Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird dead

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Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird dead

Postby agrimstad » 2021-01-21 16:50

After having to deal with too many websites not rendering properly with Firefox ESR on buster, I installed Firefox Stable from mozilla's site. I followed the instructions given by Debian wiki https://wiki.debian.org/Firefox. Firefox Stable runs and solves the rendering problems I had. There is only one problem.

When I click a link in an e-mail message in Thunderbird, nothing happens. I used Settings->Details->Default Applications in the gnome desktop to make Firefox my "Web" default application. Didn't work. I even removed $HOME/.config/mimeapps.list to get a fresh start with defaults. Still didn't work. I can switch the "Web" default to Chromium Web Browser and Firefox ESR and clicking message links launches the link in a browser tab. Switching back to Firefox Stable, still dead links.

So, what gives? Is there something missing in the wiki instructions?
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Re: Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird de

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2021-01-21 17:33

agrimstad wrote:I followed the instructions given by Debian wiki

There are several methods listed on that page, which did you follow?

Start Thunderbird from a terminal to see any error messages when you try to launch FF from there.
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Re: Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird de

Postby agrimstad » 2021-01-21 18:14

$ thunderbird &
[1] 11238
$ [2021-01-21T18:50:18Z ERROR style::stylesheets::rule_parser] Saw @import rule, but no way to trigger the load

So, an error when I clicked on an e-mail link in Thunderbird, but not helpful to me.
When I switched to Chrome Web Browser, no problem with this output to the terminal:
Opening in existing browser session.


The directions I followed were

From Mozilla binaries
Mozilla distributes ready-to-use Firefox binaries for Linux on their website:
https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/ - Release
...
To install any of them on DebianStable:
Download the Firefox version you want directly from the official website
Uncompress the archives:

in the /opt directory (system-wide installation - requires Root privileges)

Create a file firefox-stable.desktop (replace stable with beta or nightly if needed) with the contents below:

in the /usr/share/applications directory (system-wide installation - requires Root privileges)
Exact copy of the suggested firefox-stable.desktop contents used.
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Re: Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird de

Postby agrimstad » 2021-01-21 19:47

I was somewhat doubtful about Settings->Details->Default Applications working for an app which wasn't installed as a Debian package, so I discovered xdg-settings.

Code: Select all
$ xdg-settings set default-web-browser firefox-stable.desktop
$  xdg-settings get default-web-browser
firefox-stable.desktop


This looks good, but Thunderbird still complains:

Code: Select all
$ [2021-01-21T20:28:47Z ERROR style::stylesheets::rule_parser] Saw @import rule, but no way to trigger the load
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Re: Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird de

Postby agrimstad » 2021-01-22 20:15

I'm bailing out on using a binary from mozilla to get Firefox Stable. I discovered a recipe for using the Firefox Stable package from Debian unstable on buster here:
https://www.linuxuprising.com/2019/12/how-to-install-latest-firefox-non-esr.html

Would have been nice, but at this stage of buster and unstable, there seem to be incompatibilities. So, no joy here either. After following earlier steps in the recipe, we get to the installation stage, which fails. See below.

I followed further steps to back out of this business. Something got hosed in the system because now the chrome browser isn't working properly. Even after removal and reinstallation. So, warning, don't try to install things from unstable unless you know a lot, which I don't.

Code: Select all
# apt install -t unstable firefox
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
Some packages could not be installed. This may mean that you have
requested an impossible situation or if you are using the unstable
distribution that some required packages have not yet been created
or been moved out of Incoming.
The following information may help to resolve the situation:

The following packages have unmet dependencies:
 gsettings-desktop-schemas : Breaks: mutter (< 3.31.4) but 3.30.2-9~deb10u1 is to be installed
 libc6-dev : Breaks: libgcc-8-dev (< 8.4.0-2~) but 8.3.0-6 is to be installed
E: Error, pkgProblemResolver::Resolve generated breaks, this may be caused by held packages.
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Re: Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird de

Postby agrimstad » 2021-01-23 01:28

I just checked my first method on another machine that is closer to a new Debian buster installation. That is, download and untar the mozilla binary in /opt, and create a firefox-stable.desktop file in /usr/share/applications. On this machine this resulted in a configuration where, after changing the default "web" in the gnome Settings->Details->Default Apps, clicking links in thunderbird messages opened the link in Firefox Stable.

So, the method works and my first machine is broken with respect to this feature, undoubtedly from some bungle in the past. Finding this particular bungle seems to be way beyond my knowledge. Bit rot. Probably getting time for a fresh install of Debian.
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Re: Firefox Stable on Buster -- hyperlinks on Thunderbird de

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2021-01-23 09:26

agrimstad wrote:don't try to install things from unstable unless you know a lot

Yeah, no sh*t Sherlock...

Please read https://wiki.debian.org/DontBreakDebian and don't follow random interweb "guides" — just because an idiot has a website doesn't mean they know what they're doing. Debian has a huge amount of official documentation so stick to that.

agrimstad wrote:my first machine is broken with respect to this feature, undoubtedly from some bungle in the past

Check you sources, that's the most common cause of broken Debian systems.

And in respect of your OP:
agrimstad wrote:After having to deal with too many websites not rendering properly with Firefox ESR on buster

Can you provide an example of such a site? I've never noticed any problems with firefox-esr myself and the version in buster is the most recent supplied by Mozilla so it should work just fine.
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