Fix ‘Close Other Tabs’ Warning ‘Fix’

Note: Yes, the post title is suppose to be that way. This is a ‘fix’ to fix the ‘fix’ in Firefox 18 which wasn’t fixed.

Back in September we first talked about Close Other Tabs Warning being displayed even if the user had ‘turned off’ the warning in the options. In late October we posted an update that a ‘fix’ was suppose to land with Firefox 18. I had pretty much forgotten about this issue as I don’t use the ‘Close other tabs’ option in Firefox. Firefox 18 came out earlier this week and on the release post Cheryl commented “The problem with notifying when closing multiple tabs still hasn’t been fixed.”

So I finally had an opportunity took take a deeper look at this. I went through the two main bugs (801072 and 772319) and noticed that there seems to be a lot of bickering about this change. People are saying it breaks and makes useless the Warn Me When Closing Multiple Tabs option in Tab Settings under Options > Tabs. I didn’t really understand those comments until I conducted a couple tests. Since I am using the Beta (now 19) version as my main Firefox, I launched another profile using the current release version Firefox 18. Opened a bunch of tabs, went into the Tab Settings and unchecked Warn Me When Closing Multiple Tabs. Right-clicked on a tab and selected Close Other Tabs. I got a pop-up ‘You are about to close # tabs’.

Hmm, okay well it seems the ‘fix’ didn’t fix this issue. But then, what is everyone complaining about in the bug reports? So I decided I’d take a look within  about:config, more specifically the browser.tabs.warnOnClose and browser.warnOnClose settings (the latter appears to have been removed).  I pasted browser.tabs.warnOnClose into the filter and discovered a new preference browser.tabs.warnOnCloseOtherTabs which was still set to ‘True’ (default) even though I had unchecked the option in the Tab Settings section. A quick double-click on the browser.tabs.warnOnCloseOtherTabs preference to change it to ‘False’ and tried again to Close Other Tabs. This time Firefox closed the other tabs without any warning.

So it seems they landed the fix, but it doesn’t work correctly. So here is how to ‘fix’ the broken ‘fix’ or for simplicity sake Don’t Warn When Closing Multiple Tabs:

  1. Open a New Tab
  2. Type/paste about:config in the address bar and press enter
  3. You may get a warning about ‘voiding your warranty’ if you do, click the I’ll be careful, I promise button to continue
  4. In the filter field type/paste browser.tabs.warnOnCloseOtherTabs
  5. Double-click on the setting and it should then become bold with a value of ‘false’
  6. Your are done, you may now close the about:config tab. Firefox will no longer warn you when closing multiple/other tabs at once