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Should the Profile Manager UI be disabled?

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BenBasson
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Post Posted May 31st, 2004, 6:14 pm

Ding. Success. No more horrible batch hackarounds... You can now use Firefox anywhere in the world (from your USB pen drive or otherwise) by using the following method.

Extract the Firefox zip.
In the "firefox" application folder, create the subfolder "profile".
Create a batch file in the main "firefox folder" containing the following line:
start firefox.exe -Profile "profile/"

A profile will automatically be created in that directory if it doesn't already exist. Congratulations, you now have a roaming copy of Firefox + profile. The downside to this method is that it appears to migrate no data whatsoever, nor does it create the default bookmarks. However, I guess if you're setting up Firefox to use relative directories, this probably will not concern you... especially as you can copy your existing data into this profile.

Walter K
 
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Post Posted May 31st, 2004, 7:41 pm

Cusser wrote:[...]
Create a batch file in the main "firefox folder" containing the following line:
start firefox.exe -Profile "profile/"

A profile will automatically be created in that directory if it doesn't already exist. [...]

Are absolute paths still stored in the profile files? One of the major issues that batch scripts had to work around was changing drive letter from under USB drives.

BenBasson
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Post Posted May 31st, 2004, 8:08 pm

I can't find anything in the profile files that uses an absolute path. Maybe if you create profiles a different way (or migrate data) you'll have problems though. I haven't tested this properly, but so far I have been able to move this single directory around with no problems. Since I don't have a USB Pen Drive yet, I can't really test that. I could burn to CD tomorrow if nobody else has verified this.

jedbro

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Post Posted May 31st, 2004, 9:55 pm

bengoodger wrote:
Hendikins wrote:See <a href="http://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=214675">Bug 214675</a>.

I say it shouldn't be, with my opinion stated over <a href="http://www.livejournal.com/users/hendikins/19226.html">on my LiveJournal</a>. What is your opinion?

I'd post a poll, but you can't do that here...


Thumper states our reasoning for removing the function correctly. Multiple profiles are either used for development and testing, or as a hack to accomplish some task, like keychain profiles. This decision was made clear from the very earliest days of the m/b project with Hixie's opening README.html file, dated April 2, 2002. The UI will probably remain for 0.9, my patch will be added for 1.0b or some such. You will be able to do builds with the UI enabled by doing --enable-profile-manager-ui or whatever the switch was that I used.

There is a new command line switch that will let you load a profile from a specific location, e.g:

firefox -profile D:\firefox\portable

And the new profile registry format is a simple INI file that can be easily hand edited.


Sounds great Ben. Sorry for the bug spam, I didn't see this thread until after I commented on the bug (which I shouldn't have done in the first place).

Thanks for keeping the command line there for us, although I did find the UI usefull (for testing different versions of extensions under different circumstances), but I guess it will just take me longer to do so now.

-Jed

avih

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Post Posted May 31st, 2004, 11:00 pm

at last :D
thx.
Tried SmoothWheel already?

BenBasson
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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 4:34 am

jedbro wrote:Thanks for keeping the command line there for us, although I did find the UI usefull (for testing different versions of extensions under different circumstances), but I guess it will just take me longer to do so now.

A third party tool could probably be written quite easily if anyone is interested.

Lor
 
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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 4:46 am

What about computers shared between family members? They probably don't know about user switching, or they might be running Windows 9x or 2000, which make multiple user accounts hard to configure and a pain to use (logoff / logon). For these people, profile UI is useful...

scratch

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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 4:49 am

i've got absolute paths in prefs.js

Thumper's Evil Twin

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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 4:53 am

Lor wrote:What about computers shared between family members? They probably don't know about user switching, or they might be running Windows 9x or 2000, which make multiple user accounts hard to configure and a pain to use (logoff / logon). For these people, profile UI is useful...


Mozilla isn't there to cover for deficiencies in the OS. The argument that people who don't know how to use Windows's multiple user features will be comfortable with Mozilla's profile UI is weak indeed.

- Chris

BenBasson
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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 4:57 am

scratch wrote:i've got absolute paths in prefs.js

Hmm. By default (creating a profile with the method I describe), all I have is this (in prefs.js):

Code: Select all
user_pref("browser.preferences.lastpanel", 4);
user_pref("browser.shell.checkDefaultBrowser", false);
user_pref("browser.startup.homepage_override.mstone", "rv:1.7");
user_pref("extensions.disabledObsolete", true);
user_pref("extensions.lastAppVersion", "0.8.0+");
user_pref("intl.charsetmenu.browser.cache", "UTF-8, ISO-8859-1");
user_pref("network.cookie.prefsMigrated", true);

I think I/we will derail this topic too much, let's move this over to the other thread.

bengoodger

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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 2:40 pm

jedbro wrote:Thanks for keeping the command line there for us, although I did find the UI usefull (for testing different versions of extensions under different circumstances), but I guess it will just take me longer to do so now.

-Jed


Once the patch is checked in, why not encourage some of the third party builders to build with the --enable-profile-manager-ui switch, or build with it yourself. Then you get the PM you like while you develop and test.

DIGITALgimpus
 
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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 5:09 pm

I'm personally of the opinion, it should be hidden by default, but if more than 1 profile exists, it should prompt.


There are still quite a few windows 9.x users that don't have the ability to use the OS level preference separation per-user. As a result, these people loved Netscape, because it gave them that for bookmarks.

Now we are essentially removing that from the casual end user.

IMHO not a good idea.

Should be off by default (never shown), but when a 2nd profile is created, it should ask if you want to see it on startup.

End users like clean UI... but they do like features as well. Look at what made Apple good --> The ability to give features without the clutter. That's the key.

mconnor
 
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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 5:16 pm

DIGITALgimpus wrote:Should be off by default (never shown), but when a 2nd profile is created, it should ask if you want to see it on startup.


if you're able to use a command line to create a second profile, you're easily capable of creating two shortcuts with different commandline switches

BenBasson
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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 7:03 pm

mpconnor wrote:if you're able to use a command line to create a second profile, you're easily capable of creating two shortcuts with different commandline switches

Yes, precisely. Since you'll no longer have the profile manager to create the profiles with, only upgrading users may have more than one profile unless specifically choosing otherwise by using the command line tool.

yusufg
 
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Post Posted June 1st, 2004, 11:02 pm

mpconnor wrote:if you're able to use a command line to create a second profile, you're easily capable of creating two shortcuts with different commandline switches


mpconnor, what's the command line to create a profile

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