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A Better Beta

The Firefox I once knew and loved is lost to me. Please come home, Firefox.

Several weeks ago, Stan pointed me at a Mint Pepper called Fresh View. Operating on XML-based SVG, this way-cool Pepper visually interprets your stats as a line graph, something that I missed from my old hosting stats package. The downside is that not all browsers support SVG technology.

So, off I went to download the new Firefox 1.5 Beta 2. We got along mighty well for the following week, until I realized that certain extensions weren't compatible with my new friend. I can't live without my View Rendered Source Extension, which isn't available for the Firefox beta, so I decided to reinstall the regular version of the browser. All my extensions came back, and things seemed normal, until I noticed a slight annoyance: my status bar grew some fungus.

Firefox with funky status bar

Close-up of funky status bar

Hoping this was just a weird bug, I restarted my computer. I opened Firefox: still there. I uninstalled Firefox, restarted, installed Firefox, restarted, and opened Firefox again: still there. I uninstalled, restarted, installed, shut down, powered on, and opened Firefox: still there.

I can't figure out what this thing is. The red carat is just text, but I can't select it. I can't right-click or interact with this monster. Has anybody come across this before?

Update: Firefox has returned! Thanks to all for your quick help!


Nik Steffen said:

I have come accross this bug aswell, and believed it to be an error on my side since Beta 1 worked fine. I re-installed FF,m but still my status bar seemed to be suffering from elephantitis.

I have not yet found a solution to this problem, but hope somebody will in the very near future

Posted on October 11, 2005 05:59 AM

andr3 said:

Well, from what you're saying i'd be surprised if the issue wasn't in one of your profile files. :-\ Although, the solution can be painful, thus, i'm not sure i can call it a "solution". :(

If you're willing to loose all your bookmarks and extensions (and everything else, history, passwords, etc), just delete the folder and re-install firefox.

If you want to just keep your bookmarks -- loosing all else --, backup your bookmarks.html in that folder and later import it to the new install.

Posted on October 11, 2005 06:55 AM

Dan Mall said:

@Andr3: I tried it, but no luck. I have a feeling it's storing a preference somewhere outside of my Firefox folder, but I can't imagine where.

Posted on October 11, 2005 07:19 AM

andr3 said:

Yes, the profile folder i was talking about is outside the firefox folder.

I don't know what OS you're using, but on Windows XP you'll find it under
c:\documents and settings\[user]\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\

In linux, it's in your home folder, under:

On MacOS, i wouldn't know. But if you search your HDD for the file bookmarks.html you'll find it for sure.

Posted on October 11, 2005 08:58 AM

Mike Zornek said:

I think the Firefox profiles are at:

~/Library/Application Support/Firefox/

There is also a preference file at:


The tilde means your home folder by the way.

Posted on October 11, 2005 11:18 AM

Jeff Louella said:

Well Dan, You got 2 things you can do. 1)Start using IE again. 2)Buy a new computer.

OK, I am joking.

When I uninstall firefox, it never removes all the folders. Do a search for all the folders and remove them. Then Clear out all the registry.

If that doesn't work, use opera until ff1.5 comes out. :)

Posted on October 11, 2005 02:03 PM

jordan said:

With regards to your View Rendered Source, simply select the entire document, right-click, and pick View Selected Source. It has the same effect. :)

As for the crazy toolbar, it's hard to tell what's causing that. It could be that the extension relies on something that's been changed in the newer builds... the Compact Menu extension screws up the customise toolbar window in the trunk/beta builds, but works fine in the normal ones.

Posted on October 11, 2005 09:30 PM

Dan Mall said:

I had no idea Firefox did all this stuff. Next thing you're gonna tell me is that it can actually browse the internet too!

Posted on October 11, 2005 09:34 PM

ScottZ said:

How did you solve the issue with the large status bar and the little red carat? I just allowed FF 1.5 to update itself to and now I'm having the status bar issue. Grr!

Posted on February 2, 2006 09:20 AM

Dan Mall said:

I had to uninstall Firefox and delete all of the Firefox folders on my system. The best bet is just to do a search for all of your Firefox files and delete them. Then reinstall Firefox. That solved the problem for me.

Make sure that you export all of your bookmarks and take note of all of your extensions before you do any uninstalling or deleting.

Posted on February 2, 2006 10:16 AM

Brian Kenyon said:

I have had the same annoying red carat issue as well. Other than removing and re-installing which I have tried seveal times has anybody found an actual cause and simple solution?

Posted on May 16, 2006 06:15 PM

Jim said:

Had this problem on the FireFox installation for WinXp. I had copied over my settings, etc., from another machine (earlier FF rev). Got the red carat and space below the status bar. The "help" menu item was also missing. I Removed the contents of the "extensions" directory and it all went away. I didn't have to blow off any of my other settings. So my problem was probably due to the presence of an incompatible extension.

Posted on June 2, 2006 04:44 PM

Brian said:

Had the same problem. On my machine, uninstalling the Linky 2.6 extension made the problem go away

Posted on June 16, 2006 09:19 AM

-t- said:

I had the same issue described above.
However, I didn't switch to a new version of Firefox. The red carat appeared in several windows (also below the status bar) after I updated several of my extensions and installed new ones at the same time.

I tried to disable the new ones which didn't help.

What helped was going through the extensions folder in my Firefox profile and removing all folders that had been changed the day the issue appeared.

Next I will reintroduce each folder (I "only" removed 17) to see which specific extension caused the problem. I will let you guys know once I find out.

Posted on October 6, 2006 07:55 AM

-t- said:

That was quick and easy. It was Cute Menus, an extension I have been using for quite some time. Looks like the update was flawed. Too bad.

Posted on October 6, 2006 08:04 AM

Aaron Poutanen said:

I had the same problem. There is an option to start Firefox in safe mode.

Go to
C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\Defaults\Shortcuts\

then click "Firefox (safe mode)"

I selected to reset the extensions and toolbars and it worked.

Hope this helps,


Posted on October 17, 2006 11:18 PM

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