KMeleonWiki > FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

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What is K-Meleon?

K-Meleon is an extremely fast, customizable, lightweight web browser based on the Gecko layout engine developed by Mozilla which is also used by Firefox. K-Meleon is free, open-source software released under the GNU General Public License.

What platforms does K-Meleon run on?

K-Meleon is designed specifically for Microsoft Windows (Win32) operating systems. There are no plans to port K-Meleon to other platforms.
But you can try running it under Wine on Linux, or try Fred's Unofficial K-Meleon variations which he uses under wine, and there is an own little department in the KM forum for Linux Users.
Otherwise, if you are looking for a Gecko-based browser for Linux, visit the Galeon project. Camino is a Gecko-based browser for Mac OS X.

What are the system requirements?

While a Pentium level processor is recommended, K-Meleon can run on 486 systems that meet the minimum RAM requirements. Please consult the release notes for particular versions of K-Meleon.

Users of Windows 2000 may experience problems due to the absence of msvcp60.dll. Install the Windows 2000 Support Tools from your setup CD or consult the Windows Update website.

Users of Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows NT 4.0 may have to install Vcredist.exe to get the latest run-time components for Visual C++ applications.

Users of Windows 95 may also have to install shlwapi.dll (part of Internet Explorer).

What is new/improved/fixed in the latest version of K-Meleon?

Please consult the release notes for that particular version of K-Meleon, and the download page for notes about the minor version changes (mostly new gecko engines and bug fixes).

How do I install/uninstall K-Meleon?

Please consult the release notes for the particular version of K-Meleon you want to install/uninstall.

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Does K-Meleon support current web standards?

Yes. K-Meleon uses the Gecko rendering engine developed by Mozilla, which is also used by Firefox. Gecko provides excellent support for current (X)HTML, CSS and DOM standards. K-Meleon has built-in support to run JavaScript.

Does K-Meleon support secure (encrypted) transmissions?

Yes. K-Meleon 1.1 provides SSL (version 3) and TLS support.

Does K-Meleon support tabbed browsing?

Yes, since K-Meleon 1.5 true tabs are used instead of 'layered' windows. Layer macros are obsolete and it is strongly recommended to not add them in modern versions.

Does K-Meleon support Java?

Yes. To run Java applets in K-Meleon, you have to install the Java Runtime Environment (JRE). Once installed, K-Meleon automatically detects your JRE installation and no other configuration is necessary. You can download the JRE from the Java website. To see if the JRE is properly installed, open Help > About Plugins. If you see the Java Plug-in listed, K-Meleon properly recognizes the JRE.
Note: Java may not work when you change K-Meleon's browser identification (UserAgent) string.

What is the K-Meleon Loader?

The K-Meleon Loader preloads portions of the K-Meleon browser and thus allows it to launch more quickly - especially on low-end hardware. Be aware that the K-Meleon browser keeps running as long as the K-Meleon Loader is running. Some changes to the configuration of K-Meleon will not take effect until you close and restart the browser. When using it, you also have to close and restart the Loader to make such changes take effect. Review the details here.

What privacy features does K-Meleon include?

Under Tools > Privacy you can quickly enable/disable privacy-related features such as cookies, Java, JavaScript and popup windows, frames and HTTP referers. The Privacy Bar provides even more direct access. Cookie acceptance, image loading and popup blocking can be configured in detail through Edit > Preferences. K-Meleon's UserAgent string can be quickly changed through Tools > User Agent. The Privacy Plugin empowers you to delete privacy-related data such as cache, cookies, history and passwords automatically at startup or at shutdown, or manually at any time. See Configurable Security Policies for more details on advanced privacy features.

Why does K-Meleon not include feature "X" (e-mail client, etc.)?

K-Meleon is intended to be a fast, customizable, lightweight web browser. It is designed to be a browser only, not a suite. Thus, it does not include features such as an e-mail client or a web page editor, which could bloat and slow K-Meleon down. Users are encouraged to use their favorite applications for these and other particular purposes. The K-Meleon developers will consider enhancements that improve the performance and usefulness of the browser.

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Bookmarking Systems

How do I use my existing Firefox/Netscape/Mozilla Bookmarks?

The first time K-Meleon is run with the Netscape Bookmark Plugin enabled, it automatically creates a new bookmarks file in your profile directory. You also have the possibility of using your existing Firefox, Netscape or Mozilla bookmarks file in K-Meleon. Open Edit > Preferences > K-Meleon Plugins > Netscape Bookmarks and go to the Netscape Bookmarks File section. Click on Browse. This is where you can set the location of your bookmarks file. Specify the location of your existing Netscape, Mozilla/SeaMonkey or Firefox bookmarks file here.

Mozilla/SeaMonkey, Netscape and Firefox store their bookmarks file in their profile directory. Its location depends on your operating system. The following example is for the Mozilla/SeaMonkey profile directory:

Windows 95
C:\Windows\Mozilla\<profile name>\<random>.slt
Windows 98/ME
C:\Windows\Application Data\Mozilla\<profile name>\<random>.slt
Windows NT
C:\WinNT\Profiles\<user name>\Application Data\Mozilla\Profiles\<profile name>\<random>.slt
Windows 2000/XP
C:\Documents and Settings\<user name>\Application Data\Mozilla\Profiles\<profile name>\<random>.slt

Netscape creates its own folder in the same folder that contains the Mozilla folder. Firefox creates its folder within the Mozilla folder.

Note: K-Meleon's bookmarks plugin does currently not support Firefox's live bookmarks and favicons.

    • Firefox3 uses a new system for bookmarks. To get a copy in the traditional (KM-compatible) style, open Firefox and click Bookmarks > Organize > Import and Backup > Export HTML**

How do I use my existing Internet Explorer Favorites?

K-Meleon's IE Favorites Plugin automatically locates and uses your Favorites. This plugin does not import your Favorites, it allows you to share your Favorites between K-Meleon and Internet Explorer!

K-Meleon's Netscape Bookmark Plugin allows you to import your Favorites into your bookmarks file. Choose Bookmarks > Edit... and then press Import Favorites.

How do I use my existing Opera Hotlist?

The first time K-Meleon is run with the Opera Hotlist Plugin enabled, it will automatically create a new empty hotlist file in your profile directory. You also have the possibility of using your existing Opera hotlist file in K-Meleon. Open Edit > Preferences and go to the Plugins section. Select Opera Hotlist Plugin and press Configure.... This will open the Opera Hotlist Settings dialog where you can set the location of your hotlist file. Specify the location of your existing Opera hotlist file here.

How do I Backup my Bookmarks, Hotlist or Favorites?

Backup Favorites:
Click Favorites > Edit, this will open your file explorer. Right-click on your Favorites folder to copy and paste it elsewhere. If you see only the sub-folders, click the "Upwards" button first to get one level higher.

Backup Bookmarks or Hotlist:
If you use the default location, click Edit > Configuration > Profile Directory to open your currently used K-Meleon profile folder. Copy the file "bookmarks.html" or "opera.adr" (=hotlist) to any location you wish. To later restore, just copy it back.
You can also simply copy it renamed into the same folder, just keep in mind, if you accidentally delete this profile later, this backup would be lost too.

Backup Bookmarks or Hotlist with non-default path:
If you have set another path for your bookmarks or hotlist (perhaps to share them with another browser), click Bookmarks > Options or Hotlist > Options to find its location in the file field. Open your file explorer to copy and paste that file elsewhere.
(Highlight and right-click to copy that path. Open your file explorer, paste the path into the address line and crop the filename (after the last "\"), hit Enter to open that folder. Find your bookmarks or hotlist file there and copy it to another location. Tip: Or in the Options tab just click "Browse", right beside the path field, and paste the cropped folder name into the "filename" field to open that folder)

How do I search inside my Bookmarks, Hotlist or Favorites?

Bookmarks or Hotlist:
Open their menu and click Edit.... There is no search field, just start typing the word you want to find. To jump to the next one, hit F3.
(This works on-the-fly, already while you're typing it's jumping to the first matching bookmark. Note that only text in the first (x?) characters of a bookmark is found. Remember F3 means "Find Next" in most windows programs. Tip: Right-click on a bookmark for more options, e.g. to create subfolders.)

Click Favorites > Edit... The favorites folder will open in the file explorer of your system. As usual in windows programs now click Ctrl+F (or use menu) to search in it with your build-in file search. All hits will be listed together.
(You can also open a subfolder first, if you only want to search inside that one. Or right-click on a folder and find a Search command in the context menu, along with other options to rename or change the target URL etc. Note that this is just basic Windows stuff which has nothing to do with the browser, all KM does is call the file explorer. A double-click on a found Favorite will open it in the browser which you have set as default in your system.)

How do I open all Bookmarks in a folder at once?

Edit your Bookmarks or Hotlist and fill in the Nick field of a folder. Then if you want to open all those pages later, just type the nick into the URL bar. Also works for single bookmarks, also for "Hotlist", but not "Favorites".

What are Hotlinks?

Hotlinks are provided through the Macro Extension Plugin and are in a way K-Meleon's own bookmarking system. Very simple, yet efficient. Through Tools > Hotlinks... you have the possibility to assign an URL to each of the key combinations Ctrl+0, Ctrl+1, ..., Ctrl+9.
Note that javascript: URLs (bookmarklets) usually won't have the desired effect when set to open in a new window/tab/layer.
Hotlinks are not stored in a separate file, they are part of prefs.js in your current profile folder.

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What do each of the default K-Meleon plugins do?

Bitmapped Menus
Displays icons in menus.
External Control Plugin
Allows programmers to interface with K-Meleon from within their own programs.
Fullscreen Plugin
Adds support for full screen display.
History Plugin
Allows to view the global history and adds right-click menus to the back and forward buttons.
IE Favorites Plugin
Provides support for Internet Explorer Favorites.
KMeleon JS Bridge
Allows XUL applications to manipulate K-Meleon's menus. Currently only used by the Advanced Preferences panel.
Layered Windows Plugin
Simulates tab-like behavior by grouping windows together and keeping most of them invisible. (Obsolete since K-Meleon 1.5)
Macro Extension Plugin
Adds macro language support which enables many additional features in K-Meleon, see the macro library.
Mouse Gestures Plugin
Adds the ability to perform commands and macros with a combination of mouse movements and right clicks. Configurable through Tools > Mouse Gestures....
Netscape Bookmark Plugin
Provides support for Netscape/Mozilla-style bookmarks, incl. older Firefox versions bookmarks. In Firefox 3.x "Export to HTML" your bookmarks to convert them to the traditional (KM-compatible) mode.
Opera Hotlist Plugin
Provides support for Opera-style bookmarks (Hotlist).
Privacy Plugin
Allows to clear privacy-related data (cache, cookies, history and passwords) etc.
Rebar Menu Plugin
Makes the menu bar a rebar (toolbar). This will allow you to move the menu bar around just like a normal toolbar, but this may break compatibility with screen-readers.
Session Saver Plugin
Allows to save and restore sessions, and to "Undo Last Closed" pages (e.g. if you accidentally closed it)
Toolbar Control Plugin
Provides support for customizable toolbars. See also the K-Meleon Themes.

How do I enable/disable a K-Meleon plugin?

Open Edit > Preferences and go to the Plugins section. Select the plugin in question and press Enable/Disable. A green checkbox background indicates that a plugin is currently loaded. Checked plugins will be loaded next time K-Meleon starts.

How do I make K-Meleon use a third party Netscape/Mozilla plugin?

K-Meleon automatically detects the Adobe Acrobat Reader, the Sun Java Runtime Environment, Apple QuickTime and Windows Media Player. Flash and Shockwave setup programs automatically detect K-Meleon.

If it's not working automatically, any Mozilla plugin should work by being copied into K-Meleon's plugins directory (not kplugins directory), which is located in the K-Meleon installation directory. You can check the status of any plugin by opening Help > About Plugins. All your plugins currently used by K-Meleon will be listed there. For more information please review the page about third party plugins.

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Customization and Options

Does K-Meleon support skins/themes?

Yes. K-Meleon is very easy to skin. You can find quite a number of skins in the K-Meleon Themes Wiki. In order to install one, simply extract the provided ZIP archive into K-Meleon's skins directory (the files of the new skin must all end up in a new subdirectory of the skins directory). After a restart of K-Meleon, you can select the new skin in Edit > Preferences > GUI Appearance. Choose there also if you want icons in the menus (if provided by the skin), or an image as toolbar background. You have to restart K-Meleon for skin changes to take effect.

To add/remove menu lines, click Edit > Configuration > Menus.
Unlike toolbars and buttons, menus are independant from the chosen skin.

How to hide some buttons, or get more?

Single toolbars can be switched on or off in View > Toolbars
Have a look at the Privacy toolbar, if you often toggle javascript, cookies etc.
Have you already discovered the right-click menus on Go-button, Home- and other buttons? Lots of additional functions there.
To show or hide single buttons, click Edit > Configuration > Toolbars. Not as scary as it looks at first, just add or remove the #-comment-signs from the button lines.

(You can customize everything there, incl. create own buttons, new toolbars, or change left-click commands and right-click menus for every button. Because this "toolbars.cfg" file comes with the skin, it is also responsible for all the buttons it may contain and their associated functions - or which are missing. But you can always manually copy over button entries from other skins configs, if you make sure to also have a matching icon if needed, and the number of image lines must be the same inside a single toolbar.
Currently the most up-to-date list of available default commands can be found here.
You can also use macro commands for buttons, just ask in the forum for help if needed.)

Does K-Meleon support command line options?

Yes. Please review the page about command line options.
For example you can add " -new" in the shortcut to open a second browser instance that runs independendly with another profile, or simultaneously run different K-Meleon versions. Or include different profile versions in your shortcut icons. Or run KM in kiosk mode.

Does K-Meleon provide localization/multi-language support?

Yes. K-Meleon automatically attempts to recognize documents' character sets and display them properly. The browser's user interface is fully translatable since version 1.0 and supports multiple languages since version 1.1. Official localizations and language packages (to be installed additionally) can be found in the Download section. If you're interested in creating your own translation/localization, please refer to the Localization page.

TIP: Some websites offer different language versions, but depending on your browser settings. If you speak another language than english, check if you see the country flags under the menu on the left side here? Do they vanish if you click english? Then change this setting: Open "about:config" page, ignore the warning this time, and filter for "lang". This line is important:
"intl.accept_languages" Right-click and set it to something like "en-us, en, de, fr, es", depending on your languages, and the flags will show up again, and stay now.

Does K-Meleon allow to middle-click links to the background?

Yes. Mouse accelerators such as MiddleClick, Ctrl+LeftClick, Ctrl+RightClick to open links in new (background) layers, can be configured quickly throug Tools > Mouse Accelerators. Simply choose the configuration that best fits your needs:

  Default Firefox 2.0 SeaMonkey 1.1 Opera 9.2
Ctrl+LeftClick Open in foreground Open in background Open in background (nothing)
Shift+LeftClick Open in foreground Open in new window Save link target Open in foreground
Ctrl+Shift+LeftClick (nothing) Open in foreground Open in foreground Open in background
Alt+Shift+LeftClick (nothing) (nothing) (nothing) Open in foreground
Ctrl+Alt+Shift+LeftClick (nothing) (nothing) (nothing) Open in background
MiddleClick Open in foreground Open in background Open in background Open in background
Shift+MiddleClick (nothing) Open in foreground Open in foreground (nothing)
Ctrl+RightClick Open in background Open in foreground Open in foreground (nothing)

How do I customize key commands?

Key commands (accelerators) can be customized by editing the accel.cfg file. Choose Edit > Configuration > Accelerators or open Edit > Preferences, select Configs and go to the Accelerators tab. Explanations can be found on the Configuration Files page.

How do I set up macros?

K-Meleon 1.1 provides support for modular macros to ease up macro installation. You can install a module (a text file with extension kmm) by placing it in your user macro folder (open Edit > Configuration > User-defined Macros). To enable/disable installed modules, open Edit > Advanced Preferences and go to Macro Extension. User-submitted ready-made modules can be found in the macro library.

How do I set up profiles?

Profiles can be added, deleted and renamed using the profile manager (choose Edit > Manage Profiles...). For advanced customization, you might want to review the details on profile location.

How do I configure proxies?

For detailed proxy configuration open Edit > Preferences and select Proxy. K-Meleon only accepts hostnames for manual proxies. For proxies such as Junkbuster that do not support the most recent HTTP specification, you can set K-Meleon to use HTTP 1.0 instead of 1.1 on the General tab in Preferences.

Through Tools > Proxy you can quickly switch between several proxy settings. Note that the custom proxy settings are currently limited to the HTTP protocol.

How do I put Layer/Tab bar at the bottom?

Edit > Preferences (F2) > Browsing > Tabbed Browsing. Several tab options there, click on tab "Tab Bar" to find the one for top or bottom position.

Often overlooked: You can also set your preferences there for left/middle/right-clicking on a tab, change it if e.g. you want to close tabs with a middle-click and open new ones with double-click.

(Note for bottom tabs (as of Aug.2010):
Do not set minWidth for tabs smaller than 8, or you risk crashes.
And in K-Meleon 1.6 (currently alpha state) the prefs entry for "bottom tabs" has been modified. If you use KM1.6 with a profile from 1.5.x and this one was customized to use bottom tabs, without "Tab/Window buttons" attached, the browser may crash at startup. Solution: Delete "kmeleon.tabs.bottomBar" from prefs.js in your profile.)

Obsolete: To set "layers" to the bottom, look at the K-Meleon Preferences page. But it's been awhile that layers (pseudo-tabs) have been replaced with "real" tabs in K-Meleon.

How do to have a close button (X) in each tab?

This feature is included since 1.5.1 version. You must create a new pref entry in about:config.
Go to Edit -> Configuration -> Browser Configuration (or type about:config in URL bar)
Right click in preference list, and select New -> Integer.
Named it: browser.tabs.closeButtons
And set value to: 1
Restart K-Meleon to changes take effect.
Or see above for an easier tip.

How do I change default background color in new layers/tabs?

Paste one of the following rules to your userContent.css (Edit > Configuration > User-Defined StyleSheet):
1) This will only effect empty browser windows:

@-moz-document url(about:blank) {
body { background-color: Window; }

2) This will effect all pages that do not have a background color set:

body { background-color: Window; }

3) This will effect ALL pages:

body { background-color: Window !important; }

You have to restart K-Meleon to make changes in your userContent.css take effect. 'Window' is the symbolic name for your OS's window color, whatever it actually is.

Alternatively you can change a pref entry. This will affect empty browser windows/tabs, and all pages that do not have a background color set:
Go to Edit -> Configuration -> Browser Configuration (or type about:config in URL bar)
Type "background" in filter line, right click on browser.display.background_color and set another color value.
Open new window or tab to see the new color (no restart needed).

How to stop K-Meleon from warning me about fonts not installed?

You must create a new pref entry in about:config.
Go to Edit -> Configuration -> Browser Configuration (or type about:config in URL bar)
Right click in preference list, and select New -> Boolean.
Named it: font.askWhenNeeded
And set value to: false

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Why does website "X" not display/work properly? Is it a K-Meleon bug?

Probably not. A site not displaying/working properly is normally caused by one of three issues:

  1. The site is not compliant with current HTML standards.
    Try out how the site is looking in Internet Explorer (e.g. press Ctrl+Alt+I). Still a lot of websites use proprietary HTML markup and/or JavaScript code that only works correct in IE.
  2. The site is using browser-specific JavaScript.
    Try out how the site is working when you change K-Meleon's UserAgent string e.g. to Firefox' or SeaMonkey's. Still a lot of websites fail to detect K-Meleon as a Gecko-based browser. This is a typical problem in sites like Hotmail, Yahoo, Facebook, ...
    You can change this in menu Tools -> User Agent -> and check Firefox 2 or Seamonkey 1.1 and reload the site.
  3. The display problem is due to a Mozilla bug.
    Try out how the site is looking in another Gecko-based browser e.g. Firefox or SeaMonkey.

You can report such problems to the K-Meleon Forum - somebody may attempt to determine the source of the problem. Keep in mind that the particular authors are responsible for a website, not the K-Meleon developers.

Why does my personal firewall issue an alert that K-Meleon is requesting server rights?

The Personal Security Manager (PSM) in Mozilla, which K-Meleon is built on, uses sockets for communication between its security components. These communications are internal to the browser and do not go out to the Internet. There is no danger in allowing K-Meleon this access. All Mozilla browsers behave like that.

Why does K-Meleon not display colors properly when the monitor resolution is set to 256 colors?

Mozilla/Gecko does not provide proper support for 256 colors. See Mozilla Bug #88560.

Why does K-Meleon refuse to run on my system?

Your system may be missing some "Microsoft runtime libraries required to run applications developed with Visual C++". Those dll's are not included in the ZIP/7Z versions of KM. Usually they exist already on newer systems, but uninstalling another program may have removed them.

KM 1.5.x needs: msvcp71.dll and msvcr71.dll
Just put the 2 dll's into the K-Meleon root folder.

KM 1.6a (early alpha) needs: msvcp80.dll and msvcr80.dll
Older system like Win98SE: put them into the K-Meleon root folder. KM1.6 needs KernelEx for Win98/ME.
Newer systems like Vista: you must install those dll's globally (see link to Microsoft VS2005 here or Alain's mini-version)

Unless you install the vcredist, you may find those dll's elsewhere in your programs folder or another computer, in internet dll-archives, or extract them from the "installer"-version of K-Meleon (e.g. with 7zip, instead of setup just right-click and unzip the exe).

Why is K-Meleon opening two windows or displaying a "Can't open..." error message when I open an URL from an e-mail program or an Internet Shortcut?

This type of problem is usually the result of the DDE (Dynamic Data Exchange) option being enabled in the Windows Registry for the type of URL that you are trying to open. In Windows Explorer, open Tools > Folder Options... and select the File Types tab. When you've found the type of URL in question (e.g. URL:HTTP ...), select it and click Edit.... In the list of Actions select open and click Edit.... Uncheck the Use DDE checkbox and press OK until you are finally out of the Folder Options dialog.

Why do I get an error message on Windows 9X/NT related to mfc42.dll?

Your system is missing certain libraries. See the system requirements.

Why do the Bookmarks menu and/or other plugin menus not appear?

Your system is missing certain libraries. See the system requirements.
Also make sure that you have not accidentally disabled those plugins:
Edit -> Preferences -> K-Meleon Plugins. Click on the tabs for further configuration.

Why aren't links opening up in K-Meleon, it's set as my default browser?

K-Meleon's Setup Assistant doesn't set HTTP and HTTPS file types to open with K-Meleon. To fix this open up Windows Explorer and click the Tools button on the menu bar, then select Folder Options... In the Folder Options window select the File Type tab. Scroll down until you see "URL:HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol)" under the File Types column, it's extention is (NONE). Click the advanced button, then in the Actions: list box select open, then click the Edit button. In the new window click the Browse... button then navigate to the K-Meleon.exe in it's installed directory then click ok. The default location is "C:\Program Files\K-Meleon\K-Meleon.exe" (you can just copy this WITH QUOTES if you installed it in the default directory). Add "%1" to the The Application to preform action text box. Uncheck DDE and both Ok buttons. Do the same for the URL:HTTPS file type and then you're done.

Where can I get more help?

Please review the release notes of the K-Meleon version you are using for known issues/problems.

Submit your question(s) to the K-Meleon Forums (registration is not required to post and providing an e-mail address is optional). Be prepared that it may take some time until somebody knowing the answer(s) to your question(s) will read your post(s). So, check back from time to time. Bookmark the thread(s) you posted to in order to find them again later. If you are registered, you can mark "Follow Topic" to later find it listed in your 'Control Center', note that there are no nofications by email. (Note: For german language there are three versions, but the two 'Du'-versions do not exist. Choose only 'Sie' to avoid 'Blindflug' ;-)

If you think you've found a bug, ask in the Forums first. In any case, make yourself familiar with our Bug Reporting Guidelines before you file a report in our Bug Tracking System (requires registration). Be prepared that you are asked to provide more information - you have to help us to help you.

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