Google Reader Watcher

The Google Reader Watcher extension is based on one of my Greasemonkey scripts called Google Reader Checker

With the Google Reader Watcher extension you can check your feeds regularly and see which feeds have unread news. You can open the Google Reader directly from the statusbar, and not at last, you can configure the extension to login with your Google Account automatically.

If you want to translate the extension into your language, please use the translation system on Babelzilla.

Support the development

Support Google Reader Watcher extension development with a donation!
Thank you!


You can view and download the source from mozdev:

Release notes

Version 1.7.2 April 26, 2012

  • Mark all as read works again

Version 1.7.1 April 7, 2012

  • Don't require to login request if user already logged in into google and the "I have more than one google account" checkbox is not checked
  • Fix opening window when user clicks on the notification
  • Send update request after changing preferences
  • Fix 3.6 support

Version 1.7 April 1, 2012

  • Fix a possible memory leak
  • Add OAuth support, so you can use the extension even if you enabled 2 step verification for your Google account..
  • New mouse handling behavior
  • Icon and menu items can work similar to simple links on webpages. Using shift + left click will open new window, middle click will open new background tab etc.

Version 1.6.3 January 7, 2012

  • Always show context menu

Version 1.6.2 December 19, 2011

  • Fix issues with Firefox 3.6

Version 1.6.1 December 6, 2011

  • Add the toolbar button to the last place on the navigation toolbar
  • Make sure the user can remove the button from the toolbar.

Version 1.6 November 19, 2011

  • Open Google Reader with the right account if you have more than one Google account (See Preferences/Account information)
  • Make check for unread feeds menu item the first, so it's easier to reach it and force the request (especially for users, who has no middle button)
  • Intelligent order of icon context menu. Fro example the "check for unread feeds" menu item is the closest to the mouse pointer if you right click on the icon. Even if the icon is on the add-on bar (bottom of the browser) or on some other toolbar (top of the browser).
  • Fix button on second browser window: Sometimes, if you opened a second browser window, the button didn't work.
  • Make possible to turn off the counter display

Version 1.5.2 June 22, 2011

  • Fix "Component is undefined" error

Version 1.5.1 - June 14, 2011

  • Remove statusbar icon, the toolbar icon should be used now
  • Several bugfixes

Version 1.4 - April 14, 2011

  • Improved compatibility with Firefox 4
  • Faster startup
  • Bugfixes

Version 1.3.6 January 8, 2011

  • Fix statusbar icons

Version 1.3.5 January 6, 2011

  • Fix counter issues

Version 1.3.4 January 4, 2011

  • Add Swedish translation, thanks to Mikael Hiort af Ornäs
  • Improve compatibility with Firefox 4

Version 1.3 December 3, 2010

  • Toolbar and statusbar buttons has the same functionality.
  • Improve comaptibility with Firefox 4:
    • The statusbar won't be visible by default in Firefox 4, so the toolbar button should be shown instead.

Version 1.2.2 - May 31, 2010

  • Fix issues in Firefox 3.0

Version 1.2.1 - May 29, 2010

  • Updated Korean and Portuguese translations.

Version 1.2 - May 28, 2010

  • Previous version may caused some issues with other Google services.

Version 1.1 - April 17, 2010

  • Fix tooltip settings,
  • Remove empty placeholders in customize toolbar panel

Version 1.0 - April 6, 2010

The extension has been rewritten, currently it's faster and more stable. Only a few new thing introduced:

  • List of the unread items is shown also in the toolbar button
  • If saved your google password with Firefox, you don't need to specify your account details.
  • New icons.
  • Works with less requests

Special thanks to Endor, who helped a lot with the exhaustive testing

Version - November 6, 2009

  • Fix "mark all as read" functionallity

Version - November 1, 2009

  • compatible with Firefox 3.6

Version - October 28, 2009

  • Updated spanish translation, thanks for Francisco Javier Cuadrado.

Version - October 5, 2009

  • Fixing a bug when user changes the reader opening settings, and changes to open the new tab if he double clicks on the statusbar icon, it didn't opened, only in newly opened windows.

Version - September 26, 2009

  • Replace setTimeout() calls with nsITimer to address security vulnerability of setTimeout.
  • Replace eval() calls with evalInSandbox to comply with security advisory.

Version 0.0.15 - September 17, 2009

  • Show confirmation window, when you choose the mark all as read option on the statusbar menu
  • Avoid conflicts with other extensions
  • Possibility to disable tooltip in the statusbar
  • Sometimes we get an empty response from the Google Reader when try to get the count of the unread items. In that case the extension tries to get the count once more, so the error icon won't be shown so often

Version - April 8, 2009

  • The Google has changed their login method and the after that, the automatic login didn't work. This version is fixing the issue

Version - February 5, 2009

  • Fix checking failure if one of the labels contains a special character (Thanks to Maxim Dobriakov for the bugreport)

Version - January 18, 2009

  • counting also the shared items
  • you can open the a labels/feeds page from the right click menu
  • you can specify a delay, which defines that how much time should elapse after the browser started to start the first check
  • possibility to force the login before checking new feeds and opening the Google Reader
  • add localized descriptions
  • add da-DK locales, thanks for AlleyCat
  • fix compatibility with organize status bar extension
  • fix the filtering when feeds are not grouped by labels
  • password field won't be filled if it's not set
  • fix doublclick window opening issue

Version - October 14, 2008

  • fix some compatibility issues with Firefox 2.*
  • add Korean language, thanks to ¿?¿?¿?

Version - September 22, 2008

  • Make possible to use the Google Reader keyboard shortcuts right after you open the Google Reader tab from the statusbar, so you don't need to click on the page.

Version 0.0.13 - September 8, 2008

  • fix the label filter: if the tag contains white space character and the after/before the comma was a white space character, the filter didn't worked
  • fix Firefox 3 third party cookie related bug
  • make it possible to show the real number of the unread feeds again

Version - May 25, 2008

  • This release just a quick fix, because in the previous version I forgot to activate the cs-CZ and zh-TW locales.
    I'm sorry for the mistake

Version 0.0.12 - May 25, 2008

  • sort feeds by label
  • filter the feeds by their label: the feeds which are labeled with the labels you specified here won't be counted and displayed. if you want to filter the feeds which are not labeled type here "-" (without quotes).
  • if the number of the unread feeds are more than 1000, the counter will show 1000+, as in the Google Reader
  • add mark all as read function into the right click menu
  • add Traditional Chinese translation - thanks toomore (BabelZilla)
  • code improvements and fixes

Version 0.0.11 - February 07, 2008

  • This version is fully compatible with Firefox 3 (beta) version
  • New locales: nl-NL - Hans (babelzilla), sk-SK - morpher (babelzilla)
  • Open window with null:// protocol bug fixed
  • Other small improvements

Version 0.0.10 - November 26, 2007

  • Bugfix:
    • If the show counter when no unread item and the reset counter options are enabled, the counter disappeared when clicking on the statusbar icon. Thanks Nils Werner
  • Locales:
    • Pedram Veisi - fa-IR (babelzilla
    • promatik - pt-PT (babelzilla)
    • dvdianov - ru-RU (babelzilla)
  • Feature:
    • Toolbar button
    • Enable to use non-secure connection

Version 0.0.9 - September 22, 2007

  • Check for new items when opening new window - bug FIXED
  • The Google Reader Watcher opens another Google Reader window if already opened one. - bug FIXED

Version 0.0.8 - July 26, 2007

  • Show error message when the login fail
  • Bug fixed: Count of unread item is too low
  • Allow the user to turn off the notification window
  • Allow user to sets the extension to show 0 when no unread feed
  • Update the feed count with middle click on the statusbar icon
  • Locales:
    • pt-BR by zini (Babelzilla)
    • el-GR by panda2005 (Babelzilla)

Version 0.0.7 - July 8, 2007

  • Bug Fixed: The extension's unread counter not equals with the Google Reader's unread counter - (Thanks for Sander Lepik)
  • New languages
    • Sander Lepik et-EE
    • 7bse de-DE (babelzilla)

Version 0.0.6 - July 5, 2007

  • Better window opening handler
  • Better error handler (especially timeout)
  • New languages:
    • Ahmed Yilmaz - tr-TR
    • chtitux - fr-FR (babelzilla)
    • AtteL fi-FI(babelzilla)
    • drry ja-JP (babelzilla)
    • fiag zh-CN (babelzilla)
    • pierfrancesco99 it-IT (babelzilla)
    • Wareczek pl-PL (babelzilla)
    • PAGF_LINUX es-AR, es-ES (babelzilla)
    • zini pt-BR (babelzilla)

Version 0.0.5 - June 17, 2007

  • Opens Google Reader Watcher via single or double click on the statusbar icon
  • Activate the Google Reader tab when you open it
  • Your user name and password is stored in the same format as the Google do. So, if you already saved your account data into the Firefox password manager, you don't need to specify it again.
  • New configuration panel
  • New load indicator image
  • French translation (Théophile Helleboid)

Version 0.0.4 - June 3, 2007

  • Code cleanup
  • New feature: Remember login. It's equals the "Remember me on this computer" function on Google Account login page. If you enable this, the Firefox won't ask for your master password on Firefox startup (except if another extension ask).

Version 0.0.3 - May 8, 2007

  • Notification popup on Linux too!
  • Account management
  • Typo fixes
  • Compatibility problem with Gmail Manager fixed

Version 0.0.2 - April 22, 2007

  • Added a notification popup (works only on windows)
  • A bug with tooltips fixed

Version 0.0.1 - April 14, 2007

  • First Release

Here are some screenshot about the extension:

Google Reader Watcher tooltip screenshot

Screenshot about Google Reader Watcher tooltip

Google Reader Watcher statusbar right click menu

Screenshot of Google Reader Watcher's right click menu

Google Reader Watcher general preferences

Screenshot about Google Reader Watcher general preferences window

Google Reader Watcher account information

Screenshot about Google Reader Watcher account information preferences window

If you have instructions or if you want to say something about the Google Reader Watcher, use my contact form or just leave a comment.


Hey there!

Great extension, thanks for sharing this! Unfortunately, when I click on the Google Reader Watcher icon, nothing happens - the Google Reader site doesn't open, no matter what option I use in the "Open Google Reader with ..."-setting.

Again, thank you for this great extension!




Please help me, to find the reason: Open the Firefox Error Console (Tools/Error Console), then click on the clear button to delete every current entry. and then click on the grw icon. If there is any error message on the console, please post them.

Another thing that could be a problem, that the extension is not compatible with another extension. So, please disable them, and try to find which is incompatible.


In FF 3.0b5 with the latest version of Google Reader Watcher and "Use Secure Connection" turned OFF in the preferences, it never successfully completes checking for updated Feeds (little icon spins forever)


Great add-on! I love it! In your next update, can you add an option for clicking on the icon to go to the iPhone version of the reader?

It is much cleaner and easier to read on small laptops like the Eee PC.


I am Toomore (zh-tw)

I find there is no "locale grwatcher zh-tw jar:chrome/grwatcher.jar!/locale/zh-tw/" in chrome.manifest, so can't translate to zh-tw...



I'm sorry the mistake. Few minutes ago I submitted the fixed version to AMO.
Thanks your help and sorry again.

Hi, I can't get this working. Each time it checks for feeds I get this error in the Error Console:

GRW: Ajax error: no readyState || er is undefined - undefined

I've entered the correct login details in the preferences and I've visited the google reader page so that the cookie should be stored. Any ideas?



Usually this happens when something is wrong with the network connection. For example the network administrator doesn't allow to connect with secure connection (https) or anything else which block the extension to connect to the Google server.

Please try to connect without secure connection and if it not help, please try the development version (just improved debug) of the grw and post the error message.


I've installed the updated version in the newest Firefox beta but don't get the number of unread entries - the reader logo is orange, shouldn't it be blue?

in the error console i see:


GRW: Ajax error: no readyState,
e: TypeError: er is undefined,
m: er is undefined,
ln: 70,
fn: chrome://grwatcher/content/ajax.js,
sr: undefined


i get a list of subscriptions formatted as follows:

"id": "feed/",
"title": "The Pirate Bay - TV shows",
"sortid": "228AF957",
"categories": [
"id": "user/17759913006017643805/label/TVfeeds",
"label": "TVfeeds"

with a similar entry for each separate feed


Than it's very strange, I should spend more time to find a reason. Maybe, if you think, please send a message with the contact form with your email address, because it is an easier way to communicate.


I'm not the original poster but I have the same problem. This is the additional output:

GRW: Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8
Date: Sat, 14 Jun 2008 22:23:41 GMT
Expires: Sat, 14 Jun 2008 22:23:41 GMT
Cache-Control: private, max-age=0
Transfer-Encoding: chunked
Server: GFE/1.3

GRW: Ajax error: no readyState
e: TypeError: error is undefined
m: error is undefined
ln: 71
fn: chrome://grwatcher/content/ajax.js
sr: undefined
dsc: 4
st: 401
stt: Unauthorized




Sorry for my late answer, but these days are very busy for me.

Your error seems something different, at first watch, I think you are not logged in and/or your account settings are not correct. As you can see in the error message, there is an stt: Unauthorized line. Could you reach your Google Reader? Please be sure, that your settings are right.

This looks to be caused by bug 439784, actually. I noticed that other extensions were having similar problems. The workaround described in the bug also works for me.

Thanks for your help.


What I want to know, that the issue is happening only when you start the browser or always, so if you click on the icon with middle mouse button still doesn't work?

If I click on the middle button, it shows the circle graphic (checking for unread feeds) and then goes back to an orange graphic with no number.


The extension is OK on my work computer, which is a PC.
My home computer is an iMac.


What does the option continue session on startup in the account information tab do?



This is one of the best addons I know.
I just have a litle problem.

In Preferences I have some labels, separeted with comas, so those labels don't show.
But the ones with more than one word like "blogues anarresti" or with non-english caracters like "música" aren't being filtered.

Is this a bug or am I doing something the wrong way?
Oh, and I tried to filter the reserve way, using "-" but It didn't work.
Is it "-label1, -label2" or "- label1, - label2" or some other way?

Thanks for developing this great addon!
Best Wishes,
Nuno Miranda Ribeiro



In Preferences I have some labels, separeted with comas, so those labels don't show.
But the ones with more than one word like "blogues anarresti" or with non-english caracters like "música" aren't being filtered.

I'm sure, that this is a bug. I probably fixed it in the dev version, so you can try it or try to remove the white space characters (space) before and after the commas:
if it was something like this: tag1, tag2, tag3
should be similar to this: tag1,tag2,tag3

I was not able to reproduce the non-english character related bug, but maybe it's the same, please try it.

Oh, and I tried to filter the reserve way, using "-" but It didn't work.
Is it "-label1, -label2" or "- label1, - label2" or some other way?

At the moment there is no reverse filter. If you place a '-' character into the filter list, all feeds will be filtered which aren't tagged.
But this is a good idea to create reverse filter, I will look at it!

Thanks for your help

Hi again,

I removed the spaces, and it works fine, with every label, even the ones with more than one word.

As for the special caracters I dont'e know, because I renamed the labels, in Google Reader, so that there were non-English caracters.

So, Google Reader Wacther is perfect now!
What a great tool!

Thank you,


I am using Firefox on an Intel iMac. I have used this extension with great success. However, with the last update, it seems to no longer be working. The unread feed number will not update, and when I click on the icon it will not open Google Reader as per my preference. I have set the preference to other things, but it still won't open.

Using the Firefox Error Console, when I click on the grw icon no error is shown. When I right-click and ask grw to check for unread feeds, I get this error, and it does update the unread number:

Error: Components.classes[';1'] has no properties
Source File: chrome://grwatcher/content/getlist.js
Line: 16



Thank you for the bugreport and sorry for the mistake.
I didn't tested too much on Firefox 2.

I just uploaded a fixed version to the AMO. It's not reviewed yet, but you can install it if you don't want to wait.


I use the two addons together, GMM has two accounts and when I switch between the two accounts GRW switches as well, as if it doesn't logs the google account every time it checks the feeds. Maybe thats a bug, maybe a feature. Great stuff BTW.





for the past 5 weeks, the plug-in would not log in to Google Reader anymore - the icon remains gray all the time, and I can't log in even when choosing "Open Google Reader" from the context menu.

Now I enabled the Error Console, and every time I try to check for unread feeds, it returns this error:

Error: Ajax is not a constructor
Source File: chrome://grwatcher/content/accountmanager.js
Line: 97

I wonder what went wrong? Besides, I am using FF 3.0.10, but the error was already present with 3.0.8 already.

Thanks for helping, this is a very helpful plug-in, and I kind of miss using it these days.


I seem to have the same problem as him. Google Reader Watcher remains gray and won't log in no matter what I do. Here is my extension list.

Enabled Extensions: [15]

* Adblock Plus 1.0.2
* Context Search 0.4.3
* CustomizeGoogle 0.76
* Download Statusbar
* DownThemAll! 1.1.3
* Fasterfox Lite 3.1
* Gmail Notifier
* Google Reader Watcher 0.0.15a
* Menu Editor 1.2.6
* Microsoft .NET Framework Assistant 1.1
* MR Tech Toolkit
* Nightly Tester Tools 2.0.2
* Paste and Go 2 0.8
* QuickDrag 2.0.1
* Tab Mix Plus


@ Ajnasz:

Indeed it was a plug-in conflict, and I found the culprit after disabling all of the add-ons. It was the "melative stream extension" which is some twitter-like application, just a lot more enhanced. I know the developer personally so I will forward the issue to him. Thanks for your help!


I can't see any number at all!

the plugin works, with the mouse over it says to me all the information abouts the feeds, but there is no number near the icon


I'm using google reader watcher that is set up with one account, and gmail manager that is set up for two accounts. Sometimes when I click on watcher icon it takes me to the second account. I might have something to do with cookies but it started happening when Google changed their login method and you released new version to fix this. Any idea how to make it always open only one account?


very pleasant plugin while using firefox 3, now starting to put constant 10% cpu load on both of my machines (very different setup). Perhaps you could have a look for it, thanks!


Every few minutes disconnects with message
GRW: dsc: 4
st: 0
Component returned failure code: 0x80040111 (NS_ERROR_NOT_AVAILABLE) [nsIXMLHttpRequest.statusText]
Component returned failure code: 0x80040111 (NS_ERROR_NOT_AVAILABLE) [nsIXMLHttpRequest.getAllResponseHeaders]

Also, putting "Mark all as read" right next to "Check for unread feeds" in the menu is the disaster waiting to happen.


After making a horrible mistake of clicking on it, I finally decided to get rid of "Mark all as read" menu:

- download .xpi, unzip it;
- find grwatcher.jar, unzip it;
- find grwatcher.xul, comment out line 31, the one with GRWstatusbar.popup.markAllAsRead;
- put everything back together;
- uninstall the old GRW, install the xpi you just modified.

No more disasters!


Could you please add an option to hide the "mark all as read" menu?

It's very annoying having to open the xpi file and edit the stuff.

Thanx so much, your extension is great!!!


Hello! I ask you to add a new feature to your addon. Make a separate button for the function "Note in Reader". Wanna use it without any favorites. Directly from toolbar or statusbar.


Hi, I am an official Mozilla tester for Firefox 3.6 beta 1. Your extension Google Reader Watcher doesn't work anymore with this browser release. Please could you have a look at it in order to see what's wrong?

Thank you so much!



It seems that when I click on mark all as read a pop-up appears with the title [JavaScript Application] and the text Are you sure you want to mark all items as read . If I click on OK it doesn't mark the feeds as read.


Could you build an option to toggle the pop-up asking to confirm when you mark all as read on or off? I usually read the pop-up then decide and it's frustrating to keep hitting yes over and over (especially with many feeds that updated fast).


After i updated to 3.5.5 feed reader watcher now automatically updates only after i check updates manually.
before this - always 0 displayed


My current Mozilla is 3.5.5, only month ago I was happy about it, but now it's disappointing, as every time I work and open over 10 or 12 tabs it eats RAM vigorously, and it crashes and do not suggest to restore tabs, and it is fail! Then I read a research paper about browsers, and the fastest one is .....ha-ha, Chrome, yup, no Opera, Safari, etc. were mentioned! Chrome is nice, but no addons are available, for example I can't image my internet surfing without SEO for Firefox, real pity!