Missing e v2.5.6 - Fixed Settings Import for Firefox
This update is only important for Firefox users!
It was brought to my attention by wishonwyatt that the import function in the Missing e settings page that allows you to restore your settings from a saved file stopped working.
This update fixes this problem.
Firefox users: If you do not want to wait for automatic updates, you can update just by installing the new version over top of your existing one from the versions page.
If version 2.5.6 or higher does not appear in the list, you can wait until later, or use this direct link to install.
Reinstalled ‘Missing e’ and a feature has gone missing? Preserve/restore your ‘Missing e’ settings!
Whenever you uninstall Missing e and reinstall it later, you lose all of your customized settings! This means that some features which are not enabled when you first install, like the popular Quick (1-click) Reblogging option, go back to being deactivated. You’ll have to go into the Missing e settings (find out how) to set everything back up again.
There are a number of ways of avoiding this!
Are you trying to update Missing e?
If all you want to do is to update Missing e to the newest version, you don’t need to uninstall at all! Simply follow the update instructions in the Missing e FAQ page.
Missing e seems to have disappeared from your Tumblr dashboard?
If Missing e stops appearing for some reason (you can tell it isn’t working if the e. icon doesn’t appear beside the Tumblr logout button at the top of your dash), you don’t need to uninstall! Simply follow these instructions for disabling and re-enabling Missing e in the FAQ.
If you really, really do need to install Missing e fresh….
If you are uninstalling for any length of time, changing to a different computer or a different browser, you may have no choice but to start with a fresh installation of Missing e. In that case, to preserve your current Missing e settings (and bookmarks), you can follow these instructions in the FAQ to export (and later, import) your customizations.
Tip: Backing Up Your ‘Missing e’ Settings (just in case…)
With version 2.2.15 or higher, you now have the ability to export your Missing e settings to a file and then import them later to other browsers.
A quick tip for you is to backup your Missing e settings!
Follow these instructions to save a file with all your settings to your computer.
If, for some reason, you switch browsers, reinstall Missing e or have some sort of other problem, you’ve got a quick and easy way to restore all of your preferred Tumblr enhancements!
Simply follow the rest of the instructions to load the settings file from your computer. Voila! No more having to go through clicking on all the checkboxes in the Missing e settings page to get things back the way you want.
Missing e version 2.2.15
Please note that I fixed a small bug from version 2.2.14 that I posted an hour or so ago.
Polish Language Support
Shuffle Queued Posts
I’ve added a new feature for Tumblrs who get a lot of use out of the Tumblr Queue: A Shuffle button.
This feature is disabled by default. To enable it, you need to go to the settings page (find out how) and enable it under the Dashboard Features tab, in the Dashboard Tweaks section.
Once activated, a Shuffle button (like the one you see above) will be added to the dashboard sidebar whenever you are on a Tumblr Queue page. Clicking it will randomize the order of queued posts currently loaded on the page.
Due to the way the Tumblr interface works, the Shuffle button can only randomize queued posts that are currently visible in the Queue page. However, you can use Tumblr’s “endless scrolling” dashboard feature to load as many queued posts as you want. The Shuffle button can then randomize a larger set of queued posts.
Note: The Shuffle button simply creates a new order for the posts and then asks Tumblr to do the re-ordering. Please remember that the Tumblr Queue is sometimes unreliable. Once the re-ordering is complete, the queue times you see will be accurate. Any queue delays or other issues you may encounter later on will most likely indicate a problem with the Tumblr Queue and not Missing e.
Transfer / Backup your Missing e settings
With the newest update to Missing e, you will be able to export your Missing e settings to a file and import them from a file. Whether you want to back up your preferred configuration for Missing e or transfer them automatically to multiple browsers and/or multiple computers, you will now be able to do so!
Note: Both copies of Missing e need to be version 2.2.15 or higher to transfer your settings.
If you are interested in learning how this feature was accomplished, you can read about it.
If you want the new version immediately, DO NOT uninstall and reinstall Missing e, instead, read the instructions on how to update:
Firefox users: Until the new version of the extension is reviewed by the Mozilla Add-Ons site, you can update just by installing the new version over top of your existing one from the versions page.
If version 2.2.15 or higher does not appear in the list, you can wait until later, or use this direct link to install.
Download Missing e at missinge.infraware.ca
If you enjoy this extension, please consider donating to support future development.
[Technical] Settings Files: XML, PHP and Cleverness
While I was working on the upcoming feature for importing/exporting Missing e settings, I came upon some interesting technical challenges. In case you are interested in the nitty-gritty of web development, you may want to read on.
The problem is this: what’s the best way to export and import settings automatically?
File Format - XML
Missing e settings are exported in XML format. Basically, XML is a document format that looks similar to HTML, but allows you to create your own arbitrary tag names. So long as you follow a valid XML scheme, there are tools out there to automatically parse these kinds of files (read them into easily scannable data).
The Missing e settings files will look like this:
<?xml version="1.0"?> <missing-e> <setting> <name>MissingE_timestamps_enabled</name> <value>1</value> </setting> </missing-e>
For any setting you’ve manually changed, a **<setting> tag is emitted. Once in this format, the settings file is readable in just about any browser on any operating system!
Saving Your Settings
My first thought to get around this was to generate the settings XML file and display it in a new tab or window. From there, you would select all and copy the text, then paste it into a new file or directly into some sort of input box in another browser.
This seemed like it had too many steps for my users, though. Too much to explain. I figured that there must be a better way. So, my next thought was to automatically generate the settings and put it directly into your system’s clipboard (as if you selected and copied it, without actually having to do so). I got as far as implementing it on Google Chrome. It worked! Still, it seemed like too much effort to have to paste it into a file and then save it.
The script is a single, fairly short PHP file. Generating the XML is the easy part, really. The neat trick are these line at the beginning of the PHP code:
header("Content-Type: text/xml"); header("Content-Disposition: attachment; filename=missinge.xml");
These rewrite the headers (special bits of data that come along with responses when your browser asks the server for a web page) of the outputted page. The important one is Content-Disposition. You know how when you click on a web link to a program or a zip file or something else your browser isn’t used to view, and it automatically asks you if you want to save it to your computer or open it with another program? That’s exactly what the Content-Disposition header does. It tells your browser not to open the file itself, but instead ask if you want to save it to your computer. It even suggests a filename, so it automatically gets called missinge.xml!
On the Missing e settings page, there will be a special hidden tag called an IFRAME. You can’t see it, but it will be used to automatically load this server page, allowing the settings file to be saved to your computer without leaving the page or opening another tab or window.
Loading Your Settings
Well, that’s all well and good, but if saving your settings was hard, loading them is another thing entirely.
The first and simplest implementation I had was a simple HTML page with a big text box that you would paste the exported settings into. There would be code to read it in, parse the XML data and then use it to start applying changes to your settings. This is a lot more complex to implement than it sounds, and doesn’t make for an easy-to-use feature.
Later, when I was thinking about exporting the settings to your clipboard, I was also thinking of automatically retrieving them from the clipboard. Apparently, this is more difficult than exporting. Some users of the Chrome version of Missing e may have noticed a few days ago that an update of the extension asked for more permissions. This is because I accidentally left in a new permission requirement for reading the clipboard that I was playing around with. Turns out you don’t need more permissions to automatically copy to the clipboard, but you do need more to automatically paste from it.
Many users didn’t notice Chrome informing them that new permissions were required, so Chrome automatically disabled Missing e for those people! I realized very quickly that this would be a serious problem if I were to actually implement the import settings feature in this way.
So, all you have to do to import your settings is to click a button, select the Missing e settings file in an Open File dialog box, and Missing e automatically uploads the file to tools.missinge.infraware.ca which just sends the file back to your browser. The Missing e code gets the document, then your web browser automatically parses the XML (there’s no need to write the code to do it, since most browsers can actually do this themselves with a loaded XML page) and I scan through it to get a list of all the setting names and values, which the Missing e background code uses to overwrite the existing settings.
Done and done.
Manually transferring your settings and actually copying and pasting things is for chumps, anyway.
Upcoming Feature: Import / Export Missing e Settings
With this feature, you’ll be able to export your Missing e settings (not bookmarks) to an XML file that you can save to your hard drive. You’ll then be able to import that settings file into another version of Missing e in a different browser or a different computer!
This will make it easier to use Missing e on a variety of browsers or on multiple computers. A few mouse-clicks and you won’t need to manually restore all your preferred settings.
If you have to uninstall Missing e for some reason, you can back up your current settings before removing the extension and then load them back in once you’ve reinstalled!
So far, I’ve got a working implementation ready for Chrome, but there’s still work to do getting the feature onto the Safari and Firefox versions. Watch for updates!