This has happened to me about a dozen times now: every once in a blue moon I'll load the Stack Overflow homepage, and Firefox will crash. It's happened enough times, that I'm pretty sure that it has something to do with SO.

The following is the only error found in the error console, but the error console seems to only be recording events after the fact.

Timestamp: 11/19/2012 4:27:15 PM
Error: no element found
Source File: http://stackoverflow.com/posts/13463336/ivc/5ca6?_=1353364035068
Line: 1

I'm running Firefox 16.0.2

Here is the crash report

update: it's happened two more times since this post, and and also happened when visiting the meta homepage.

It just happened once today with firefox v17.0.1

And here is that crash report

  • 15
    No website should be able to crash a browser, as that would be a serious browser vulnerability. If you've updated to the latest released version of Firefox, tried disabling all extensions, and Firefox still crashes when visiting SO, I would highly suggest also filing a bug with Mozilla. – waiwai933 Nov 20 '12 at 0:44
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    In my experience, Firefox does an excellent job of crashing when it does prettymuch anything or nothing at all. "Well, that was embarrassing...Firefox crashed because you looked at it funny/belched/it's Friday/<insert seemingly irrelevant excuse here>." – user164207 Dec 14 '12 at 19:47
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    Interestingly, there were 180565 crash dumps reported last week for Firefox 16.0.2. I doubt all of them were surfing Stack Overflow. – user102937 Dec 14 '12 at 21:13
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    @RobertHarvey the reason I post it here, is that this has happened to me about a dozen times since summer, every single time it was when navigating to the stackoverflow.com or meta.stackoverflow.com homepage – Sam I am says Reinstate Monica Dec 14 '12 at 21:31
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    SE doesn't support older versions. You need to upgrade to the latest version, and re-evaluate. – user102937 Dec 14 '12 at 21:32
  • @RobertHarvey i've just edited my question to indicate the last version it's happened on – Sam I am says Reinstate Monica Dec 14 '12 at 21:37
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    @Sam, did you try disabling all add-ons (i.e. running in safe mode)? – Frédéric Hamidi Dec 14 '12 at 21:57
  • @waiwai933 well... remember when the Formatting Sandbox was unusable with Chrome (10k-only)? – Pops Dec 14 '12 at 21:58
  • @FrédéricHamidi it happens less than once per week. I can't just disable my addons for a little bit and get meaningful information from that unless i am able to recreate the error on demand – Sam I am says Reinstate Monica Dec 14 '12 at 21:58
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    I use Firefox exclusively (Vista, Firefox 17.01) and I spend hours daily in various Stack Exchange sites. Firefox hardly ever crashes, generally, and I can't recall it ever crashing on a Stack Exchange site. – The Dark Avenger Dec 14 '12 at 22:21

Okay, I'll do what I can.

nsWindowGfx::Data32BitTo1Bit() crashes horribly with the usual error 0xC0000005 (EXCEPTION_ACCESS_VIOLATION_READ). It does so when called from nsWindowGfx::CreateIcon(), which itself is called from mozilla::widget::TaskbarTabPreview::SetIcon().

So chances are the taskbar preview icon data passed to CreateIcon() is pointing to nowhere, at least partially, and therefore building a bitmap mask matching the icon results in the crash.

The bottom of the stack trace seems to match a resource finishing downloading. Further up is a bridge to Javascript through XPCOM, which I unfortunately cannot tell if it comes from an add-on or from the Windows interface in Firefox Core.

My best guess would be that the favicons advertised by one or more sites you visit are served in an unsupported or corrupted format, or that you're running an add-on that tampers with the favicons in the same manner.

My first move would be to upgrade the browser, if at all possible. If the symptoms persist, consider running with half your add-ons disabled half the time and dichotomically working your way from there.

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