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Using "unverified" add-ons

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New User

Using "unverified" add-ons

Mozilla at https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/add-on-signing-in-firefox?as=u says that I "can still install [an] unverified add-on at [my] own risk"--but it doesn't say how. How may I use an add-on that in version 40.0.2 Mozilla has disabled for being "unverified"?

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SUMO Contributor

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

Sounds like a glitch in the Add-ons page if the extension is actually enabled but shows as disabled. I have no idea what could cause that.

27 REPLIES
SUMO Contributor

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

I realize this is confusing.

In the future, Firefox will refuse to run unsigned extensions. In other words, if Mozilla has not signed the extension, Firefox will auto-disable it. This will start in Firefox 41.

The first step being taken in Firefox 40 is simply to warn you that you have some unsigned extensions so you can check for updates and/or inform the publisher about this impending problem. This does not stop the extensions from running.

If those extensions are disabled or broken, there probably is a different problem. Could you mention which extensions are not working?

New User

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

Many thanks, jscher. Let me explain the very confusing situation, and perhaps you can shed some light on it.

Two of my extensions are currently marked, "could not be verified for use in Firefox and has been disabled." These are Roboform Toolbar and WordWeb.

There seems to be no issue with Roboform, as I never use its toolbar and its new version works just fine on Firefox without the toolbar. However, WordWeb, which is designed to work within the browser and elsewhere, also, strangely, works fine in Firefox, notwithstanding the error message stating it's been disabled.

I installed neither of the products as Firefox extensions. After installation they just appeared as Firefox extensions--and now, as I mentioned, Mozilla claims they are disabled.

It seems that RF works because I updated it. But I did not update WordWeb. My only guess is that perhaps it updated itself after Firefox disabled it. What do you think?

SUMO Contributor

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

Disabled extensions should be grouped at the bottom, against a gray background, and not run at all. If the extensions are in the main list, not on a gray background, and show a "Disable" button, then they are still enabled. So that would explain why they function. In Firefox 40, the unverified warning is just a warning; in Firefox 41, it turns into a block.

I'm not familiar with WordWeb, but Firefox does check for extension updates from time to time so it certainly is possible that it was updated recently.

New User

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

Thanks again, jscher.

As you probably realize, I use Firefox ver. 40, not 41--yet the two extensions I mentioned have according to Mozilla now been disabled. I do not see anything that could be construed as only a warning. These two are shown only in the Disabled group (following the main group). None of my disabled add-ons (or any other add-ons) shows a gray background. These two show a pink background. The "disabled" add-ons, including these two, are distinguished by text in gray instead of black.

SUMO Contributor

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

I see what you mean about the background, I have diagonal stripes. I don't know why they are disabled. If you try the Enable button, can they be re-enabled?

New User

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

There is no Enable button for either of these two add-ons.

SUMO Contributor

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

That is not the default behavior...

Could you check to make sure the signature block has not been turned on?

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

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

(3) If the xpinstall.signatures.required preference is bolded and user set to true, double-click it to switch it to false

If the preference indicates it is locked, we need to investigate an autoconfig file. If it changes back to true at the next startup, we need to investigate a possible user.js file.


If that preference is set to its default, the other reason to not see an Enable button would usually be that the extension is internally coded not to run in Firefox 40. Extension authors can set a maximum version number and if it is marked for strict enforcement or if the extension contains binary (compiled) components, then Firefox will disable the extension in versions newer than the specified max.

But in researching the RoboForm and WordWeb extensions, I do not think they limit the version number.

New User

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

This remains a mystery but it is not worth more time to explore--since (as mentioned) I'm fully able to use both programs even though "disabled" by Mozilla. I consider this issue closed although not solved.

SUMO Contributor

Re: Using "unverified" add-ons

Sounds like a glitch in the Add-ons page if the extension is actually enabled but shows as disabled. I have no idea what could cause that.