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Web clipper / Firefox/ private mode

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I'm running the current version of Firefox (79.0) under 64-bit Windows.

Since the recent update, the Evernote web clipper doesn't work in private mode - fact it says "Not Allowed in Private Windows" and "This extension does not run while private browsing."

There was no problem before - can this please be looked at as a matter of uregency.

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Did you change anything ? Like updating, restarting the computer etc. ?

From my experience, FF is getting tighter on security with each release, which probably means that services in the browser the web clipper needs to do his job are blocked when going private.

Anyhow, the privat mode does nothing to protect you in the web - it just avoids some stuff to get stored on your computer, like cookies, and probably puts the session into a sandbox to stop anything from moving out. Which may stop web clipper from working. If it is your private computer we are talking about, there is not much use of going to privat mode, and typically if you go, you will probably not be clipping this stuff (like your bankIng web site) to EN.

So if it is working outside of private mode, I would use it in normal browser windows, and you are done.

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3 hours ago, PhilRSoT said:

"Not Allowed in Private Windows" and "This extension does not run while private browsing."

As @PinkElephant - that sounds more like a Firefox restriction than an Evernote issue - have you taken this up with that team too? Alternatives would be: as suggested,  or try another browser private mode. 

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7 hours ago, gazumped said:

that sounds more like a Firefox restriction than an Evernote issue

Just realized I hadn't added the FF extension on this (new) computer... It does appear to be an EN extension problem - in FF, there should be a toggle to enable the extension in private mode. But that toggle isn't in FF (it is for some of my other plugins) - so it appears the EN extension is saying "don't" (very well could be FF now requires explicit 'yes I can' where it didn't before...)

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Firefox 79.0 (64 bit) user here...I checked my clippings...the Evernote Clipper extension absolutely was working in Firefox Private Browsing, as recently as 8/10/2020. I'm 60% certain I used the extension in Private Browsing on 8/13 as well. Yet now when I go to firefox 'about:addons' to manage my extensions, the option to enable EN clipper in private is no longer there! Instead it says "Not Allowed in Private Windows / This extension does not run while private browsing." This to me confirms that this new restriction comes from the Clipper developers (EN) and not from Firefox (Mozilla).

Once again, WTF, EN taking away a feature with no warning, no appeal, etc.

Sure there are security implications, that's why you let the user decide. The only reason not to allow the use to decide that I can see would be a) newspapers are giving EN flack and threatening...I dunno...something because people use the clipper to save (and distribute?) free copies of articles that are normally behind a paywall unless you use private browsing or other tricks; or b) EN wants to track us, and sell our telemetry, every time we use the clipper.

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2 hours ago, John in Michigan USA said:

The only reason not to allow the use to decide that I can see would be

... For Firefox to impose a restriction via regulation or code to ensure that private browsing remains completely untraceable...?  Nobody around here knows,  but maybe if any subscribers suffering from the issue raise it with Evernote,  it will get explained or even fixed?

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Dear all, some facts:

MacBook Pro, latest Catalina, FF 79.0, latest WebClipper

From the AddOn-View, WebClipper, when viewing the full text (simply click on the short version in Tools, Add-Ons):


further down



This makes it very clear that WebClipper is not intended to run while in a private window in FF. It is not a bug. it is a feature ...

About the hypothesis "These guys are following us around": I run a Pi-Hole that protects my whole home network against ads and tracking. Who does not know what it does can google it. It is very effective, and it runs a Log-File where I can see what web-sites are called, which are blocked and which are passed.

Just made some clips by WebClipper, in Safari and Firefox. There is NO tracking at all when clipping. Just the clip itself is passed through to EN servers.

When a clipped page is opened as a note in EN, there is NO internet traffic as well. This means that even when the page may contain trackers or ads, they do not go active when a note is opened in EN. So no tracking emerges from clipped content when it is stored in your EN account.

And for a final reading experience: This little window shows up when opening a private window in Firefox. It says what I have said above: The private mode will NOT protect you against tracking or ads. It only prevents that the web site can store content on your browser, like cookies. But what you do is completely transparent to the internet itself. If you want to avoid this, you need other methods, like ad-blockers, tracking blockers, a VPN (to cloak your IP-address) etc.

There is link for further reading about private mode in the box. Just open a private window in FF, and it will appear.


Stay save ! Happy Ever-Noting !

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12 hours ago, PinkElephant said:

Just made some clips by WebClipper, in Safari and Firefox. There is NO tracking at all when clipping. Just the clip itself is passed through to EN servers.

When you say no tracking, it sounds like you mean that the clipper doesn't send any network traffic to 3rd party sites. That's good news, but it might not be the whole story...I took a look at https://pi-hole.net/ it doesn't appear to let you look inside the traffic that the Clipper sends to Evernote, so it is possible EN could be sending telemetry, other meta-info, etc. along with the clip itself.

Well I say possible...the more I think about it, the more I am leaning towards my first hypothesis, that EN doesn't want to be seen as enabling people to clip content from Private Browsing when the content provider would prefer it be accessed from normal browsing. There are plenty of news sites that used to let you access their stuff via private browsing, but now have private browsing detection that prevents that, so that's an emerging trend.

I agree with what you said re Private Browsing doesn't provide any real protection against tracking or ads. Anyone interested in knowing more, read up on browser fingerprinting.

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Now it is getting weird: It is the job of WebClipper to send content to an EN server, and it does so because you tell it „Send this web site to my account, put it into this notebook, apply these tags etc.“. Tracking ???

There is no need for tracking, because you use your account. Tracking means indirectly knowing who does what.  If you use a personalized account, which is necessary to send stuff into your server data base, what sense makes tracking ? They know who you are, they don’t need to find it out.

Pi-Hole knows if there is side-traffic related to such an action. There are legitimate web sites where a call in the browser leads to 20 (twenty !) additional communications with trackers and advertisers. In the case of sending data to an EN server: 0. Zero. No side traffic. Just data going to EN. And this because you tell it to do so, and because it can’t work without sending it.

If I read your statement, you seem NOT to know about browser fingerprinting. If you want to try, call the website www.amiunique.org . It will show the information your browser is sending out, and compare it to other browsers. You see if you are unique, and which element it is that makes your browser unique. In my case it is the combination of installed fonts that makes my browser unique. Yes, this information is send out by your browser. But not because EN makes it send it out. Behind this are the Googles and Facebooks that dominate the web with their money and browser development. 70% of all Web Traffic runs through Chrome, developed and given to anybody for free by whom ? Yes, Google, honi sunt qui mal y pense.

I just opened the Website above in Firefox, first in a normal window. It send out 1.556 lines of information, 61.908 characters. Then I opened a private window and did it again. It send out 1.555 lines of information, 61.889 characters. It is exactly what I already told above: A private window does NOT stop information to go to the internet. It only prevents stuff like cookies to be saved on your own computer. Which has nothing to do with browser fingerprinting - cookies are yet another technology for tracking.

If you want to avoid browser fingerprinting, use another browser. Safari is pretty good on this ! Brave is another safe browser. Or on an iPad use DuckDuckGo.

If you want to avoid getting tracked and ad-spammed, get yourself a raspberry, learn Linux, install a Pi-Hole and be free. Because opposite to an ad blocker in the browser, Pi-Hole can not be detected. The tracking and advertising is send out. It just never gets somewhere. And it blocks apps on the mobile device as well, as it does with smartTVs (that talk a lot about your viewing habits to the manufacturers servers) and other stuff.

But better learn on what to focus your attention, instead of constructing conspiracy theories about EN. If you don’t trust EN, delete your notes (or export them), tell them to forget about you, and close your account. And that is it.

Try that with Google, Facebook or the others that day in day out collect every bit of information about your personal life even without you having an account there. Or even worse, if you have an account, then you are fair game to be tracked whatever you do, wherever you do it. And no opt out as long as you use the internet.

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On 8/22/2020 at 2:47 PM, pmahadev said:

How can such a large problem continue for over 2 years. Absolutely ridiculous

Hi.  This thread is about issues with private windows and has only been live for a few days.  I clipped PDFs in Firefox today with no problem.  Please start a new thread for your issue,  and let us know your OS, Evernote version and exactly what you see when trying to add a PDF to your notes.

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On 8/22/2020 at 3:47 PM, pmahadev said:

I cant clip pdf's on edge or firefox. How can such a large problem continue for over 2 years. Absolutely ridiculous

OK, this is what I read: You have posted 2 times here in the forum, the first time 2 years ago, the second time now, because it is "ridiculous" ? Any support tickets about this you could share with us ? We are users like you, you know ... this forum lives from sharing, not ridiculing.

One must understand that EN has to support a bunch of browsers for WebClipper. Some share the "engine", some use their own. For each engine WebClipper needs to interpret the result, to clip roughly what you see in the browser window. Each browser has its own update strategy, not synced to each other. So sometimes with one browser, something may go wrong. Missing function like pdf clipping (you can always download and save the pdf, you know), or missing WebClipper at all, like with Safari last year, when Apple forced Safari 13 on all Mac users as a surprise, even those who did not want to update at that moment.

About Edge: The Edge 2 years ago has nothing to do with the Edge of today. The Edge of 2 years ago is discontinued, the new Edge browser now uses the Chromium Engine based on Chrome. This means for Microsoft 2 completely different browsers to support. And some people using Windows still insist on browsing with Internet Explorer 11. So it is 3 browsers only from MS, and if pdf clipping might not work on one of them, people are bitching around. Market share of Edge in July 2020 was 1.91%, that of FF was 4.26%, which makes a thundering 6.17% for the both browsers you mention.

My strategy: If I need to clip something, it sometimes means switching browsers, until the EN team can follow up on fixing things. Maybe not ideal, but again it is not EN driving this browser update wars.

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Sorry I didnt know this was a user only forum. Did not mean to cause any hurt to anyone.

It wont clip in any browser for me. The new edge/old edge/firefox/chrome.

I get the same error. It says 'Due to the restrictions set by the browser, you cannot clip this page.'

I bought adobe pdf editor and edit the pdf's there, but if i could screenshot a pdf oon a web browser that would make my life several times simpler.

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31 minutes ago, pmahadev said:

Due to the restrictions set by the browser, you cannot clip this page

Aha! (as they say...)  That particular message means the browser content is not meant to be copied by anyone - hence the clipper not working.  There are probably ways around it - by taking a screen shot,  or by highlighting and copying areas - but Clipper is simply complying with the security settings on that page. 

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  • 1 month later...

It appears to be an issue only on Web Clipper on Firefox in private mode as it still can be enabled in Chrome. I'm guessing that Evernote has decided to disable Clipper completely (with no option to enable it) in Firefox Private mode to comply with some Firefox security rules.


  1. Use non-private mode
  2. Use Chrome
  3. Copy and paste into Evernote desktop
  4. Save it to Pocket (free & works in private mode) then save it from Pocket into Evernote. Hint Pocket is accessed via the V inside a shield at right of address bar.

I guess you have your reasons to not use 1 or 2 (like I do).

3 & 4 work pretty well. They give you most of the formatting but each is a bit different.

Using #4, Evernote records the source as a link to Pocket instead of the link to the article (but you can easily fix it). #3 records the article link.

Even with the web clipper, not everything clips properly so I don't think either of these are worse than using the web clipper.

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  • 2 years later...

The Evernote extension 7.29.2 {E0B8C461-F8FB-49b4-8373-FE32E9252800}.xpi  has in  manifest.json:

"incognito": "not_allowed",

so it is on purpose. I believe it should apply to all WebExtension browser but it does not in Google Chrome at least.

If anyone can get a clue as to why they prevent private clipping (while Firefox which as far as I know own Pocket allows clipping in private mode), please add it here.


If I remove this line from the manifest.json, repack the xpi (with the zip command), load the now not correctly signed extension (by setting temporiraly in about:conf xpinstall.signatures.required to false) I am able to clip in private mode with Evernote web clipper 7.29.2.

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Tried myself: No web clipper in private mode, tested in Safari and Firefox, Mac. If you want to reach EN, issue a support ticket. If you want to reach the EN devs community, go to  dev.evernote.com .

The forum is user 2 user. Since nothing was posted in this thread for 2 years, it is not really looking like a hot issue.

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