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These days, I'm the director of the American Library Association' s Office for Intellectual Freedom. I'm also executive director and secretary of the Freedom to Read Foundation. See "About Me" for contact information.

Monday, January 4, 2010

User Agents in Firefox

I've written before about troubles getting Linux to work in a Windows world. Today, it occurred to me to try something I dimly remembered: getting Firefox to pretend to be Internet Explorer using a plug-in called User Agent Switcher. It's an easy download. Then I restarted Firefox, pulled down the Tools menu, and went to Default User Agent>Internet Explorer>Internet Explorer 6. Voila, I immediately had access to our payroll system.

Which means that, since the only thing this does is send a different string of letters to identify the browser, Firefox 3.0.16 is deliberately disabled by my vendor. Complaints to follow. Meanwhile, this was a MUCH simpler solution than the wine approach, which seems only to work SOMETIMES.


Hamish said...

Your comment about WINE struck a resonance here! I didn't find it workable for the programs I wanted to run. Another group I belong to has been discussing it today; when it works it's fine, but ...

I've given up on Linux - life isn't long enough.

Jamie said...

Well, there are many kinds and levels of frustration. I've noticed that my Windows colleagues have troubles I don't (virii, forced upgrade conflicts, registry issues, etc.). And I have troubles they don't (apps that refuse to recognize my platform). On balance ... Doesn't this just seems like a really stupid choice to have to make?