Opened 5 years ago

Last modified 23 months ago

#14118 new defect

Holding down SHIFT button while starting Tor Browser starts it in non-Tor mode

Reported by: s7r Owned by: tbb-team
Priority: Medium Milestone:
Component: Applications/Tor Browser Version:
Severity: Normal Keywords:
Cc: mikeperry, arma Actual Points:
Parent ID: Points:
Reviewer: Sponsor:

Description

Holding down SHIFT button while starting Tor Browser starts it in non-Tor mode.

Apparently it's a Firefox kind of a safe mode startup, in which all the extensions, addons and plugins are disabled. Obviously, this will prevent Tor launcher / Tor button to do their job (starting the background Tor process, etc.).

I think this is a 'feature' we could remove, for the sake of every user category. Holding by mistake the SHIFT key down when clicking to start something is not so hard and could accidentally happen. If this 'feature' does not help Tor Browser in any way and it can be removed without breaking something else, we should remove/disable it?

Child Tickets

Change History (3)

comment:1 Changed 5 years ago by dcf

Somewhat related, in the meek HTTP helper extension, I set a pref to disable safe mode after a crash.
https://gitweb.torproject.org/builders/tor-browser-bundle.git/tree/Bundle-Data/PTConfigs/meek-http-helper-user.js?id=e8b710e8688b29e2850e38e72583713adf65c92a#n12

// Disable safe mode. In case of a crash, we don't want to prompt for a
// safe-mode browser that has extensions disabled and no proxy.
// https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/951221#answer-410562
user_pref("toolkit.startup.max_resumed_crashes", -1);

While I was developing it, at one point it crashed at startup three times in a row, and the next time it offered to start in safe mode, which caused it to disable all addons (and therefore its own headlessness). I haven't seen a similar failure in Tor Browser or Tor Launcher itself.

comment:2 Changed 5 years ago by mcs

In the meek helper case, disabling the "automatic safe mode after crash" feature makes sense since that browser is intended to be invisible.

In the general Tor Browser case, it does not seem necessary and we would like to avoid unnecessary changes to Firefox's behavior. The user will see a prompt, so if they accidentally hold down shift they will know something went wrong. Also, the browser will probably not work in safe mode because tor will not be running (the user will see "proxy server is refusing connections" errors).

comment:3 Changed 23 months ago by teor

Severity: Normal

Set all open tickets without a severity to "Normal"

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