Etch from scratch – how to change Iceweasel reported browser

I’m Iceweasel and I’m happy being who I am. Except there are some web pages in the community that don’t recognise me and do not allow me to carry out any further activities that require JavaScript.

So I have to pretend I’m someone else to get to do what I want to do, for example, upload images to a journal entry on the BookCrossing site.

In the BookCrossing Advanced Questions forum, ardik provided the hint that I needed. But I didn’t want to pretend I was Internet Explorer, Netscape or Opera by using the User Agent Switcher addon.

I did a little search of the debian-user mailing list to find that I can change the general.useragent.extra.firefox in about:config.

  1. In the Iceweasel browser Location Bar type:
    about:config
    to display the Preference Name, Status, Type, and Value.
  2. Use the Filter text box near the top of the window to locate general.useragent.extra.firefox.
  3. Double click general.useragent.extra.firefox to display a dialog window to allow you to change the value.
  4. I changed the value from “Iceweasel/2.0.0.4” to “Firefox/2.0.0.3” without any investigation of versions and just because this was what I read on the debian user mailing list.

So far so good. It is so nice to not have to edit my preferences to turn off JavaScript then turn it back on for different web sites.

Note: Also on the debian user mailing list, KS cautioned that “While this works, the user will always have the value as user-set and will not change with an upgrade.”

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