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Last Comment Bug 214867 - Don't let web pages use dependent=yes in
: Don't let web pages use dependent=yes in
Product: Core
Classification: Components
Component: DOM: Core & HTML (show other bugs)
: Trunk
: x86 Windows 98
: -- enhancement with 2 votes (vote)
: ---
Assigned To: Nobody; OK to take it and work on it
: Jet Villegas (:jet)
Depends on:
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2003-08-02 08:07 PDT by Daniel Ehrenberg
Modified: 2013-03-06 21:24 PST (History)
11 users (show)
See Also:
Crash Signature:
QA Whiteboard:
Iteration: ---
Points: ---
Has Regression Range: ---
Has STR: ---


Description Daniel Ehrenberg 2003-08-02 08:07:29 PDT
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Win98; en-US; rv:1.5a) Gecko/20030728 Mozilla Firebird/0.6.1
Build Identifier: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Win98; en-US; rv:1.5a) Gecko/20030728 Mozilla Firebird/0.6.1

The window showing the past and current graph of the value of the futures items
doesn't show up on the taskbar

Reproducible: Always

Steps to Reproduce:
1. Go to
2. Click on the top future under "today's highlights"
3. Click on the top link that is below "contract" and right of the tradesports logo

Actual Results:  
A window opened that showed information about that future went up but it wasn't
shown on the taskbar. If I tried to minimize it, it looked like when a window
inside AOL was minimized. I could move around the minimized window.

Expected Results:  
Mozilla should have shown the window on the taskbar and it should have acted
like a typical window when minimized.
Comment 1 Jesse Ruderman 2003-08-03 03:11:07 PDT

Why does Mozilla support dependent=yes (or allow web pages to use it)?  IE
doesn't support it, but Netscape 4 does.

-> DOM 0
Comment 2 Jesse Ruderman 2003-08-03 03:16:12 PDT
In addition to keeping windows off of the taskbar, dependent=yes makes the
window close if you close its opener.  That's probably why tradesports used it.
Comment 3 Gérard Talbot 2004-06-17 14:21:46 PDT
Just for your info, MSIE supports showModelessDialog() which is the closest
thing to a Mozilla dependent window. A ModelessDialog window in MSIE will not be
shown in the statusbar, will close of its opener closes but will not be minimizable.

I'm not sure this is a bug; an enhancement, maybe. If dependent child windows
were not shown in the statusbar in NS 4.x (which I have not verified), then why
should this be considered a bug? Just asking.
Comment 4 Gérard Talbot 2005-01-03 15:07:16 PST
"dependent - The new window belongs to the calling window, on operating systems
that support this behaviour. This is the kind of window *_that is minimized
along with its parent/owner_*; a 'popup' or 'transient' window, or whatever word
your OS has chosen to use."

"(JavaScript 1.2) If yes, creates a new window as a child of the current window.
A dependent window closes when its parent window closes. On Windows platforms, a
dependent window does not show on the task bar."

By definition, a dependent window can not be minimized on the Windows' task bar
but it will look minimized within/inside the parent window.
"If I tried to minimize it, it looked like when a window
inside AOL was minimized." That is what is expected by definition and that is
what I noticed too.

Resolving as INVALID
Comment 5 Jesse Ruderman 2005-01-03 16:27:57 PST
Gerard, it's useful to know that dependent=yes is documented, but that doesn't
mean Mozilla/Firefox should support it.
Comment 6 Gérard Talbot 2005-01-03 17:50:15 PST
A dependent child window has 3 consequences, implies 3 behaviors w.r.t. its
parent window: 
1- it will close if its parent closes
2- it will be minimized on the Windows task bar if its parent is minimized
3- it will be/stay/remain on top of, in front of its parent

That's what the documentation says for NS 4 and Mozilla-based browsers. That's
also what empirical testings and objective verifications report. That's how
dependent was first introduced and was implemented. As far as I'm concerned,
this bug is INVALID per all definitions. I tried to carefully substantiate all
this and I'm convinced a majority of reasonable people would reach the same
conclusion I reached.

Now, if Mozilla/Firefox should not support dependent, then the normal thing to
do is to write a summary accordingly and to identify the bug as a enhancement
request, not as a normal bug.

Same thing with any/all other window features (modal, dialog, chrome, etc.)
which you may think that Mozilla/Firefox should not support and which we all
know are very constraining on users, reducing usability and/or accessibility
(and often poorly used or unjustifyingly used by authors). Personally, I would
never have implemented dependent, modal, dialog, chrome, scrollbars, resizable,
menubar, status as windowFeatures in the method.

The less bugfiles are maintained, updated accordingly, the more these eventually
lead to waste of time of good-willing volunteers, to misunderstandings,
counter-productive inconsequences and frustrations.
6 months ago, I asked in this bugfile one single question and no one answered me.
Comment 7 Jesse Ruderman 2006-10-27 07:18:55 PDT
Has this been fixed?  See bug 354123.
Comment 8 Gérard Talbot 2006-12-26 13:20:36 PST
Dependent windows are modal windows of a special kind, with a particular behavior: they are nevertheless modal windows. What changed is that modal windows are no longer possible without granted UniversalBrowserWrite privileges: bug 180048 is decisive here.
Comment 9 Gérard Talbot 2007-01-03 17:50:17 PST
"'modal' was never intended to be exposed to untrusted script." Dan M, bug 180048 comment #9

"'dependent=1' should not work for untrusted content." B. Zbarsky, bug 194404 comment #4

There are other interesting comments in bug 194404
Comment 10 Daniel Kabs, reporting bugs since 2002 2007-02-02 15:16:36 PST
I just figured there is no preference in about:config to disable this option.

I'd like to have e.g.


to be able to disallow this option.

Should I file separate enhancement request to this effect?
Comment 11 william drescher 2009-07-31 11:49:45 PDT
I appear to be swimming upstream, but I really like/need the dependent window feature for an application I am recoding.  The login screen opens a menu window and clicking on the menu options opens dependent windows.  It is important that closing the menu window also close all the dependent windows for a clean logout
Comment 12 Jesse Ruderman 2009-07-31 21:57:55 PDT
You can do that much with JavaScript, e.g. onpagehide and window.close().  dependent=yes allowed sites to do more, and we were uncomfortable with that.

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