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istrasci
New member
Status: New idea

Please do not block my browsing session just to force me to restart!  Let me restart when I want to.  For security reasons, I'm almost always browsing in Private Mode, and as such, logins and passwords are not saved.  So when I'm forced to restart because of an update, I have to save my current tab session, reopen them after FF has restarted, and re-login to every site I was using—many of which require 2FA, so it's extra annoying.

This is bad UX!  Put a notification, or even a whole separate tab telling me I need to restart.  But don't block out everything I was doing.  Even Windows doesn't do this...

82 Comments
kds72v
New member

There is no way to disable this on Ubuntu other than using a different browser.

jbpoline
New member

Forcing a restart at any moment is just not an acceptable user experience - I will stop using firefox if this isn't solved.

cgerhard
New member

I honestly can't understand how this is still a thing. This is an awful bit of UI that encourages people to disable updates completely. It's like forcing people to change passwords was thought to be a good idea but the unintended consequence was people use insecure and easy to guess passwords.

555Number
New member

I love everything else about Firefox but this is seriously tempting me to switch away. It seems like there's one of these every week for months now. I'm on a modern Ubuntu version, so there isn't even an option to disable the auto-updates. Please, either let anyone switch them off, or make it so they don't lock you out and force you to lose your private tabs.

alx84
New member

This behavior of Firefox is really annoying - would like to understand it a bit more, what is actually driving it?

Recently I got this message as a tab content, while trying to open new tabs:

Restart to Keep Using Firefox
An update to Firefox started in the background. You’ll need to restart to finish the update.
Your windows and tabs will be quickly restored, but private ones will not.

My first impression was, I somehow missed some setting and allowed Firefox to autoupdate itself.

 

Spoiler

Do I need to explain, why people hate autoupdates and why it is strictly forbidden from happening to critical applications in enterprise environments? Because updating something behind users/administrators backs, usually breaks something, while leaving people blind-guessing what happened to their PCs / software. People don't like surprises, especially unexpected surprises like seeing your PCs to start living its own live, without asking you. Especially surprises in the realm of tech, which is already having high-above-the-roof of entropy

But no, none of the Firefox settings were indicating that I have any kind of automatic updates turned on.

So my question is - what is actually driving such behavior to happen?

alx84
New member

I did some researches and it looks like it's not the Mozilla Firefox, whom we should be blaming. What we see here is just a reaction of Firefox detected its own binaries has changed, while its been running, so it warns you about this kind of update already happened. And it does that in order to prevent itself from crashing, while being  running out of one set of binaries/libraries, while having already some different set of binaries/libraries on disk.

I've seen this kind of behavior is happening on Ubuntu with Firefox installed as a snap package. The thing is, snap is doing very aggressive job by default, by checking updates and actually updating all your installed snap packages like 4 times per day, without telling you a word about it. If that is the case, as an easiest option I can suggest to remove Firefox snap package and reinstall it as normal deb package. For that you will need to include Mozilla apt repository to your local apt config.

If you're experiencing the same behavior on a different OS - try to dig into that direction, like how exactly it could have happened, that Firefox binaries were updated? It could be some automatic software updates happening to your software behind your back, in your OS.

KellyK
Strollin' around

Agreed!

It's doubly irritating cause FireFox does a lousy job of communicating to me that I need to restart. I pin all my most frequently used tabs, so 90% of the time that's where I'm working. And everything just... stops. Refreshing doesn't work, can't navigate anywhere, no error messages.

It isn't until I open a new tab when it tells me "you need to restart to continue using firefox." 🤦‍♀️ At least be proactive in telling us what we need to do to get the browser working again. Like a dialog box or something.

(It's also frustrating that it asks me if I want to update, I tell it NO, and it does it anyway. So I'm not exactly expecting to need to restart after the update I told it NOT to do!)

Sailingtheseven
New member

Forced restarts need to stop. In the middle of my meetings, I can't create any new tabs, I can't do worm, and I can't hang up the call to restart, because you know, work!  Before people ask me to mess with updates, on Linux Mint the updates are handled by the OS, so they just happen, FF just needs to wait until I'm ready to restart it!

GoodByeFirefox2
New member

I have to say that Firefox USED to be a great Browser, NOW it is, excuse the language, CRAP. Slow, does not Restore multiple (2 windows) if system has crashed, only restores 1 Window.   There is a saying "If it Aint broke Dont fix it" , which basically means dont fiddle. Mozilla have cleared fiddled with Firefox and have now broken.  NJow will have a find another Browser;.

bebe
Making moves

It happened to me also. Today, while trying to pay a bill, while I got redirected to the cc verification page, the dreaded restart firefox message appeared. This is absolutely inadmissible. Just let me know I have to restart my browser and I'll do it in my own time, like Brave does. If you want to force a restart then pop a few warnings before.

bebe
Making moves

Totally agreed. And the settings regarding updates are weird in Linux.

bebe_1-1686398849983.png

It's my own device. There's no organization managing my updates. It looks like FF for Linux is an afterthought...

kutrow
New member

What kind of a user experience is this? Very off-putting in the middle of my work.

loffler
New member

Add setting to disable forced restart

It is extremely annoying that once in a while firefox forces me to restart firefox to apply updates. I have to interrupt my work unwillingly and lose my incognito windows. It should be possibility to postpone or disable restart.

KLeung
New member

This is more accurately described as a bug - Running Win10 22H2, Firefox v114.0.1, with the update mode set to "Check for updates but let you choose when to install them", and still got the dreaded "Restart required, update has begun in the background" message, which means that Firefox is not honouring that setting. I have observed this on both my work laptop and my personal home PC, so it can't be the RMM agent on my laptop pushing updates.

For now, I have disabled the "Mozilla Maintenance Service" service in the Services control panel to see if this stops this improper update behaviour.

By all means nag me to update, but it should never be forced. That is a huge no-no.

Firefox being a massive memory hog (I commonly see north of 7gb RAM used) and frequent undesirable behaviour (websites just stop loading necessitating a browser restart, or it starts inexplicably using huge amounts of CPU) - and although I do use a small handful of plugins, you can't blame those either as I've seen the same behaviour on vanilla Firefox with no plugins installed whatsoever, across multiple unique computers.

I'm just about ready to dump Firefox and go to another browser - and I have been using Firefox since its major version number was still in the low single digits. Chrome has its problems as well, but is much better at managing its memory usage than Firefox is, and is far more stable in my experience.

Jack_Cassowary
New member

Posting here because a forced restart just lost me work.

Stop.