Profiles - Where Firefox stores your bookmarks, passwords and other user data

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  • Creator: Michael Verdi
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  • Reviewed by: Verdi
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Did you know that all the settings you make in Firefox, like your home page, what toolbars you use, saved passwords and bookmarks are all stored in a special profile folder? It's true. Your profile folder is kept in a separate place from the Firefox program so that if something ever goes wrong with Firefox your information will still be there. It also means you can uninstall Firefox without losing your settings and you don't have to reinstall Firefox to clear your information or troubleshoot a problem.

This information is here for reference. You don't have to follow these steps unless you were directed to do so from another article.

How to find your profile

Firefox 3.6

  1. At the top of the Firefox windowOn the menu bar, click on the Help menu and select Troubleshooting Information.... The Troubleshooting Information tab will open.
  2. Under the Application Basics section, click on Open Containing FolderShow in Finder. A window with your profile files will open.
No​te: If you are unable to open​ Fire​fox, use the instructions in the next section to find your profile.

Firefox 3.5

Windows Vista and 7

  1. Click the Windows Start button and type %APPDATA%\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\ in the Search box at the bottom of the Start menu, without pressing Enter. A list of profiles will appear at the top of the Start menu.
  2. Click on the profile with “default” in the name to open it in a window.


Windows 2000 and XP

  1. Click the Windows Start button, and select Run....

  2. Type in %APPDATA%\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\ then click OK.

  3. A window will open containing profile folders.
  4. Double-click the folder with “default” in the name to open it.
  1. Open Finder and go to your home folder. Note: your home folder is usually the name of your Mac user account
  2. From your home folder open /Library/, then /Application Support/, then /Firefox/, then /Profiles/. Your​ prof​ile ​fold​er is with​in this​ fold​er.
  1. (Ubuntu) Click the Places menu on the top right of the screen and select Home Folder. A File Browser window will appear.
  2. Click the View menu and select Show Hidden Files if it isn't already checked.
  3. Double click the folder marked .mozilla.
  4. Double click the folder marked firefox. Your profile folder is within this folder.

What information is stored in your profile?

  • Bookmarks and Browsing History: The places.sqlite file contains all your Firefox bookmarks and the list of all the websites you’ve visited. For more information see Bookmarks in Firefox.
  • Passwords: Your passwords are stored in the key3.db and signons.sqlite files. For more information see Password Manager - Remember, delete, change and import saved passwords in Firefox.
  • Site-specific preferences: The permissions.sqlite file stores many of your Firefox permissions that are set on a site-by-site basis. For example, it stores which sites are allowed to display popups.
  • Search engines: The search.sqlite file and searchplugins folder store the search engines that are available in the Firefox Search the Web on Firefox.
  • Personal dictionary: The persdict.dat file stores any custom words you have added to Firefox's dictionary. For more information see How do I use the Firefox spell checker?.
  • Autocomplete history: The formhistory.sqlite file remembers what you have searched for in the Firefox search bar and what information you’ve entered into forms on websites. For more information see Control whether Firefox automatically fills in forms.
  • Cookies: A cookie is a bit of information stored on your computer by a website you’ve visited. Usually this is something like your site preferences or login status. Cookies are all stored in the cookies.sqlite file.
  • Security certificate settings: The cert8.db file stores all your security certificate settings and any SSL certificates you have imported into Firefox.
  • Download actions: The mimeTypes.rdf file stores your preferences that tell Firefox what to do when it comes across a particular type of file. For example, these are the settings that tell Firefox to open a PDF file with Acrobat Reader when you click on it. For more information see Change what Firefox does when you click on or download a file.
  • User styles: If they exists, the \chrome\userChrome.css and \chrome\userContent.css files store user-defined changes to either how Firefox looks, or how certain websites or HTML elements look or act.

Working with profiles