moving from firefox to palemoon on Linux

Support and discussions for the x86/x64 Linux version of Pale Moon and specific Linux distribution questions related to the browser.

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Lucio Chiappetti
Posts: 348
Joined: 2014-09-01, 15:11
Location: Milan Italy

moving from firefox to palemoon on Linux

Post by Lucio Chiappetti » 2014-09-01, 15:35

I am inclined to test Pale Moon on Suse Linux (openSUSE 11.3 kernel architecture x86_64 GNU/Linux) mainly because I was rather upset by the GUI look I got this morning when I unwillingly clicked on "update" instead of "ask later" (and I found myself projected into firefox 31 instead of 28, with no menu bar etc. etc. so I promptly reverted to the 28 backup)

My question concerns the compatibility of the plugins and addons. I guess I will make anyhow a backup of ~/.mozilla, but if there are any hints (or useful pointers to already available hints) about the following issues I should know before I start:

- are the following plugins and addons compatibile:

java plugin 1.6.0_23
shockwave flash

status-4-evar 2013.05.03.06 (or is this redundant ?)
Session manager 0.8.11
Saved password editor 2.7.2
Favicon restorer 1.4 (or is this redundant ?)
Adblock plus 2.6
nogoogle 0.

- if yes would PaleMoon use the same stored by firefox under ~/mozilla, or should I install them afresh, or can I make soft links or otherwise import them ?

- and similarly about importing all preferences, bookmarks etc.

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Night Wing
Knows the dark side
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Joined: 2011-10-03, 10:19
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Re: moving from firefox to palemoon on Linux

Post by Night Wing » 2014-09-01, 23:45

I don't think the Menu Bar is missing in Firefox 31 for Windows or linux. I think it's just hidden.

Have you tried right clicking on a blank area above the Navigation Bar in Firefox 31? If you do, you should see a box and the Menu Bar might be unchecked.
Linux Mint 20 (Ulyana) Xfce 64 Bit with 64 Bit linux Pale Moon


Re: moving from firefox to palemoon on Linux

Post by Supernova » 2014-09-02, 04:39

Lucio Chiappetti wrote:- are the following plugins and addons compatibile:

java plugin 1.6.0_23 => yes
shockwave flash => yes

status-4-evar 2013.05.03.06 (or is this redundant ?) => redundant
Session manager 0.8.11 => should be
Saved password editor 2.7.2 => should be
Favicon restorer 1.4 (or is this redundant ?) => redundant
Adblock plus 2.6 => yes
nogoogle 0. => should be


Re: moving from firefox to palemoon on Linux

Post by access2godzilla » 2014-09-02, 05:42

You can find the extensions in your profile directory under extensions/, and can drag the files into Pale Moon to install them.

However, if the extension versions you use are for FF 24+, then you need to install older versions from AMO.

Pale Moon uses its own directory, "~/.moonchild productions/pale moon".

Lucio Chiappetti
Posts: 348
Joined: 2014-09-01, 15:11
Location: Milan Italy

finally moved from firefox to palemoon on Linux

Post by Lucio Chiappetti » 2014-09-16, 15:08

Afterr a couple of weeks I finally found the time to do a thorough test whether I could get a way to customize firefox 31 the way I liked (even with the Classic Theme Restored I could not), or whether I could do it with palemoon which I did and I have now changed and I will be working with it.

I'd like to comment on the procedure I followed and the way I overcame my problems in case they may be helpful to anybody.

1) my original installation of firefox (3.6) was a Suse-bundled one (hence as root). My latest (ff 28) was done as a user (tar unpacked under my home dir. I hoped to do the same. I found that requires a "password" but does not specify it is the root password (which indeed it is). Specifying the root password it says 'can't open display". If I run it from an xterm ssh'ed as root, with a valid DISPLAY (localhost:10.0) it runs fine. Only it does not tell you where stuff has been installed (a "find" locates most of the stuff under /opt wiht a link in /usr/bin). It would help to have these stuff documented for the curious like me.

2) starting palemoon (as user) runs nicely. However the mentioned profile migration tool is only for Windows, and the link for the other cases leads to an unhelpful So I had to find a way to migrate my customised configuration on Linux.

3) I compared the content of .moonchild\ productions/pale\ moon/xxxx.default with .mozilla/firefox/yyyy.default but there were too many unobvious differences to make me trust just dumping the old configuration onto the fresh one. Actually some of the files (like the .ini) ones had firefox paths encoded, and I guess some could be old vestigial stuff.

4) A good news was that the mozilla plugins (not addons), the ones under .mozilla/plugins, the shared library for Flash and Java are automatically picked up by palemoon. Or perhaps are the system ones to which they are linked or from which they were copied ?

5) Therefore I decided to use FEBE on firefox to make a backup, and FEBE on palemoon to restore. A full backup hung forever, so I did selective ones. I excluded themes, which I do not care about. Also for some reasons FEBE saves only the bookmarks as html and not as json (it does not give error but does nothing). Apparently this is irrelevant.

6) I restored bookmarks, usernames and preferences, and verified it was OK. For preferences I got back things like my home, the fonts, the PAC used to access the proxy of our library etc. but not some of my UI preferences like text buttons instead of icons or absence of bookmark bar. I also copied user.js manually since I had one.

7) I restored cookies and history (though this is hardly relevant since for me they are session transients), form history and permissions (although I haven't an easy way to check).

8) then I restored the plugins one by one (just the ones not mentioned above as redundant). nogoogle and saved password were restored ok, for adblock and session manager I had to manually copy also the directories where they kept data (and I did also a couple of files which I suspect related to the session manager) and restore the adblock filters.

9) at this point everything was almost back like I wished but some UI details. Still buttons were icons and not text, the bookmark bar was there, there were some unwanted items and some missing items in the menu bar and navigation bar, and some details to be set for the status bar (native in palemoon, but very similar to the status-4-evar preferences I was using before). All these things can be repristinated "graphically" however I'd be curious to know in which files they are stored.

10) the preference in palemoon which links helpers to file types looks different and simpler. Would that be mimeTypes.rdf ? Actually I never liked tjhe way even old firefox handled it (I'd preferred things like .mailcap and .mime.types. So far I left it alone.

11) the final touch was to set up things to call palemoon (is there a man page with all runstring arguments for palemoon ?). Of course the alias in .cshrc to start the browser. Then the arrangements in the MUA (alpine) to display URLs from a mail message (these are trivial replacements of "firefox" with "palemoon"). A bit more tricky is the arrangement to start the browser within the window manager. I use fvwm, and that has an "event handler" and a "style" to force the browser to come out of a given size in a particular page of a particular desktop. But after all it was just a matter of replacing "Firefox" with "Pale Moon" (with capitals and blanks).

12) what I haven't yet checked is what happens when I click on an URL in a PDF document within acrobat (before it opened multiple instances of the web page in firefox, something I did not quite like anyhow.

At the end I am gald to have arramnged things very satisfactorily in just a few hours. Some sort of migration tutorial or tool for Linux would however be appreciated.
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man. (G.B. Shaw)


Re: moving from firefox to palemoon on Linux

Post by Zootal » 2014-10-01, 16:52

Just a few quick comments:

1) I updated /usr/bin/firefox to point to /opt/palemoon/palemoon. Now Palemoon gets called in place of firefox. WARNING don't do this if you don't know exactly what you are doing!
2) Now that PDF preview in the browser works, I don't use FireFox. At all. It was the only thing I kept FireFox for, as I have to have pdf preview in browser.
3) I simply copied my ~/.mozilla/firefox/<horrid random name for a profile> to ~/.moonchild productions/pale moon/<horrid random name>. Made sure profiles.ini pointed to it. And everything worked perfectly.

As with many others, I absolutely despise what they did to the FireFox gui. Change for the sake of change is not always good, and they really screwed the pooch on this one.