February 5, 2012 6:35 AM   Subscribe

Firefox popup "Application/JSON from"

When I try to type a new search term into the box on Google's resuts page, I get a popup saying:

Opening search
You have chosen to open
[Win logo] search
which is a application/json

What should Firefox do with this file:
[radio button] Open with Browse...
[radio button] Save file

I have to click at least twice and sometimes 5 times on Cancel to get past it, and it keeps returning.

I tried installing the application, but that didn't help.

Is it a virus? If so, what will clean it out?
posted by KRS to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
I tried installing the application, but that didn't help.
What application did you install?

JSON is just how google now returns search results (its possible you can turn that feature off) so that they appear as you're typing. Search is the name of the page google is getting the results from.

When I'm working with JSON that popup thing happens when there's something wrong with the JSON that is being returned (ie. I set the content-type to application/json but what gets served isn't a valid json response). So either your copy of firefox for some reason doesn't know how to handle application/json, its been set to download json files, or there was something wrong with the json response that google was returning.

How long have you been having the problem and does it happen with all search terms? Have you tried a different browser?
posted by missmagenta at 7:04 AM on February 5, 2012

Not a virus. missmagenta is right that it is part of Google's new instant search.

Are you using an older version of Firefox? From what I can tell it looks like versions prior to about 3.1 might not know what they're supposed to do with JSON.
posted by FreelanceBureaucrat at 9:17 AM on February 5, 2012

Which version of Firefox are you using? What plugins or add-ons are you running?

I tried installing the application, but that didn't help.

What application are you talking about?

JSON is a type of formatted data, roughly like an Excel file, that browsers and web servers use to transmit data back and forth to each other. Upon preview I think FreelanceBureaucrat is on to something with old Firefox. Whatever is up your browser doesn't understand what to do with this file, though it could be because you had your preferences trashes or maybe Google is telling your computer it's the wrong file type or something.
posted by Ookseer at 9:55 AM on February 5, 2012

I had similar symptoms a while back (on any and all pages, and not just google) and for me, disabling my TrackMeNot plugin is what stopped them. Given that TrackMeNot runs searches in the background and even tries to simulate the search being typed in, it makes sense that there might be compatibility issues with the json returned from google instant search.

Since it's only happening for you when you type searches directly into Google, this may or may not be related to your problem. I agree with the others that a listing of your plugins and any custom CSS/User Styles or Greasemonkey scripts would help in troubleshooting.
posted by radwolf76 at 3:35 PM on February 6, 2012

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