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Firefox Refresh Causes Problems ordinary users won't be able to cure PLEASE FIX URGENTLY

Kuphostiwe

I got a message saying Firefox was staring slowly, not taht I had particularly noticed, and it offered to 'refresh'.

A quick glance at the consequences said it would get rid of 'extensions' but no mention of add-ons.

So I stupidly went ahead and lost adbloc (and all its settings), spell checker etc.

No advice given on how to reverse this (is Mozilla following Miscrosoft policies now?)

A web search pointed out that old settings were saved on the desktop, but the advice of copying over the old user profile and deleting the new one didn't work, in fact Firefox refused to start at all saying the profile was broken - surely this is wrong, it should start in default mode.

Finally I got things working by restoring the 'new' profile and copying the old one's contents over it so I kept the new profile folder name.

The badly worded page encouraging users to 'refresh' needs to be changed urgently is if a relatively informed user like me can be caught out, it is going to leave lots of less experienced folks reduced to tears of rfrustration.

1 It need to make it explicit that people will lose ALL of their APPs and settings

2 Their needs to have a reliable and automated path to reverse the changes which is easily accessible

3 Ideally, before nuking everything, it should display a list of add ons and allow you to select those which you want to keep or remove.

The refresh feature as it stands is a complete car-crash. Also I question the basis on which it is judging Firefox as slow to start, I don't consider under 2 seconds as 'slow'. I had just assumed that refresh would just get rid of temp files or indexes that had become cumbersome etc.

UU

I got a message saying Firefox was staring slowly, not taht I had particularly noticed, and it offered to 'refresh'. A quick glance at the consequences said it would get rid of 'extensions' but no mention of add-ons. So I stupidly went ahead and lost adbloc (and all its settings), spell checker etc. No advice given on how to reverse this (is Mozilla following Miscrosoft policies now?) A web search pointed out that old settings were saved on the desktop, but the advice of copying over the old user profile and deleting the new one didn't work, in fact Firefox refused to start at all saying the profile was broken - surely this is wrong, it should start in default mode. Finally I got things working by restoring the 'new' profile and copying the old one's contents over it so I kept the new profile folder name. The badly worded page encouraging users to 'refresh' needs to be changed urgently is if a relatively informed user like me can be caught out, it is going to leave lots of less experienced folks reduced to tears of rfrustration. 1 It need to make it explicit that people will lose ALL of their APPs and settings 2 Their needs to have a reliable and automated path to reverse the changes which is easily accessible 3 Ideally, before nuking everything, it should display a list of add ons and allow you to select those which you want to keep or remove. The refresh feature as it stands is a complete car-crash. Also I question the basis on which it is judging Firefox as slow to start, I don't consider under 2 seconds as 'slow'. I had just assumed that refresh would just get rid of temp files or indexes that had become cumbersome etc. UU

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Eminye Imininingwane

the-edmeister
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5411 izisombululo 40287 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

Extensions are add-ons, along with themes, plugins, and search plugins; all 4 fall under "add-ons". https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/find-and-install-add-ons-add-features-to-firefox#w_what-types-of-add-ons-can-i-install

1. API's are not lost, as they're part of the program files - not the Profile. And "settings" are purposely reset to their default values. Overall, far less drastic than creating a new Profile to solve problems brought about by user error or by extensions.

2. Yes, that would be nice - but it would be very complicated a process and just might make things worse that they were to begin with. I'd sooner see the Refresh discontinued / eliminated and make users learn more about how to fix things properly via troubleshooting their issues or with a new Profile to get a clean start.

3. Really? How hard is it to look in the Add-ons Manager and view the listing of install extensions?

As far as Firefox itself determining "something" is slow and to recommend a Refresh, user choice comes into play; if the user doesn't "see" a problem, it is best to ignore the message and move on as things are. Then ask about it in a support forum, before doing the Refresh.

Personally, I have done the Refresh just once; and I only wish all that happened only affected my Firefox Profile ...

Extensions '''''are''''' add-ons, along with themes, plugins, and search plugins; all 4 fall under "add-ons". https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/find-and-install-add-ons-add-features-to-firefox#w_what-types-of-add-ons-can-i-install 1. API's are not lost, as they're part of the program files - not the Profile. And "settings" are purposely reset to their default values. ''Overall, far less drastic than creating a new Profile to solve problems brought about by user error or by extensions.'' 2. Yes, that would be nice - ''but it would be very complicated a process and just might make things worse that they were to begin with.'' ''I'd sooner see the Refresh discontinued / eliminated and make users learn more about how to fix things properly via troubleshooting their issues or with a new Profile to get a clean start.'' 3. Really? How hard is it to look in the Add-ons Manager and view the listing of install extensions? As far as Firefox itself determining "something" is slow and to recommend a Refresh, user choice comes into play; if the user doesn't "see" a problem, it is best to ignore the message and move on as things are. Then ask about it in a support forum, before doing the Refresh. Personally, I have done the Refresh just once; and I only wish all that happened only affected my Firefox Profile ...
James
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1600 izisombululo 11315 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

Unique_username said

A quick glance at the consequences said it would get rid of 'extensions' but no mention of add-ons.

What the word Addons refers to https://addons.mozilla.org/faq

''Unique_username [[#question-1139371|said]]'' <blockquote>A quick glance at the consequences said it would get rid of 'extensions' but no mention of add-ons.</blockquote> What the word Addons refers to https://addons.mozilla.org/faq

Umnikazi wombuzo

Ah yes, of course!

The average user knows that they should check a glossary first whenever reading a message from Mozilla...

My point is simple; if I, who have been playing with 'puters for 35 years, can get caught out, then a lot of ordinary users are going to find themselves in a muddle.

Perhaps refresh, needs to be gotten rid of but maybe all it needs is adding an explanation of what add-ons will be changed and why, and a link that explains how to restore your profile (and someone needs to check why it could create a backed up profile that won't restore).

Ah yes, of course! The average user knows that they should check a glossary first whenever reading a message from Mozilla... My point is simple; if I, who have been playing with 'puters for 35 years, can get caught out, then a lot of ordinary users are going to find themselves in a muddle. Perhaps refresh, needs to be gotten rid of but maybe all it needs is adding an explanation of what add-ons will be changed and why, and a link that explains how to restore your profile (and someone needs to check why it could create a backed up profile that won't restore).
the-edmeister
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5411 izisombululo 40287 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

35 years of experience with computers? Far above the "average", I'd say. Like from the dawn of the PC-era. I got started a few years late with an IBM-XT, myself.

A bit disingenuous of you to not learn the terminology used in the software that you are using, don't you think?

35 years of experience with computers? ''Far above the "average", I'd say. Like from the dawn of the PC-era. I got started a few years late with an IBM-XT, myself.'' A bit disingenuous of you to not learn the terminology used in the software that you are using, don't you think?
John99 971 izisombululo 13138 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

That's one of my pet hates. The fact we aggressively promote the one click Refresh, but do not go to further lengths to let users know the add-ons will be removed. The message they get can easily be clicked through. I am sure the message could be misconstrued as add-ons will be temporarily reset or disabled.

I am hoping with fingers crossed that when the profile picker is properly implemented it will be able to restore any of these Desktop profiles. It will save us a lot of work if it could.

That's one of my pet hates. The fact we aggressively promote the one click Refresh, but do not go to further lengths to let users know the add-ons will be removed. The message they get can easily be clicked through. I am sure the message could be misconstrued as add-ons will be temporarily reset or disabled. I am hoping with fingers crossed that when the profile picker is properly implemented it will be able to restore any of these Desktop profiles. It will save us a lot of work if it could.
James
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1600 izisombululo 11315 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

Refresh is basically Mozilla's idea of creating a new Profile for user while keeping some of the settings from old Profile on desktop. It was not something that somehow dusted and tidied things up while still keeping all your settings.

from https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/refresh-firefox-reset-add-ons-and-settings

These items and settings will be removed: Extensions and themes, website permissions, modified preferences, added search engines, download history, DOM storage, security certificate and device settings, download actions, plugin settings, toolbar customizations, user styles and social features will be removed

Addons like Plugins of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type about:plugins in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system.

Addons does not equal Extensions mainly.

Refresh is basically Mozilla's idea of creating a new Profile for user while keeping some of the settings from old Profile on desktop. It was not something that somehow dusted and tidied things up while still keeping all your settings. from https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/refresh-firefox-reset-add-ons-and-settings <blockquote>These items and settings will be removed: Extensions and themes, website permissions, modified preferences, added search engines, download history, DOM storage, security certificate and device settings, download actions, plugin settings, toolbar customizations, user styles and social features will be removed</blockquote> Addons like '''Plugins''' of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type '''about:plugins''' in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system. Addons does not equal Extensions mainly.

Okulungisiwe ngu James

jscher2000
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8783 izisombululo 71835 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

I haven't seen that bottom bar for a while, but when I use other Refresh buttons, the warning dialog uses more general language (screen shot attached).

We probably see a user a week trying to recover from a Refresh (for example, Bookmarks Toolbar is not displayed, panic ensues, or a hard-to-find extension cannot be installed from the Add-ons site), but we also see users ecstatic not to have to follow our sometimes complicated troubleshooting steps when they discover the Refresh button on their own. There's really no way to efficiently cater to all needs in a manner that everyone would find comprehensible, and everyone has a somewhat different view on how to fix the problem.

I haven't seen that bottom bar for a while, but when I use other Refresh buttons, the warning dialog uses more general language (screen shot attached). We probably see a user a week trying to recover from a Refresh (for example, Bookmarks Toolbar is not displayed, panic ensues, or a hard-to-find extension cannot be installed from the Add-ons site), but we also see users ecstatic not to have to follow our sometimes complicated troubleshooting steps when they discover the Refresh button on their own. There's really no way to efficiently cater to all needs in a manner that everyone would find comprehensible, and everyone has a somewhat different view on how to fix the problem.

Umnikazi wombuzo

James said

Addons like Plugins of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type about:plugins in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system. Addons does not equal Extensions mainly.

So why did 'refresh' remove or disable AdblockPlus?

It seems like Refresh doesn't always do what it's meant to do, including not creating a reliable backup.

''James [[#answer-918442|said]]'' <blockquote> Addons like '''Plugins''' of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type '''about:plugins''' in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system. Addons does not equal Extensions mainly. </blockquote> So why did 'refresh' remove or disable AdblockPlus? It seems like Refresh doesn't always do what it's meant to do, including not creating a reliable backup.

Umnikazi wombuzo

jscher2000 said

I haven't seen that bottom bar for a while, but when I use other Refresh buttons, the warning dialog uses more general language (screen shot attached). We probably see a user a week trying to recover from a Refresh (for example, Bookmarks Toolbar is not displayed, panic ensues, or a hard-to-find extension cannot be installed from the Add-ons site), but we also see users ecstatic not to have to follow our sometimes complicated troubleshooting steps when they discover the Refresh button on their own. There's really no way to efficiently cater to all needs in a manner that everyone would find comprehensible, and everyone has a somewhat different view on how to fix the problem.

It's the old question, which is worse the sin of ommission or commission?

Not providing a facility means at least that users have to engage in the process before things go wrong.

''jscher2000 [[#answer-918443|said]]'' <blockquote> I haven't seen that bottom bar for a while, but when I use other Refresh buttons, the warning dialog uses more general language (screen shot attached). We probably see a user a week trying to recover from a Refresh (for example, Bookmarks Toolbar is not displayed, panic ensues, or a hard-to-find extension cannot be installed from the Add-ons site), but we also see users ecstatic not to have to follow our sometimes complicated troubleshooting steps when they discover the Refresh button on their own. There's really no way to efficiently cater to all needs in a manner that everyone would find comprehensible, and everyone has a somewhat different view on how to fix the problem. </blockquote> It's the old question, which is worse the sin of ommission or commission? Not providing a facility means at least that users have to engage in the process before things go wrong.

Impendulo Ewusizo

Having read the various replies, I can see that some are a little defensive.

The fact is that the refresh process appears to cause a significant number of users distress and inconvenience.

All that is needed is for the refresh page to:

1 Clearly warn users that using it may remove all their add-ons & customisations, 2 These can be restored from backup profile(s) that will be left on the desktop but that restoring these may not be as simple as copying them back as this might cause Firefox to fail to start completely. 3 Signpost alternative strategies for speeding things up.

Having read the various replies, I can see that some are a little defensive. The fact is that the refresh process appears to cause a significant number of users distress and inconvenience. All that is needed is for the refresh page to: '''1 Clearly warn users that using it may remove all their add-ons & customisations,''' '''2 These can be restored from backup profile(s) that will be left on the desktop but that restoring these may not be as simple as copying them back as this might cause Firefox to fail to start completely.''' '''3 Signpost alternative strategies for speeding things up.'''

Okulungisiwe ngu Unique_username

James
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Kuphostiwe

Unique_username said

James said
Addons like Plugins of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type about:plugins in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system. Addons does not equal Extensions mainly.
So why did 'refresh' remove or disable AdblockPlus?

Adblock Plus is a Extension and not a Plugin. Plugins normally refers to say Flash Player, Silverlight, Java for example.

https://addons.mozilla.org/faq

''Unique_username [[#answer-918496|said]]'' <blockquote> ''James [[#answer-918442|said]]'' <blockquote> Addons like '''Plugins''' of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type '''about:plugins''' in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system. Addons does not equal Extensions mainly. </blockquote>So why did 'refresh' remove or disable AdblockPlus? </blockquote> Adblock Plus is a '''Extension''' and not a Plugin. Plugins normally refers to say Flash Player, Silverlight, Java for example. https://addons.mozilla.org/faq

Umnikazi wombuzo

James said

Unique_username said
James said
Addons like Plugins of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type about:plugins in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system. Addons does not equal Extensions mainly.
So why did 'refresh' remove or disable AdblockPlus?

Adblock Plus is a Extension and not a Plugin. Plugins normally refers to say Flash Player, Silverlight, Java for example.

https://addons.mozilla.org/faq

Seems like this simple explanation should be on the refresh page so people can be sure what they are nuking before they press the fire button.

''James [[#answer-918499|said]]'' <blockquote> ''Unique_username [[#answer-918496|said]]'' <blockquote> ''James [[#answer-918442|said]]'' <blockquote> Addons like '''Plugins''' of course does not get removed since they are on system and not installed in Firefox. Type '''about:plugins''' in Location (address) bar to see where the Plugins Firefox is making use of is located on system. Addons does not equal Extensions mainly. </blockquote>So why did 'refresh' remove or disable AdblockPlus? </blockquote> Adblock Plus is a '''Extension''' and not a Plugin. Plugins normally refers to say Flash Player, Silverlight, Java for example. https://addons.mozilla.org/faq </blockquote> Seems like this simple explanation should be on the refresh page so people can be sure what they are nuking before they press the fire button.
John99 971 izisombululo 13138 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

Just thought I would mention & cross link another current thread that may be of interest

I posted links to what could be potentially useful help articles for those sorting out this situation.

There are not Knowledge Base articles specifically covering the situation of recovering after a Refresh. This post contains two similar good fully detailed explanations on what you need to do

Explanations and instructions may change shortly because of a new profile picker, but that is not yet fully functional.

Most peoples extensions will have come from a Firefox related searchable add-on site

Just thought I would mention & cross link another current thread that may be of interest * ''How to restore profile name after refresh ?'' https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1139223#answer-918502 I posted links to what could be potentially useful help articles for those sorting out this situation. There are not Knowledge Base articles specifically covering the situation of recovering after a Refresh. This post contains two similar good fully detailed explanations on what you need to do * ''[https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1128917#answer-892013 how to unrefresh firefox]'' Explanations and instructions may change shortly because of a new profile picker, but that is not yet fully functional. * The main article on Data other than Firefox add-ons (extensions) is <br/> [[Recovering important data from an old profile]] Most peoples extensions will have come from a Firefox related searchable add-on site * See [[Find and install add-ons to add features to Firefox]] * Visit & search https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/

Umnikazi wombuzo

I've suggested the other thread is retitled 'How to Undo Firefox Refresh' so it is easier to locate with a search engine.

Refresh is being oversold, if it is a last resort, it should not be promoted to users because 'firefox started slowly' far better a link to a pages suggesting 'things you could do to speed up firefox'. Recovering important data from an old profile Is a useful page, and is essentially what I did, because the advice I found through Google just suggested deleting the old profile folder and replacing it with the saved one, which just made Firefox hang.

As a complete rollback is just copying every file from old to new profile, surely this could be automated?

I've suggested the other thread is retitled 'How to Undo Firefox Refresh' so it is easier to locate with a search engine. Refresh is being oversold, if it is a last resort, it should not be promoted to users because 'firefox started slowly' far better a link to a pages suggesting 'things you could do to speed up firefox'. [http://example.com Recovering important data from an old profile] Is a useful page, and is essentially what I did, because the advice I found through Google just suggested deleting the old profile folder and replacing it with the saved one, which just made Firefox hang. As a complete rollback is just copying every file from old to new profile, surely this could be automated?
John99 971 izisombululo 13138 izimpendulo
Kuphostiwe

I am hoping the profile picker may be developed in such a way as to be able to handle the task of rolling back Refersh Desktop profiles. Who knows it may, or other things may be more important and take priority. The profile picker does not even work as intended yet so it's a bit early to expect an enhancement.

I am hoping the profile picker may be developed in such a way as to be able to handle the task of rolling back Refersh Desktop profiles. Who knows it may, or other things may be more important and take priority. The profile picker does not even work as intended yet so it's a bit early to expect an enhancement.