I run Gmail in "Basic HTML" mode and sometimes lose composed email because the network has disappeared for various reasons when I'm trying to send the message. To recreate:

  1. Switch Gmail to "Basic HTML" mode
  2. Compose an email
  3. Turn off Wi-Fi (or unplug Ethernet)
  4. Send the message

Result: Safari will show a blank page saying you've got no network, and when you try to go "Back" after regaining network, the message is gone.

I thought modern browsers retained user input in <textarea> fields when going back and forth in tab history.

I'd to know where to turn to solve this problem. Is this a bug in Safari/WebKit? Is it a bug in how Gmail is implemented? I'd like a technical explanation of why this is happening.

EDIT: Safari does indeed preserve form fields without using JavaScript or server-side tricks. So why does this fail with Gmail?

<form action="b.html" method="post">
<textarea placeholder="Write some text here"></textarea>
<input type="submit" value="Then click here"/>

<p>Now go back</p>

1 Answer 1


Modern (sic) browser retain the data in a form when reloading it using JavaScript or similar features which are apparently not in the "Basic HTML" which you selected. That is not necessarily a limitation of the browser but of the technology which was used.

Further reading:

  • Please see my edit.
    – forthrin
    Feb 23, 2016 at 7:50

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