Created attachment 619531 [details]
Graphical description and comparison of both prompts
User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:14.0) Gecko/20120429 Firefox/14.0a2
Build ID: 20120429042006
Steps to reproduce:
Download an windows executable file (.exe), e.g. https://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/mozilla.org/firefox/releases/12.0/win32/en-US/Firefox%20Setup%2012.0.exe
Firefox always asks "would you like to save this file?" and, unlike other mimetypes, it is impossible to set a default behaviour for those.
I understand that, for security, it makes sense to handle .exe files specifically and forbid the user to "Automatically Open", but the user should be able to "Automatically Save".
In the current implementation it is impossible and, at each download, the user has to click "Save File", which adds friction, especially with the streamlined experience provided by the new in-chrome download manager.
Contrarily, .msi files (which can be just as dangerous as .exe files) can be set to be always downloaded, or even automatically opened.
Subject has been discussed on SuperUser, and a workaround has been proposed, but it doesn't work: http://superuser.com/questions/166323/how-to-stop-firefox-warning-about-downloading-executable-files
Thanks Ronan for the proposed enhancement!
I'd agree that the behavior here is inconsistent especially when it comes to EXE vs MSI. I'm not sure it is a good idea to allow autosave of EXE's but at the same time EXE and MSI files should be handled the same way. Either both should force the "save" prompt every time or both should allow the user to choose a default behavior.
*** Bug 945049 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Doing whatever they want with files should be user prerogative, EXE being no exception.