Firefox Certificates Glitch

A few weeks ago, when considering whether or not to restart blogging here, I found an old draft of a post from May 5, 2019 that never was published to the blog. I have hesitated to publish it now over two years later, but I think for my own benefit to remember old tech problems, it will be useful to do so. Back then, a major problem occurred using Firefox. Before finally publishing my draft now, I decided to find what version of Firefox was current back in early May 2019 and discovered the Wikipedia Firefox Version History. According to that, it was most likely Firefox 66.

Following is my May 5, 2019 draft:

A couple of days ago Firefox suddenly disabled all add-ons. I tried closing and reopening it, then tried uninstalling and reinstalling, all to no avail. The instructions given in the general help section said to delete and install the add-ons again. I tried that and was able to uninstall them, but not reinstall. It kept coming up with errors.

Next, I went online checking user forums and found that it had been identified as a glitch in the software and eventually it would be fixed. That was Friday night.

I checked again Saturday and found a comment that said it was fixed, but one had to allow Firefox to install and run studies. I did so, then was able to install all the add-ons I use again.

Most time consuming was reinstalling the feed reader, Feedbro. It was easy enough to get the addon, but it turned out I lost all the feeds I was using. I don’t know if I would have been able to recover them if I had not uninstalled it, but suspect I might have been able to.

This is the worst issue I’ve had using Firefox. The most confusing part of it was the glitch happened suddenly and not as a result of an update.

End of May 5, 2019 draft

My wife and I both continue to use Firefox and have had no problems since. A while back, we also began to use our own profiles making it much easier to navigate with our preferred bookmarks present.

Services and Add-ons

As a kind of miscellaneous category, I’ve lumped together several disparate apps or add-ons that have become regulars in my computer use.

I suppose because it was the first cloud file storage service I was aware of, Dropbox continues to be the one I use. I’ve tried One Drive and Google Docs a little, but like Dropbox better. Also, I do not really need more than one place. Someday I might choose to use one of those as a kind of backup, but so far, I have not seen the need for that.

As I mentioned in a previous post about my use of Twitter, I have kept my Facebook account purely for lurking. I never post anything, and long ago deleted what little I had done. I have my privacy settings at the highest level possible. Even so, I’m considering deleting the account completely, because I am so thoroughly disgusted with its failure to follow its own policies consistently, and its intentionally vague responses to avoid full transparency.

Pocket has become one of the most useful services for me. The quick and easy ability to save a site to read later is one of the handiest items created, in my opinion. (When I first began to use it, it was called Read It Later, which still is an excellent name for the purpose.) I learned toward the end of 2018, via a note from Pocket, that I was in the top 10% of users last year, which was a real surprise. And, I’m still a little leery about believing it, but I have used the service for more than just reading later. It has become a kind of archive of stories, sites, etc. grouped by topics I created by use of tags. I have no clue how many sites I’ve saved, but I find it a good way to go back to items I want to use again. Another great feature is it is available on all platforms, so when using the iPad or cellphone items can be saved quickly.

Several years ago, I found Google Reader a useful app and used it for my homepage. It has long since met its demise, but igHome was built by a developer who intentionally created it as knock-off of Google Reader. I have used it now for years as my home page on at least one of my computers.

My Yahoo also was a decent home page option when I was following sports more closely than I am now, but I have discontinued using it. I’ve tried a few other such as Start.me and more recently Protopage, but do not like them as well as igHome.

One add-on I have used for years is Web of Trust (WOT). Some browsers have discontinued it, but it still works fine in Firefox and Chrome. For a brief period of time a couple of years ago, it has some serious security issues, but they have been corrected. The little green/orange/red circle serves as one reminder of taking care not to visit dangerous sites online.

Other add-ons in Firefox: Privacy Badger, DuckDuckGo privacy Essentials, uBlock Origin, Facebook Political Ad Collector, Start Page private search engine, Save to Pocket

Other add-ons in Chrome: Privacy Badger, uBlock Origin, Save to Pocket

The most recent add-on I am now using with Firefox is Feedbro. It is one of the replacements for Firefox’s own feed reader that was just discontinued recently. I have come to really like Feedbro, and had I known about it sooner I would have used it instead of the built-in reader.

For the most part, I do not like to use add-ons, preferring to keep the browser lean, so these are the only ones I use now.