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Why was Firefox View taken away in Private Browsing mode?

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I thought that in Private browsing mode, using Tools > Settings > Privacy & Security > Clear Data > Clear > Clear Now cleaned out everything in mid-session. It turns out that's not true, for example, using Firefox View I found that the list of Recently closed tabs in three-bar menu > History > Recently closed tabs was NOT cleared. The only way to see that was with Firefox View, which you could then use to delete items from the list.

With the new version of Firefox (119.0) Firefox View has been removed from Private browsing mode entirely. Thus not only is it impossible to see if the recently closed tabs list has been cleared, but it's impossible to clear the list even if you could see it. That leaves the only way to be (fairly) sure things are cleared out during a Private browsing session is to close the browser entirely, which is an annoying pain.

Why was that feature removed? How can I tell if the recently closed tabs have been cleared without it?

Thanks.

I thought that in Private browsing mode, using Tools > Settings > Privacy & Security > Clear Data > Clear > Clear Now cleaned out everything in mid-session. It turns out that's not true, for example, using Firefox View I found that the list of Recently closed tabs in three-bar menu > History > Recently closed tabs was NOT cleared. The only way to see that was with Firefox View, which you could then use to delete items from the list. With the new version of Firefox (119.0) Firefox View has been removed from Private browsing mode entirely. Thus not only is it impossible to see if the recently closed tabs list has been cleared, but it's impossible to clear the list even if you could see it. That leaves the only way to be (fairly) sure things are cleared out during a Private browsing session is to close the browser entirely, which is an annoying pain. Why was that feature removed? How can I tell if the recently closed tabs have been cleared without it? Thanks.

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If you call up Recently Closed Tabs from the menu -- either

  • main menu button > History > Recently Closed Tabs
  • (menu bar) History > Recently Closed Tabs

-- are the tabs listed there after you clear Browsing History? That menu doesn't provide a way to clear them, I don't think, but you can see what remains available.

For private windows:

Since closed tab history is specific to that window, if you want to continue working with one or more of the existing tabs in the same window while flushing its history, you could multi-select the tabs to keep (Ctrl+click to add/remove from the group), right-click any selected tab, Move tabs > Move to New Window, then after that launches, close the old window.

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Yes, the tabs are there after I clear the history as described in the original post.

Clever suggestion on how to defeat the lack of Firefox View. Thank you.

I'd still like to know why they took it away, though.

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Setting browser.sessionstore.max_tabs_undo to '0' (zero) temporarily (set to zero and click the trash can) clears the PB mode "Recently Closed Tabs" list for me in permanent PB mode and with about:config opened in a PB mode window, the Undo list for regular tabs is not affected. All PB mode windows share the same closed tabs list and I can reopen a tab closed in one window open in another PB mode window. So, just like with other session data, there are two lists of closed tabs maintained, one for regular windows and one for private browsing mode windows.


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