Stop Firefox from downloading everything to the desktop!

Every time I download files in Firefox that I “auto process” (i.e. open with an application or whatnot), it puts the downloaded file on my desktop! This doesn’t happen at home, only at work, and never happens on my PC. Reinstalling Firefox (and extensions, themes, etc. – ugh!) didn’t fix a thing!

Well, thank you Riverside Rugby for showing me how to fix this problem for once and for all!

It seems that Firefox secretly looks at your Mac’s prefs for where to save files any time it saves a temp file. I know, I know, it would make way too much sense for it to use the same setting as your save-to-disk downloads in the Firefox prefs. But, hey, that’s why we love open-source software!

So all you have to do is change Safari’s prefs for where to save files. (Darn near any other Mac browser’s equivalent prefs will work, too.) Firefox will then honor that setting for its temporary files, but not for your downloads you wish to save to disk.

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Written on August 30, 2007