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HELP!! 1768 copies of the bookmark-file...

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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 2:16 pm

Running V 1.5 on Windows 9x. I had the bookmarks problem, and they were appearing in many places/folders. I tried everything mentioned so far, and it didn't work or didn't apply (e.g., not set to Read Only; no Norton, etc., only AVG on an olllld system). Started toying with adding/changing relevant about:config entries, but at first was making it worse, they started breeding into dated folders-within-folders even. The settings I have now which *seem* to have worked are:

browser.bookmarks.file pointed to c:\[relevant beginning of path here; varies by OS]\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\[nonsense folder name here].default\bookmarks.html

AND!!! (This made the real diff)

browser.bookmarks.restore_default_bookmarks set to TRUE. Seems maybe the default 'false' (this line wasn't pre-entered but about:config definitions say that's the default) had the effect of making the file *act* like a "Read Only?" None of the bookmarks or folders WERE Read Only but what I mean is, things instead bounced off and recreated themselves under that setting. It wanted to know it had control of being able to restore bookmarks, even tho there is no reason to think mine were corrupted. Now it looks like my bookmarks.html file is staying current, and only the bookmarks.bak file is updating itself more often than it, which is fine.

With this setting combo it seems Fx has also stopped forcing me to have a bookmarkbackups folder, which I didn't until days after install, but which appeared (and would recreate if I deleted it, even adding the dated folders within folders) when I first began tweaking about:config bookmark entries. I think that's more proof it just wants control over backups: now that I gave it that control, it is confident enough not to force a backup folder (or additional bookmark copies) on me.

This has held true through many intentional restarts of Fx today; previously that would create more bkmks each time, spread all over including in the dated folders so they could all have the same name. If any problem presents, such as unwanted recreation when I restart on a different date (i.e., tomorrow), I'll post back. Otherwise, it worked! :)

Alas, like others I have had additional problems with this version, which cropped up days after install. Have been tweaking about:config for those too (memory, etc.), but can't mess around long... am giving this old PC to a needy friend within days and he knows nothing at all about computers, and will not be able to address anything or switch versions by himself. Too early to tell if they've worked yet, but if not I may have to bag it, rather than leave him with mysterious probs that are likely to get worse. :(

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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 2:31 pm

Anonymous wrote:I had "the" [quotes added] bookmarks problem, and they were appearing in many places/folders.

I don't know what problem you had, but it's not the same problem as the original poster had. The original poster had multiple bookmarks copies in the same directory.

This sounds like a mess. If you are giving your computer to someone, you should give them a clean copy. Delete all Firefox profile directories, uninstall Fx using Add/Remove programs, and reinstall version 1.5. Accept all the defaults and don't touch anything, with one exception. I recommend that you disable Java, since some versions have critical security flaws. Tools|Options|Content -- uncheck "Enable Java". Do not disable JavaScript, which is not Java.

Guest
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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 2:38 pm

...P.S., I do have a bookmarkbackups *file* now (a hidden one), rather than folders. Don't know if I did before and as long as I don't get hundreds more, I don't care. Just thought that might be of interest to developers/debuggers somehow. Something about certain settings was making that file create actual bookmarkbackups folders -- and dated folders within folders. And also folders (not just files) by name bookmarks-[date].html.

P.S.S., so far I'd have to say it does look like my other memory and cache tweaks may have helped the other issues too (to end on a positive note ;)).

Guest
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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 2:50 pm

Ooops, we crossed in posting (and may again now). Anyway yes I did have multiple copies of html bkmks in the same directories too, like the OP. The breeding folders issue only started after I tried various about:config entries. And my original bkmks issue *was* happening with default settings, and no plugins or extensions. But seems ok now so I'm gonna wait and see what happens; as of now it looks like I've ended up with something better than the fresh install & defaults gave me (and FYI, no other versions of Fx have ever been on this machine).

I'd think my apparently-successful settings combo should be of interest, although I know it must be hard to tell who is just out of their league and making things worse, or who doesn't even realize they changed anything period. (That ain't me ;))

Alice

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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 3:30 pm

VanillaMozilla wrote: Unless I missed a crucial point. Does anyone have any idea why it happens under Windows? It may be analogous to the Mac Spotlight problem.

VanillaMozilla wrote:There are several bug reports, and generally they are a mess, although it is fixed for OS/2. Yea! Do you know if this is well understood and noted in a proper bug report -- one that convers Fx in all OS's?

<b>NOTE: Folks, please do not add comments to bug reports unless you have solid new information to add.</b>

Why what happens? Why the moztmp file becomes read-only? That's covered in the the "basic" bug reported in 2002 for Mozilla Suite, which as far as I know, also applies to the same issue on Firefox for Windows.
https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=157152
read-only/hidden bookmarks.html (or bookmarks.html.moztmp) causes creation of bookmarks-{n+1}.html
------ Comment #21 From ostgote@gmx.net 2005-02-08 02:36 PST [reply] -------
See Firefox Bug 281359 there a read-only bookmarks.html.moztmp caused this
behavior. I guess this is due to the copy function, see comment 13, and later
the file bookmarks.html was writable again but not the copy.

Note that the Firefox bookmarks bug, https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=281359 Close to 7000 'bookmark-nnnn.html' files; ..... was marked Invalid, I guess because the reporter noted in an attachment that his bookmarks.html.moztmp file was read-only and apologized for wasting eveyone's time.
Another Bug 157152 comment:
------- Comment #19 From Dan M 2005-01-13 10:52 PST [reply] -------
Why patch one symptom of a basic flaw when you could fix the flaw itself,
described in bug 257288?

That bug is for all ready-only files in the profile, including bookmarks:
https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=257288
Read-only cookies file not respected, results in data loss

the-edmeister wrote:1768 copies of bookmarks.html is the new record!
Nope... see above.
Alice Wyman

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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 4:05 pm

Alice wrote:Why what happens? Why the moztmp file becomes read-only? That's covered in the the "basic" bug....

I don't think it is. Bug 157152 covers deliberate setting of "bookmarks.html" or "bookmarks.html.moztmp" to ReadOnly. There are numerous reports in which users report that they did not set any file to ReadOnly. I believe the reports are correct, but I can't prove it. In one Mac bug the Searchlight program caused ReadOnly attribute to be set. No deliberate user action was required.

If deliberate user action caused the problem, the bug is not likely to get fixed. Maybe it can be moved along (or the patch reviewed and checked in) with a reproducible test case that does not require a user error.

Alice wrote:That bug is for all ready-only files in the profile, including bookmarks:

It's specifically for cookies.

Alice

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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 5:28 pm

VanillaMozilla wrote:
Alice wrote:That bug is for all ready-only files in the profile, including bookmarks:

It's specifically for cookies.
Maybe Bug 257288 started out specific to read-only cookies but it seems to have evolved, at least in so far as the bug comments:
From the big report
------ Comment #14 From Dan M 2005-01-13 10:49 PST [reply] -------

The corresponding bookmarks bug is bug 157152. With that bug as with this one,
in my opinion the problem is not how the file became read-only, but the terrible
things Mozilla does to itself when it stubs its toe on the read-only file. It
doesn't have to be so clumsy.


------- Comment #21 From MW 2005-01-20 09:07 PST [reply] -------

sorry for bugspam, but I want to make sure any patches that land is not
specifically for one or 2 files but ANY file FF tries to write to
this also happens to hostperm.1 and I suspect as well as to any user file in
your Profile that is readonly


I agree, what does it matter how the bookmarks.html got set to read-only? What happens (and I've tested by setting it read-only myself) is that the bookmarks.html read-only attribute is then stripped, while the bookmarks.html.moztmp file stays read only, generating the {n+1} duplicates. This shouldn't happen.
Alice Wyman

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Post Posted January 30th, 2006, 8:07 pm

The summary, bug description, and almost all comments treat this as only cookies. Bugs don't easily morph in Bugzilla, and one or two comments certainly don't do it. The only thing that would morph it for sure is a checked-in patch. If you want to make it more than cookies, someone has to file another carefully written bug report.

Alice

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Post Posted January 31st, 2006, 8:06 am

Maybe you (or someone who knows Mozilla coding) could look at this patch:
delete temp file after failures patch 2005-01-13 15:14 PST
which is listed in the attachment section in bug 257288
... is the proposed patch only specific to cookie temp files? If so, I apologize.

Guest
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Post Posted January 31st, 2006, 9:01 am

Hi, I'm the one who posted on this thread yesterday about my about:config modifications. Couldn't resist updating how the combo is working... Perfect!! Through many intentional restarts and reboots. Recap, I had the multiplying bookmarks prob the OP posted about, on a virgin and default install (ok, by far mostly default; only some Tools > Options entries changed). I made the bkmks issue worse at first as I tinkered, but now, over 24 hours later, the about:config settings I mentioned in my first post have stopped it. (I think they were both lines that had to be added rather than just modified.)

Well, there it is, in case it works for others too.

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Post Posted January 31st, 2006, 9:59 am

Guest, interesting workaround, if it actually works. Your second change causes Fx to automatically use the backup bookmarks files. It may be that it inadvertently causes deletion of the problem ReadOnly file. In so doing, be aware that you may lose your last bookmark.

A better solution is probably to remove the ReadOnly attribute on the offending file. If you are repeatedly setting a file ReadOnly, there is something seriously wrong, and it would be useful to know how you did it. I don't think anyone has reported that the problem returns.

Your first change probably has no effect. It just affirms that the bookmarks file is where it is by default.

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Post Posted January 31st, 2006, 10:04 am

Alice, good point. It looks like it might cover all profile files, and it blocks 157152. I just checked with the author of the patch. He doesn't remember and doesn't want to look at it. It's hard to tell without the context of the patch. Just to be sure it doesn't fall through the cracks, I commented in the bug report.

Guest
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Post Posted January 31st, 2006, 2:18 pm

Hi VanillaMozilla.

Ever since I realized I had this issue I have been checking all bookmarks-related files to see if any are Read Only (including hidden files), and none have been.

Pretty sure I haven't lost any most recent bookmarks since using this workaround, but will test 'er out to be sure.

Yes, guess I don't know if the location setting actually did make any diff. Fun fact, when I pointed it slightly elsewhere than detailed originally (the default location, as you said) is when the bookmarks folders-within-folders appeared.

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