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Places.sqlite and bookmarks.html suddenly doubled in size

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I use firefox bookmarks to store my biomedical research data which over the last 12 years has grown to a large size with places.sqlite around 60 Mb and bookmarks.html about 75 Mb.

Sometime ago the bookmarks.html file suddenly almost doubled in size to some 130 Mb (I automatically back up/export my bookmarks as a bookmarks.html file) and places.sqlite to some 70 Mb. Unfortunately I only discovered the issue sometime after it happened.

According to Places Maintenance, which I run relatively frequently, the bookmarks data base comprises:

Table moz_places has 77666 records Table moz_bookmarks has 230886 records

The bloated bookmarks.html file is needlessly taking up a lot of backup space . I can only assume that somehow one of the very large files was inadvertently copied into some other folder. Given the vast number of folders/subfolders it is a virtually impossible task to open each one to find where such a large file has been put to cause such bloat. Unfortunately when I open the bookmarks.html file there is no folder structure visible so it is not possible to sort folders by size which would greatly help to find the offending folder.

Although I am quite useful at finding my way around browser technology I have no sqlite database skill. I have looked at the places.sqlite using DB Bowser for Sqlite and SqliteManager extension in the hope that I could figure out whether it is possible to identify folders and hopefully sort them by size to find where the misplaced large folder is located. But no luck it is all greek to me.

I would be most grateful if anyone can offer suggestions/guidance on any possible way to identify folders and to sort them by size from places.sqlite or any other way (I have considered exporting the bookmarks from places.sqlite to xlsl into Excel but it does not seem to offer any way to search for/sort folders by size.

I am on Win10 Pro.

All Replies (7)

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Go to the Mozilla Add-ons Web Page {web Link} (There’s a lot of good stuff here) and search for a bookmark duplicate checker.

Helpful?

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Thanks for the advice. Unfortunately I have already tried a few but they only seem to find duplicate bookmarks rather than duplicate folders which would be helpful. One bookmark will frequently be placed in many different folders as it may relate to several different features of say cancer or diabetes. The current "bloated" bookmark database currently has 177292 bookmarks distributed in 53608 folders which gives a good sense of the challenge in finding one (very large) folder that has been inadvertently copied into some other folder/subfolder. That is why I keep hoping to find someway to search for folders and be able to sort them by size.

Many thanks for the input

Helpful?

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Looks like you may have to do this manually.


Open the Bookmarks Manager; Press the Alt or F10 key to bring up the toolbar, and select Bookmarks. Hot key is <Control> (Mac=<Command>) <Shift> B. Firefox 84+ <Control> (Mac=<Command>) <Shift> O.


Look at the directory tree on the left side. You should be able to see any duplicate folders.

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Do you use Windows Favorites? If not, you could import your bookmarks.html file into Internet Explorer which will convert your bookmarks to Windows Favorites. My thought is then you could use disk organizing tools to de-duplicate them. Then finally you could get those back into Firefox after cleanup (you can export from IE, or delete your bookmarks in Firefox and tell it to import from IE).

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Hello,

  • First Disable sync
  • Backup your bookmarks
  • Now delete all your bookmarks
  • Go into the profile directory and delete "places.sqlite."
  • Restart and import bookmarks

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Hi Naheed,

Thanks for the suggestion. I do not use sync and have previously done the remaining steps but still get the bloated size of the bookmarks.html file. Still hoping that there is some software that will allow segmenting folders and sorting them by size to find the rogue file that has been duplicated somewhere.

Once again thanks for the input.

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FredMcD,

Unfortunately the bookmarks data base has 53608 folders/subfolders so it would be almost impossible to manually go through each folder and nested subfolders to find the rogue folder that caused the bookmarks.html folder to almost double in size. That is why I was hoping there was some software that could interrogate the places.sqlite folder in terms of selecting all the folders and then sorting them by size which would flag the super sized folders as likely targets where the rogue folder got copied into.

I have not used Windows Favorites but I could import the bookmarks.html into internet explorer in order to run deduplicator software but I don't think this would help as many bookmarks are saved into different folders as it may relate to various biochemical aspects unless the software can search for duplicate folders with identical content rather than just by name, for example I probably have more than 75 folders named Cancer but each one will have a unique content of subfolders and bookmarks. The real problem is to try and find the one very large folder that somehow got copied inadvertently into some other folder/subfolder.

Does anyone know of a deduplicator type software that would permit the search of duplicate folders based on their content?

Many thanks to both for your suggestions

Helpful?

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