How to get your RSS/RDF feed working with Mozilla Firefox\’s Live Bookmarks

As soon as I upgraded to Mozilla Firefox 1.0, I started noticing that when I visited certain sites that had RSS/RDF feeds, a big orange “RSS” icon showed up in the lower right hand portion of the window.

That’s cool. Click on that, and you can instantly see that site’s current headlines, and know if the site has changed, just by looking in your bookmarks.

Except my site has an RSS feed and that icon didn’t show up. Here’s how I fixed it.At first I figured Firefox was looking for the standard “XML” icon everyone uses. So I added that. No go.

So I investigated. A Google search didn’t tell me anything useful. So I went to Slashdot’s page and viewed the source. Four lines down, I found my answer.

In your section, you need to add a line. In my case, since I run GeekLog, it was this:

LINK REL=”alternate” TITLE=”Silicon Underground RSS” HREF=”//” TYPE=”application/rss+xml”

Just substitute the URL for your RSS feed for mine. The two slashes at the beginning are necessary. The whole line has to be enclosed in , of course. (I can’t show them here because my blogging software is trying to protect me from myself.)

But since Geeklog doesn’t have an index.html file, and its index.php file is mostly programming logic, where do you add your code?

In your themes directory, in the file header.thtml, that’s where. I put mine right after the line that indicates the stylesheet.

The location for other blogging systems will vary, of course. But I notice some seem to do it automatically.

Now your readers can keep track of you without constantly refreshing your page (which they probably won’t do) and without having to run a separate RSS aggregator. Pretty cool, huh?

10 thoughts on “How to get your RSS/RDF feed working with Mozilla Firefox\’s Live Bookmarks

  • September 16, 2004 at 8:20 am

    Which makes sense, except that I’m running Firefox 1.0PR and I don’t see the "RSS" icon in the lower left, which I have seen on other sites…

    • September 16, 2004 at 9:57 am

      Really? You don’t see it right now? I’m running 1.0PR and I see it. This is odd.

  • September 16, 2004 at 3:30 pm

    I just loaded the 1.0 preview, and I *DO* see the RSS icon here on Dave’s blog, on my Moveable Type blog, and several others. Hmmmm…..

    • September 17, 2004 at 8:59 am

      I don’t see it, but I do get it on, for example.

      • September 17, 2004 at 10:22 am

        Thanks for the example of a site that works. This will probably help.

        I looked at the source for the BBC’s site and saw one subtle difference. The BBC does put the http: at the front or the RSS feed’s URL. Other than that the only difference was the order. I went ahead and changed that too, even though order isn’t supposed to make any difference at all.

        Is it working for you now?

  • September 17, 2004 at 1:07 pm

    FYI, I see it on BBC ( and on Slashdot, but not here.

    Yeah, but it’s a moist heat.

    • September 17, 2004 at 1:23 pm

      I did the one other thing I could think of. The extension on my feed had been .rdf. I changed it to .rss. (And changed the references accordingly.) Any difference?

  • September 17, 2004 at 3:14 pm

    I used your theme changer to change to ‘clean’, and I see your rss now. I also see bbc’s, and slashdots. But just a few minutes ago, I could not see the orange rss icon for bbc or slashdot, while I could for yours. I haven’t been able to make that happen again. I wonder if this is partly a rough edge in Firefox.

    Yeah, but it’s a moist heat.

    • September 17, 2004 at 10:03 pm

      Ah, I neglected to make the change in both themes. That’ll do it. Thanks for your help in troubleshooting it.

      As for why it’s not showing up on the BBC and Slashdot, maybe you’re right that it’s still a bit of a rough spot.

      • September 18, 2004 at 12:11 pm

        Works for me now!

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