavaScript


Incremental GC: true

Accessibility


Activated: false Prevent Accessibility: 0

Library Versions


NSPR Expected minimum version: 4.10.3 Version in use: 4.10.3

NSS Expected minimum version: 3.15.5 Basic ECC Version in use: 3.15.5 Basic ECC

NSSSMIME Expected minimum version: 3.15.5 Basic ECC Version in use: 3.15.5 Basic ECC

NSSSSL Expected minimum version: 3.15.5 Basic ECC Version in use: 3.15.5 Basic ECC

NSSUTIL Expected minimum version: 3.15.5 Version in use: 3.15.5

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Moses, I think perhaps we "might" be on to something. I did run all the pieces of software you suggested, except for the last one as that one required some sort of registration. I figured by the time I did partial and complete scans with all the others I was possibly fairly safe to skip the last one.

I know each user and issue can be slightly different, but I will share my results and my processes in an effort that it may help someone else.

Microsoft Safety Scanner - the Quick Scan Turned up No Results. However a Full System Scan after 2 1/2 hours and 2.5 Million files later turned up 2 files one of which seemed to be automatically cleaned and the other is what may be the culprit is called 'Exploit:Win32/APSB08-11.gen!A'

The software automatically removed the Malware. By clicking on the file you can get a report about the file and what it does. This file evidently effects Adobe Flash software. After the removal I made sure I updated the Adobe Flash software like Microsoft suggested.

The other pieces of software that you recommended MalwareBytes' Anti-Malware, TDSSKiller - AntiRootkit Utility, Hitman Pro, ESET Online Scanner fortunately yielded nothing but a few tracking cookies and an old pesky 'Ask Toolbar' that will not seem to go away. All of which I was able delete.

I will let you know if the problem persists or if this as I suspect may have solved the issue.

Interesting how you think are protected by scanning and updating definitions everyday but still something can still get by.