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Websites won't automatically log-in to my account

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I'm not sure if the title is clear. The problem is: every time I open Firefox on my PC and visit websites such as Twitter, or YouTube, or Facebook, it's like I've never visited the website before and I have to enter username and password all over again, then change all the options again because they are back to "default" (such as language, going back to dark mode, etc.). How can I solve that problem? I've been using Firefox for years and this never happened. Before, I just opened, let's say, YouTube and I was automatically logged-in to my account.

I'm not sure if the title is clear. The problem is: every time I open Firefox on my PC and visit websites such as Twitter, or YouTube, or Facebook, it's like I've never visited the website before and I have to enter username and password all over again, then change all the options again because they are back to "default" (such as language, going back to dark mode, etc.). How can I solve that problem? I've been using Firefox for years and this never happened. Before, I just opened, let's say, YouTube and I was automatically logged-in to my account.
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  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0

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jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8643 solutions 70725 answers

Hi clispi2000, there are two ways that Firefox could you get into a site automatically with logging in again:

(A) Send a Cookie

Many sites set cookies when you log in that can persist for long periods of time (you might need to check a box for the site to remember you). With each new request to the site, Firefox includes the cookies so the site knows it is you and not someone else. If your cookies get cleared, either by a built-in setting, an add-on, or an external cleaning program, then this method of staying logged in won't work and you have to start again.

Some sites (like search engines) use cookies to save preferences, so if you need to reset those each time, losing your cookies seems like the most likely reason.

More comments below the line

(B) Fill the Login Form

Firefox's password manager and add-on password managers can fill login forms automatically for you. If you let Firefox save your login, this may have stopped working normally.


Why are cookies gone in my next session?

(1) If you are visiting the site in a private window

Cookies are not written to disk in private windows, so whether they are session cookies or have an expiration date after we're all gone, they will evaporate when the last private window is closed in your session.

The two ways a site could open in a private window are:

(A) Creating a private window in a regular session (for example, Ctrl+Shift+p or right-click > Open Link in New Private Window)

(B) Setting Firefox to use automatic private browsing on the Options/Preferences page --

  • 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, then scroll down to the History section. Either of these will invoke automatic private browsing:

  • Firefox will: Never remember history
  • Firefox will: Use custom settings for history + "Always use private browsing mode"

(2) If Firefox is set to store ONLY session cookies, and you have not made an exception for the site.

You can check for this on the Preferences page, Privacy & Security panel, Cookies section. Make sure you do NOT have a checkmark for "Delete cookies and site data when Firefox is closed". If you do, you need to create "Allow" exceptions for sites where you want Firefox to accept persistent cookies.

(3) If Firefox is set to Clear History When it Closes and that includes Cookies

Most people do not have this setting, but you can double-check here: On the Preferences page, Privacy & Security panel, History section: make sure you do NOT have a checkmark for "Clear history when Firefox closes". If you want to use that feature with some types of data, use the Settings button to the right of it to confirm that Cookies are not being cleared.

(4) If you use an add-on that modifies how cookies work

There are extensions to manage cookie lifetimes and removal, including some that expire cookies for inactive tabs. There also are extensions that isolate pages in a container, which creates a separate cookie jar for the pages in that container which are invisible to pages outside that container.

(5) If you logged out of the site

The cookie identifies you to the site, but if your session ended, the site isn't going to start a new one automatically. So if you logged out on the site -- highly recommended for sites that have sensitive data or accounts you can't afford to have taken over -- then the site might pre-fill your user name on the login page, but you will need to sign in again.

(6) If external utility or privacy software cleans browser cookies

If you use CCleaner, Advanced SystemCare or other third party programs that touch browser data, set them not to touch Firefox data.

(7) If your IP address is unstable

Some sites link your identification to your IP address and require a new login if that changes. To minimize the potential for changes, you can check your Firefox connection settings on the Preferences page.

In the search box at the top of the page, type proxy and Firefox should filter to the "Settings" button, which you can click.

The default of "Use system proxy settings" piggybacks on your system settings (for example, Windows/IE "LAN" setting). "Auto-detect" can lead to a flaky connection. You may want to try "No proxy".

Does any of that help?

Hi clispi2000, there are two ways that Firefox could you get into a site automatically with logging in again: (A) Send a Cookie Many sites set cookies when you log in that can persist for long periods of time (you might need to check a box for the site to remember you). With each new request to the site, Firefox includes the cookies so the site knows it is you and not someone else. If your cookies get cleared, either by a built-in setting, an add-on, or an external cleaning program, then this method of staying logged in won't work and you have to start again. Some sites (like search engines) use cookies to save preferences, so if you need to reset those each time, losing your cookies seems like the most likely reason. ''More comments below the line'' (B) Fill the Login Form Firefox's password manager and add-on password managers can fill login forms automatically for you. If you let Firefox save your login, this may have stopped working normally. ---- '''''Why are cookies gone in my next session?''''' '''(1) If you are visiting the site in a private window''' Cookies are not written to disk in private windows, so whether they are session cookies or have an expiration date after we're all gone, they will evaporate when the last private window is closed in your session. The two ways a site could open in a private window are: (A) Creating a private window in a regular session (for example, Ctrl+Shift+p or right-click > Open Link in New Private Window) (B) Setting Firefox to use automatic private browsing on the Options/Preferences page -- * 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''', then scroll down to the '''History''' section. Either of these will invoke automatic private browsing: * Firefox will: Never remember history * Firefox will: Use custom settings for history + "Always use private browsing mode" '''(2) If Firefox is set to store ONLY session cookies, and you have not made an exception for the site.''' You can check for this on the Preferences page, Privacy & Security panel, Cookies section. Make sure you do NOT have a checkmark for "Delete cookies and site data when Firefox is closed". If you do, you need to create "Allow" exceptions for sites where you want Firefox to accept persistent cookies. <img src="https://user-media-prod-cdn.itsre-sumo.mozilla.net/uploads/images/2019-05-01-08-10-39-73a6c7.png" width="500"> '''(3) If Firefox is set to Clear History When it Closes and that includes Cookies''' Most people do not have this setting, but you can double-check here: On the Preferences page, Privacy & Security panel, History section: make sure you do NOT have a checkmark for "Clear history when Firefox closes". If you want to use that feature with ''some'' types of data, use the Settings button to the right of it to confirm that Cookies are not being cleared. '''(4) If you use an add-on that modifies how cookies work''' There are extensions to manage cookie lifetimes and removal, including some that expire cookies for inactive tabs. There also are extensions that isolate pages in a container, which creates a separate cookie jar for the pages in that container which are invisible to pages outside that container. '''(5) If you logged out of the site''' The cookie identifies you to the site, but if your session ended, the site isn't going to start a new one automatically. So if you logged out on the site -- highly recommended for sites that have sensitive data or accounts you can't afford to have taken over -- then the site ''might'' pre-fill your user name on the login page, but you will need to sign in again. '''(6) If external utility or privacy software cleans browser cookies''' If you use CCleaner, Advanced SystemCare or other third party programs that touch browser data, set them not to touch Firefox data. '''(7) If your IP address is unstable''' Some sites link your identification to your IP address and require a new login if that changes. To minimize the potential for changes, you can check your Firefox connection settings on the Preferences page. In the search box at the top of the page, type ''proxy'' and Firefox should filter to the "Settings" button, which you can click. The default of "Use system proxy settings" piggybacks on your system settings (for example, Windows/IE "LAN" setting). "Auto-detect" can lead to a flaky connection. You may want to try "No proxy". Does any of that help?

Modified by jscher2000

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