Inconsistent behavior from "Display webpages" acti

I have put together an Automator workflow to pull all the links to articles from today’s New York Times and display them in tabs of a DEVONagent window. It’s lovely (and I’ve added a little Perl script to change all the desired URLs to printable pages, which makes them perfect for quickly importing into DEVONthink as I scan through the tabs).

However, the behavior of the “Display webpages” action is inconsistent. Probably 60% of the time it does not in fact open tabs for all the URLs it is passed (this can be a large number, up to 50 or so). It may open as few as 6 and then stop, apparently without returning an error of any kind. The remaining 40% of the time it opens all the URLs into tabs just fine.

I suppose that I’m asking a lot of DA by throwing it so many URLs at once, presumably via AppleEvents, which have always seemed a bit prone to getting lost when there’s a lot going on in the system.

Is there any way to fix this? Or is there a way to do a fairly simple workaround? Maybe I should write an AppleScript to pass the URLs one by one with a few seconds’ delay in between them, but I’d rather just give it the whole list of URLs and expect it to work every time.

Many thanks–


Hello Andy,

During testing I threw a lot of stuff at it and it seemed to hold out fine. Since Automator doesn’t have a good logging system, you may check the Console for more information.


Hi Annard,

Nothing in the console log that I can tell. I ended up just sending individual open events via a Perl script, which seems to be working fine.