Browser issues with MediaWiki

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See also: Wikipedia:Wikipedia:Browser notes

This page is intended to document problems with certain web browsers in editing Wikipedia articles. If you have experiences with a specific web browser, please add them here.

Some of these problems may be bugs, some of them may be user interface annoyances, and some of them may result from incorrect or unexpected implementation of certain features on the Wikipedia site. If you find bugs in your browser, this is not the place to report them, but if they are relevant to Wikipedia, they may as well be listed here.


IE on MacOS 9

Internet Explorer 5 on Mac OS 9 displays Wikimedia pages badly, especially quotes.

Problem with newlines

Some browsers seem to insert newlines into entries. This is likely to be a CR/LF problem (Windows ends lines with CR/LF, Unix only with LF), and to mostly show up during collaborative editing as in Wikis. Specifically, Opera 5.x on Linux seems to have this problem, although further tests are needed. Opera 6.0?


Problems with saving

Opera 5.x on Linux definitely has issues with saving pages. Sometimes, a page will simply not be stored and the browser will hang. Opera 6.0 on Windows seems to save fine.

Mozilla 0.9.9 has problems saving forms (such as wikipedia edits!) longer than about 10k; the connection stalls and the page is not saved. Use an older or newer version without the bug.

Problems with editing

Mozilla (0.96) has some quite annoying bugs in textareas. These relate to cursor behavior and scrollbar display. On the other hand, it supports saving form data, which is quite handy for long articles.

See This bug has been around since the first version of the browser.

Netscape 4.7/Windows 98
Occasionally refuses to allow insertion into longer articles.

Internet Explorer 5/Mac OS X (and perhaps older?)
Textarea seems to be limited to about 32k; text cannot be inserted into longer pages, instead met with an indignant beep.

Opera 5/Mac OS X (and perhaps older?)
Textarea is limited to about 32k; text is truncated after that point. Inserting additional text results in the end of the text scrolling off into la-la land, though someone editing the middle of a page might not notice; if the page is saved, it will be truncated.

K-meleon (Mozilla)/Windows 95
Unicode characters replaced by '?'.

  • This happens on any browser that doesn't support unicode.

Note: 32kb limits Textarea was limited to 32kb in both Netscape 3 and MSIE 3, presumably on all platforms for which those browsers were respectively available. In neither case does the browser warn of a buffer overflow. (I am not sure about the version 4 browsers - an experiment might be needed)

Problems while selecting text

Internet Explorer 6/Windows 98

With Wikipedia Phase II (not Phase III), it's impossible to select part of text on every pages. But there are not problems of selection in input area while editing.

According to the following text this has not been fixed in the Cologne Blue wikipedia "skin". You may like to check if this is your problem before reading any further. MrJones 18:37, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Check the stylesheet; it may be using absolute positioning on bits where it doesn't really need it. This was discovered and fixed in phase 3 a while ago; the selection bug was triggered by the combination of using absolute positioning for the body text (actually the whole page was in an absolutely positioned div, rather pointless) and fixing the doctype so browsers wouldn't render in quirks mode. --Brion VIBBER 15:41, 5 Sep 2003 (UTC)
Sorry, I said a mistake ; I have this problem on Meta-Wikipedia too ...But, Meta-Wikipedia use Phase III now ? And I have not this problem on french Wikipedia which use Phase III. Oliezekat 16:13, 5 Sep 2003 (UTC)
It would really help if when people report bugs, they specify if they're using any non-standard options (such as the Cologne Blue or Nostalgia skins). Cologne Blue skin i still broken in this regard (it's broken in many ways, and no one has yet come forward to fix it). --Brion VIBBER 16:41, 5 Sep 2003 (UTC)
I'm sorry...You had solved my problem : it's Cologne Blue skin which cause this problem ! I never think this issue. :o. Oliezekat 16:52, 5 Sep 2003 (UTC)

Some pages don't display properly in the Opera browser

Moved from: w:Wikipedia:Village pump

It seems like some pages on wikipedia don't display correctly when the user's using opera. I tried with IE, and there's no problem. It happened to me with the sandbox and with the Village pump page... It would be good to fix this.

Probably the Arabic links; see down at the bottom of m:Talk:Main Page. This is either an Opera bug or a Windows bug or an Opera-Windows bug interaction. What versions of Opera and Windows are you using, exactly? I've been unable to reproduce it with Opera 7.23 on Windows XP. --Brion 01:28, 12 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Meta is in utf8

Character encoding

The meta wiki is now encoded as Unicode UTF-8 so that it can cleanly include pages and commentary in any language. (Actual display of any given language's characters depends on the fonts installed on your computer, of course!)

Note that some browsers have poor Unicode support and may, in addition to not displaying properly, damage non-ASCII characters during editing. Known problems include:

  • Opera 5.0 for Macintosh, and probably other OSs as well. (Opera 6.0 does have Unicode support; if you've used it please say if it works!)
    • Opera 6.04 for Windows works well. -- PE 21:50 Nov 15, 2002 (UTC)
  • Netscape 4.x
  • IE 5.0 (Mac)

Browsers known to be able to view and edit correctly include:

  • Mozilla and Mozilla-based browsers (ex Netscape 6 and higher)
  • IE 5.5 (Win)

And with appropriate configuration:

  • Lynx if Unicode UTF-8 character set is selected in options. Proper display may require setting your terminal for Unicode.
  • Links if in graphics mode

Gecko and tables next to lists on RTL pages

In Gecko browsers (Mozilla, Mozilla Firefox, Epiphany etc.), with RTL pages, in certain cases where there is a table and a long list next to each other, an unneeded scroll bar is added and the list incorrectly moves way right, and overlaps the navigation and toolbox links. See for example the Hebrew entry for canine.

See a screen shot

This problem does not seem to be present in Mozilla Firefox 1.0.6, which I have just tested the aforementioned hebrew entry for canine on. Further testing is warranted, however.

This problem does not appear in the linked article under Mozilla Seamonkey 1.0 under Windows XP.

Display problem

My contribution to Wikipedia:Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject Grammar title Display problems with this project page may be relevant here, regarding a possible Mozilla bug.

Displaying MathML

Few browsers support MathML, and MediaWiki still consider it as an experimental feature. Anyway W3C publishes a list of browsers and of browser plugins and extensions supporting MathML (with relative bugs).

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