Save me from the blood mists…

I swear, if someone doesn’t put a bloody save-state function into a browser with tab-functionality in it soon I’m going to snap and murder everyone around me. Even Safari – probably the most stable browser I’ve ever used – still crashes every eight or nine days or so, taking with it about forty or fifty open tabs full of carefully filtered, “I really must talk about that at some point” potential weblog content. Now I know I should be impressed that I basically never have to restart my laptop (current uptime according to Terminal is 5 days and 22 hours since I last shut down) and goddamit I am but allowing me to build up a massive amount of stuff in my browser over such a long period of time and then not giving me simple ways of grabbing all the stuff I have open and putting it somewhere safe – well it’s just nuts. So please, please Apple/God, will someone please do something about this!? Before the blood mists start?

25 replies on “Save me from the blood mists…”

I second that.
Mostly related:
I had to re-map ‘cmd + q’ ( quit Safari ) to ‘cmd + shift + q’ because I always seemed to hit it by accident whilst closing tabs ( ‘cmd + w’ ). This happens so much you would think people would have complained about it, but no, it appears not. Hyatt take notice.

I just create a “tmp” folder in the Bookmarks Bar and either drag stuff there or hit command-D. Sometimes I’ll have other folders beneath that (Read, Food, Listen, etc.). Much safer. I mean, what program do we expect to rescue us post-crash when we keep what amount to 40 or 50 unsaved documents open?

I know exactly what you are talking about! I’ve actually written about this for years. Opera was the first to add this capability (years ago!) and not a single browser has followed suit since. Yes, there are plug-ins and extensions, but no other browser does this natively. I don’t get it. I’ve had to drop Safari after it crashed one too many times and move to Firebird with the Tabbrowser Extensions. This worked great for a while, but now, after installing the latest versions of the browser and the extension, it absolutely will not restore my tab session — I’ve tried everything. At the momment, I’m using the Session Saver extension, which works quite well but requires you to manually close the browser to save your tabs, which makes absolutely no sense. So, if I feel like Firebird is about to crash, I have to shut it down so that Session Saver will remember my tabs. I wrote the author of the extension the other day and asked if he could put in the ability to have it save the tabs every time a new one is opened/closed; he said that someone else is taking over the project and will probably be adding that functionality, though he doesn’t know when it will be completed.
I feel your pain Tom, I really do.

zlog, the Cmd-Q and Cmd-W keyboard shortcuts are the same in many Mac apps and even in Windows apps; they’re so fundamental it’s hard to imagine changing those.
As many curmudgeonly UI designers (Raskin, Tog, Cooper etc.) have argued, there’s no reason that *every* app can’t save its state information invisibly and constantly.
Clearly there are processer cycles by the zillion to spare, and saving the tab state, browser history, window size and position, even information typed in form fields is a trivially small amount of data.

It’s like Justin says: Opera has had save tab state functionality for yonks. In fact I think the only thing Opera doesn’t righteously kill the opposition on is bookmark implementation, which is a bit rubbish to be honest. But I love it anyway.

I believe Opera 7 (affectionally known as macopera) for the mac when it finally comes out will be well worthy of your consideration. If you crash, just load up again & it asks do you want to continue from last time?
This guy is one of the Opera developers & gives away a few snippets of info:

‘Dude, Moz does this in spades. Bookmarks -> File This Group of Tabs…’
In safari for now, you can just drag the URLs into a folder in your Bookmarks Bar. You can then open that collection of bookmarks as tabs.
No word as to you can’t bloody save a collection of tabs as bookmarks.

Incredibly annoying, isn’t it? The AppleScript solution pointed to above works great for me, though – I just had to get into the habit of running the script every so often – it sits in the script menu, so it’s no hassle.
I suppose Safari is a victim of it’s own fabulousness here – as you say, having a browser that you can leave open for days on end is a new thing, and encourages ways of working that the developers maybe didn’t anticipate. You’d think automatic save state on quit would be standard in all applications, though, really.

It’s annoying that you can’t bookmark groups of tabs in Safari like you can with Camino, but the Applescripts that bongoman has provided a link to have been working fine for me for a couple of weeks. I’m personally more peeved by the proprietary format Safari uses to store its bookmarks – why can’t they use XML like Camino does?

An elegant, at least partial solution to this problem would be the simple “not saved” state. If you have more than one tab opened in a window, the close widget would show a dot in the center, like text editors do. Then if you tried to close the window, either by the actual close widget or Apple-W, or quitting, it would ask for confirmation, with the option to save your current state. This would of course be a behavior you could turn off (off by default probably), and also could make automatic for Quitting.

I don’t know about Mac, but under Windows and linux Opera does just what you want. If it crashes it will give you the option of reopening all tabs that were there at the crash.

The Saft ‘Value Adder for Safari’ features ‘Auto save and restore opened browser windows at quitting and start’ among many other features it adds to Safari. Another added feature is ‘Original URLs in Finder comments of downloaded files, exported PDFs and saved pages’. Firefox also allows groups of tabs in a single windows to be bookmarked.

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