gtkcookie(1) edit Netscape cookie file


gtkcookie [ Gtk options ]



gtkcookie supports the command flags common to all Gtk applications. There are no gtkcookie-specific flags.

What happens at startup

On startup, gtkcookie will try to find your Netscape cookie file by looking for ~/.netscape/cookies. If ~/.netscape/cookies is found, gtkcookie will load the file and show it in a multi-column list.

Opening a cookie file

Regardless of whether gtkcookie finds your cookie file, or you have to open it manually, when you open the file, all of your Netscape cookies are displayed in whatever order Netscape wrote them into the file.

Sorting a cookie file

You can sort the cookies by any column by clicking on the heading for that column.

Human-readable dates

The final column is actually not stored in your cookie file, but is a translation of Netscape's native date field. Netscape stores the date as the number of seconds since 1 Jan 1970 (familiar to anyone who's spent any time on Unix), but gtkcookie translates those dates into human-readable expiry dates in the final column.

Editing cookies

To edit a cookie, double-click on the cookie, and a cookie edit dialogue will pop up. You'll notice that the date, in seconds since the epoch (the epoch is 1 Jan 1970), is not an editable field, whereas the human-readable date is. Follow the format presented in the edit dialogue box, and as you edit the human-readable date, the expiry date in seconds since the epoch will update itself. Please note (as repeated in the bugs section below) that although dates later than 2038 are supposed to present problems, (you'll see the date in seconds since the epoch become -1) dates on or after 2036 seem to present problems. I'm still looking into this.

Searching for text strings

Under the Edit menu, select Find. Type in a string or substring that you wish to find, and press the Find button. If the string or substring is found anywhere in a cookie, that cookie will become selected, and the view will scroll to that cookie, if necessary. Pressing Find again will search for the next instance, or pop up a "not found" dialogue box if the string wasn't found. In its current version, gtkcookie isn't yet smart enough to re-start a search from the top of the cookie list, so if you need to search from the top, hightlight the first cookie, and then do your search.

Deleting cookies

Right click on a cookie, and select "Delete" from the popup menu, or click on the cookie and press "Del" on your keyboard.

Creating cookies

Press the "Create Cookie" button. A cookie with dummy values will be added to the cookie list, and the "Edit Cookie" dialogue box will pop up so that you can edit the new cookie to your liking. Note that even if you press "Cancel" immediately after creating a new cookie, the new cookie, with its dummy values, will still be in the list. You'll have to delete the cookie manually.


The Netscape cookie file in your home directory




Manni Wood: [email protected] or [email protected]


1. The "Edit Cookie" dialogue has problems with on-the-fly conversion of human-readable dates to the number of seconds since the epoch for dates later than 2036. For some reason, despite the fact that the date is supposed to overflow in 2038, the C function strptime flubs up the conversion for dates larger than 1036.

Unfortunately, this means that when you edit a cookie whose expiry date is after 2036, the edit dialogue box shows the number of seconds since the epoch as -1. There is currently no workaround to this problem, besides moving the date back 2 years.

2. Although the "find" feature is supposed to always highlight and scroll to any found item, sometimes, the item becomes highlighted, but is outside the current view.

3. The file open and save dialogues don't show directories beginning with a dot (such as .netscape!) but typing such directory names manually will work.

4. Double-clicking in the scroll bar will pop up the "Edit Cookie" dialogue box for the currently highlighted cookie.

5. Editing the cookie file while Netscape is running is futile, because Netscape will re-write the cookie file when you exit Netscape, based on what's in its memory, not what's in the cookie file. A popup menu in my programme warns you of a running netscape... unless you're running Netscape 4.5. Netscape 4.5 doesn't seem to create the same lock file that earlier Netscapes used to.