Outsmarted by "smart" software: Firefox
Last week I installed Firefox3 on my laptop, working from a
remote machine with X redirection. After the installation,
starting up the "firefox3" binary worked swiftly, and checking
the version (Help-menu -> About) gave me:
Wait, what's that?! I've installed FF3, why is it showing
The problem remained, and reinstalling the FF3 binary package
didn't work. After returning to the problem today, I moved
away my ~/.mozilla directory, and starting up FF3 still had all
my toolbars, bookmarks etc. Initial confusion led to quick
enlightenment: The Firefox2 running wasn't actually from the
remote (NetBSD) laptop, but from the local (desktop) machine!
The machines do not have a common file system, but I have bookmarks
etc. synchronized, that's why I didn't notice that I was using
the local firefox.
So what happened? Apparently the remote FF3 is smart and recognizes
that there's already some other instance of the browser running
on the target display, and instead of starting a separate instance
on the remove machine, it'll communicate to the already-running
firefox to open a new window. This happens even if the versions
After running "firefox --no-remote", I actually got a session from
the remote machine, which was what I expected initially:
Lesson learned? Outsmarted by "smart" software. Doh!