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Cookies continually deleted despite far-out expiration dates




Networking: Cookies
14 years ago
12 years ago


(Reporter: Mark Rogowsky, Assigned: Darin Fisher)


Windows XP

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)




14 years ago
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.6) Gecko/20040206 Firefox/0.8
Build Identifier: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.6) Gecko/20040206 Firefox/0.8

I reported this bug a long, long time ago. It appears to be somewhat similar
(the same as?!?) 202878, a bug no one appears to actively care about. I don't
mean to be rude, but this bug is absolutely real, it has been real for ages, it
also "infects" Firefox 0.8 at least, and it ought to have an easy solution.

Mozilla deleted cookies willy nilly that should last much longer. This affects
wsj.com, a lot of sites based on vBulletin -- although mysteriously not all of
them -- et al. It is frustrating at best.

I am prepared to help get the bug fixed as I experience its wrath several times
per week. Note that Internet Explorer does not have this same problem (not that
I want Mozilla to be like IE, of course).

Reproducible: Always
Steps to Reproduce:
1. Go to affected site. Example: www.tivocommunity.com
2. Login and thereby set cookie.
3. Return to site a couple of days later. Be forced to login again instead of
auto-logging in. Many other sites do the same thing.

Actual Results:  
I had to log in manually.

Expected Results:  
Logged me in automatically, as it does on IE and Opera.

Comment 1

14 years ago
in preferences under Privacy & Security -> Cookies:

What is your setting for "Cookie Lifetime Policy" ?

Comment 2

14 years ago
in addition to that, please list all your cookie prefs.

when you are visiting an affected site, does it set around 20 cookies or so?
mozilla allows sites to store a maximum of 20 cookies, so this could be the problem.

if a given site is storing well under 20 cookies, then please compare the
cookies you get after doing a simple operation (such as logging in to a site)
between mozilla and another browser, such as IE. in order to do this, you'll
want to start with a clean cookie list (a fresh profile under mozilla, and clear
your cookies in IE. note that IE stores its cookies in text files under
c:\Documents and Settings\<username>\cookies, which you'll have to manually open
and read). if the cookie lists you end up with are different, then you'll want
to generate a cookie log in mozilla to see why the pertinent cookies are being
rejected. see http://www.mozilla.org/projects/netlib/cookies/cookie-log.html for
instructions on generating a cookie log.

Comment 3

14 years ago
My setting for cookie lifetime is the default setting.

No, there are not more than 20 cookies.

I will try the cookie logging thing later, tomorrow, the next day (it will take 
time to reproduce potentially). I don't believe the cookies are rejected at 
all, btw, it's that Mozilla deletes them. As does Firefox. The same rogue code 
is running around, imho.

tested tivecommunity.com, it sets three one year cookies and one session cookie,
I'm thinking this is a dupe of bug 202878.  The big question is "at what point
is the cookie lost?"

the three persistent cookies are:

which one is lost or are all three?

Comment 5

14 years ago
OK, this is truly, truly bizarre and has to be >>part<< of the answer. I set up
a cookie log and ran Mozilla. Currently, it is >>not<< my regular browser, I'm
using Firefox (which exhibits the very same bug). Anyway, the Mozilla window has
been open for days and days -- more than enough time for the bug to >>always<<
reappear when I'm actually using Mozilla regularly. I cannot get the bug to

Either it's not happening:
(a) Because the cookie log is running
(b) Because there is only one Mozilla window open
(c) Because I'm not using Mozilla and generating a ton of cookies

or something like this (you programmer types can probably think of other

Anyway, the cookies in question -- most of which are vBulletin-oriented, but not
all of them (wsj.com cookies seem also to be at least somewhat affected by the
bug) -- are still disappearing for me on Firefox as I wait out the return of the
bug on Mozilla.

Any ideas about what to do? I suppose I could use Mozilla more aggressively to
see what happens.... What do folks think?
(In reply to comment #5)
> Either it's not happening:
> (a) Because the cookie log is running
> (b) Because there is only one Mozilla window open
> (c) Because I'm not using Mozilla and generating a ton of cookies

afaik cookies get only expired when something happens. There is no timer, just
before sending a cookie we check if it isn't expired. So, not using mozilla
could be the cause.
The other option is that the cookies got expires because you had too many. You
can only have 300 cookies. If you go over that, the oldest will be removed. If
you arent using mozilla you wont get new cookies and never go over 300.
So, what i tried to say: test with a browser that you actually use. afaik, FF
can do logging too. So either turn it on there, or use mozilla for a while.

Comment 8

14 years ago
OK, so here it is --> The problem appears to be the 300 cookie limit. I am
chagrined to admit it, but that's what it is. 

I know Bugzilla is not really the place to ask this, but... How does this get
fixed? It's patently obvious that more cookies are required for fairly normal
web-browsing behavior. I'm a power user of sorts, but not a nut.

Comment 9

14 years ago
that's already fixed... see bug 213963. try a recent trunk or wait for 1.8.

doing so might also answer the question of whether your problem was related to
these limits, or otherwise.
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Last Resolved: 12 years ago
Resolution: --- → EXPIRED
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