Friday, July 18, 2008

Mac, Firefox... little help here

Okay you smart, computery types, I need a little technical help.

Here's the set-up... I have a middle-aged iMac G5 running MacOS X Leopard (fully updated). I have an Apple Mighty Mouse (with the track nipple). And I recently updated to the latest version of Firefox.

Except now, my mouse functionality is somewhat fucked up. I can still move around the screen. The scrolling track nipple works correctly. No problems clicking (right, left, side buttons, etc.) But there's one highly annoying problem that's really starting to piss me off.

I used to be able to left-click, hold and drag to select a group of text on the browser screen, or left-click, hold and drag the scrolling bubble (you know, the one in the right-hand border of the window?) to scroll the web page.

But now, whenever I try to left-click, hold and drag anything, it just moves the entire browser window around on my screen.

I've looked through my Firefox preferences and mouse preferences to try to determine if I have somehow inadvertently screwed up a setting somewhere, but I can't find anything that looks like it would control this behavior.

So, WTF?! Has anyone else run into this? Is this a flaw in Firefox, or (more likely) pilot error on my part.

And if it is my fault, how in the heck to I fix it. Because, like I said, it's annoying the hell out of me.

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  1. You say "fully updated". Can we assume you mean "10.5.4? I have been downgrading some of our systems back to 10.5.2 because of flaky app behavior after the system update.

    You shouldn't need to right-click (control-click) on the scroll thumb (bubble) to scroll up or down. The little scroll-nipple-button should do it or just grab the thumb with a left-click and scroll away.

    I suspect the system update and/or the Firefox install.

  2. Ah shit. I mixed up my left and right. Lemmy fix that. (Gawd I'm a dumbass!)

  3. Okay, fixed the left/right thing.

    And now that you mention it, I guess I'm just assuming I have the latest system upgrade (10.5.4), but I'll have to check to make sure.

    It seems this started when I updated Firefox, and I don't get this behavior with other apps (Safari, iTunes, iPhoto, etc.)

  4. Dude, you need a Dell.

    Comment posted from Windows XP/IE platform that is not experiencing any problems whatsoever.

  5. If you haven't done 10.5.4 yet, hold off.

    Could be that resetting the Firefox preferences might help. Sometimes upgrades and the prefs fight it out. I don't use Firefox, so I'm not sure what else is affected, but the path to the prefs file is:

    Disclaimer: This could also make things worse.

    Home [Your Username]/Library/Application Support/Firefox/Profiles/f6t6w8pn.default (this is a system & user specific filename - this is what it says on my MBP) /prefs.js

    Sending this bit of Java to the trash should reset Firefox, but it may also trash other settings that you want to retain. Delete it at your own risk. I just tested it here, and my History and Bookmarks were retained.

  6. LGL, thanks for the tip. I'll give it a try when I get home.

    XO, Yeah. Right. As if. I suffer through a Windblows environment 9/10 hours a day at work. No way in hell I'm going to subject myself to that torture voluntarily in my Fortress of Solitude at home.

  7. what do you mean "suffer"? I have 0 problems with my PC and it works great. BTW, they are opening an apple store in South JoCO for people who like to overpay for their stuff and then brag about it.

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. Here in the Crossroads we don't overpay and then brag about it. We overpay and then we agonize about it.

    We don't play that Ford/Chevy game.

    Comment posted from my shiny MacBook Pro running Mac OS X and Windows.

  10. Try going to about:config, search for "mouse" and see if you can tweak your way out of this.

  11. LGL,

    That seems to have done the trick!

    I lost a few useful prefs, but no bookmarks or anything super important. And the problem with left-click and drag bug seems to have gone away.

    Thanks for the help, man!

  12. No problem. Glad it worked out.

  13. One, get rid of that nipple mouse and get a regular 3 button wheel mouse. Two, Firefox just updated again as of today. They have had issues once in a while. The Apple updates are fine, usually anyways. Most of the time it is a plug in or what not that breaks after an update, Dell can kissy my ass.

  14. The lesson here should be this:
    You don't have to update. Your life really won't get any better with the latest repackaged shiny stuff. Find a stable system and stay with it until you're absolutely forced, by compatibility issues, to update things.

    The reasons my and my clients' systems usually go down are the occasional hardware glitch, poorly written software, and random, totally unnecessary updates.

    Oh, and fonts.

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