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Mozilla Adds Do-Not-Track Feature To Firefox 4 Pre-Beta Builds

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the hitting-the-ground-running dept.

Firefox 89

An anonymous reader writes "Mozilla cranked out a new version of Firefox 4 (Beta 11-pre) that includes the proposed do-not-track feature. Both the nightly builds and latest trunk builds integrate the do-not-track feature. You could accuse Mozilla of wasting time with Firefox 4 beta-testing, but this feature certainly has surfaced fast."

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It's great (1)

piripiri (1476949) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066524)

Having a browser with a feature that no one else uses!

Re:It's great (2)

Esospopenon (1838392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066538)

It's the great chicken and egg dilemma. Why would anyone use it if there are no browsers that supports it?

Re:It's great (3, Insightful)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066616)

Every browser in the world can support it, it means nothing if the websites do not honour it - and what reason do they have to honour it?

Re:It's great (2)

PseudonymousBraveguy (1857734) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067054)

The proposed FTC regulation [ftc.gov]

Re:It's great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35067572)

Well it's a good thing all websites are under U.S. jurisdiction then.

Re:It's great (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 2 years ago | (#35067704)

As a British web developer, the FTC does not regulate me...

Re:It's great (1)

SeaFox (739806) | more than 2 years ago | (#35073618)

I think it's safe to say that majority of websites one visits are those of their home country due to language support, business serving area (for ecommerce sites), and locality for sites dealing with things in one's own hometown. So to Americans, this feature will be welcome as the FTC regulation will apply to the majority of the websites they visit.

Re:It's great (1)

shia84 (1985626) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066546)

Well, having a browser with a feature that no one else used (for a short time span, until others started using it) was great many times before, so why not now? One has to be the first.

Re:It's great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35066644)

Having a browser with a feature that no one else uses!

Yeah, really great! Like being a member of an elite club! Those users of other browsers sure are backward hillbillies! That'll show those Opera nerds

Re:It's great (3, Funny)

commodore6502 (1981532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066694)

>>>Having a browser with a feature that no one else uses!

When Netscape first introduced the concept of Inline Pictures, or Frames, or Blink, nobody had ever used them before either. But the web quickly adapted.

(Still not sure why blink was deprecated. How am I supposed to design a website header that mimics Neon signs?)

Re:It's great (1)

bws111 (1216812) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066800)

Of course inline pictures, frames, and blink were positives for the site developers. 'Do not track' not so much.

Re:It's great (1)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066824)

I was about to retort with PRIVACY WARBLE, but then I wondered if visitor count would apply for Do-Not-Track.

Re:It's great (3, Insightful)

bunratty (545641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066916)

The more important point is that anyone who writes a web page can use inline pictures, frames, and blink just by editing their page with a text editor. Do not track requires web server support. I think most web developers do not have access to the configuration of the web server, and even if they do have access, they generally don't know how to configure it properly.

Re:It's great (1)

bunratty (545641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066818)

text-decoration: blink;

Re:It's great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35070652)

user_pref("browser.blink_allowed", false);

Not convincing until they solved the memory leak (1, Flamebait)

francium de neobie (590783) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066542)

I used FF4 b7 in my Mac for a while - whenever I closed it, I get half my system's memory (2GB) back, visible from Activity Monitor's pie chart. This thing eats more memory than a Windows 7 VM for opening a bunch of YouTube tabs, there's no way I'll go back until they fixed this.

Re:Not convincing until they solved the memory lea (4, Informative)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066742)

https://addons.mozilla.org/af/firefox/addon/configuration-mania-4420/ [mozilla.org]

Install this addon.

Click Edit for Mac/Linux or Tools for Windows, Configuration Mania, which should be under preferences.

Make sure Browser is highlighted on the top row, if not click it. Click Browser Cache on the Left Column. Press Disabled under Max Number of Pages Stored in Memory.

It keeps closed pages all in RAM, and decides based on your total RAM how much it will save. There are almost no leaks, just dumb decisions (developers) and judgments (users).

Re:Not convincing until they solved the memory lea (1)

francium de neobie (590783) | more than 2 years ago | (#35068564)

Have you actually used Firefox 4 on a Mac? The usual excuses are simply invalid - you open FF4b10 with Google as home page with barely anything on screen - 230MB is now gone! Safari opening Apple's oh-so-blingy home page is only using 100MB. "Max Number of Pages Stored in Memory" simply doesn't apply.

Plus... I know there're about:config entries that can tune this behavior. But I also know I can use Chrome without setting anything and it'll work without slowing things down (and Chrome did have a similar problem in the past! But they fixed that). Or, I can use FF4, tweak a bunch of stuff and it's still bad, and slower. This "this is not technically a memory leak" thing is irrelevant when user experience is concerned. Chrome does the job better and faster without slowing the computer down, they also seem to fix bugs faster. The decision is really easy for the user.

Re:Not convincing until they solved the memory lea (4, Informative)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 2 years ago | (#35068792)

Have you actually used Firefox 4 on a Mac? The usual excuses are simply invalid - you open FF4b10 with Google as home page with barely anything on screen - 230MB is now gone! Safari opening Apple's oh-so-blingy home page is only using 100MB. "Max Number of Pages Stored in Memory" simply doesn't apply.

This "this is not technically a memory leak" thing is irrelevant when user experience is concerned.

This next statement direct answer to both your statements.
Webkit (Chrome and Safari) and Gecko (Firefox) work very differently. Firefox has sane disk cache limits (the default is 75MB), but instead opts to store much more in memory for the sake of speed.

There is no setting for Chrome nor Safari to change the disk cache, and in Chrome only a command line setting will change it. I've seen it balloon to 1GB.

So you see, for the sake of speed, something has to give. Firefox chose the route of RAM, probably following the philosophy that Linux users have that unused RAM is wasted RAM (hence Linux OS having the RAM cache full of files and regular users freak out. Since you are on a Mac, try running free in the command line and see your cache usage). Webkit I'm not sure why they do what they do, but considering the disk is currently much faster than any non-LAN network, it opts to use the disk.

So you see, there's very good reasons why these behaviors occur, and both have obvious advantages and disadvantages, all in the name of speed.

I'm babbling, I should get back to work now.

Re:Not convincing until they solved the memory lea (1)

rjstanford (69735) | more than 3 years ago | (#35079268)

You made an interesting babble:

So you see, for the sake of speed, something has to give. Firefox chose the route of RAM, probably following the philosophy that Linux users have that unused RAM is wasted RAM (hence Linux OS having the RAM cache full of files and regular users freak out. Since you are on a Mac, try running free in the command line and see your cache usage). Webkit I'm not sure why they do what they do, but considering the disk is currently much faster than any non-LAN network, it opts to use the disk.

What we really need here is a way for the OS to handle some of the network retrieval protocols (or expose direct access in another way) so that webpages can be stored in the OS file cache space. That way all "excess" memory is used, but data is immediately kicked out (instead of being pushed out to disk or, worse yet, causing other apps to swap to disk) when memory usage becomes an issue.

Ironically, I'd guess that it would be a lot easier for the tighter integration in Windows to manage this :/

So i guess the privacy browsing feature (2)

Stan92057 (737634) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066576)

So i guess the privacy browsing feature doesn't work as well?? or at all?

Re:So i guess the privacy browsing feature (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35066754)

Where Private Browsing prevents the *browser* from storing information on your session, Do-Not-Track presumably prevents tracking by parties on the Internets.

(Not that I've read TFA, of course.)

Re:So i guess the privacy browsing feature (2)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066760)

They do different things. Privacy browsing gives you a new, clean session that's trashed (with temp files, cookies, etc.) when you exit. Do-not-track tells sites they should not be tracking your activity, without affecting your session's permanence. In some situations you'd want neither, either, or both.

Re:So i guess the privacy browsing feature (2)

Rhaban (987410) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066770)

Firefox's private browsing is the worst among the main browsers. In opera you can open a private tab alongside your other tabs, chrome opens a private window, but firefox is the only one to close all your current tabs when you want private browsing.

Re:So i guess the privacy browsing feature (1)

bunratty (545641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066952)

I suppose one could consider Firefox's implementation worse. One could also consider Opera's or Chrome's implementation worse because a user could get confused about which tabs or windows are private and mistakenly open a URL meant to be private in a non-private tab or window. One person's bug could be another person's feature.

Re:So i guess the privacy browsing feature (2)

anilg (961244) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067124)

Chrome privacy window is of a different color. When you regularly use it, you immediately know when you're in privacy mode by the color. It's intuitive, and in no way confusing when you're used to it.

Re:So i guess the privacy browsing feature (1)

rjstanford (69735) | more than 3 years ago | (#35079274)

It's intuitive, and in no way confusing when you're used to it.

If it was actually intuitive, it would be no way confusing even when you weren't used to it.

Re:So i guess the privacy browsing feature (1)

perryizgr8 (1370173) | more than 2 years ago | (#35068024)

whenever i need to use the 'p' mode, i just fire up ie9, whose shortcut i've modified to always open in inprivate mode. its much better than firefox's close-everything-that-is-open-and-start-afresh approach.

Fonts (1)

zixxt (1547061) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066602)

They just need to fix the blurry fonts in 4.0 betas on Windows, geez I cannot use Firefox for more than 10 minutes with out getting dizzy.

Re:Fonts (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35066880)

Turn off hardware accelerated rendering in the options.

Re:Fonts (1)

wmac (1107843) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066972)

and one of the most convincing features in FF4 is the hardware acceleration which should be turned off to restore usability??!!

Re:Fonts (1)

perryizgr8 (1370173) | more than 2 years ago | (#35068038)

i think they fixed aliased ui text in b10?
and anyway the content is beautifully anti-aliased.

Do I have this right? (3)

codeButcher (223668) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066636)

Is this a header that nicely asks advertisers not to track you? And if they choose to ignore it??

Re:Do I have this right? (3, Informative)

Seumas (6865) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066668)

Correct. You can use the "opt-out" feature, but it only works if the advertiser also "opts-in". In other words, this is completely fucking useless. It's like having a car that is crash-proof, as long as nobody crashes into you. (Because this is slashdot and this post would be useless without a car analogy).

Re:Do I have this right? (1)

codeButcher (223668) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066716)

I thought so - this should have been under Idle....

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35066724)

It doesn't sound useless. It depends on where privacy laws go in different jurisdictions. If we get to a point where sites are required to honor user choice and they don't honor this setting, then there will be legal repercussions for the site. For now, yes, it is a feature with no teeth. However that doesn't mean it will always remain with no teeth.

Re:Do I have this right? (2)

Seumas (6865) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066752)

That'll be great. For Americans in America visiting American websites hosted in America and advertising for American advertisers in America.

Re:Do I have this right? (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067252)

It's potentially quite useful, if we ever got the legislative backing behind it. If I have Do Not Track enabled, and some advertiser grabbed a session, including the do-not-track tag, then a nice crispy penalty should apply. Per page click.

At the very least, Google on Slashdot should obey it. FF4 Beta / unknown others seems to crawl waiting for ssl.google-analytics.com.

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35070302)

You can use the ol' hots-file redirect to 0.0.0.0, or the slower 127.0.0.1
Do not track infrastructure is a good idea even if nothing happens here in the USA --it's about giving people elsewhere an option in case lawmakers in their more sensible areas agree. What happens afterwards is still vague and pointless, but we can't begin to build a gate without putting up the hinges first.

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35066702)

If they choose to ignore it, then nothing. There are motions underway to enforce this legally, but that pesky jurisdiction thing tends to get in the way ("US laws forbid it - so what? Our company and server is in Bumfuq, Elbonia, nyah nyah"). It is indeed somewhat toothless.

Re:Do I have this right? (1)

PseudonymousBraveguy (1857734) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067132)

I think that at least the big advertising networks like Google will comply, and coincidentally those are the ones that do most of the tracking.

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35072922)

... and are already the ones which allow you to opt-out. It's not Google that you need to worry about. It's the far-shadier companies which don't already give you an opt-out option, and will likely laugh at this header.

Re:Do I have this right? (2)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066782)

It's like robots.txt*. People are entitled to ignore it, but they will reap the consequences if they do. Whether adoption of this flag is as heroic will say a lot about the maturity of the web.

*Appropriate, really. Used to be you'd make a site and decide how much you wanted to share with spiders using robots.txt. Now you make a Facebook profile and decide how much you want to share with advertisers similarly.

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35069654)

It's like robots.txt*. People are entitled to ignore it, but they will reap the consequences if they do. Whether adoption of this flag is as heroic will say a lot about the maturity of the web.

I have tried google, but I'm not quite sure what I'm looking for. Could you, or someone else, elaborate on the consequences of ignoring robots.txt?

Appreciated.

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35072032)

Webmasters who are paying attention will ban your IP address(es) for running ill-behaved bots. Google for "incredibill" for one particularly vitriolic example.

Re:Do I have this right? (1)

anilg (961244) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067178)

And if they choose to ignore it?

All it takes is a couple high profile sites to recognise this header. Something along the lines of "Hey, we see you requested DO-Not-track, and we'll honor this" . Once this feature and it's usage is in the average user's radar, it creates an incentive for the website to garner some karma. And as the web grows focuses more on privacy issues, this would very likely lead to content providers and advertisers honoring the header. I'd be interested in seeing how Mozilla and others promote this.

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35067556)

You missed an important step in there: the high profile sites must find a way to stay in business when their advertising dollars dry up.

Re:Do I have this right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35072264)

yes it is. And if hey choose to ignore it there is nothing you can do about it.
Even worse, you are handing them an extra bit of information about yourself, being that you care about privacy but are not savvy enough to realize this does not work.
It also makes your browser signature more unique so it actually makes it easier for them to track you.
http://panopticlick.eff.org/ [eff.org]

Firefox Advertising? (2, Insightful)

commodore6502 (1981532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066648)

Whenever there's a Beta release (11 times so far) we get a post. And NOW we have a post about a release that not even a full beta, but just a pre-build.

But we don't ever get updates when Mozilla Seamonkey has a release (upto beta 3 now), or Chrome, or Safari, or Opera. Yes Firefox is my favorite browser (because of the addons), but can we at least have some balance? Coverage of other browsers would be good too.

Re:Firefox Advertising? (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066850)

Have you submitted the story?

Re:Firefox Advertising? (1)

commodore6502 (1981532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066946)

I have submitted stories when Mozilla Seamonkey released 2.1 Alpha and Beta. Both were rejected. (But betas about firefox get promoted.) In fact seamonkey hasn't been covered by slashdot since 2009.

Opera doesn't get much coverage either. They released 10.1, 10.5, 10.6 and nary a word from slashdot, and opera's the most popular browser in Eastern europe and Russia.

Re:Firefox Advertising? (1)

bunratty (545641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066868)

The post isn't about a build. The post is about the second most popular browser suddenly adding support for a much desired feature, soon after the third most popular browser added the same feature. To put it another way, it really doesn't matter whether SeaMonkey or Opera alone supports a particular feature, because their usage share is so low they can't influence much on their own.

Re:Firefox Advertising? (2)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067026)

>>>their usage share is so low they can't influence much on their own.
>>>

And yet everyone keeps copying Opera:
- the "paste and go" function in the title bar
- the speeddial function that displays 6-12 icons for websites
- the online "cloud" storage of bookmarks so they can be accessed from anywhere
- spellcheck
- instant display of half-loaded pages
- Turbo for slow dialup lines
- and of course the biggest one: Tabbed browsing.

Plus other features I've forgotten, but originated with Opera originally and others copied. It appears this browser has had a LOT of influence.

Competition (1)

kangsterizer (1698322) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066704)

Chrome's competition forced their hand I think. And that's good. Competition, is good. Not that anyone would doubt it anyway.

Beta (1)

rjstanford (69735) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066756)

You could accuse Mozilla of wasting time with Firefox 4 beta-testing, but this feature certainly has surfaced fast.

Actually, I'd rather accuse the Mozilla team of not understanding the purpose of a beta release. Adding support for shiny new features (and introducing, and then fixing, the inevitable bugs that follow) is great activity for a point release. The idea behind the beta is to make sure that all existing features work well, and that any true functionality gaps (often seen as bugs - for example, not supporting .png by design, while not a bug, would fall into this area) are addressed.

Once 4 is released, this type of minor change would be a great candidate for 4.0.1... As it is, it just makes it harder to get 4.x out the door.

Re:Beta (3, Insightful)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066900)

This is a checkbox which adds a single static header to each request, it's too simple to delay FF4 in any way.

Re:Beta (2)

rudy_wayne (414635) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067072)

This is a checkbox which adds a single static header to each request, it's too simple to delay FF4 in any way.

From TFA:
"Currently, the feature shows up in the “Advanced” panel within Firefox Preferences. It pains me that it’s not under the “Privacy” panel, yet. This reflects our desire for speed in getting the feature into Firefox, as updating the “Privacy” UI and content will require additional engineering bandwidth. We’ll have more to say on this once we move the new feature into upcoming beta releases."

Translation: Even though we are already at Beta 11 and should be focused solely on fixing bugs for a final release, we are in a big hurry to cram in a new feature, of questionable value, and can't be arsed to implement it correctly because it would take too much "engineering bandwidth". (what the fuck is engineering bandwidth and who talks like that?)

Re:Beta (1)

francium de neobie (590783) | more than 2 years ago | (#35068644)

This is a checkbox which adds a single static header to each request, it's too simple to delay FF4 in any way.

This is also what programmers worldwide hate the hear from their PM/VP/CxO right before release - sorry, no software feature is "too simple to delay release in any way". This is an all-too-common blind spot when the requestor only thought about the time needed to make the change, but neglected to consider the effects it can have on other parts of the project and the user. It's actually quite worrying to see Firefox doing that - it's poor project management.

Re:Beta (1)

rjstanford (69735) | more than 2 years ago | (#35070172)

This is a checkbox which adds a single static header to each request, it's too simple to delay FF4 in any way.

O rly?

And you've never had a checkbox not save properly? Or cause the screen on which its placed to overflow when shown on a particular resolution netbook, causing a previously unimportant scrolling issue to surface that was being masked because the screen wasn't overflowing? And all of those situations would need to be tested, which takes time, and documented (for testing) which also takes resources... Don't forget internationalizing the checkbox label - I hope that German doesn't cause the label to overflow...

There's no such thing as a "free" feature in software.

Re:Beta (1)

rudy_wayne (414635) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066948)

You could accuse Mozilla of wasting time with Firefox 4 beta-testing, but this feature certainly has surfaced fast.

Actually, I'd rather accuse the Mozilla team of not understanding the purpose of a beta release. Adding support for shiny new features (and introducing, and then fixing, the inevitable bugs that follow) is great activity for a point release.

Unfortunately, this is what Firefox has become. Its development process has gone completely off the tracks. Instead of implementing a fixed feature set, and getting everything working properly, they are constantly adding new features. That's why they are up to Beta 11.

Re:Beta (1)

bunratty (545641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066994)

It doesn't seem like Mozilla's development process has changed much. I think it used to be trendy to praise Firefox, and now it's trendy to criticize Firefox.

Re:Beta (1)

Rizimar (1986164) | more than 2 years ago | (#35069374)

I don't see it as trendy. The praise and criticism have largely been legitimate for Firefox. People praised this browser because of its execution speed and flexibility with add-ons as well as better support for standards than many other browsers, particularly Internet Explorer (which might not sound like much until one considers how many people used IE and how newer browsers like FF have helped things like CSS grow on the web). Now, people criticize it because this software that has proven to be so useful is being bogged down with a poor development process and questionable feature additions, such as this Do-Not-Track header line.

Re:Beta (1)

BuckaBooBob (635108) | more than 2 years ago | (#35069108)

Still this feature is kinda irrelevant.. Turning it on does not force the website your visiting to obey..

For this type of Opt-in style Feature to work (I use Opt-in as the websites would have to want to comply) there would need to be some way to verify that they are actually not tracking you.. In all likelyhood they will still track you and this feature will end up being as effective as a big sign on your lawn that says "My house is unlocked.. But I do not want anyone to steal my stuff.. So don't please"

 

Something akin to a "model release"? (1)

kmdrtako (1971832) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066836)

If a commercial/professional photographer takes a photograph of me, and wants to use it commercially, he or she needs a model release from me in order to do so.

If a commercial data miner collects information about me -- in this new information age -- shouldn't they also need a "release" from me in order to use it?

Key phrase in the article here (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066882)

When enabled and supported by advertising networks

i.e., never.

DING! (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 3 years ago | (#35066902)

Buzzer goes off>
another point for mozilla.....and nothing as usual for IE

Speaking of wishful thinking... (1)

ibsteve2u (1184603) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067038)

From TFA:

When enabled and supported by advertising networks...

For its likely effectiveness at stopping the slimeballs, I'd put voluntary support by the advertising networks right up there with the sign at the bank entrance that says "No firearms.".

I would prefer.... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067174)

Do not track info scrambling.

Honestly they can give the user easy tools to scramble the browser response string, scramble the javascript info like fonts available and only report the standard list that comes with a clean XP install. etc.... Report random "referrer" responses/ etc....

The do not track flag is useless as most of the scumbag sites that track will ignore it or use it as a further flag on you. making your info random or looking like a standard that everyone else has will hide it better.

Question for FireFox fans (on browser cache) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35067300)

I tried to move my FireFox 4 latest build from 01/31/2011 (minefield 64 bit builds for Windows 7), using what used to work on FireFox via editing about:config adding entries for this to override the stock-oem defaults of putting this onto your main "C" drive disk of:

user_pref("browser.cache.disk.enable", true);
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.directory", J:\TEMP);
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.parent_directory", J:\TEMP);
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.capacity", 1048576);
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.smart_size.first_run", false);
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.smart_size_cached_value", 1048576);

And later checking those entries in both about:config as well as about:cache, and yes, seeing them there... but, they do NOT seem to be working anymore, because the FireFox diskcache keeps forming itself on my "C" drive under my user profile folders there.

I also later additionally even checked prefs.js to see if the entries there are correctly entered!

They are there & showing as the same as they do in about:config or about:cache, albeit using "\\" path entries as was directed and worked in older FF/Minefield browser versions, vs. single path slash entries shown in about:config or about:cache... & they were there, in prefs.js also, as follows:

---

user_pref("browser.cache.disk.parent_directory", "J:\\TEMP");
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.capacity", 1048576);
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.directory", "J:\\TEMP");
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.smart_size.first_run", false);
user_pref("browser.cache.disk.smart_size_cached_value", 1048576);

---

ANY IDEAS WHY THOSE ENTRIES NO LONGER WORK IN FIREFOX 4 BETA/MINEFIELD, when they used to and still do on stock-oem-final builds of FireFox?

See, I wanted to move the browser cache off of my C disk, as I do in Opera, IE9, and Chrome so it does not clutter the main disk that houses my OS & programs, as well as to a disk that has less activity as well (so the cache performs better by using another diskdrive to do the work seeking/writing it, rather than burdening "C" drive with it). This also lends to less fragmentation of my main "C" disk too (by not cluttering it up with browser cache data).

Any ideas guys? Thanks in advance.

Firefox and their "security theater" (3, Interesting)

ugen (93902) | more than 3 years ago | (#35067302)

On the one hand, Mozilla/Firefox has been taking control of cookies away from "regular users" - yes, it's all still there, but it is no longer obviously exposed, and instead most users would never even know what hides behind "Firefox will remember history" one-liner in a drop box.

So now, after cannibalizing the real control of privacy - one that rests with a user, they are trying to come up with an *http header* that is no more than a plea on part of a client to the server - "please don't track me". What are the chances anyone would give a damn (unless this is written into a *world wide* law with severe penalties?).

Sorry, this misses the mark completely. If you want to make sure users are not being tracked, restore control of information sites can store, make it *easier* and *more obvious* to users when they are being tracked, cooperate with or build into your browser functionality of "cookie jar", "ghostery", "adblock" and other click/cookie/link/image tracking control plugins. In short - do real work, rather than sticking a feel-good, do-nothing header which will achieve nothing.

Re:Firefox and their "security theater" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35067938)

What are you talking about? You can control individual cookies, and prevent the sites you want from storing them. Try actually using Firefox before whining about it.

Re:Firefox and their "security theater" (1)

ugen (93902) | more than 2 years ago | (#35068408)

I use Firefox exclusively.
Please read what I posted again, more carefully this time.

Re:Firefox and their "security theater" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35069792)

I did, and it's still pretty fucking obvious. Either Firefox remembers history, which means it remembers things you expect a browser to remember, either it doesn't, and then every single setting comes up for you to modify, with a glaringly obvious "Exceptions..." You're looking for problems where they are none because it's cool and hip to whine about well made browser features.

Re:Firefox and their "security theater" (1)

BuckaBooBob (635108) | more than 2 years ago | (#35069244)

What they should be doing..

"Do not track me or else the war will begin"

And with the Exhaustion of IPv4 address space.. everyone will be behind a NAT for a number of years and it will be easier than ever to make everyone look the same on the internet...

All they need to do stop sending info to the servers because they cannot be trusted. This has been needed for a Long time.. Servers on the internet cannot be trusted and should not be.. the whole trust relationships have been made with the client trusting the server... This needs to shift to where the server must prove its trustworthy to the client...

 

Re:Firefox and their "security theater" (1)

StripedCow (776465) | more than 2 years ago | (#35069380)

What I am really waiting for is for browsers to implement a mechanism that will allow websites to become "trusted" by the user, in a simple way.

Right now, if a website wants to obtain a level of trust, it should ask the user "pull down this menu, then click here and there, then type website name, etc. etc.". Much too complicated, and different per browser. And not even adequate in most cases.

With such a simple and user-friendly system in place, websites could be "untrusted" by default.

Re:Firefox and their "security theater" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35073682)

Good idea, you should probably propose that to Chromium and to Firefox. Although I doubt Firefox will care, as they remove nice things like F6 keyboard shortcuts; and Firefox likes to play catchup.

BrowserSpy now supports Do Not Track (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35067346)

BrowserSpy now supports showing if your browser send the correct Do Not Track header.

Head over to http://browserspy.dk/donottrack.php and check for your self.

You currently have to be running nightly Mozilla Firefox for the header to show up

time for server-side do-not-visit feature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35067462)

I know tracking is being abused in many cases, but it's also important for many sites to survive - better tracking allows targeted ads which generates more money. I'd rather see a focus on transparency and opt-out or personalization and restrictions on data selling & cross-site profile building, and educating the users than the do-not-track scare that's being pushed. It is very different from do-not-call since the user is initiating the contact and not being interrupted by an unwanted call but seems like some are using the success of do-not-call to push this.

This is more like saying stores cannot keep surveillance video or analyze it for non-crime uses (e.g. store layout), cannot keep track of what you buy, cannot keep count of how many people are in a suit vs overalls, or seem foreign or lower income, and cannot share this data with other companies. All of these things keep your selection up and prices down at the grocery store (even if you don't use their card). All of these things can be abused but few people are yelling to have them stopped.

The outcome is going to be 1) some sites go away because they aren't cost-effective 2) you have to register everywhere else and agree to tracking. Hopefully (2) will bring some transparency as they detail their tracking in the agreement but I'd still rather not have it.

Give me a version that doesn't crash (2)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 2 years ago | (#35067668)

Okay, my screen just turned black. Every v4 pre since like b2 has been corrupting its own memory, slowly dying, then outright crashing. The crash reporter has submitted 4 or 5 reports after crashes; it usually fails.

Re:Give me a version that doesn't crash (1)

kbrosnan (880121) | more than 2 years ago | (#35073102)

If Firefox 4 starts, assuming you are on Windows, would you try disabling hardware acceleration in tools > options > advanced > general > browsing. If that helps your system has video card drivers that are incompatible with Firefox. Updating the drivers should help. If you have any crash report IDs http://support.mozilla.com/en-US/kb/Mozilla+Crash+Reporter [mozilla.com] explains how to retrieve them. They would be very helpful in diagnosing the problem.

Does it no longer log me out of Slashdot??? (1)

WebManWalking (1225366) | more than 2 years ago | (#35067854)

Switching between FF 3 and 4 trashes all of my persistent sessions with "keep me logged in" sites, including Slashdot. Both directions (3 to 4 and 4 to 3). And FF 4 launches automatically if it's not up and I click on a hotlink, presumably because the OS wants to launch the latest and greatest. That means I have to keep FF 3 going all the time, in case, I want to click on a hotlink. Either that or default to FF 4 with all of its hounding for feedback. Stop punishing me for helping you test version 4's HTML5 features, Mozilla!

Why doesn't one version of Firefox want to honor a different version's "Keep until: they expire"???

Re:Does it no longer log me out of Slashdot??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35070796)

You're running FF3 and 4 on the same profile? What are you, retarded?

google: firefox 3 and 4

result 1: http://www.tech-recipes.com/rx/2828/os_x_install_firefox_2_firefox_3_same_computer/
result 2: http://www.thewindowsclub.com/how-to-run-firefox-3-and-firefox-4-simultaneously-in-windows

learn to use the google-tubes and you won't end up looking like a (complete) dumbshit

Not going to fly. (1)

Richy_T (111409) | more than 2 years ago | (#35068632)

If this were going to work, it would need to offer the remote site the opportunity to ping back "Tracking is required to obtain access to the content/services I am providing. Approve/Deny". I know most of us here don't like tracking but it's a two way street and if you make it all one sided, the other side is simply going to ignore your "Please don't track me" flag.

agreed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35071372)

very much agreed!

Tell me why (1)

roxteddy (1741462) | more than 2 years ago | (#35071670)

Would I need a feature that allows me to give control to a third party when I can have the control myself. NoScript Adblock flashblock BetterPrivacy and other plugin tools allow me to get the service I want. I choose to support them.

Suuure, this'll work. (1)

prograde (1425683) | more than 2 years ago | (#35073482)

I am reminded once again of the "evil bit".

Easier to track (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35073700)

This is just another way to track people through headers. http://panopticlick.eff.org/ will instantly show you how trackable you are. While they are adding a new header, they also need to add a setting that makes all of the browser settings look the same, including system fonts, plug-ins, cookies, etc. You aren't trackable if you are unique.

Whitewash needed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35073878)

This is just adding something else to track you with. [eff.org] Instead, there should be defaults for all of the different pieces of information you transmit on the internet. Such a whitewash will make everyone look the same for a lot of purposes and help part of the problem.

Tor & Torbutton is the better solution! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35075094)

The Do Not Track option already exists:

Install and configure properly:

1. Tor (and it's requirements like libevent)
2. Privoxy (or Polipo)
3. Torsocks
4. Firefox (with Torbutton and Noscript addons)
5. Browse with SSL, ixquick has a good and free SSL search AND proxy, works with Tor, also Scroogle's SSL search.

And that's it: no cookies, no plugins, no scripts, no plugin updates in the background, and with proper encryption used, no tracking. You're welcome.

Trolls whining over exit node snooping aren't using SSL.

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