Force Firefox To Display Your Full Feeds [WordPress Hack]

There is a problem (or feature) in Firefox. For wordpress blogs and few other feeds it always show partial content making it hard to judge for a wannabe subscriber whether your are displaying full feed or partial feed.

Many subscribers just hate partial feeds and most of them are unaware of this default firefox behavior which I guess can’t be changed via some about:config hack.

As a blogger if you care about your subscriber count, you can use following hack to force firefox to display your original full feed.

RSS 2.0 Feeds (default wordpress format)

1. Open file.

<wordpress-root>/wp-includes/feed-rss2.php

2. Find following lines

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
<description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>
<?php else : ?>
<description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>

3. Now comment out last line. We can remove it too but commenting is safe option. So it will look like…

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
          <description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>
<?php else : ?>
          <!- -
            <description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>
          - ->

4. Save file. That’s it.

ATOM Feeds

1. Open file.

<wordpress-root>/wp-includes/feed-atom.php

2. Find following line

<summary type="<?php html_type_rss(); ?>"><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss(); ?>]]></summary>

3. Now comment out last line. We can remove it too but commenting is safe option. So it will look like…

<!- -
<summary type="<?php html_type_rss(); ?>"><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss(); ?>]]></summary>
- ->

4. Save file. That’s it.

RSS 0.92 Feeds

Fix is not needed.

RDF Format

1. Open file.

<wordpress-root>/wp-includes/feed-rdf.php

2. Find following lines

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
<description><?php the_excerpt_rss() ?></description>
<?php else : ?>
<description><?php the_content_rss('', 0, '', get_option('rss_excerpt_length'), 2) ?></description>

3. Now comment out last line. We can remove it too but commenting is safe option. So it will look like…

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
<description><?php the_excerpt_rss() ?></description>
<?php else : ?>
<!- -
<description><?php the_content_rss('', 0, '', get_option('rss_excerpt_length'), 2) ?></description>
- ->

4. Save file. That’s it.

What is the problem? (Technical Details)

RSS 2.0 &  ATOM  have exclusive support for summaries. In RSS 2.0, actual content is placed in content element while summaries can be optionally put in description element. Similarly in ATOM, actual content is placed in content element while summaries can be optionally put in summary element.

Now other browsers displays data from content but Firefox uses data in description (for RSS 2.0) or summary (for Atom). These element are optional so by commenting them we force firefox to use data in content field. As both description & summary are optional element in their formats at item/post levels, feeds are still valid. In fact, blogger.com by default don’t use these elements so this problem does not arise there.

Actually this can be seen as a feature too as you can see entire feed without much scrolling. But firefox should somehow tell a user that full feeds area also available whenever applicable.

As a firefox user I am still looking for a way to solve this in firefox as I prefer full feeds all the times.

For FeedBurner users…

Above modifications are reflected instantly at wordpress end but if you are using FeedBurner to burn your feeds, you can ping FeedBurner here and ask them to clear their cache.

No related posts.

  • Pingback: 8 Wordpress Plugins for Feed Subscribers | Welcome To Devils Workshop

  • http://www.newgadgetsguru.com Raj

    Excellent piece of information. Thanks a lot as I was struggling with this for the past couple of days.

  • http://www.newgadgetsguru.com Raj

    Now my feedburner feeds are showing the full text in firefox, but when I view the xml file it still shows the excerpt only. How can i fix this?

    http://feeds.feedburner.com/NewGadgetsGuru?format=xml

    • http://www.devilsworkshop.org/ Rahul Bansal

      @Raj
      Clean your cache. I just checked link you posted above and I can see full feed! :-)

  • Pingback: Why Firefox won’t display full feed(WordPress) - Freeware Log

  • http://willtaft.com Will

    I did the changes and Firefox still shows excerpts. A friend even sent me copies of his edited files which work on his site and I just replaced mine with those. Pinged Feedburner. Cleared my cache. Still no joy. Full text in email delivery, in IE , but not in Firefox. Any idea why this will not work on my site. WordPress version 2.7.1. Using the Feedburner Feedsmith plugin.

    Thanks.

  • http://willtaft.com Will

    I figured it out. It is a Feedburner problem. Pinging does not work and for some reason Feedburner would not update so it got the edited files. Even after 2 days it was not working. So what I did is create a new temporary feed at Feedburner and pointed it to my sites feed. That caused a hard reset of some kind at Feedburner and everything started working fine. Then I just deleted the new Feedburner feed.

    Hope this helps anyone else that may have the same issue.

  • karthick

    Excellent Man.Many many thanks for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Wonderful explanation

    • Rahul Bansal

      @Will & Karthick
      Thanks for your feedback guys. :-)

  • Julie

    its notr working for me too. Like Raj its still showing the only two lines of my xml feed in firefox browser

  • http://www.nehemoth.com Nehemoth

    Sadly isn’t working for me.

    After edit the files, I went to Internet explorer, open the feed but for some reason IE don’t recognised this <!- -

    Thank you anyway

    • Rahul Bansal

      @julie & Nehemoth
      There may be some extra newlines inserted in the beginning. Find out which theme/plugin are adding them and remove them.

  • Pingback: Why Firefox won’t display full feed for WordPress « FreewareLog

  • Sarah

    Thank you VERY much. Exactly what I needed.

    • Rahul Bansal

      @Sarah & Ray
      Glad to know that this article has helped you fellas. :-)

      @Ray
      I really think this problem is from Firefox side. Other browsers displays full content whenever full-feeds are available.

  • Ray

    Thanks for this article! I was wondering why Firefox was only showing the excerpt!

    Really handy!

  • Ray

    I’ve reported this on the WordPress trac… we’ll see what happens.
    http://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/10689

    If you want to add your comments, do so there.

    • Rahul Bansal

      @Ray
      Just checked trac pages and saw that they marked your ticket as invalid one.
      Being wordpress pro, I guess it will be nice idea to have a plugin take care of this automatically.
      What do u think? Any suggestions or enhancements??

  • Ray

    I know it’s more of a Firefox issue, but was wondering what the dev team over at WP thought.

    For my own usage, I don’t use Firefox for RSS feeds, I use Opera more for that.

    A plugin sounds like an idea.

  • Hamad

    Amazing work, Indian bloggers always have something good to offer.

  • Hamad

    I donated some money via adsense :p

  • http://www.archcityhomes.com Karen Goodman

    I’ve been having this problem for some reason in all formats, not just Firefox. It started when I hired a bad website designer about a year ago (it had been sending full feeds up to that point). But, I scrapped that design and I had a great WP designer migrate over my site to a Thesis WP theme in November. I’ve checked every setting and still everything goes out in excerpts – email and readers. I just followed all of the instructions above, pinged Feedburner and cleared the cache, and I’m still getting excerpts in Firefox when I hit the RSS button as if I’m going subscribe. Any other suggestions?

  • Pingback: Blog Updates und Plugins | zServ

  • http://networkcultures.org/wpmu/cpov/ Juliana

    Hi, maybe you can help me with another problem: when editing html in wordpress, it looks funny in firefox, but ok in all other browsers… why is that? can anyone help me?

  • http://www.nehemoth.com Nehemoth

    Well it looks like doesn’t work anymore with the last version of WordPress (2.9.2), if I make the changes (and delete Firefox Cache) I don’t get any information at all.

    Maybe you want to take another look.

  • http://www.nehemoth.com/ Nehemoth

    And 7 months later try it out again and its working like a charm.

    Maybe the first time I did not understood well.

    Anyway thank you, the feedburner trick was essencial.

    Kudoz

  • http://www.nehemoth.com/ Nehemoth

    Users of Feedburner beware, this hack can cause some sincronizations problemas

    Error on line 47: Comment must start with “<!–".

    My feeds were OK after several weeks with this hack, but later the feeds wasn't displayed at all.

    I removed the hack and all went back to normal

  • Pingback: Wordpress: Vollständiger RSS-Feed « am röschibach

  • Pingback: Wordpress Full Text RSS Feed Fix for Firefox and Safari | personal blog of @mmbc