Macromedia News Firefox Extension for 1.5 Beta / Update

I have uploaded a beta version of the soon to be renamed Macromedia News Firefox extension that (kind of) works with Firefox 1.5.

There are some significant known issues with this build, so I am not adding it to the main extension page. You can only download it from here.

Download Macromedia News Firefox Extension BetaI had hoped to fix all of the issues before posting it, but decided to post it for two reasons:

  1. Tons of people have been asking me to update it
  2. I am having trouble fixing one of the issues, and maybe by releasing it, someone might have an idea of what is going on

Here is the main issue. Something in Firefox 1.5 changed, so that when I call MenuPopup.childNodes, some of the nodes are now null, where as they used to contain the nodes of the menu. Because of this, the menu cannot clear itself (since I can’t remove the nodes that come through as null), before it is rebuilt. The odd thing is that the the childNodes length is correct, but that some of the node references within it are just null.You can reproduce this with the following steps:

  1. Install the extension, and restart Firefox
  2. Open the preferences, and change the “View Items” setting to “Chronologically”
  3. Save the settings
  4. View the menu

Notice that the menu is all messed up. Basically, the clearMenu function was not able to remove some of the menu items because it could not get a reference to them.If you restart Firefox, then everything will draw correctly with the new preferences.If you are interested in looking at the code, simply rename the extension file to .zip and unzip it. The code is in:


You can also look at and modify the installed extension within the Firefox install by looking at


which on Windows is found in the Application Settings directory. Changes to this code will be run once you restart Firefox. Finally, you can find info on developing and debugging Firefox extensions here.The bug manifests itself in the clearMenu call, although that is not where it originates. Here is a modified clearMenu function that dumps / alerts the nodes and shows that some are null:[code]function clearMenu(){var cNodes = newsMenuPopup.childNodes;var cLen = cNodes.length;var node;var val;for(var i = 0; i 0){oldMenuHash[val] = (node.getAttribute(“isNew”) == “true”);}newsMenuPopup.removeChild(node);}else if(node.getAttribute(“isNewsItemHeader”) == “true”){newsMenuPopup.removeChild(node);}else if(node.getAttribute(“isNewsItemSeperator”) == “true”){newsMenuPopup.removeChild(node);}}}[/code]I am going to keep working on it and try to figure out what is going on (or what changed in Firefox 1.5 that broke this). If anyone has any ideas / thoughts about what is going on, or questions about the code, then post them in the comments.

11 Responses to Macromedia News Firefox Extension for 1.5 Beta / Update

  1. Jack says:

    Thanks for releasing it, I will do my best bug testing it and ask friends for help on the code issues! Like I did for lots of Macromedia Flash versions

  2. Thanks Mike! Good luck with the new ship Adobe!

  3. trond says:

    mike – it’s probably just me, but i am not able to install the extension.when i click on the link within ff i am prompted to run it or save it. if i choose run, ‘nothing’ happens. if i download it, and try to doubleclick it afterwards, nothing happens.had the same problem when i tried to install version the previous version you posted, and ended up having to install it from the mozilla site, so i’m running an old version.what on earth could i be doing wrong?

  4. Mike seems to be working well with 1.5!

  5. mike chambers says:

    >mike – it’s probably just me, but i am not able to install the extension.Download the extension and then drag it into Firefox. That should prompt you to install it.mike

  6. rodrigo says:

    excelent work mike!thank you!

  7. Andrew Field says:

    Hurrah – thanks so much! Brilliant.

  8. jack says:

    Just Installed it..great release for me since i am a big fan of Macromedia products,,sorry Adobe products or is it Macromedia???someone fix me!

  9. Mirjam says:

    Really neat! I have come to adore and rely on that tool! Go on like this!Cheers from Austria!

  10. Ramesh says:

    MikeMenuPopup.childNodes not clearing properly.I had the same problem with an extension in 1.5, I had to work around it by removeelement of the menu and building the menu myself.ThanksRamesh.B

  11. Andrew says:

    Hi mike, im running firefox and the plugin isnt working with it, i just wanted to know if you could fix it and release another one.thanks for the help