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Synced tabs wiped after firefox crash, how to do proper backup?

  • 7 replies
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  • 67 views
  • Last reply by Paul

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Hello everyone

Recently, my Firefox on iPhone crashed (again ...) and after I restarted it, the familiar "restore your last session?" prompt appeared. Acknowledging it however yielded an empty Firefox, with all previously open tabs lost (about 120). Nothing was displayed in history under "recently closed tabs". Normal history however had been retained.

As this instance is included in my Firefox sync account, I hoped I could recover the tabs from there, to no avail. It seems that, after FF crashed and restarted, it just wiped all its tabs from sync.

Most people with similar problems are advised to restore their tabs from browsing history. This is an excruciating task, as it is most difficult to filter through all several months of visited pages and extract just the last instance of all previously open tabs. The small FF mobile menus make this even more difficult.

As I don't think these reliability issues will be resolved soon and backups are prudent one way or the other -- How can I back up the data in FF sync? I've found the extension About Sync which at least shows all tabs from all devices that are stored in Sync. When using the export data function however, only bookmarks are included. So I'd have to do a monthly clickfest, manually opening all object trees and saving the HTML page, which feels most awkward in the "digital age". Also, if this extension is discontinued, I'm f-ed again.

Is there any better way to back up FF sync data?

Thanks and best regards


Björn

Hello everyone Recently, my Firefox on iPhone crashed (again ...) and after I restarted it, the familiar "restore your last session?" prompt appeared. Acknowledging it however yielded an empty Firefox, with all previously open tabs lost (about 120). Nothing was displayed in history under "recently closed tabs". Normal history however had been retained. As this instance is included in my Firefox sync account, I hoped I could recover the tabs from there, to no avail. It seems that, after FF crashed and restarted, it just wiped all its tabs from sync. Most people with similar problems are advised to restore their tabs from browsing history. This is an excruciating task, as it is most difficult to filter through all several months of visited pages and extract just the last instance of all previously open tabs. The small FF mobile menus make this even more difficult. As I don't think these reliability issues will be resolved soon and backups are prudent one way or the other -- '''How can I back up the data in FF sync?''' I've found the extension [https://addons.mozilla.org/de/firefox/addon/about-sync/ About Sync] which at least '''shows''' all tabs from all devices that are stored in Sync. When using the export data function however, only bookmarks are included. So I'd have to do a monthly clickfest, manually opening all object trees and saving the HTML page, which feels most awkward in the "digital age". Also, if this extension is discontinued, I'm f-ed again. Is there any better way to back up FF sync data? Thanks and best regards Björn

All Replies (7)

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Hi

Firefox Sync is not designed to be an online backup service, but a tool to help sync bookmarks, user credentials and other data between copies of Firefox.

Did you have another copy of Firefox connected to your Firefox Account to sync data to and from?

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Hi Paul

Paul wrote

Firefox Sync is not designed to be an online backup service, but a tool to help sync bookmarks, user credentials and other data between copies of Firefox. Did you have another copy of Firefox connected to your Firefox Account to sync data to and from?

A happy new year to you, and thanks for your info. I don't expect it to be a fully-fledged backup solution -- which it is ;) at least if you go by this blog post ("A lot of folks expected it to be a Backup service. The good news is, now it is a backup service. ").

My extended question is, how to back up the iOS FF Mobile data (bookmarks excluded, they sync fine to other PC instances which I can back up manually). There is no obvious way to export anything from iOS.

As I could see all the juicy data I need for this inside the synced data, the obvious solution for me was to back up the synced data regularly, even if FF Sync itself was not meant as a backup solution.

FWIW, it just feels awkward that you have to go to great lengths to export FF Sync data, whilst other services have easy on-line "data takeout" features yielding easily-parsed XML or JSON files.

I do have several other FFs on PC connected to the same account. I tried to fool one instance I haven't used since by cutting the internet connection, starting FF and looking at the synced tabs pane, which was completely empty (no devices, no tabs). I'm open for further suggestions.

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You will have to take the backup from the PC and not from your iOS device.

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Hi Paul

Paul schrieb

You will have to take the backup from the PC and not from your iOS device.

Please forgive me, it seems I'm writing too much for the limited time you seem to have.

My issue is: I cannot back up the opened tabs of Firefox Mobile on iOS. (Because I don't know how.)

The tabs synced from FF mobile seemingly aren't included in the data of the PC instances, so I cannot back them up directly.

So I'd like to download and back up the sync data from the sync servers directly (like in Google's data takeout).

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Firefox Sync is a transfer mechanism rather than online storage as is with Google. You will need to send those data to a desktop copy of Firefox to be able to back it up.

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Hi Paul

I think we're at cross-purposes. Do you know the "About Sync" extension? The data is there, it's just awkward to retrieve.

No offence meant, IMHO it's best not to waste both of our times any longer. To whom it may concern, I've opened an issue on the extension's Github page if an "export everything" option could be added.

So long, and thanks for all the fish!

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No problem, thank you for letting us know.