WebStorm on Ubuntu 14.04 - help links open blank browser page only

I am using the current trial version of WebStorm on Ubuntu 14.04 (standard Gnome desktop).

I have Chrome and Firefox installed, but mostly use Chrome.

In a number of the dialogs there are external help links ("Click here for more info" etc, the wording varies).

When I click on one of them though it just opens a new, blankChrome window. I would have expected it to open a new tab in my existing Chrome session and load a URL there, or at least load a URL in the new empty Chrome window.

I can open URL's in Chrome from the command line, e.g. all of the following work:

Why is this happening? Is there a Browser configuration I've missed?

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Can you open any URLs from WebStorm (File/Open URL, View/Open in Browser for .html file)?

Can you open WebStorm help (https://www.jetbrains.com/help/webstorm/2016.2/meet-webstorm.html) in Chrome?

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Hi Elena, here is my investigation of Open URL and Open in Browser:

  • When I do File/Open URL and enter http://www.google.com I get a new tab showing the page source
  • Open in Browser is not in my view menu, when I Ctrl-Shift-A there are three "Open in Browser":
  • --- The first "Open in Browser" task mapped to Alt-Shift-B - no response, including when I highlight a URL in the current WebStorm editor tab
  • --- The second "Open in Browser" task - pops open a very small "Open in Browser" dialog with a text entry box saying "Nothing here", I try entering http://www.google.com into that and hitting enter, this doesn't appear to do anything
  • --- The third "Open in Browser" task - same dialog as the second, but the "Nothing here" text is pre-highlighted and I don't seem to be able to edit it
  • "Open in default browser" (found via C-S-A) also doesn't do anything, including when I have a URL highlighted in the current WebStorm editor tab

I can open https://www.jetbrains.com/help/webstorm/2016.2/meet-webstorm.html in my Chrome browser, I can also open other web pages in Chrome (and FireFox) without any problems

As a concrete example of a UI element which opens a (blank) browser window for me: File/Save As and then click the "Help" button in the dialog

I've also checked ~/.Webstorm.2016.2/system/log/idea.log but that doesn't seem to have anything in there about opening pages in a browser. There's a stack trace about failing to load help from a file on disk though? I've posted the full stacktrace on pastebin (http://pastebin.com/k3tjq7FY) and a snippet here:

2016-08-03 19:42:46,191 [46552124] INFO - llij.help.impl.HelpManagerImpl - Failed to load help set from 'jar:file:////opt/WebStorm-162.1121.31/h
elp/null!/null/Help.hs'
javax.help.HelpSetException: Could not parse
Got an IOException (/opt/WebStorm-162.1121.31/help/null (No such file or directory))
Parsing failed for null
Got an IOException (/opt/WebStorm-162.1121.31/help/null (No such file or directory))
Parsing failed for null
Got an IOException (/opt/WebStorm-162.1121.31/help/null (No such file or directory))
Parsing failed for null
at javax.help.HelpSet.<init>(HelpSet.java:154)
at com.intellij.help.impl.HelpManagerImpl.a(HelpManagerImpl.java:133)
at com.intellij.help.impl.HelpManagerImpl.a(HelpManagerImpl.java:107)
at com.intellij.help.impl.HelpManagerImpl.invokeHelp(HelpManagerImpl.java:57)
at com.intellij.refactoring.copy.CopyFilesOrDirectoriesDialog.doHelpAction(CopyFilesOrDirectoriesDialog.java:338)
at com.intellij.openapi.ui.DialogWrapper$HelpAction.actionPerformed(DialogWrapper.java:1894)

 

 

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>Open in Browser is not in my view menu

 

please make sure to open .html file in editor - this menu is only active for HTML files

 

>As a concrete example of a UI element which opens a (blank) browser window for me: File/Save As and then click the "Help" button in the dialog

Does Help | Help main menu work?

 

>There's a stack trace about failing to load help from a file on disk though?

 

it's Ok - this error is always there as  WebStorm doesn't bundle offline help with it

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View / Open in Browser when I have a local HTML in the current editor tab:

  • Chrome option: This opens the file in Chrome, creating a new tab in my existing Chrome window (nothing in the logs)
  • Firefox option: Also works
  • Default browser: Also works (opens in Chrome)
  • Opera: "No such file or directory" (no surprises there, it's not installed)

Help / Help

  • This does not work - it opens a new Chrome window that is blank, there is nothing in the address bar either

 

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Additional discovery: URL's in plugin documentation are clickable, these also open a new, blank Chrome browser window. If I copy and paste the URL into a new or existing Chrome tab or a new Chrome window it loads correctly.

TIA for your help resolving this issue

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>URL's in plugin documentation are clickable

sorry, what URLs are meant? If you load https://www.jetbrains.com/help/webstorm/2016.2/meet-webstorm.html in Chrome, can you use hyperlinks in TOC (left-side panel) and in text to open other topics?

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> sorry what URLs are meant?

For example, when I look at the CSSReorder (beta) plugin description in settings, the text includes the following: "https://github.com/anton-rudeshko/CSSReorder", this text is a clickable link. If I click it then a new Chrome window opens but it is blank.

The behaviour is the same for other links in that plugin and other plugin descriptions too. E.g. the CoffeeScript plugin has a blue hyperlink with text "CoffeeScript". If I click that I get a new, blank Chrome window.

> in Chrome, can I use hyperlinks in https://www.jetbrains.com/help/webstorm/2016.2/meet-webstorm.html 

Yep, no problems either in the lefthand menu bar (including expansion of some topics to others and displaying new content in right hand content pane) or in clicking links from within the content pane (when I do the content pane updates and the menu bar does as well, to stay in sync with it)

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Please try setting 'Default Browser' option in Settings/Tools/Web Browsers to 'First Listed' (instead of 'System Default') - does it make things any better?

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Nice - that fixes it. Thanks for your help with this problem.

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To update on the below, I also encountered this problem with BrowserSync and in the process found another solution to this problem for WebStorm:

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It turns out that this problem is actually caused by a missing parameter in Chrome’s .desktop file on Ubuntu. I encountered the same problem using BrowserSync,  but fixed it by appending%U to the Exec line in ~/.local/share/applications/google-chrome.desktop:

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Exec=/opt/google/chrome/chrome %U

Before doing this, BrowserSync would open a blank Chrome window instead of a new tab with the web page in it. After doing this, adding %U made BrowserSync work as expected. WebStorm help also continued to work after changing it back to use “System Default”. Obscure configuration fixes FTW!

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StackOverflow link: http://askubuntu.com/a/701775/110172

 

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