There are a number of different ways to backup/restore your Firefox installation, but below is a quick run-down on the most versatile and reliable form of restoring your Firefox profile information. Essentially, Firefox stores all of your user specific data into sql-lite databases in your user profile. And all you need to do in order to restore a desired subset of said information is copy and paste these files into your NEW Firefox user profile. It is a pretty simple process once you know where to look, and unlike some of the other methods – bookmarks, form data & saved passwords can be easily snatched from a failing hard drive and restored.
1.) In a explorer window go to: Tools > Folder Options
2.) Under the View tab, make sure that “Hide extensions of known file types” is unchecked. And also make sure that “Show hidden files, folders, and drives” is selected.
3.) Next, to access your Firefox profile data browse to the following location:
4.) Most users should only have 1 Firefox profile in this directory, if you have several – I recommend using the most recent!
5.) Within your profile folder, there are a number of different important files that contain your personal browser information, the most noteworthy of which are:
- Bookmarks and Browsing History: places.sqlite
- Passwords: key3.db and signons.sqlite
- Site-specific preferences: permissions.sqlite and content-prefs.sqlite
- Autocomplete history: formhistory.sqlite
For a complete listing of what important information is contained within these profile databases, You can check out https://Support/Mozilla.org.
6.) Once you have selected what information you wish to move/restore. Copy the corresponding data file and paste it into your current firefox profile directory.
(Make sure Firefox is not running!)
That should do it! Once you fire up Firefox, you should be greeted by the familiar bookmarks of your past Firefox installation. If you chose to restore the appropriate files, you would also notice that your entire auto-complete history, remembered passwords and site preferences should be intact as well 😀