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Firefox constantly deleting history and closing open accounts

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For some reason, after a fresh install of WIndows 10 64 bits, Firefox just keeps deleting my history and closing my open account sessions EACH TIME AFTER RESTARTING OR SHUTTING DOWN the PC. I've tried deleting the sqlite and json files several times, restarting Firefox, uninstalling Firefox, deleting leftover files, and reinstalling to no avail. Is this a Windows or Firefox issue? I've run out of options to try and i'm basically desperate. I'm even willing to let someone troubleshoot me through Teamviewer , please. Many thanks.

Modified by rodrigorosales87

All Replies (14)

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Hi rodrigorosales87, that does sound frustrating.

Is this separate from your Firefox session? In other words, can you exit Firefox and start it back up, and you still have your history and cookies? So the problem only occurs when you shut down Windows, then after the next restart, your Firefox data is all gone?

There are some cleaning programs that run at Windows startup which can purge out browser data. If you have CCleaner or any other similar programs, please make sure they are set not to touch Firefox data.

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Hello, jscher2000. Thanks for the prompt reply.

Yes, I can exit and restart Firefox and cookies and history are still there. The problem starts when restarting or shutting down Win 10. Everything is wiped out.

I do have CCleaner, but it doesn't run on startup nor is there an option checked to delete Firefox data, so there's no indication CCleaner is interfering.

Just now, I uninstalled, deleted everything, restarting and reinstalled. I've just tried restarting and shutting down Windows and, for some miracle, history is intact and accounts are still logged in.

I still fear this is something that happens spontaneously, so I'll try restarting and shutting down later and keep posted on Firefox's behaviour by the end of the day.

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Hello, indeed, the problem is still there. I shut down my PC yesterday and today history is gone and accounts are closed once again. I tried once again deleting sqlite and the json file,, restarted, and accounts are still open, but history is wiped out. My bookmark toolbar is completely gone and I'm afraid I'll have to uninstall once again.

I would really appreciate some personal assistance on this. I know this is perhaps asking for too much, but think it's the most effective way to figure out what's going on and determine whether it's a Windows or Firefox issue. Please, I need help on this.

Modified by rodrigorosales87

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Hi Rodrigo, Firefox doesn't do anything special at Windows startup, so I don't think there are any Firefox settings that need to be changed. Here are a couple things to investigate:

(1) What data remains when you start Firefox after a Windows startup? For example:

(2) What is your profile folder name before and after startup? You can get that information from the following internal page (type or paste to the address bar and press Enter to load it):

about:profiles

Your current profile is the one with the text "This is the profile in use and it cannot be deleted." below its name. The table below that shows the folder name, which usually starts with some randomized characters, e.g.,

a1b2c3d4.default

Is your Firefox generating a new profile at first run after a Windows startup, or is it re-using the same profile as before you shut down Windows?

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Hello, jscher

I tried your suggestions after, again, uninstalling and doing a fresh install of Firefox. There were no changes after restarting or shutting down the PC. All web surfing performed these last few days are there in the history. This was also the case yesterday. The profile folder name did not change, and the new test bookmark I created is untouched. I also verified the integrity of the sqlite file and Firefox says it's "sane".

I'm quite convinced that for some reason, Firefox is "resetting" itself AFTER 12:00 a. m. each day, that my profile is somehow broken, or that Windows is messing with Firefox in some way. Otherwise, how can we explain the history and accounts only being wiped out the next day? Is this a Firefox Quantum-specific issue?

Would creating a new profile solve the issue?

Modified by rodrigorosales87

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rodrigorosales87 said

I'm quite convinced that for some reason, Firefox is "resetting" itself AFTER 12:00 a. m. each day, that my profile is somehow broken, or that Windows is messing with Firefox in some way.

This reminded me of another "history cleared at midnight" thread from December 2017: Firefox (57.0, latest) browsing history does not keep browinsing history. Browsing history only keeps for a day and then gone. That case involved Firefox running when the clock struck 12 and history older than 1 day old disappeared. It was never solved, despite extensive investigations.

Would creating a new profile solve the issue?

A new Firefox profile? I thought from your description that you had tried that but, if not, you can do it as follows:

Make a Bookmark Backup

Firefox has two formats and I recommend creating both:

Please store those somewhere like Documents that Firefox won't touch and hopefully Windows won't either.

Create a Clean Profile

Inside Firefox, type or paste about:profiles in the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it.

Click the Create a New Profile button, then click Next. Assign a name like Aug2018, ignore the option to relocate the profile folder, and click the Finish button.

After creating the profile, scroll down to it and click the Set as default profile button below that profile, then scroll back up and click the Restart normally button. (There are some other buttons, but please ignore them.)

Firefox should exit and then start up using the new profile, which will just look brand new. Please ignore any tabs enticing you to connect to a Sync account or to activate extensions found on your system so we can get a clean test.

Bring over your bookmarks using either:

Fingers crossed.

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Thanks for the reply.

I'll try your suggestion. Does that mean I won't be using Firefox sync anymore? do I have to use another email for that? sorry if the question sounds basic, but I'm not understanding that part.

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Good question. I don't know how Sync might play into this problem. I guess you could start off with a new profile where you connect to the same Sync account and if the problem continues, we could try a new profile where you do not connect to the same Sync account.

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Just saw your thread here: https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/95nccc/firefox_constantly_deleting_history_and_closing/

Let us know how the new profile works out.

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jscher2000 said

Just saw your thread here: https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/95nccc/firefox_constantly_deleting_history_and_closing/ Let us know how the new profile works out.

Hello, jscher. Yes, I posted that not much before I posted here, as I didn't get any help in a previous reddit post on the same issue. I am actually going to try your suggestion first, but I also have a doubt: Is your suggestion basically the same as creating a new profile?

I also saw this post (https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/83ei0z/stop_firefox_from_deleting_history/) that might be related. Could that work?

Many thanks. Will try this out soon.

Modified by rodrigorosales87

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rodrigorosales87 said

I also saw this post (https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/83ei0z/stop_firefox_from_deleting_history/) that might be related. Could that work?

Hmm, you could look at Firefox's latest calculation of how much history to keep:

(1) In a new tab, type or paste about:config in the address bar and press Enter/Return. Click the button promising to be careful or accepting the risk.

(2) In the search box above the list, type or paste hist and pause while the list is filtered

The places.history.expiration.transient_current_max_pages preference should list a large number (many 10's of thousands; mine is over 140,000). What does yours list?

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Mine says "147095"

I'm also seeing "privacy.clearOnShutdown.history" set to integer and true.

Could this be the reason?

Should i add "places.history.expiration.max_pages" as integer, as suggested by the post?

As for my question, is there a difference between your method and the other one?

Many thanks for taking the time to help me.

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rodrigorosales87 said

Mine says "147095"

That's plenty. I don't think Firefox is pruning history due to too many entries.

I'm also seeing "privacy.clearOnShutdown.history" set to integer and true.

This should be a "boolean" type preference. (Booleans have true and false as the possible values.) This reflects the checkbox here:

You can check that here:

  • Windows: "3-bar" menu button (or Tools menu) > Options
  • Mac: "3-bar" menu button (or Firefox menu) > Preferences
  • Linux: "3-bar" menu button (or Edit menu) > Preferences
  • Any system: type or paste about:preferences into the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it

In the left column, click "Privacy & Security"

On the right side, in the History section, you can change from "Firefox will: Remember history" to "Firefox will: Use custom settings for history" to reveal the detailed settings.

Presumably it's like this:

  • Always use private browsing mode => NO check mark
  • Remember my browsing and download history => checked
  • Remember search and form history => checked (not important for this problem)
  • Clear history when Firefox closes => NO check mark
    • If this is enabled, the "Settings" button becomes available. Then you can view the above dialog. However, it's inactive if "Clear history..." is not selected.
Should i add "places.history.expiration.max_pages" as integer, as suggested by the post?

I don't think it will make any difference, but feel free.

As for my question, is there a difference between your method and the other one?

Do you mean methods of creating a new profile? I don't know, what I described is the easiest way in Firefox 47 and later.

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Hello jscher.

As I suspected, soon after midnight, history was wiped again, so I tried your suggestion but, sadly, it was not effective. So I decided to format my HDD and do a clean reinstall of Windows and now I'm not having any issues whatsoever with history or logins, at least for the time being. This is still a mistery to me, but it may be due to the fact I previously ran some windows-cleaning script that might've messed up some things. That is the only explanation I can think of, as I don't think Firefox was the issue.

I hope this post can be useful for another person with almost the same problem. Many thanks again for your time and help!