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At Firefox's Urging Refreshed 42.0 & Now My 2-Fav Add-Ons Gone! Is Reversal Possible to Undo Unwanted Changes?

Posted

In moments, Firefox's "Refresh" made a mess of my customized selections of add-ons, plugins, toolbars, etc., and now crashes, 2-of my favorite "go-to" add-ons are (1) 1 gone, and (2) the other will not install. I will NEVER do what Firefox suggests again. I was doing just fine...Except, for several months Firefox suddenly freezes and I have to go to the Task Manager to end Firefox, then open Firefox anew. All I can say is, I must be losing my marbles for "refreshing" Firefox for the second time in a couple of years, after the first time caused trouble, and the overall results are worse now, the second time. I am also weary of Firefox crashes.

Anyway, is the "refresh" which occurred within the past hour, reversible? Also, just noticed "Old Firefox Data" folder whereas Had never seen it before . . . is this connected to Firefox refreshing?

HELP?!!

In moments, Firefox's "Refresh" made a mess of my customized selections of add-ons, plugins, toolbars, etc., and now crashes, 2-of my favorite "go-to" add-ons are (1) 1 gone, and (2) the other will not install. I will NEVER do what Firefox suggests again. I was doing just fine...Except, for several months Firefox suddenly freezes and I have to go to the Task Manager to end Firefox, then open Firefox anew. All I can say is, I must be losing my marbles for "refreshing" Firefox for the second time in a couple of years, after the first time caused trouble, and the overall results are worse now, the second time. I am also weary of Firefox crashes. Anyway, is the "refresh" which occurred within the past hour, reversible? Also, just noticed "Old Firefox Data" folder whereas Had never seen it before . . . is this connected to Firefox refreshing? HELP?!!
Attached screenshots

Chosen solution

Yes, a Refresh moves your whole settings folder to the Old Firefox Data folder, then Firefox creates a new settings folder with selected data from your old folder, not including your extensions or most preferences.

You can use the contents of the Old Firefox Data folder to "roll back" the Refresh, but it does involve several steps. This takes 5 minutes, but that may be faster than recovering individual files and loading those into your new profile.

Check inside the "Old Firefox Data" folder that Refresh adds to your desktop for a folder with a semi-randomized name. If there's only one, that probably has your old settings and add-ons. If there's more than one, you'll want to work with the one that was updated most recently.

Once you have identified the profile folder you want to restore, here is my suggested "old profile resurrection procedure":

Overview

These are the steps described in more detail below:

  1. Create a new Firefox profile
  2. Remove everything from that new profile folder
  3. Copy in everything from the old profile folder

Create a new Firefox profile (Windows)

Exit Firefox completely, and then start up in the Profile Manager by pasting the following into the Windows search box, or the Run dialog, and pressing Enter:

firefox.exe -P

Note: Any time you want to switch profiles, exit Firefox and return to this dialog.

Click the Create Profile button, assign a name like OldSettings, and skip the option to change the folder location. Then select that new profile in the dialog and start Firefox.

Open the New Profile folder in Windows Explorer

Firefox in the new profile should look like a factory fresh installation. Open the Troubleshooting Information page using either:

  • "3-bar" menu button > "?" button > Troubleshooting Information
  • Help menu > Troubleshooting Information
  • type or paste about:support in the address bar and press Enter

In the first table, click the "Show Folder" button. Firefox will launch your brand new profile folder in Windows Explorer.

Leaving that folder open, switch back to Firefox, and Exit using either:

  • "3-bar" menu button > "power" button
  • (menu bar) File > Exit

When Firefox closes, the profile folder should be front and center, or you can activate it using the Task bar.

Copy Old Data in Place of New

In that new profile folder you just popped open -- NOT the one on your desktop -- select all the contents (you can use Ctrl+a) and delete (you can press the Delete key on the keyboard).

Leaving that window open, open or switch over to your Old Firefox Data folder. Drill down into your old profile folder. At this level you should see a folder named bookmarkbackups among other things.

Select everything (Ctrl+a) and Copy (either right-click > Copy or Ctrl+c).

Switch to the empty new profile folder in other window and Paste (either right-click > Paste or Ctrl+v). This may take a minute since some of the files are large.

Start Firefox

Firefox should start up in that "new" profile with the resurrected old profile data. Success?

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jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

Chosen Solution

Yes, a Refresh moves your whole settings folder to the Old Firefox Data folder, then Firefox creates a new settings folder with selected data from your old folder, not including your extensions or most preferences.

You can use the contents of the Old Firefox Data folder to "roll back" the Refresh, but it does involve several steps. This takes 5 minutes, but that may be faster than recovering individual files and loading those into your new profile.

Check inside the "Old Firefox Data" folder that Refresh adds to your desktop for a folder with a semi-randomized name. If there's only one, that probably has your old settings and add-ons. If there's more than one, you'll want to work with the one that was updated most recently.

Once you have identified the profile folder you want to restore, here is my suggested "old profile resurrection procedure":

Overview

These are the steps described in more detail below:

  1. Create a new Firefox profile
  2. Remove everything from that new profile folder
  3. Copy in everything from the old profile folder

Create a new Firefox profile (Windows)

Exit Firefox completely, and then start up in the Profile Manager by pasting the following into the Windows search box, or the Run dialog, and pressing Enter:

firefox.exe -P

Note: Any time you want to switch profiles, exit Firefox and return to this dialog.

Click the Create Profile button, assign a name like OldSettings, and skip the option to change the folder location. Then select that new profile in the dialog and start Firefox.

Open the New Profile folder in Windows Explorer

Firefox in the new profile should look like a factory fresh installation. Open the Troubleshooting Information page using either:

  • "3-bar" menu button > "?" button > Troubleshooting Information
  • Help menu > Troubleshooting Information
  • type or paste about:support in the address bar and press Enter

In the first table, click the "Show Folder" button. Firefox will launch your brand new profile folder in Windows Explorer.

Leaving that folder open, switch back to Firefox, and Exit using either:

  • "3-bar" menu button > "power" button
  • (menu bar) File > Exit

When Firefox closes, the profile folder should be front and center, or you can activate it using the Task bar.

Copy Old Data in Place of New

In that new profile folder you just popped open -- NOT the one on your desktop -- select all the contents (you can use Ctrl+a) and delete (you can press the Delete key on the keyboard).

Leaving that window open, open or switch over to your Old Firefox Data folder. Drill down into your old profile folder. At this level you should see a folder named bookmarkbackups among other things.

Select everything (Ctrl+a) and Copy (either right-click > Copy or Ctrl+c).

Switch to the empty new profile folder in other window and Paste (either right-click > Paste or Ctrl+v). This may take a minute since some of the files are large.

Start Firefox

Firefox should start up in that "new" profile with the resurrected old profile data. Success?

Yes, a Refresh moves your whole settings folder to the Old Firefox Data folder, then Firefox creates a new settings folder with selected data from your old folder, not including your extensions or most preferences. You can use the contents of the Old Firefox Data folder to "roll back" the Refresh, but it does involve several steps. This takes 5 minutes, but that may be faster than recovering individual files and loading those into your new profile. ''Check inside the "Old Firefox Data" folder that Refresh adds to your desktop for a folder with a semi-randomized name. If there's only one, that probably has your old settings and add-ons. If there's more than one, you'll want to work with the one that was updated most recently.'' Once you have identified the profile folder you want to restore, here is my suggested "old profile resurrection procedure": '''Overview''' These are the steps described in more detail below: # Create a new Firefox profile # Remove everything from that new profile folder # Copy in everything from the old profile folder '''Create a new Firefox profile (Windows)''' Exit Firefox completely, and then start up in the Profile Manager by pasting the following into the Windows search box, or the Run dialog, and pressing Enter: firefox.exe -P ''Note: Any time you want to switch profiles, exit Firefox and return to this dialog.'' Click the Create Profile button, assign a name like OldSettings, and skip the option to change the folder location. Then select that new profile in the dialog and start Firefox. '''Open the New Profile folder in Windows Explorer''' Firefox in the new profile should look like a factory fresh installation. Open the Troubleshooting Information page using either: * "3-bar" menu button > "?" button > Troubleshooting Information * Help menu > Troubleshooting Information * type or paste about:support in the address bar and press Enter In the first table, click the "Show Folder" button. Firefox will launch your brand new profile folder in Windows Explorer. Leaving that folder open, switch back to Firefox, and Exit using either: * "3-bar" menu button > "power" button * (menu bar) File > Exit When Firefox closes, the profile folder should be front and center, or you can activate it using the Task bar. '''Copy Old Data in Place of New''' In that new profile folder you just popped open -- NOT the one on your desktop -- select all the contents (you can use Ctrl+a) and delete (you can press the Delete key on the keyboard). Leaving that window open, open or switch over to your Old Firefox Data folder. Drill down into your old profile folder. At this level you should see a folder named bookmarkbackups among other things. Select everything (Ctrl+a) and Copy (either right-click > Copy or Ctrl+c). Switch to the empty new profile folder in other window and Paste (either right-click > Paste or Ctrl+v). This may take a minute since some of the files are large. '''Start Firefox''' Firefox should start up in that "new" profile with the resurrected old profile data. Success?
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

Regarding the "Not Responding" problem, I think our general support article does suggest trying a Refresh, but you could ignore that and check out the other suggestions:

Firefox hangs or is not responding - How to fix

Also, since Flash can cause this problem and is used pervasively through the web, I suggest the following to minimize potential issues with Flash during your troubleshooting:

(1) To avoid unnecessary pain on sites where Flash is not actually essential, try setting Flash to Click-to-Play ("Ask to Activate"). This will delay Flash from starting on a page until you approve it.

To set "Ask to Activate", open the Add-ons page using either:

  • Ctrl+Shift+a
  • "3-bar" menu button (or Tools menu) > Add-ons

In the left column, click Plugins. Look for "Shockwave Flash" and change "Always Activate" to "Ask to Activate".

With this setting, when you visit a site that wants to use Flash, you should see a notification icon in the address bar and usually (but not always) one of the following: a link in a dark gray rectangle in the page or an infobar sliding down between the toolbar area and the page.

The plugin notification icon in the address bar typically looks like a small, dark gray Lego block. (If it's red, Flash needs updating.)

The delay in activating Flash can help distinguish between problems caused on initial page load, styling, and script activation vs. loading/running Flash.

If you see a good reason to use Flash, and the site looks trustworthy, you can go ahead and click the notification icon in the address bar to allow Flash. You can trust the site for the time being or permanently.

But some pages use Flash only for tracking or playing ads, so if you don't see an immediate need for Flash, feel free to ignore the notification! It will just sit there in case you want to use it later.

(2) A common cause of unresponsive script errors on Windows Vista and higher is the protected mode feature of the Flash player plugin. That feature has security benefits, but seems to have serious compatibility issues on some systems. You can disable it using the Add-ons page. Either:

  • Ctrl+Shift+a
  • "3-bar" menu button (or Tools menu) > Add-ons

In the left column, click Plugins. On the right side, find "Shockwave Flash" and click the More link. Then uncheck the box for "Enable Adobe Flash protected mode" and try that for a day to see whether it helps.

Regarding the "Not Responding" problem, I think our general support article does suggest trying a Refresh, but you could ignore that and check out the other suggestions: [[Firefox hangs or is not responding - How to fix]] Also, since Flash can cause this problem and is used pervasively through the web, I suggest the following to minimize potential issues with Flash during your troubleshooting: (1) To avoid unnecessary pain on sites where Flash is not actually essential, try setting Flash to Click-to-Play ("Ask to Activate"). This will delay Flash from starting on a page until you approve it. To set "Ask to Activate", open the Add-ons page using either: * Ctrl+Shift+a * "3-bar" menu button (or Tools menu) > Add-ons In the left column, click Plugins. Look for "Shockwave Flash" and change "Always Activate" to "Ask to Activate". With this setting, when you visit a site that wants to use Flash, you should see a notification icon in the address bar and usually (but not always) one of the following: a link in a dark gray rectangle in the page or an infobar sliding down between the toolbar area and the page. The plugin notification icon in the address bar typically looks like a small, dark gray Lego block. (If it's red, Flash needs updating.) The delay in activating Flash can help distinguish between problems caused on initial page load, styling, and script activation vs. loading/running Flash. If you see a good reason to use Flash, and the site looks trustworthy, you can go ahead and click the notification icon in the address bar to allow Flash. You can trust the site for the time being or permanently. But some pages use Flash only for tracking or playing ads, so if you don't see an immediate need for Flash, feel free to ignore the notification! It will just sit there in case you want to use it later. (2) A common cause of unresponsive script errors on Windows Vista and higher is the protected mode feature of the Flash player plugin. That feature has security benefits, but seems to have serious compatibility issues on some systems. You can disable it using the Add-ons page. Either: * Ctrl+Shift+a * "3-bar" menu button (or Tools menu) > Add-ons In the left column, click Plugins. On the right side, find "Shockwave Flash" and click the More link. Then ''uncheck'' the box for "Enable Adobe Flash protected mode" and try that for a day to see whether it helps.

Question owner

THANK YOU!!

THANK YOU!!
KC 1 solutions 59 answers

Helpful Reply

i don't have time to figure out how to create a new profile i hate you for screwing up my browser and making it impossible to get my stuff back

YOUR DIRECTIONS ARE CLEAR AS MUDD

IF I EXIT FIREFOX THEN I LOSE YOUR FRIGGIN COMPLICATED DIRECTIONS

i don't have time to figure out how to create a new profile i hate you for screwing up my browser and making it impossible to get my stuff back YOUR DIRECTIONS ARE CLEAR AS MUDD IF I EXIT FIREFOX THEN I LOSE YOUR FRIGGIN COMPLICATED DIRECTIONS

Modified by KC

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

Hi kcsummer111, I have heard of that problem before and the three workarounds that come to mind are:

  • open the instructions in a different browser, or
  • paste the instructions into a word processing document, or
  • print the instructions

P.S. Don't hate the support volunteers, we're not the ones who caused this problem.

Hi kcsummer111, I have heard of that problem before and the three workarounds that come to mind are: * open the instructions in a different browser, or * paste the instructions into a word processing document, or * print the instructions P.S. Don't hate the support volunteers, we're not the ones who caused this problem.
KC 1 solutions 59 answers

Helpful Reply

It isn't you I hate

FIREFOX SHOULD WARN PEOPLE ABOUT THEIR STUPID REFRESH BUTTON

It isn't you I hate FIREFOX SHOULD WARN PEOPLE ABOUT THEIR STUPID REFRESH BUTTON
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

Hi kcsummer111, you should have seen the attached prompt before the Refresh started. Perhaps it should be more dramatic. You can suggest changes using this site:

https://input.mozilla.org/feedback/firefox

Hi kcsummer111, you should have seen the attached prompt before the Refresh started. Perhaps it should be more dramatic. You can suggest changes using this site: https://input.mozilla.org/feedback/firefox
KC 1 solutions 59 answers

Thanks I did leave feedback.

Thanks I did leave feedback.
geraa48 2 solutions 50 answers

am as confused and frustrated as kcsummer111, that REFRESH should contain a warning, I lost an entire add on which I paid for and notice other stuff missing; I have also deleted the old firefox data folder from my desktop as I naively thought I wouldn't be needing that again.

the instructions above are too complicated, can't you just put the thing back for me, the addon, or maybe reverse the refresh thing.

thnx, gd nite.

am as confused and frustrated as kcsummer111, that REFRESH should contain a warning, I lost an entire add on which I paid for and notice other stuff missing; I have also deleted the old firefox data folder from my desktop as I naively thought I wouldn't be needing that again. the instructions above are too complicated, can't you just put the thing back for me, the addon, or maybe reverse the refresh thing. thnx, gd nite.
geraa48 2 solutions 50 answers

hi, referring to my first message a few minutes ago I am thrilled to see my old firefox data have NOT been deleted even tho I removed them from desktop.

will check back tomorrow, thnx for reading, gd nite again.

hi, referring to my first message a few minutes ago I am thrilled to see my old firefox data have NOT been deleted even tho I removed them from desktop. will check back tomorrow, thnx for reading, gd nite again.
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

Hi geraa48, neither Mozilla nor forum volunteers can remotely undo a Refresh. Hopefully all your data is still on your system for restoration.

Hi geraa48, neither Mozilla nor forum volunteers can remotely undo a Refresh. Hopefully all your data is still on your system for restoration.
geraa48 2 solutions 50 answers

hi jscher2000

how do I do that though ?????? restore data from old data ???? simple couple of steps method ?????

not really very urgent except for the addon I paid for, the tiny blue add blocker which I now can also no longer find on the addon page.........?!????

and the erase everything little arrow thing is gone, but I can erase everything thru history anyway.

thnx :-)

hi jscher2000 how do I do that though ?????? restore data from old data ???? simple couple of steps method ????? not really very urgent except for the addon I paid for, the tiny blue add blocker which I now can also no longer find on the addon page.........?!???? and the erase everything little arrow thing is gone, but I can erase everything thru history anyway. thnx :-)
geraa48 2 solutions 50 answers

BLUE HELL FIREWALL IS BACK !!!!!! :-) if you did that THANKSSSSSSSSSSSS :-)

BLUE HELL FIREWALL IS BACK !!!!!! :-) if you did that THANKSSSSSSSSSSSS :-)
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

geraa48 said

and the erase everything little arrow thing is gone, but I can erase everything thru history anyway.

In Customize, look for the "Forget" button. See: Customize Firefox controls, buttons and toolbars.

''geraa48 [[#answer-839929|said]]'' <blockquote> and the erase everything little arrow thing is gone, but I can erase everything thru history anyway. </blockquote> In Customize, look for the "Forget" button. See: [[Customize Firefox controls, buttons and toolbars]].
gherrick 0 solutions 4 answers

"Chosen solution" — not sure now who wrote it, but it does guide me to the folder I need to rescue my old settings and add-ons, but it does NOT tell any of us out here who use FFx on a Mac how to do it. I cannot find any mention of Profile in Preferences, nor in any menu, nor does a search in Help lead me anywhere. So I'm left with a neutered FFx, frustrating. I realize that FFx is volunteer-written and maintained and is offered free, and I'm a firm believer in it, and a long-time beneficiary. Thank you for that and in advance for help

"Chosen solution" — not sure now who wrote it, but it does guide me to the folder I need to rescue my old settings and add-ons, but it does NOT tell any of us out here who use FFx on a Mac how to do it. I cannot find any mention of Profile in Preferences, nor in any menu, nor does a search in Help lead me anywhere. So I'm left with a neutered FFx, frustrating. I realize that FFx is volunteer-written and maintained and is offered free, and I'm a firm believer in it, and a long-time beneficiary. Thank you for that and in advance for help
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

Hi gherrick, for future reference, when there is a significant difference such as details for Mac vs Windows, it's a good idea to start a new question.

A version of the solution for Mac can be found in this thread: https://support.mozilla.org/questions/1122095

Hi gherrick, for future reference, when there is a significant difference such as details for Mac vs Windows, it's a good idea to start a new question. A version of the solution for Mac can be found in this thread: https://support.mozilla.org/questions/1122095

Question owner

Hello jscher2000:

I appreciate your continuing thread on this "old" topic, but I thought it had run it's course! The issue was never resolved. I captured naught that was lost in the "refreshing" of Firefox and, would be hard-put to use that function ever again in future. So, please put "Paid" to the above question for once and for all.

On another note, however, I have issues with the Mozilla Toolbar (Add-Ons) Permissions, (a fiasco! of the first order!), which has made my life a virtual living hell online, in concert with the never-ending crashing of Adobe Flash Player/Shockwave Player.

The Mozilla Toolbar Website "Permission" is nothing short of horrendous and, does not work. It is repetitive, sluggish, unresponsive, duplicative, inaccurate, and more!

AFP (full continual crashes)/Shockwave (Unresponsive) is always updated and current, yet it is a total failure, et al. I am literally falling apart between these two super-significant problems (understatement!).

Pleas note that helpful remedies fro a plethora of forums have resulted in zero resolutions. These, however, are my true issues on a moment-to-monent basis online! And, yes, I've read every conceivable article relating to both online, marched through every directive, all to no avail. I believe I may have posted both issues on Mozilla Support, but have received no responses to-date. Possibly I should re-post each ongoing incident once again?

Hello jscher2000: I appreciate your continuing thread on this "old" topic, but I thought it had run it's course! The issue was never resolved. I captured naught that was lost in the "refreshing" of Firefox and, would be hard-put to use that function ever again in future. So, please put "Paid" to the above question for once and for all. On another note, however, I have issues with the Mozilla Toolbar (Add-Ons) Permissions, (a fiasco! of the first order!), which has made my life a virtual living hell online, in concert with the never-ending crashing of Adobe Flash Player/Shockwave Player. The Mozilla Toolbar Website "Permission" is nothing short of horrendous and, does not work. It is repetitive, sluggish, unresponsive, duplicative, inaccurate, and more! AFP (full continual crashes)/Shockwave (Unresponsive) is always updated and current, yet it is a total failure, et al. I am literally falling apart between these two super-significant problems (understatement!). Pleas note that helpful remedies fro a plethora of forums have resulted in zero resolutions. These, however, are my true issues on a moment-to-monent basis online! And, yes, I've read every conceivable article relating to both online, marched through every directive, all to no avail. I believe I may have posted both issues on Mozilla Support, but have received no responses to-date. Possibly I should re-post each ongoing incident once again?
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8690 solutions 71031 answers

Hi SweetFacz3913, I was just replying to some others who joined your thread.

I have issues with the Mozilla Toolbar (Add-Ons) Permissions, (a fiasco! of the first order!), which has made my life a virtual living hell online, in concert with the never-ending crashing of Adobe Flash Player/Shockwave Player. ... I believe I may have posted both issues on Mozilla Support, but have received no responses to-date. Possibly I should re-post each ongoing incident once again?

You do have open questions for those where you might want to give an updated status:

Mozilla's Recent Implementation of Control of Firefox's Website Add-Ons/Permissions <"Page Info window"> @ Address Bar . . . (GASP!)

Firefox 43.0.2 & AdobeFlasdPlayer/Shockwave 20.0.0.235 Crash Constantly! I NEED Relief!!

Hi SweetFacz3913, I was just replying to some others who joined your thread. <blockquote>I have issues with the Mozilla Toolbar (Add-Ons) Permissions, (a fiasco! of the first order!), which has made my life a virtual living hell online, in concert with the never-ending crashing of Adobe Flash Player/Shockwave Player. ... I believe I may have posted both issues on Mozilla Support, but have received no responses to-date. Possibly I should re-post each ongoing incident once again? </blockquote> You do have open questions for those where you might want to give an updated status: [https://support.mozilla.org/questions/1116363 Mozilla's Recent Implementation of Control of Firefox's Website Add-Ons/Permissions <"Page Info window"> @ Address Bar . . . (GASP!)] [https://support.mozilla.org/questions/1101043 Firefox 43.0.2 & AdobeFlasdPlayer/Shockwave 20.0.0.235 Crash Constantly! I NEED Relief!!]