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Will Seamonkey ever be commonly supported?

Discussion of general topics about Seamonkey
Melissa2009B
 
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Post Posted July 11th, 2017, 9:52 am

I'm so sick of seeing messages; "Your browser isn't supported. Please use....".

It's my understanding that Seamonkey uses the Firefox engine anyway, so why isn't it supported?

I prefer the Seamonkey GUI but it's just getting weary.

Will Seamonkey ever be commonly supported?

If not, I guess my next step is to figure out how to transfer everything to Firefox. The bookmarks and top pull down tabs for my commonly accessed stuff, is the hardest, I guess.
Melissa

isaacschemm
 
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Post Posted July 11th, 2017, 10:09 am

SeaMonkey is a very "niche" browser (it has been ever since Firefox came out) and so I don't think its usage will ever grow to the point where websites have to officially support it.

As an example, I checked the browser usage stats for a site I work on, and of just the "Firefox" users it detects, only about 0.1% are actually SeaMonkey.

There are ways to change the user agent string in SeaMonkey so that it doesn't identify itself as SeaMonkey at all. But as a first step, go to Edit > Preferences > Advanced > HTTP Networking and make sure Advertise Firefox Compatibility is turned on. I leave it on and I rarely, if ever, see "unsupported" messages.

Melissa2009B
 
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Post Posted July 11th, 2017, 10:48 am

isaacschemm wrote:SeaMonkey is a very "niche" browser (it has been ever since Firefox came out) and so I don't think its usage will ever grow to the point where websites have to officially support it.

As an example, I checked the browser usage stats for a site I work on, and of just the "Firefox" users it detects, only about 0.1% are actually SeaMonkey.

There are ways to change the user agent string in SeaMonkey so that it doesn't identify itself as SeaMonkey at all. But as a first step, go to Edit > Preferences > Advanced > HTTP Networking and make sure Advertise Firefox Compatibility is turned on. I leave it on and I rarely, if ever, see "unsupported" messages.


OHHHHH! It was OFF! Thank you! :D
Melissa

cuppettcj
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 2:43 pm

FWIW, I have "Advertise Firefox Compatibility" turned on but I still get a lot of warnings from web sites that my browser is out of date, even though I'm currently using BUILD1 of SeaMonkey 2.48. The worst offender I have come across is https://www.chase.com/. First they splash a huge banner on the top of the page warning me that my browser is out of date when I go there with SeaMonkey. Then when I login, I'm faced with what looks like a balance transfer offer page, but the offer is completely blank. I just see two buttons that say "No Thanks" and "Call to Apply", neither of which work. When I refresh the page, I'm taken to the mobile site with severely dumbed-down functionality! ](*,)

None of this happens on Firefox 54.0.1 of course. I see the site as intended without warnings. I suppose I could download a user agent spoofer and create rules for all the sites that give me grief, but then that will be a list I will always have to maintain. I guess it's just one of the growing list of inconveniences with using a specialized browser that's always about 2-3 versions behind the latest version of Firefox.

Frank Lion

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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 4:19 pm

cuppettcj wrote:FWIW, I have "Advertise Firefox Compatibility" turned on but I still get a lot of warnings from web sites that my browser is out of date, even though I'm currently using BUILD1 of SeaMonkey 2.48. The worst offender I have come across is https://www.chase.com/. First they splash a huge banner on the top of the page warning me that my browser is out of date when I go there with SeaMonkey. Then when I login, I'm faced with what looks like a balance transfer offer page, but the offer is completely blank. I just see two buttons that say "No Thanks" and "Call to Apply", neither of which work. When I refresh the page, I'm taken to the mobile site with severely dumbed-down functionality! ](*,)

None of this happens on Firefox 54.0.1 of course. I see the site as intended without warnings. I suppose I could download a user agent spoofer and create rules for all the sites that give me grief, but then that will be a list I will always have to maintain. I guess it's just one of the growing list of inconveniences with using a specialized browser that's always about 2-3 versions behind the latest version of Firefox.

You don't need to download anything. It's all done via about:config and known about for ages now -

viewtopic.php?p=14716742#p14716742

You could do a one hit general override (takes around 2 minutes to do) or a site specific one - despite it being claimed in that thread that site specific overrides don't work in 2.46+ - they do.

Chase would be > general.useragent.override.chase.com and then just fill in the value with any old modern string (I use Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; Trident/7.0; rv:11.0) like Gecko)

Let's face it, doing that has to be quicker than you coming here every 6 months or so and saying the same stuff each time? :) - viewtopic.php?p=14725857#p14725857
Metal Lion latest SeaMonkey & Thunderbird Themes - Sea Monkey and Silver Sea Monkey
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke (attrib.)

barbaz
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 4:55 pm

Frank Lion wrote:despite it being claimed in that thread that site specific overrides don't work in 2.46+ - they do.

Wait, what? I still see the two problems -
viewtopic.php?p=14697731#p14697731
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3021425

@cuppettcj: On the user visible side, these problems would likely manifest as you being unexpectedly logged out of Chase.
*Always* check the changelogs BEFORE updating that important software!

Melissa2009B
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 4:59 pm

I'm wondering if they could reverse engineer a Seamonkey GUI for putting on top of Firefox?
Melissa

Frank Lion

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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 5:04 pm

barbaz wrote:
Frank Lion wrote:despite it being claimed in that thread that site specific overrides don't work in 2.46+ - they do.

Wait, what? I still see the two problems

Well, I don't.

I have no general override set and get the browser message at Chase. When I use general.useragent.override.chase.com then I don't and am invited to login.
Metal Lion latest SeaMonkey & Thunderbird Themes - Sea Monkey and Silver Sea Monkey
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke (attrib.)

cuppettcj
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 6:12 pm

Frank Lion wrote:You don't need to download anything. It's all done via about:config and known about for ages now -

viewtopic.php?p=14716742#p14716742

You could do a one hit general override (takes around 2 minutes to do) or a site specific one - despite it being claimed in that thread that site specific overrides don't work in 2.46+ - they do.

Chase would be > general.useragent.override.chase.com and then just fill in the value with any old modern string (I use Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; Trident/7.0; rv:11.0) like Gecko)


Thanks for the about:config tip. It may have been known about for ages by many but I somehow missed it. I didn't realize you could do site-specific user agent string overrides there. That would be a bit quicker than downloading an add-on, but I'd still have to maintain the list of domain --> customized user agent string mappings wherever it's stored.

Frank Lion wrote:Let's face it, doing that has to be quicker than you coming here every 6 months or so and saying the same stuff each time? - viewtopic.php?p=14725857#p14725857


Except it's not the exact same stuff, it's gotten worse. If you read what I wrote back then, Chase gave me the same banner but did not degrade my user experience once I logged in. I could simply ignore or "x" out of the banner before and it wasn't worth the time to spoof my user agent string. I only took the time then to inform everybody what my experience was like, I wasn't trying to figure out how to solve the problem because it wasn't really a problem then, just a slight annoyance. Now it's become a problem, and I anticipate more problems once SeaMonkey gets stuck on the Firefox 52 ESR code branch as more and more sites expect you to upgrade to the latest Firefox/Chrome/Edge browser and won't consider a SeaMonkey release that's 2 versions behind the latest Firefox ESR version to be up to date.

So what's my point? Am I just writing here to complain? It seems like that's how you're taking it, Frank. I detect a certain amount of irritation mixed with condescension in your reply. I get it, nobody likes a whiner. But I'm not whining as much as I'm commenting on the topic in this thread. The OP's original question was "Will Seamonkey ever be commonly supported?" I wanted to add my thoughts. Not only do I not think SeaMonkey will ever be commonly supported, I get a strong sense that things will continue to get worse. Hopefully I'm wrong about this, because I do really enjoy the customization the classic suite provides. I guess I'll enjoy it as long as it lasts.

cuppettcj
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 6:26 pm

barbaz wrote:@cuppettcj: On the user visible side, these problems would likely manifest as you being unexpectedly logged out of Chase.


Thanks for letting me know, barbaz. I just tested out the user agent string spoof with Chase and did not get the banner. After I logged in, the site showed me the updated user interface and I navigated around between my accounts and between transactions and payments pages. I did not get logged out unexpectedly, so I'm hopeful this workaround will suffice for now.

cuppettcj
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 6:36 pm

I just read the SeaMonkey bug barbaz indirectly linked to, and I noticed that it pertains to users who set both general.useragent.override and general.useragent.override.<domain> (where <domain> is the specific domain meant to supercede the generic override). I don't have the general.useragent.override config property set in my test of chase.com, only the general.useragent.override.chase.com property, so that may be why I haven't noticed any adverse effects.

Frank Lion

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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 6:48 pm

cuppettcj wrote:
Frank Lion wrote:You could do a one hit general override (takes around 2 minutes to do) or a site specific one - despite it being claimed in that thread that site specific overrides don't work in 2.46+ - they do.

Chase would be > general.useragent.override.chase.com and then just fill in the value with any old modern string (I use Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; Trident/7.0; rv:11.0) like Gecko)


Thanks for the about:config tip. It may have been known about for ages by many but I somehow missed it. I didn't realize you could do site-specific user agent string overrides there. That would be a bit quicker than downloading an add-on, but I'd still have to maintain the list of domain --> customized user agent string mappings wherever it's stored.

Which is why I pointed out the one time general override option for you. I prefer the specific site route, personally.

cuppettcj wrote:So what's my point? Am I just writing here to complain? It seems like that's how you're taking it, Frank. I detect a certain amount of irritation mixed with condescension in your reply. .

Nope, your 'seems like' and 'you're taking it' circuitry is malfunctioning. I'm from the UK and we don't do hidden meanings. You'd know it if I was irritated. :)
Metal Lion latest SeaMonkey & Thunderbird Themes - Sea Monkey and Silver Sea Monkey
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke (attrib.)

barbaz
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2017, 8:42 pm

cuppettcj wrote:I just read the SeaMonkey bug barbaz indirectly linked to, and I noticed that it pertains to users who set both general.useragent.override and general.useragent.override.<domain> (where <domain> is the specific domain meant to supercede the generic override). I don't have the general.useragent.override config property set in my test of chase.com, only the general.useragent.override.chase.com property, so that may be why I haven't noticed any adverse effects.

I think that one is less likely to have user visible effects than https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1299013.

But with what you and Frank Lion said, sounds like neither bug has any user visible effect on Chase.
*Always* check the changelogs BEFORE updating that important software!

BillT52
 
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Post Posted July 24th, 2017, 7:28 pm

Frank, thanks for the tip about the site specific override. UBS.COM just plain stops me from logging in with Seamonkey.

It seems a number of sites, mostly financial companies, are not only looking for specific browsers, but the most recent version of the browser. I assume for the sake of security they're looking for the most recent, with the most up to date patches. Since the Seamonkey build process no longer can piggyback on the FF infrastructure, updates are running behind, so even the FF data in the user agent string is old enough to cause problems. Once SM 2.48 makes it out the door, the problem should get better, at least for a while.

Frank Lion

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Post Posted July 25th, 2017, 5:16 am

BillT52 wrote:Frank, thanks for the tip about the site specific override. UBS.COM just plain stops me from logging in with Seamonkey.

Hi Bill, no problem, glad it worked for you.

BillT52 wrote:It seems a number of sites, mostly financial companies, are not only looking for specific browsers, but the most recent version of the browser. I assume for the sake of security they're looking for the most recent, with the most up to date patches.

Partly, it may well be that, but financial institution's websites have good security in place anyway as their sites are constantly being probed by hackers.

The usual reason is just that it's easier to write a website like that, especially if much of the IT time is taken up with security coding. Writing websites is not easy anyway and there are slight differences how different browsers will display/handle the content, so that has to be accounted for in the site coding.

So, everything has to be tested on not only the various browser brands, but also on older versions (called 'backwards compatibility') and less well known browsers. Websites that want to sell you something or show you billions of ads (news media sites, etc) have to take that burden on the chin, as the last thing they want is to drive visitors away by telling them to change their browsers to use their site.

But, 'no choice' sites often/sometimes don't have that problem and you'll get messages on Government sites, utility sites and financial sites, etc. In other words, it's easier to code up and test a site for the 4 most popular browser's latest versions, than it is for 20+ variations.

That's sort of OK if they do a 'This site requires you to use X browser...' type message, but many try to put the blame back on the visitor with a 'Whoa! you are using really old unsupported browser! WFT?!!!' type message, when in fact all they've done is simple UA browser sniffing and rejected anything that is not those 4 latest versions.

Point is, I could go to one of those sites with the latest Firefox alpha (v.56?) change my UA string from Firefox to SeaMonkey and still get that message.

BillT52 wrote: Once SM 2.48 makes it out the door, the problem should get better, at least for a while.

For the reasons I've outlined above that may well not happen on some sites. :)


Incidentally, this is a useful site when looking for suitable UA strings to use - https://techblog.willshouse.com/2012/01 ... er-agents/
Metal Lion latest SeaMonkey & Thunderbird Themes - Sea Monkey and Silver Sea Monkey
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke (attrib.)

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