It's never as good the second time.
September 27, 2008 10:41 AM   Subscribe

I often lose text that I've written in a web page by accidentally hitting a link and page changes (instead of in a new tab). Is there anything I can do to always save the text on the previous page?

When I hit the "Back" button, everything I've written is gone. Is there a plug-in or grease monkey script that can help with this problem? I'm even okay with a key logger if I have to.
posted by JakeLL to Computers & Internet (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Safari doesn't do this.
posted by troy at 10:43 AM on September 27, 2008

Are you using Firefox? It'll often retain text I've entered if I accidentally leave the page and then just click back.
posted by Atreides at 10:46 AM on September 27, 2008

If you use firefox, there is this extension which auto saves all your 'textarea' fields (the large multi line textboxes)
posted by bbyboi at 10:51 AM on September 27, 2008

Yes, I'm using Firefox and often this is no problem... I'm talking about the other 10%. For example, this happens when using the Gawker Media comment system.

And I just downloaded and tested Safari... it does indeed do it as well.
posted by JakeLL at 10:52 AM on September 27, 2008

bbyboi: That is very close, but for it to autosave I have to have the foresight to save it once in the first place. Is there any way to autosave without user prompt?
posted by JakeLL at 11:01 AM on September 27, 2008

What about this extension?
posted by Memo at 11:22 AM on September 27, 2008 [2 favorites]

Or indeed AutoSaveTextToCookie.
posted by katrielalex at 11:53 AM on September 27, 2008

Firefox helps, but not with every form. I've gotten into the habit of typing CTRL+A CTRL+C before submitting or navigating away from a form.

CTRL+A CTRL+C *Post Comment*
posted by MaxK at 12:22 PM on September 27, 2008 [1 favorite]

Seems to me that you just need a new habit. Any time you're going to write more than a sentence or two, write it out in a in a text editor, then copy and paste over. I started doing this after losing one too many posts, and it hasn't failed me yet.
posted by chrisamiller at 2:11 PM on September 27, 2008

The auto-save firefox extension is nice for that, but I find it replaces an occasional very annoying problem with a constant slightly annoying problem.
Having to erase every text area every time you you want to fill one out is a pain, I uninstalled the add-on because of that.
posted by muddylemon at 2:17 PM on September 27, 2008

I follow MaxK's tip about doing select-all/copy to keep an on-the-fly backup of what I'd written in a form. I used to get burned, however, when I'd copy something after that (e.g. when making a small text edit) and not do the select-all/copy combo again to get the "full" backup. But from earlier AskMe software recommendation threads, I learned about Ditto, which is really useful because it keeps a running history of clipboard activity. So now I've gotten accustomed to doing the ctrl-A/ctrl-C combo (with Ditto on in the background) as a pretty reliable "save" shortcut for web forms.

(Ditto is open-source but it only works with the Windows clipboard. There's a portable version, too. For Mac, I've heard about Jumpcut, but haven't tried it.)
posted by macguffin at 3:42 PM on September 27, 2008 [1 favorite]

Following what chrisamiller said... Last night, I did the same shtick: "oops, back button! &$@**#$#!" and my friend said, "That's why you keep a text editor open." Good for text areas, but if you're talking about text fields - those one-line inputs - this would be a hassle.
posted by curagea at 8:08 PM on September 27, 2008

My wife used to lose a lot of things in online application forms because they would time out on her. Then we found It's All Text. Once installed and configured, it'll add a little transparent button to every text field which pops you into your favourite text editor, then automatically transfers what you write back into the text field when you close the editor window. It's ace. In fact, I'm writing this comment in a text editor right now.
posted by Happy Dave at 1:24 AM on September 28, 2008

« Older I need suggestions for a message to a one-year-old...   |   QuickTime? Flash? Who's talking about it? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.