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backup/restore versus import/export html

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So I want to archive/backup my bookmarks. I see that I can "Backup" and "Restore" to/from a json file, or I can "Export Bookmarks to HTML" and then "Import Bookmarks from HTML". Moz support suggests doing the former, though I know the latter works. Why would I do one instead of the other? FWIW, the html file I get is 8MB, while the json file is just 1MB. This seems positively screwy to have two completely separate ways of doing backups. What are these functions intended to be for? Maybe these are intended to allow porting bookmarks to/from different browsers?

So I want to archive/backup my bookmarks. I see that I can "Backup" and "Restore" to/from a json file, or I can "Export Bookmarks to HTML" and then "Import Bookmarks from HTML". Moz support suggests doing the former, though I know the latter works. Why would I do one instead of the other? FWIW, the html file I get is 8MB, while the json file is just 1MB. This seems positively screwy to have two completely separate ways of doing backups. What are these functions intended to be for? Maybe these are intended to allow porting bookmarks to/from different browsers?

Chosen solution

For purposes of exchanging with other browsers, the HTML format is standard.

There is an important difference between "Restore" and "Import":

  • Restore wipes your existing bookmarks
  • Import adds to your existing bookmarks

So having your choice of formats could be useful in different situations.

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jscher2000
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8315 solutions 68052 answers

Chosen Solution

For purposes of exchanging with other browsers, the HTML format is standard.

There is an important difference between "Restore" and "Import":

  • Restore wipes your existing bookmarks
  • Import adds to your existing bookmarks

So having your choice of formats could be useful in different situations.

For purposes of exchanging with other browsers, the HTML format is standard. There is an important difference between "Restore" and "Import": * Restore wipes your existing bookmarks * Import adds to your existing bookmarks So having your choice of formats could be useful in different situations.
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Question owner

That's very clear. Thank you. So Backup/Restore is really for wholesale bookmark backup, and Export/Import is really just for exchanging bookmarks with other browsers, adding bookmarks, and I guess if you want to look at them in a convenient file form. I guess that's why, for purposes of backing up bookmarks in an archival form, Moz support doesn't even refer to the latter.

That's very clear. Thank you. So Backup/Restore is really for wholesale bookmark backup, and Export/Import is really just for exchanging bookmarks with other browsers, adding bookmarks, and I guess if you want to look at them in a convenient file form. I guess that's why, for purposes of backing up bookmarks in an archival form, Moz support doesn't even refer to the latter.
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the-edmeister
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danll said

... So Backup/Restore is really for wholesale bookmark backup, and Export/Import is really just for exchanging bookmarks with other browsers, adding bookmarks, and I guess if you want to look at them in a convenient file form. I guess that's why, for purposes of backing up bookmarks in an archival form, Moz support doesn't even refer to the latter.

There's more to the difference than that. The bookmarks.html files contain the bookmark Favicons for the saved bookmarks added to Firefox in Firefox 0.9 in 2004; didn't save those images beyond the current session prior to that time. The .json backup files don't contain those images, Firefox will save them all over again as each bookmark is used for the first time after the user "restores" their bookmarks.

Also, the bookmarks.html format doesn't contain "Tags" data which the .json backups do have.

For users who count on the Favicon images to 'recognize' their bookmarks, as when the user removes the name and only has the images to tell one bookmark from another, doing a "restore" can be an aggravating event if that user doesn't know that will happen.

Overall, the bookmarks.html format is ancient, dating to the original Netscape of the mid-1990's, and not used for storage / usage of bookmarks since the SQLite bookmarks system came into play in Firefox 10 years ago with Firefox 3.0. It's now a legacy format for cross-browser exchange as Jefferson mentioned, and being able to view them in any browser like a "local webpage" without much adornment.

''danll [[#answer-1185383|said]]'' <blockquote> ... So Backup/Restore is really for wholesale bookmark backup, and Export/Import is really just for exchanging bookmarks with other browsers, adding bookmarks, and I guess if you want to look at them in a convenient file form. I guess that's why, for purposes of backing up bookmarks in an archival form, Moz support doesn't even refer to the latter. </blockquote> There's more to the difference than that. The bookmarks.html files contain the bookmark Favicons for the saved bookmarks ''added to Firefox in Firefox 0.9 in 2004; didn't save those images beyond the current session prior to that time''. The .json backup files don't contain those images, Firefox will save them all over again as each bookmark is used for the first time after the user "restores" their bookmarks. Also, the bookmarks.html format doesn't contain "Tags" data which the .json backups do have. For users who count on the Favicon images to 'recognize' their bookmarks, ''as when the user removes the name and only has the images to tell one bookmark from another'', doing a "restore" can be an aggravating event if that user doesn't know that will happen. Overall, the bookmarks.html format is ancient, dating to the original Netscape of the mid-1990's, and not used for storage / usage of bookmarks since the SQLite bookmarks system came into play in Firefox 10 years ago with Firefox 3.0. It's now a legacy format for cross-browser exchange as Jefferson mentioned, and being able to view them in any browser like a "local webpage" without much adornment.
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Question owner

Thank you. This addresses a question I just posted here a few days ago, about WHY IN THE HELL IS MY EXPORTED BOOKMARKS FILE 8MB! You look at the html in a browser, and nothing big-ish comes up. But you look at it in a text editor, and most of it is big png files. What the .... ? Yep, those are just ginormous Favicons, which I do not need.

So archiving my bookmarks (and leaving out what I consider to be Favicon debris), I need to use "Backup", NOT "Export".

Thank you. This addresses a question I just posted here a few days ago, about WHY IN THE HELL IS MY EXPORTED BOOKMARKS FILE 8MB! You look at the html in a browser, and nothing big-ish comes up. But you look at it in a text editor, and most of it is big png files. What the .... ? Yep, those are just ginormous Favicons, which I do not need. So archiving my bookmarks (and leaving out what I consider to be Favicon debris), I need to use "Backup", NOT "Export".
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