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Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Firefox users, never EVER install NewsMonster !

The reading of this post is reserved to geeks who use Firefox. The others may skip it.

NewsMonster is supposed to be sort of a Firefox extension that should act as a RSS reader.
Do you want my advice ? NEVER EVER install it !

Good reasons for not installing it:
- the uninstall procedure DOESN'T WORK. How would you want to install a thing you cannot uninstall ?
- After the installation, a wide sidebar appears on the right, approximately 30% the size of the window, NOT sizeable, not shrinkable.
- some of the menu items added by NewsMonster seem not to work (especially the "NewsMonster Preferences" menu item, from which, by the way, you are supposed to uninstall the product...)
- unlike other Firefox extensions, NewsMonster is not listed among the other installed extensions (via the "Tools | Extensions" menu item)
- the OPML import function doesn't work. I tried to import my RSS feeds in OPML format, and it imported only one of them.

I successfully uninstalled it by doing the following tasks:
- closed Firefox
- deleted the c:\newsmonster folder
- under "c:\program files\Mozilla Firefox\chrome", I deleted "newsmonster.jar"
- under "c:\program files\Mozilla Firefox\components", I deleted a group of files (*.jar, *.js) last modified at 10/23/2003, 3:13 AM
- under "c:\program files\Mozilla Firefox\ subdirectories, edited every recently changed *.rdf file, trying either to delete xml tags containing the "newsmonster" string, or turning them into comments, i.e. changing tags like




Strangely, it worked. Once reopening Firefox, the NewsMonster disappeared, and everything else seemed to work fine.

I'd not generally advice to do what I did for erasing NewsMonster. Don't do this at home. You might get burned.
Instead, I'd suggest to uninstall Firefox and reinstall it.

If you want a fairly good RSS reader, try FeedDemon. It is not perfect, it has a few defects , but it's better than many other RSS readers.

And DON'T install NewsMonster, for Heaven's sake !