My bookmark file is over 1Mb and contains deleted bookmarks
In migrating to a new iMac, I exported my bookmarks to html and imported them to Firefox on the new iMac. That resulted in many old bookmarks appearing on the new iMac, so I looked at the contents of the html file and found very many bookmarks that I had deleted before exporting the bookmark file - many had been deleted months ago.
I keep Firefox automatically fully up to date on the release channel.
If the exported html contains more than the visible bookmarks on the Firefox that is exporting them, it's not just inconvenient but it's also a serious privacy problem.
My exported bookmark file was 1.7Mb, for no more than 100 bookmarks. What's happening here and how can I stop it happening again?
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There are a few locations where bookmarks that are not visible in the Bookmarks Toolbar, including Bookmarks Menu and Other Bookmarks. These will show up on the exported bar but not in to bookmarks toolbar. 1. Go to ☰->Bookmarks->Manage Bookmarks or use the shortcut Ctrl+Shift+O 2. Check any folders or bookmarks under Bookmarks Menu or Other Bookmarks to see if they contain undesirable bookmarks. If necessary, delete them.
Do you still have access to your old iMac? I'm curious how many items (bookmarks + folders + separators) are listed as being in your automatic backups? Those would be listed on the "Restore" menu in the Library window (Manage bookmarks).
This article has more info on accessing the Restore menu: Restore bookmarks from backup or move them to another computer.
If the menu lists a proper number on one date but an inflated number on a later date, one option might be to use the older file to replace what you have on your new iMac.
Note that it is possible that there are issues with the places.sqlite database.
You can use the "Places Database" -> "Verify Integrity" button on the "Help -> More Troubleshooting Information" (about:support) page