This thread was archived. Please ask a new question if you need help.
can't access my bookmarks any longer
I recently reset my computer to a earlier time, 3 weeks earlier. When that happened, now when I click on the bookmark tab, no bookmarks come up like they used to. It's as if I no longer have any bookmarks now, or at least the drop down list does not come up. How can I get the bookmark drop down list to come up? Second, when I did some how (though trial and error) get the drop down menu to appear, my carefully sorted out bookmarks were now all of a sudden not in the correct order I had then in. It would take a long time for me to now sort out all my bookmarks, about 350 of them! It appears they are now in alphabetical order now? Once I get the bookmark menu to appear like it used to with the drop down menu, how do I get all my bookmarks to appear like they used too? Hopefully someone can help my dilemma. Thank you.
All Replies (20)
Hmm, the Windows System Restore feature can unfortunately damage your Firefox data, and possibly also program files. Could you start with the following to rule out problems with the program files:
We use this name, but it's not about removing your settings, it's about making sure the program files are clean (no inconsistent or alien code files). As described below, this process does not disturb your existing settings. Do NOT uninstall Firefox, that's not needed.
(A) Download a fresh installer for Firefox 45.0 from https://www.mozilla.org/firefox/all/ to a convenient location. (Scroll down to your preferred language.) For maximum plugin compatibility, choose the 32-bit version.
(B) Exit out of Firefox (if applicable).
(C) Rename the program folder as follows:
(32-bit Firefox on 64-bit Windows)
C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox
C:\Program Files (x86)\OldFirefox
C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox
(D) Run the installer you downloaded in step (A). It should automatically connect to your existing settings.
Can you get to the Options page? Does the Bookmarks menu look any better?
Note: Some plugins may exist only in that OldFirefox folder. If something essential is missing, look in these folders, but to avoid introducing problems, please don't just copy everything over:
Modified by jscher2000
Once you are sure Firefox is "intact", does that fix it?
If not, could you check whether your old folder structure still appears to be intact in the Library dialog? You can open that using either:
- Bookmarks menu or Bookmarks button > "Show All Bookmarks"
Is that okay?
Hi jscher, I'm confused, but nonetheless, when I try the installer it does not correct the problem. I still can't access my old bookmark data. When I use your suggestion: ctrl.+shft+b, a screen comes up, but I see no link to "show all bookmarks" within that window. The only way I can view my old bookmark data is when I click on I.E. bookmarks, and then I can see my old bookmarks, but again, they are all out of order. Just can't see a way to get firefox to show my old bookmarks, and then maybe restoring them? What suggestion do you recommend now? Thank you.
There are two different ways to open the Library dialog. Let's say you use Ctrl+Shift+b. Firefox should display three items:
- Bookmarks Toolbar
- Boomarks Menu
- Unsorted Bookmarks
If you double-click Bookmarks Menu on the right side, or expand it on the left side, is it disorganized there or does it have your folder structure?
jscher, thank you for your reply. When I double click bookmarks menu from library, I get the window that shows 2 options: firefox and bookmarks from I.E. When I click on firefox the next option is customize firefox, get involved, about us and help and tutorials. When I click on bookmarks from I.E. I'm able to view all my bookmarks that I had with firefox. But, that seems the only way to view my bookmark. Just can't figure out how to view my bookmarks the way I used to with firefox. Wasn't able to import bookmarks from I. E. either? Thought I would try that out of desperation. What do you suggests now? Thank you.
It is possible that a new profile got created because the profiles.ini file that stores all registered profiles could have been affected as well.
If you go to the current profile folder and go up one level, is there only one profile with a random name (xxxxxxxx.default) present?
You can use this button to go to the current Firefox profile folder:
- Help > Troubleshooting Information > Profile Directory:
Windows: Show Folder; Linux: Open Directory; Mac: Show in Finder
Do you have an "Old Firefox Data" folder on the desktop?
cor-el, thank you for your reply. Frankly, this is getting more confusing, and you'll have to bear with me. When I follow your directions to profile folder and click on show folder, that brings up a screen showing many options? But, when I click on profile at the top, I see what appear to be 3 default options? When I click on any 3, none of the items show a old firefox data link, like you asked about. Is it possible I made a mistake in the first suggestion from jscher about installing firefox 45? His instructions saying use this name, seemed to show several options? "(32-bit Firefox on 64-bit Windows)
C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox
C:\Program Files (x86)\OldFirefox
C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox
(D) Run the installer you downloaded in step (A). It should automatically connect to your existing settings."
Consequently, I may have made a mistake there. I just ran the installer as I was instructed by it. Did I do something wrong there? Why is it when click on show all bookmarks, (as jscher suggested at one point) within the bookmark window, no bookmarks come up? Again, those 4 options when I click on firefox show: customize firefox, get involved, about us and help tutorials. The only way I see my bookmarks is when I click on bookmarks from I.E. Why is it I can't import my bookmarks from I.E., cor-el? Is it best to start from the beginning all over again, or are we past that? Is it best to just install firefox all over again, and just try to install my bookmarks from I.E., if that function is possible? Please understand both cor-el and jscher, that I'm not a computer wizard, and it is best to try and please keep it simple for my success. Thank you cor-el and jscher, and please keep helping.
When I follow your directions to profile folder and click on show folder, that brings up a screen showing many options? But, when I click on profile at the top, I see what appear to be 3 default options?
There are three semi-randomly-named folders in the Profiles folder? Check each one for a folder named bookmarkbackups and check the dates on those files to see which look like the most promising candidates for restoration. For convenience of access, copy the ones that look most useful to your Documents folder.
Also, the "Old Firefox Data" is a folder that Firefox creates on the desktop if you use the Refresh feature. This is not the same as the program folder. If you have an "Old Firefox Data" folder check in there for other possible profile folders and check their bookmarkbackups folders.
jscher, thank you for your reply. First of all, I do see a icon for old firefox data on my desk top. But, that date for that old bookmark data is very old 2013. So, maybe that's not an option? When I locate bookmarkbackups in the folder you suggest, there is a date very favorable. But, when I try and send that data to a document as you suggest, I get the message "windows can't open the file". I have seen this problem before, jscher. What can I do about this new problem now? Is there a way to still open that file with that bookmarkbackup, that windows doesn't want to cooperate with? When I tried the other option given, I think I may have created a file, and it was sent to JSONLZ4 file? If so, what can I do with that file now? How do I copy a file to my documents, jscher? If I can copy the bookmarkbackups file as you suggest, what do I do with it from there, jscher? What about my comment about importing my bookmarks from I.E. to Firefox? Would that be a simpler option, or more involved? Again, thank you for your help, jscher. I will be tuning off my computer for the day. But, I will be answering and responding to your helpful suggestions tomorrow.
To copy a bookmark backup file, you can right-click it and choose Copy. Then open the documents folder, right-click a blank area and choose Paste. Don't try to open the file.
Then when you are ready to restore that file -- which will replace what you have now -- use the steps in the following article but instead of looking for a list of dates, use Choose File, then go to your Documents folder and restore the file you copied there.
jscher, thank you for your reply once again. I must be doing something wrong? When I followed your suggestion, I still have the same problem, that is, when I click on bookmarks, I still don't see my bookmarks, and when I click on show bookmarks, I still get no bookmarks in firefox. In following your suggestions and firefoxes fix, I believe you know what they say, so I probably don't need to repeat it, but when I get to the fix of choosing a file which is in my document list and it says to restore it, not sure what is happening there. You said " don't choose list of dates, use Choose File, (which I did) then go to your Documents folder and restore the file you copied there" Maybe the reason it didn't work was it wasn't restored? All I know is once I left clicked on the file within documents after it was put there by pasting, as you suggested, nothing really happened, jscher. Same problem, as before, no bookmarks listed within firefox, only shows bookmarks if I access from I.E. What am I doing wrong? Is there a reason I just can't either import from I.E. or export from I.E. to firefox to solve the problem? I very much appreciate your help and patience, jscher. Just please stay with me here so we can resolve this problem. Oh by the way, if all else fails, is there an option of just restoring my computer again, but to a more recent time from what I restored earlier? Thank you.
Could you tell me the left part of the file that you restored or tried to restore? It should follow a pattern similar to:
The numbers represent: year, month, day, number of bookmarks in the file
Do any of the other files you found in the old bookmarkbackups location have more bookmarks in them than the one you tried?
You can check for problems with the places.sqlite database (bookmarks and history) in the Firefox profile folder.
The name of a JSON bookmarks backup file includes a total item count (folders and separators included) and an hash value to prevent saving the same backup more than once.
- bookmarks-YYYY-MM-DD_<item count>_<hash>.jsonlz4.
You may have to restore an older JSON backup manually if recent JSON backups are already affected.
jscher, cor-el, thank you both for your reply. Fiddling around yesterday, I was able to finally able to get my bookmarks back, and in order. The problem seemed to be the file I choose bookmarkbackups JSONLZ4 in my document folder?---had no bookmarks possibly? Because, when I used another file labeled just bookmarks 2013--the newest year associated with bookmarks in that folder--documents, I finally got my bookmarks back and in order. Problem is the older time frame---2013. I guess it appears I have no newer bookmarkbackups available? But, nonetheless following the instructions you supplied, jscher about the restore procedure "Restore bookmarks from backup or move them to another computer" did work. Evidently though, when I was using the file with the name JSONLZ4 for the copying, it had no bookmarks within it? Maybe you can explain? But, while that one problem seems to have been solved, how do I get my latest bookmarks that I had before the Windows restore procedure I did? Is there anything I can do to get my newer bookmarks back? Once again thank you both.
Hmm, when you started, you had a folder of bookmarks imported from IE Favorites, so the backup should have shown a non-zero number of bookmarks in the file name. That's the number I was curious about.
Anyway, one other thought: Windows might have kept a newer restore point than the one you rolled back to. The following utility might help you uncover a newer bookmark backup file: http://nicbedford.co.uk/software/systemrestoreexplorer/
If you see a backup that looks possibly useful, try restoring it to the Desktop for easy access (not everything, just the single file or two).
jscher, thank you for your reply. In so far as another restore point within windows, I did see other restore points with newer dates other than the one I choose. I can try to select a new restore point with a newer date, with the Windows restore point, (not bookmark restore points that we have been talking about) if that is what you are advocating? your first comment"Hmm, when you started, you had a folder of bookmarks imported from IE Favorites, so the backup should have shown a non-zero number of bookmarks in the file name. That's the number I was curious about." I'm confused by you stating "bookmarks imported from I.E." and there being a file or folder containing them. Where and how do I access that folder, jscher? Can you give me instructions for that? But, if that is a waste of time now, being I now have bookmarks, I'll be it, old bookmarks, OK. One other point, jscher, Can you explain how I do this procedure "If you see a backup that looks possibly useful, try restoring it to the Desktop for easy access (not everything, just the single file or two? Are you referring to a firefox bookmark backup, or Windows backup from a restore point? Once again jscher, I certainly appreciate your help and patience with dealing with computer novice. I'm just not well versed in resolving various computer issues and I have to rely on people like yourself, jscher.
Please DO NOT use Windows' system restore again!
However, the program I linked to lets you search inside restore points to see whether there are any individual files you might want to restore out of them.
When I referred to your bookmarks imported from I.E. I thought that's what you were referring to in your first reply to my replies:
The only way I can view my old bookmark data is when I click on I.E. bookmarks, and then I can see my old bookmarks, but again, they are all out of order.
I thought that was a folder of imported IE bookmarks in Firefox. Maybe not, because you asked here:
What about my comment about importing my bookmarks from I.E. to Firefox? Would that be a simpler option, or more involved?
It could be very simple and definitely worth trying if IE is more up-to-date than your other sources. Check out this support article: Import data from another browser.
jscher, thank you for your reply. Out of frustration, I did use windows restore again, and used a more recent date. Thought that was what you meant when you said try a different restore date for windows. But, doing so solved the problem completely. I now have all my firefox bookmarks back and in the correct order. But, the reason for me initiating the system restore in the first place was to try and resolve a firefox problem to begin with. Obviously, it created other problems I wasn't expecting. But, the initial problem with firefox was I wasn't able to any longer view CNBC video's on Yahoo finance.com. I believe I may have tried to upgrade my firefox browser somehow and after that was executed, I could no longer view the video's in question from the web site I mentioned, like I used to be able to do. So, I did the restore thing instead of trying to undo what I did with firefox instead, mistake on my part! Having said that jscher, how can I (and I know this is a separate question) remedy that firefox issue, of not any longer being able to view CNBC video's within the yahoo finance web site? Again, it seemed I performed some kind of firefox upgrade? that may have caused the problem to begin with? Can you help? Certainly appreciate your help, jscher. Thank you again.
Could you give a link to a page that isn't show a video? I'm not sure how to find CNBC on Yahoo.
Also, could you test what version of Flash you have? You can use my plugin lister page to see whether that shows up, or Adobe's test page:
jscher, thank you once again for your reply. My shockwave flash version is 21,0,0,182. I wasn't able to test that version with the link you provided, jscher? It seemed like the numbers were highlighted in such a way to do so, but I could not click on any of the links to test anyone of them? Strange? In so far as how you can access CNBC video's within Yahoo Finance, I simply log into Yahoo Finance and within that web site you can access CNBC material, or specifically CNBC video's to view. The video format comes up, but the video's will not activate, just see a blank screen where normally you see the video? Normally, when the video was going to be shown, I used to see a message from firefox in a box at the top of my screen saying something in the affect that firefox doesn't support DSM (or something like that) video's. But, nonetheless the video would still work from CNBC even thought I got that message all the time? Strange, but that's how it worked. So, on the one hand it was saying it doesn't support something, but on the other it still worked nonetheless? Hopefully you can make sense of it, jscher. But, I still can't view those CNBC video's from Yahoo finance any longer. When just very recent I could. Thank you, jscher.