Bookmarks and toolbar buttons not working after upgrading

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Firefox stores your bookmarks and browsing history in the "Places database" file (places.sqlite), located in the profile folder. If the places database is damaged or if Firefox is unable to access the file for other reasons, many functions will not work. Symptoms include bookmarks disappearing or not saving, browsing history not saving and toolbar buttons such as Back and Forward not working. If you are having these problems, try the solutions listed below.

Exit other programs

A previous Firefox session may not have closed properly or another program may be accessing your places.sqlite file, thus locking it. Exit Firefox and any other program you suspect may be interfering with your web browsing (or restart the computer) and then reopen Firefox.

Exit Firefox completely

  1. Click the File menu in Firefox and select Exit{PATH().
  2. Right-click on an empty spot in the Windows task bar and select {PATH()}Task Manager} (or press Ctrl+Shift+Esc).


  3. Select the Processes tab.
  4. Select the firefox.exe entry in the processes list, click End Process and click Yes in the "Task Manager Warning" dialog that appears. (If there is no "firefox.exe" entry, skip this step.)


    Repeat this step for each "firefox.exe" process listed, if multiple entries are found.
  5. Start Firefox normally.
Note: The above "workaround" will allow you to reopen Firefox so that it works correctly if there was a problem closing the previous session, until a better solution can be found.

Check for incompatible extensions

  1. From the menu at the top of the Firefox window, click Tools and then select Add-Ons. The Add-Ons window appears.
  2. In the Add-Ons window, select the Extensions panel to see your installed extensions.
  3. Look for these extensions known to cause this problem:
    • Freecorder
    • Piclens
    • Skype extension
    • Any toolbar extension based on the Conduit toolbar platform
    • Google Toolbar
    • FoxyTunes
  1. Disable each extension you have from the list above.
    1. Click the name of the extension you wish to disable.
    2. To disable the extension, click Disable.
    3. Repeat these steps for each extension you have that is on the list.
  2. After the extensions are disabled, Exit Firefox completely and end any remaining firefox.exe processes, as explained above.
  3. Start Firefox normally.
  4. Close Firefox again; click the File menu and select {PATH()}Exit{PATH()}.
  5. Start Firefox again to see if the issue is resolved.

For more information on troubleshooting extensions, see Troubleshoot extensions, themes and hardware acceleration issues to solve common Firefox problems.

If Norton 360 is installed

A component installed with Norton 360 can cause problems with bookmarks and history after installing or updating to Firefox 3. These symptoms are caused by Firefox not completely exiting with the Norton 360 component enabled. If you are experiencing these problems, first update Norton 360 to see if that resolves the issue:

Update Norton 360

Symantec recently released a patch for Norton 360 that should address this issue for some users. Update Norton 360 by following the steps below:

  1. Start Norton 360
  2. Click Tasks & Settings or Tasks.
  3. Click Check for Updates.
  4. Click Close when LiveUpdate finishes installing updates.
  5. Run LiveUpdate again until you see the message there are no more updates available.
  6. You may need to restart your computer to complete certain updates.

If bookmarks history and toolbar buttons are working normally, you are finished. If you are still experiencing these symptoms, check for and disable incompatible extensions (see above).

Alternatively, you can disable Phishing Protection in Norton's settings and then restart the computer.

Another option is to follow the instructions below to manually remove the Norton component from Firefox.

Remove the Norton 360 component from Firefox

If disabling extensions did not work or if you need to use extensions that are not compatible with Norton 360, you will need to remove a component that Norton 360 added to Firefox.

  1. Exit Firefox completely and end any remaining firefox.exe processes, as explained above.
  2. Open My Computer or Windows Explorer.
  3. Browse to the folder C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\Components.
  4. Delete (or rename) the file coFFPlgn.dll from this folder.
    • If the file will not delete, you may not have ended all "firefox.exe" processes.
  1. Open Firefox and verify that bookmarks and toolbar buttons are working properly.
    • Note that Norton can sometimes replace this file when you restart your computer so you may need to do this step after each reboot. Another option is to disable Phishing Protection in Norton's settings, as mentioned earlier.

If these steps do not fix the problem, try following the procedures listed on the Configure Norton 360 to work with Firefox article.

Places database file

You can also fix this by forcing Firefox to rebuild the Places database, as follows:

  1. (Optional) Export your bookmarks to an HTML file named bookmarks.html (see Export Firefox bookmarks to an HTML file to back up or transfer bookmarks for detailed instructions) and place the bookmarks.html file in the Firefox profile folder. If a bookmarks.html file already exists, allow the exported file to replace it.
  2. Click the Firefox menu Fx89menuButton and select Exit.Click the Firefox menu at the top of the screen and select Quit Firefox.Click the Firefox menu Fx89menuButton and select Quit.
  3. Open the Firefox profile folder and delete (or rename) the places.sqlite file and, if it exists, places.sqlite-journal.
  4. (Optional) If you want Firefox to automatically import your bookmarks from an existing bookmarks.html file in the profile folder, instead of from a JSON backup, open the bookmarkbackups folder and remove all bookmarks-(date).json files to another location.
  5. It is probably a good idea to also delete (or rename) the localstore.rdf to remove the references to the old Places file but you will need to add back any toolbar customizations.

Firefox will create a new places.sqlite file and automatically import the most recent bookmark backup file. If no JSON backup is found, Firefox will automatically import your bookmarks from the profile folder bookmarks.html file, if it exists.

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