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I'm running 9.3 and have no problems reading .pdf's online in Firefox...until recently. Got back from 3 weeks of vacation and Suse Watcher said there were security updates available, so away we go. The one time I'm in a hurry and don't pay close attention to the updates is, of course, the time it comes back and bites me in the butt. The only update that sticks in my head from the group was a kernal update. All seems to go well and I do a system restart when done. But now...pdf's won't open in Firefox. All I get is a window that says, "Could not launch Adobe Reader 7.0. Please make sure it exists in PATH variable in the environment. If the problem persists, please reinstall the application."
I'd really rather not reinstall if I don't have to. Being newish to Linux, where should I be looking for the pathing and what should it say? I checked the "about: plugins" in Firefox and it's still showing the plugin installed. And .pdf's work just fine in Konqueror, but I like using 'fox. I'd like to know what update ate my pathing, but that's probably an existential question my curiosity will have to deal with unanswered.
Sounds strange that an update would mess with your paths like this. If you type "acroread" from a command line does it open Acrobat Reader? If so, what output does "which acroread" give you? This should give some clues as to where acroread is installed and then hopefully we can tell if you need to add a path to your PATH environment variable or if something else is going wrong...
In Firefox, if you go to Edit->Preferences->View and Edit Actions, and then Click on the action for PDF and click "Change Action", what radio button is selected here and what value does it have?
Thanks for replying! Yes, "acroread" from the commmand line opens the Adobe Reader and "which acroread" gives back "/usr/X11R6/bin/acroread". When I go into "View and Edit Actions" and hit "Change", the .pdf button ticked is, "Use this plugin: Adobe Reader 7.0".
I know an update changing the pathing is weird, but after 3 weeks of the computer being off, followed by playing a couple of games of "Konquest" and going up on-line to dump a wad of email, the only other action taken prior to Adobe not working was downloading 3 weeks of accumulated security updates including the kernal update. Arrrggh!
Okay...that's just weird. I just changed the preference for .pdf's to "Save to Disk" and now when I open the "View and Edit Actions", the only filetype shown is .swf. Now I'm really confused.
Err... so you are saying that firefox now shows no other file types than shockwave and has completely forgotten your PDF settings? Odd? What I was going to suggest was to try put the path to acroread into firefox for PDF files and have it use that command to open them. Maybe you can add a new file type for pdf and try that? Use the full path to acroread that you got using the which command...
Yup. Shockwave only, .pdf is now not showing up at all. I finally found a Mozilla bug report (#308204) with the heady name of "Null description in helper version info leaves Download Actions blank". It seems to be a fairly common problem (though I haven't found anything matching my original problem). I went into "about: config" and toggled "browser.download.hide_plugins_without_extensions" to false (per recommendation in the bug report) and Adobe is at least showing up again in the "view and edit" but only as an .fdf viewer. sigh... The other fix suggested was to go into the profile manger and delete the file "mimetypes.rdf". Supposedly, it resets to the defaults when the application is used again. Double arrgggh.
This has been more than a little strange. Long story short(er), tried deleting the "mimetypes" file--no joy. Tried opening up several .pdf's and it claimed they were downloading, but I can't find them anywhere, so at this point, I couldn't even download a .pdf and read it elsewhere. Went back into the "about: config" and found, "pref.downloads.disable_button.edit_actions" with an odd-looking string in it so I reset it to default. Now, .pdf shows up in the "View and Edit" tab again, but I'm still getting the yucky pathing message. Out of curiosity, what does it say in your "mimetypes.rdf" file for .pdf? P'raps I can type it in there and get it to work that way. At least I can right-click .pdf's now and save them to the bin for viewing.
Thanks again for the help. I'm feeling a little like Alice in Wonderland here and it's nice to know there's someone sane out there.
I'm running 22.214.171.124. The easiest way for me to find it (YMMV) was going via the GUI through my bin to the Mozilla folder, into the Firefox folder and then into my profile folder. I'm sure there's an easier way to find it via the command line, but I'm ignorant. Ah! Just rechecked and the correct title of the file is "mimeTypes.rdf" with the small "m" and capital "T".
OK, I found it now. To find files quickly from the command line you can use locate (if you have it installed) like so
and that should list all the place on the file system that the file can be found. My .rdf file contained quite a few mentions of PDF so I thought I might as well include the whole thing here and you can take the relevant bits out.
Thank you very much, indeed! No luck with "locate", unfortunately--must not be installed. I tried doing some cut and pastage, but no luck there either. I have a feeling I'm doomed to reinstall and migrate....
Thank you again for all the help and for putting up with a newbie! The help has been *greatly* appreciated.
No worries, glad to be of some use, pity that we couldn't find a nice solution to this.
A fresh install of Firefox shouldn't be such an issue. If you backup the contents of your profile (i.e. the whole .mozilla folder in your home directory) and then install Firefox it should remember all your settings (bookmarks, extensions etc) and you shouldn't have to migrate anything. This of course might cause a problem where it keeps that mimeTypes file between installs, in which case you could backup the .mozilla folder, then delete it, install firefox anew, and then selectively copy stuff (e.g. everything except the mimeTypes.rdf file) from your old profile into the new one it creates.