Zotero 7 Beta: XML Parsing Error: no root element found

edited November 23, 2023
I have observed for some plugins a popup window with the error:
XML Parsing Error: no root element found
Location: chrome://zotero/content/progressWindow.xhtml
Line Number 1, Column 1

I have reported to the plugin developer, but it seems to be a problem experienced by several plugins, so it may be something related to Zotero itself.
The same error was also reported in a previous post for other plugins.

Here is the debugging done with the help of @hsiangyu_wong to obtain the steps to reproduce: https://github.com/windingwind/zotero-actions-tags/issues/197

Running the following script with all plugins disabled triggers the error popup:
progressWin = new Zotero.ProgressWindow();
progress = new progressWin.ItemProgress(
undefined, 'test'

-> Debug ID D1280907565

[JavaScript Error: "TypeError: headline is null" {file: "chrome://zotero/content/xpcom/progressWindow.js" line: 157}]
  • Did you restart Zotero after disabling all plugins?
  • Yes. To be 100% sure, I have just disabled all plugins and restarted the computer.
    I still see the same popup after running this script.
  • edited November 24, 2023
    And to be more precise on the error, as you can see in on the GitHub issue, there is also a red "^" at the end:
    XML Parsing Error: no root element found
    Location: chrome://zotero/content/progressWindow.xhtml
    Line Number 1, Column 1:


  • Do you still get this after uninstalling and reinstalling Zotero? (Just application files — nothing to do with data.)
  • Yes.
    I have uninstalled Zotero, but did not click on the checkbox to remove personal data.
    After restart of Zotero, I still get the same popup from the script, with all plugins disabled.
  • I have uninstalled Zotero again, but this time I have ticked the Remove my Zotero personal data and customizations.
    This time, it solved the problem.

    I was expecting this option to actually "Remove my Zotero personal data", including the "Zotero Data Directory": https://www.zotero.org/support/zotero_data
    But it did not remove my storage folder.

    Is that folder the only thing that is not deleted when I uninstall Zotero with that option ticked? Or are there other things also left untouched?
    I would have found it useful to get a more clear notice during uninstalling that the storage folder is not touched by this process.
  • edited November 27, 2023
    Right, I was going to suggest trying in a new Zotero profile. It sounds like that would've fixed it.

    That uninstall option is from Firefox, and all it does is delete the profile folder. (Also, you don't mean the storage folder — that's just a subfolder of the data directory. The relevant folders for a discussion like this are the profile directory and the data directory.)

    Are you using the same locale as before?
  • (I can't reproduce this with en-GB, which you were using before, so probably something else in the profile folder.)
  • I have reset everything back to before the reinstallation, including the plugins. I have also tried to repeat some of the things I did before getting this problem. But I do not get the problem anymore.
    So I don't know what triggered the problem.

    For the uninstallation message, I just want to make sure I have understood:
    - The "profile directory" is the one described here: https://www.zotero.org/support/kb/profile_directory
    So for me on Windows 10: C:\Users\<User Name>\AppData\Roaming\Zotero\Zotero\Profiles\<randomstring>
    - The "data directory" is the one described here: https://www.zotero.org/support/zotero_data
    So for me on Windows 10: C:\Users\<User Name>\Zotero
    The "data directory" includes the storage folder.

    The uninstallation option says: Remove my Zotero personal data and customizations
    I was expecting the personal data part of the message to refer to the "data directory", and therefore include the storage folder. I mentioned specifically the storage folder, because it is the one containing the "personal data" I was worried would be deleted (the items, attached PDF files, annotations, ...) and I would have to download again.

    But from your reply, I understand that this option is refering only to the "profile directory" and not to the "data directory". This explains why my "personal data" in the storage folder was not deleted.
  • edited November 27, 2023
    That's mostly right, but you're still misunderstanding the point about "storage". As I say, the two things that matter here are the "profile directory" and the "data directory". Forget about "storage". "storage" is just one subfolder within the data directory. It happens to contain your attached files, but that's not relevant — the relevant entity is the data directory, which is the parent directory of "storage". "storage" does not contain your items or annotations.
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