Don’t try being smarter than me — you aren’t, you’re just a website!

So today the new major version of Firefox was released. I care relatively since I’m actually a Chrome user — and the one killer feature Firefox had over Chrome is now gone (Delicious extension, doesn’t work with Firefox 4 yet). But I have to test Firefox, and today I was explicitly working on my rule set so I was interested to get the new version of Firefox on all of my systems. Also, my mother uses both Chrome and Firefox (don’t ask) and thus I had to download a copy for her as well.

This would usually not be a problem: you go to the website and download the copy you need to run on your system, even better it provides you a direct link for the package you need to use on the system you’re visiting from. But I’m not your average user, I wanted to download the Windows and OS X versions of Firefox from my main workstation, running Linux. I don’t need the Linux version here for two reasons: I don’t use Firefox here at all; if I did, I would let Portage manage that.

For most download pages, there is a simple way to deal with that as well: you have a link “Other operating systems and languages”, that gives you access to the other binary packages — I actually like LibreOffice choice: it loads all the platforms and languages in selection boxes, select by default the one you’re visiting from, but easily let you choose the others for the same language. If you visit the English/American Firefox homepage there is such a link indeed.

But since my locale is set to Italian on this computer, whenever I visit either or I hit a captive redirect that brings me to the Italian version of the website. This is a way to be friendly to the users I’m sure, but there are two issues:

  • the link to other operating systems and languages is gone, replaced instead by the release notes; Jo (directhex) noticed that the same is true for French and German sites as well;
  • there is no way to navigate from the Italian website to the English one or the other way around: this makes it impossible to reach the page above.

And this is not the first time I find something like this, but finding it on a package such as Firefox, really stressed me up.