Firefox updates, profiles, sync
The problem is that I am severely confused. It pertains to at least Firefox profiles, and sync.
A little background: I have been using Firefox, happily, over countless updates, on a single computer, for maybe 2 decades, logging in to "shopping" websites (travel-tickets, government websites, blah-blah, so password memory is very important). Now on 113.0, on a Mac, Catalina 10.15.7
Recently, I've a need to travel, using a laptop. Linux, Mint, Ubuntu, various. Should maybe think about "Sync". Just care about logins/passwords. So signed on to Mozilla "Sync" (password safe on a bit of paper). What could go wrong? Not yet tried to sync to anything else...
Wrong. Firefox wanted to update to 113.0.1. Why not? Go ahead. I've 2 previous versions in /Applications. What could go wrong? On 113.0.1, Firefox warned me (in capital letters IIRC) that my bookmarks, passwords and history might be corrupted unless I created a new profile.
Perhaps because I panicked, I now have 7 profiles. Obfuscating slightly: blahblah1.default-esr-1 blahblah2.default-esr-4 orig.default blahblah3.default-esr-3 blahblah4.default-esr blahblah5.default-esr-2 and blahblah6.default-release
I have parked the 113.0.1 update in a holding directory, and continue to use 113.0. I've had to change some passwords, but the new ones are written safely (AFAIK) on bits of paper, or memory sticks.
How to sort this out? My super-duper backups have been failing for lack of space.
I appreciate (see above) that "Sync" is not a backup strategy. I THINK I know what it is intended. However the mere word "Sync" does not really cut it as a dependable specification. I've not (AFAICR) tried to sync this computer's firefox profile to any other. But I was in an extreme panic.
I depend heavily on Thunderbird. I'm hopeful that any false steps I take won't extinguish any remaining ability I have to communicate with the outside world. If this wail appears on your support website, that would be reassuring.
Alle Antworten (2)
Only a Firefox ESR version (current is 102.11.0 ESR) would create/use a blahblah1.default-esr profile. Did you ever use or install an ESR version ? Firefox 102.11.0 ESR:
A regular release would use a blahblah6.default-release profile, so with the current 113.0.1 release I would expect it to use this profile. You can look at the file dates and inspect compatibility.ini in a profile to see which Firefox version last used this profile. If you no longer use and need data like the bookmarks and the logins in older profiles then you can remove those profiles or possibly move them to a backup location.
Note that Firefox doesn't allow downgrading a profile, but is happy to use a profile with a newer version.
Note that Firefox uses two locations for the Firefox profile folder. One location for your personal data like bookmarks and another location for temporary files like the disk cache, so you can cleanup unused profiles in the secondary profile location as well.
Location used for the main profile that keeps your personal data (Root Directory on about:profiles).
- ~/Library/Application Support/Firefox/Profiles/<profile>
Location used for the disk cache and other temporary files (Local Directory on about:profiles).
You can copy/backup certain files with Firefox closed from a profile folder to backup your personal data.
- bookmarks and history: places.sqlite
- favicons: favicons.sqlite
- bookmark backups: compressed .jsonlz4 JSON backups in the bookmarkbackups folder
- cookies.sqlite for the Cookies
- formhistory.sqlite for saved autocomplete Form Data
- logins.json (encrypted logins) and key4.db (decryption key and primary password) for logins saved in the Password Manager
- cert9.db for certificates stored in the Certificate Manager
- persdict.dat for words added to the spell checker dictionary
- permissions.sqlite for Permissions and possibly content-prefs.sqlite for other website specific data (Site Preferences)
- sessionstore.jsonlz4 for open tabs and pinned tabs (see also the sessionstore-backups folder)
More info about the files in a profile:
Many thanks. You've enlightened me a lot, though I need to research things more.
> Did you ever use or install an ESR version ? Firefox 102.11.0 ESR: I don't know. I'm currently using Firefox 130.0, according to "About Firefox". Most things (logins etc) seem usable. I've resisting any temptation to go to try 130.0.1 again, for the time being. I'm backing up everything in sight.
I'm not sure what ESR means, or why I would have said "yes" to getting it.
I am contemplating moving elsewhere my "esp" profiles, then accepting the 130.0.1 upgrade, and hoping that plays nicely with my current default profile (orig.profile), in the sense that the latter will have most of my most recent logins not on bits of paper. Would that be too much to hope for?
It would be reassuring to know that my problems have nothing to do with experimentally setting up Firefox sync (but, I think without without actually yet "syncing" anything anywhere). If and when I want to try this, I presume on the other machine, I just sign in to Mozilla Firefox using the account/password set up on this machine. Is there a web-page about this?