Firefox Android: “The address wasn’t understood” error fixed

I don’t like to install the likes of Facebook and Twitter apps on my android phone.  Preferring instead to just view the web interfaces in Firefox.

I use the sites, but I don’t like the apps.  Facebook especially has some pretty “spy-heavy” permissions requirements, and they are generally both fairly bloaty, and don’t offer much advantage over just using the mobile web.

Recently, however, I started to encounter a problem – I don’t know what changed it but, all of a sudden, when I clicked Twitter links sent via email, they seemed to open correctly in Firefox, but then were replaced by this:

Firefox showing "The address wasn't understood" error, when viewing twitter.comEventually, after googling and finding some similar, but different, issues, I discovered a way to fix it.  If you type the following into the URL bar of firefox:

about:config

Then type “Extern” into the search dialog, you will come across the configuration “network.protocol-handler.external-default”.  Hit the “Toggle” button to set it to false, like in the picture.  Now when you click twitter links they will work correctly in Firefox! 🙂

Firefox's configuration page, showing the option which has to be changed

I have to be honest, and say I don’t really know what this option does.  I suspect it means that if websites try to open android apps in future it won’t work, but I’m not sure I want websites to open apps, so that should be OK!

 

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