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#1 2012-05-08 23:31:49

Xyne
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Registered: 2008-08-03
Posts: 6,520
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Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

The subject isn't exactly clear but I couldn't think of a good way to summarize the issue.

I want to share a subset of Firefox bookmarks, extensions, settings and search plugins across different system accounts.
For example, I have a bookmark hierarchy with directories named foo, bar and baz. I want to keep bar and baz synchronized across multiple accounts but I want foo to remain private for a given account. I want to have extensions x, y and z installed on all accounts with the same settings, but I want extension w only on one account.


General and plugin settings are easy enough to do with user.js.

Interface settings, extensions and search plugins can be shared with some scripting and rsyncing but that's a minor pain.

Sharing a subset of bookmarks is major pain. Either I have to automatically export HTML bookmarks files, write a parser, copy the subset around, import it manually with each account, and finally arrange the imported bookmarks in the hierarchy or I have to open each account in the same X session and copy+paste bookmarks between accounts.

I could probably write a script to  extract and insert what I want in places.sqlite3, but I don't want to rely on the stability of the database format with the new release plan.

Does anyone have any suggestions? Firefox Sync is not an option because I do not want to share everything.


At this point I'm open to alternatives, but there is some functionality that I'm not willing to give up:
* NoScript (per-site Javascript and Flash blocking)
* RequestPolicy (per-site permissions for loading content from other sites)
* Cookie Monster (per-site cookie permissions)
* Add to Search Bar (easily add any search form to the search bar)
* Organize Search Engines (create hierarchical structures of aforementioned search engines)

I've started considering Chrome but the matching extensions don't seem to be mature enough yet (e.g. Request Maker is based on RequestPolicy, but the author admits it lacks features). Besides, I don't really want to rely on the Google apps store if I can avoid it.

I looked at uzbl too, but the script-blocking scripts apparently fail sometimes because uzbl lacks hooks. An unreliable script-blocker is a no-go for me.




tl:dr; need suggestions for something that lets me:
* control outgoing requests from browser
* control code execution in browser
* synchronize subsets of bookmarks, extensions, search engines
* organize bookmarks and search engines





p.s. Life would be so much easier if Firefox didn't pack shit into SQLite databases like it was playing Tetris.  Just give me some decent command-line options and simple configuration file formats ffs.


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#2 2012-05-09 00:29:40

ngoonee
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From: Between Thailand and Singapore
Registered: 2009-03-17
Posts: 7,246

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

Pentadactyl (or vimperator) does have vim-like scripting, not sure how helpful it would be, I don't use bookmarks AT ALL. Upstream is quite responsive to adding features which make sense though...


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#3 2012-05-09 00:48:46

stryder
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Registered: 2009-02-28
Posts: 500

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

Not sure since I don't use it now but xmarks have "profiles" where you can choose what to share.

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#4 2012-05-09 07:32:29

monacelli
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Registered: 2011-11-11
Posts: 14

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

Firefox has built in profiles you could use.  Run 'firefox -P' from the command line.

http://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/Managing-profiles

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#5 2012-05-09 07:48:12

ngoonee
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From: Between Thailand and Singapore
Registered: 2009-03-17
Posts: 7,246

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

monacelli wrote:

Firefox has built in profiles you could use.  Run 'firefox -P' from the command line.

http://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/Managing-profiles

You, sir, obviously did not read/understand what was being asked.....


Allan-Volunteer on the (topic being discussed) mailn lists. You never get the people who matters attention on the forums.
jasonwryan-Installing Arch is a measure of your literacy. Maintaining Arch is a measure of your diligence. Contributing to Arch is a measure of your competence.
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#6 2012-05-09 08:19:02

skanky
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From: WAIS
Registered: 2009-10-23
Posts: 1,847

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

You could try xxxterm (soon to be renamed xombrero), it has per site script & cookie blocking, not sure about cross site control. The bookmarking is a bit primitive, but easily manipulated because of that.

Also, I imagine that browsers like luakit, jumanji, dwb  and the like, might also have similar functionality.


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#7 2012-05-09 16:07:54

Xyne
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Registered: 2008-08-03
Posts: 6,520
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Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

ngoonee wrote:

I don't use bookmarks AT ALL.

oO

What do you use instead? Memory and auto-completion?

This did give me an idea... I could just as well write a basic server to host my bookmarks and run that as a daemon.


As for the suggestions so far:
* Pentadactyl: I'll look into it, but installing it would be a bit like buying a car just for the seat.

* Xmarks: that might do what I want, but I don't like the idea of storing all of my bookmarks on  a third-party server and I definitely don't want to let them collect data about me as per their ToS.

* xxxterm etc.: I'll look into those.


Thanks!

I'll post an update as soon as I decide on a solution.

Last edited by Xyne (2012-05-09 16:08:30)


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#8 2012-05-09 17:04:28

x33a
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Registered: 2009-08-15
Posts: 4,586
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Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

You can also try febe. It lets you specify user-defined backups,i.e., whichever files or folders you want. Also, you can selectively backup the extensions. Though, you still have to sort the bookmarks issue.

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/febe/

Last edited by x33a (2012-05-09 17:04:57)

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#9 2012-05-10 15:05:38

stryder
Member
Registered: 2009-02-28
Posts: 500

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

Xyne wrote:

* Xmarks: that might do what I want, but I don't like the idea of storing all of my bookmarks on  a third-party server and I definitely don't want to let them collect data about me as per their ToS.

I actually thought you'd look at what they do and come up with your own implementation. Anyway they used to allow "your own server". Perhaps they still do.

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#10 2012-05-11 02:12:23

ngoonee
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From: Between Thailand and Singapore
Registered: 2009-03-17
Posts: 7,246

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

Xyne wrote:
ngoonee wrote:

I don't use bookmarks AT ALL.

oO

What do you use instead? Memory and auto-completion?

Pretty much. There's like 6-10 'main' websites I keep visiting. Blogs etc. are tracked on google reader (RSS ftw). Stuff which I need to save is mainly work related (academia, so research) and I use zotero for that. Never seen the need for bookmarks. Of course, I'm very much a corner case....


Allan-Volunteer on the (topic being discussed) mailn lists. You never get the people who matters attention on the forums.
jasonwryan-Installing Arch is a measure of your literacy. Maintaining Arch is a measure of your diligence. Contributing to Arch is a measure of your competence.
Griemak-Bleeding edge, not bleeding flat. Edge denotes falls will occur from time to time. Bring your own parachute.

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#11 2013-09-21 10:20:50

Xyne
Moderator/TU
Registered: 2008-08-03
Posts: 6,520
Website

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

Still not solved, but this is related: https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=170117


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#12 2013-09-21 13:34:21

wirr
Member
Registered: 2009-10-25
Posts: 68

Re: Firefox with multiple system accounts: solutions or alternatives?

Xyne wrote:

* synchronize subsets of bookmarks, [...], search engines
* organize bookmarks and search engines

Sounds like you are looking for surfraw? There is a global bookmark file in /etc/xdg/surfraw/bookmarks and the local one in $HOME/.config/surfraw/bookmarks. And the search engines are very sophisticated.

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