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Stop Safari in OSX 10 Lion reloading webpages from last browsing session.

Posted on 2012-03-14
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Last Modified: 2012-03-15
OK, I know this issue with Safari and Lion is out there in the tech forums like a weed. Everybody and his brother is complaining about this. But I figure if I'm going to find a solution anywhere, it has to be here!
THE ISSUE: Safari ver.5 (and, I think ver. 4 too) running on OSX 10 Lion has this annoying feature: it reloads all webpages, tabbed, from the last session of web browsing, instead of your chosen homepage.
In effect, you can't ever actually get an automatic session-start beginning with the homepage you've lovingly specified in Safari/Prefs/General.
I've tried countless solutions offered on other Tech Forums; none of them work. Viz: close each session of Safari holding down Command/Option/Q; manually close all open tabs before finishing a session of Safari; there are a couple of Terminal scripts out there supposedly fixing the issue. They don't. And I vaguely recall a few other lame "solutions" that didn't work either.

Any bright ideas here? I can't believe Apple did this... it is SO annoying - and useless too!
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Question by:jbm4
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24 Comments
 
LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37722243
Give this little Preference Pane, "Restore me not" a try: http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/40013/restoremenot

What you do is to list in this thing the applications you don't want to restore windows next time you start them up or after a crash. A life saver for me.
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37722353
Hi sigurarm:

Well this is just crazy, but after installing Restoremenot, and adding Safari to its list,  Safari has begun to re-load not just pages from my last Safari session - but dozens and dozens of pages...looks almost like every website I've EVER visited!
How strange is this? Considering that all reviews I've seen of Restoremenot are positive.
Sheesh!
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

by:maximus5328
ID: 37722524
Have you tried to disable the option to "Restore windows when quitting and re-opening apps" in System Preferences > General ?
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37722697
Try to ditch the Safari .plist, clear cache and reset Safari.

I have Restoremenot on my main work mac but not yet on my laptop. The difference is very obvious.
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37722800
TO: maximus 5328: Yes, have always had "Restore etc. etc." pref disabled.

TO: sigurarm: Yes. Have cleared cache - result was same - I just counted exactly 62 tabs, one site login, and one app I had to manually close upon opening Safari. Have not ditched Safari.plist. Will  try that now.
......Just thought of something: earlier today a Safari update came down the pipes (ver.5.1.4 (7534.54.16) I wonder if it's buggy?

Will kill Safari.plist now.
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37723071
TO: siguram

The "kill Safari/plist made no difference. Tossed that plist in the trash.

Tried several Restarts. Safe Start, repair permissions, maintenance scripts...you name it...I tried it.

Must've restarted 1/2 dozen times - always with no change: Safari always acting up.

So I tried to Time Machine my Safari app back to a functional time - NO GO - apparently Lion won't let us tamper with this app anymore. Time Machine refuses to touch it. Sheesh!

Now something weird:

I just purchased this machine (iMac) that I'm working on now, with Lion pre-installed. So I don't have a Lion install disk. I wanted to do Complete System Restore via Time Machine. Better buy an install disk: I opened App Store, it only has the download installer, so it kicked me over to www.Apple.com [Oh NO! I'm in Safari!] - where Safari worked beautifully! No dozens of tabs opening up! I was unable to locate the Lion disk purchase there, so gave up on that project. Thought I might as well click on back here to EE, just to see what would happen. Amazing! Safari playing really nice now! You go figure that. I don't understand what-the-heck happened!

I think I should give this issue some probationary time to see if it REALLY is fixed. So I'll come back here several times over the next few days to report, and give you Experts a chance to crack this elusive nut.
That OK with everyone?
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37723084
Sure, no hurry.

Btw. The download installer is a great thing. You download and then reinstall Lion. The reinstallation does not mess with anything, just reinstalling. I have done this on several macs and to me it is one of the fastest ways to repair instead of searching for hours for some glitches.
Not that it is likely to fix Safari, it might.
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37723098
Hmm...that's interesting...but would the download installer give me access to Utilities/System Restore from Time Machine Backup" menu as a disk would ?
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37723107
Not sure about that, sorry. I don't use Time Machine. Maybe someone else has that answer.
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37723184
I've been researching my question elsewhere in the last few minutes, and have not found a solid, clear answer - even at Apple.com. I am reading that many people who are upgrading to Lion from Leopard are burning the download content to DVD, and that produces a viable install disk of Lion - complete with the menu I queried you about : "Utilities/Restore System from Time Machine Backup." BUT...I read that a user like myself who has a machine with Lion pre-installed can not download/burn the package - people are saying that in my case the download immediately deletes itself! I don't understand that, and nobody explains it so far.

I also learned that Apple has already released a Lion Recovery install for a USB stick. But again, the same issue is mentioned: a pre-installed OS will not cooperate with this method of  recovery.

Clearly, this is evolving into a whole new question. So I'll post this as a new question asap. Can't do it right now...dinner is on the go here...tomorrow I'll do it.

In the meantime, if somebody comes along here with an answer to this evolving issue, I'll award the points originally intended for the question that began this whole discussion string.
My Safari is still playing nice at this time, so if the original issue is resolved, the points might as well migrate to this last issue? Hope I'm not confusing everyone!
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37723217
CRAAAAAAAP!!! Someone, please SHOOT me! My Safari is right back to the insane state that started this question! I don't know what happened! It was playing really nice for a few minutes, then I closed it. Then opened it again for a new session and there they were: 64 tabs to close, two apps to close and one extension prefs to close! Aaaaarrrggh!

Get me my pistol. I'm gonna do myself!
...help!
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37723770
Try making a new user account and check if Safari behaves the same way there.
Hopefully not because, although it is a bit time consuming to move to a new account it is better than dealing with a corrupted application.

In the meantime: Try Chrome
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37725795
good morning sigurarm:

Well I'm back, with a very strange report: When I first launched Safari a few minutes ago directly from the applications folder - same old crap - 60-some tabs and several other apps and extension pref windows to close.  
So I recalled that yesterday, when I used Apps Store and clicked a link there to go to www.apple.com,  Safari went there and ran perfectly. I just did that again...and same thing! Right now Safari is behaving as it should, and I got here by clicking a link at the Apps Store.

Go figure. I've raised the points on this issue to 500.

BTW: the issue does not occur in my "Test" user account.
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

by:maximus5328
ID: 37726183
If it starts misbehaving again try this:
Quit Safari, go to your home folder in Finder, open Library > Safari, delete LastSession.plist
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37726600
LastSession.plist > garbage!
Same as before! Nothing changed.
The only way I got back here without the hundreds of tabs etc. to close was via App Store link!!!
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37726752
"BTW: the issue does not occur in my "Test" user account."

So it is in your user account.
Did you already try some maintenance apps? I would recommend Onyx. Get it and start it up and select Automation. Check all boxes and run it.
You can see at the check boxes what will be done and uncheck some if you prefer.

Some of the things Onyx does is to trash caches (short time memory) which might help.

Another free and effortless maintenance is to restart the computer, hold down command + s
Then when everything is uploaded, type: fsck -fy (the commands are on the screen)
If you get System Modified, run fsck -fy again and finally type: reboot.
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37726836
hey sigurarm,

Ya, yesterday I gave my system the Onyx tuneup. No improvement.

And I gave it the fsck-fy routine a couple of days ago. No change.

I'll tell you what...this is one mysterious issue that comes and goes. For instance, the present Safari session started up perfectly! I can't explain that!

I think my machine has to serve more probationary time to see if it's going to behave consistently.

I posted that leftover issue from last night, today as a new question. It's here: http://www.experts-exchange.com/Apple/Operating_Systems/Q_27634274.htm It sure puzzles me why Apple has made is so tricky for an out-of-the-box user to get to System Restore - no install disk, no nuthin'

Thanks for your intrepid follow-ups. Will keep you posted on it.
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37726870
3 Minutes Later:

I closed that last Safari session that was running perfectly, just to see. Then I opened a new session. Back to square one again!!! Zillions of tabs to close, etc. etc.!!

So I used the mysterious App Store portal to come back here without the problem starting up again.

What in the world is going on with that? Why does App Store hand me off to Safari perfectly, while I can't open Safari independently without using that "portal"????

**Hey Moderator! Can I double-double the points on this mind-numbing question? Cause if someone solves it, they are a true wizard!
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37727268
And Soooo.....in the end, after a liquid refreshment break to clear out my muddled, addled head, I took a wild leap and killed ALL of Safari .plist Pref files, and restarted. That lessened the numbers of tabs  opening up automatically with each launch of Safari. Still, there were two or three malingerers.

I still wasn't satisfied, so I went to Safari/Reset Safari menu and reset all choices except my Saved names and Passwords.

Bing-o!

Happy Safari user now.

Weird how sometimes the simplest solution turns out to be the ONE!

Thanks, Experts, for all you time and effort, esp. siguram
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Author Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37727292
I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for jbm4's comment #37727268

for the following reason:

It was just me!
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37727288
Considering this discussion I actually think answer ID: 37722697 leads to the right solution besides many of the other answers would help.
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LVL 22

Accepted Solution

by:
Sigurdur Armannsson earned 500 total points
ID: 37727293
Considering this discussion I actually think answer ID: 37722697 leads to the right solution besides many of the other answers would help.
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Author Closing Comment

by:jbm4
ID: 37727307
sigurarm,

OOPS! Ya, you did cover those points earlier! Pleeze exsqueeze me!

You do deserve the points. This was such a long, dragged-out issue that I guess i lost my way.

Glad you  objected. You worked hard, man.
0
 
LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Sigurdur Armannsson
ID: 37727326
No problem at all and no hard feelings. These points pushed me over the 500.000 point milestone and I will get a new rank. :D
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