Screwy Links and Reloading Issues March 26, 2009 12:28 PM   Subscribe

I'm not sure if this a MeFi bug or something with my browser or set-up. I have experienced this on different computers and tried reloading Firefox, but I think that it is still going on. What gives? Is it some sort of local proxy or cache issue? I'm at work right now and it's definitely doing it, but this has happened to me at home as well (I am 95% sure).

For the last week or so, if, within any Metafilter window, I click on the upper right corner links to go to the other sections of the site, the browser status bar transfers the data and the URL changes, but the actual page does not. It will not change to the target of the clicked link until I hit refresh. In addition, if I don't hit refresh and click on a displayed MeFi link without reloading the page, it takes me to some random page from long ago, or alternatively, a MeFi page that says I've clicked a bad link (I can't reproduce this right now) - this all seems to depend on the portion of the site I am starting from. If I click on an external link, that works fine. I have not experienced these sorts of problems on any other site. What the hell is going on? It seems like it has to do with how my local servers are caching the pages, but I sure as hell don't understand why that would prevent my browser from loading the links I click.
posted by iknowizbirfmark to Bugs at 12:28 PM (6 comments total)

That sounds like you have some browser memory issues of some sort.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:31 PM on March 26, 2009

hmm, yeah this sounds like a problem on your end. Try starting Firefox in safe mode with all add-ons disabled and see if you're still having the problem. If not, you know one of your extensions is causing problems.

And you might look at any other software sitting between you and the Internet. Try selectively disabling any firewall or anti-phishing sort of software and see if that clears up the problem. If so, you might need to add exceptions to your software for MeFi domains.
posted by pb (staff) at 12:36 PM on March 26, 2009

It still happens in safe mode, and after a restart of the machine (which has 3.5GB of memory). I am leaning towards screwiness with local caching or firewall software, which I can't disable. When I get home, I will check out if I am really remembering that it happens on my home machines or if my mind made that up and it's just going on at work.

posted by iknowizbirfmark at 12:51 PM on March 26, 2009

My problem with MeFi is similar, so I thought I might as well put it out here. I simply can't post to *.metafilter (comments) from my home network. I get a blank page, or a error saying browser failed to open page. However everything works fine from the University network. I'm on a Mac, ibook g4, any browser. I thought it was that old MTU issue (, but even after changing settings I can't do so. I also get frequent timeouts while accessing the Askme site. I've noticed that problems with timeouts especially occur when I click on a link from the popular favourites page. Any ideas what the problem could be?

Hi, pb.
posted by dhruva at 2:04 PM on March 26, 2009

Interesting. I had this problem a year ago when I was borrowing my neighbor's signal while waiting for ISP hookup after a move. Obviously I couldn't change his settings, so I just waited to see if the problem went away after I got my own network set up, and it did. On the one hand, it was a problem on my end because it went away once I changed networks. On the other hand, it ONLY happened at metafilter, for me and for the others who have mentioned it, which is bizarre given the amount of browsing I was doing at the time. I had forgotten about it since it doesn't affect me anymore, just thought I'd chime in to point out it isn't necessarily an isolated case (this was a brand new at the time Macbook Pro with 4gb memory, both Safari and Firefox with no extensions, by the way).
posted by bwanabetty at 2:28 PM on March 26, 2009

Switch to Internet Explorer, of if you're on a Mac, try parrallels and Internet Explorer. If using Linux, WINE or VirtualBox might help. If you're on an iPhone, you could setup some sort of VNC connection to a windows box. If you're on Windows Mobile, try Remote Desktop. If you're running a Timex Sinclair or Tandy 1000(ex) you might want to invest in a nice laptop. If you're using Windows XP, try upgrading to Vista, and if on Vista, check out Windows Server 2008. If you're on Windows Server 2008, you might want to look into the Data Center Edition. If you're already on WS2008 DCE, have you upgraded to Internet Explorer 8?

If none of that works, try rebooting.
posted by blue_beetle at 2:29 PM on March 26, 2009 [1 favorite]

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