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Firefox is creating a new Profile every few days resulting in losing Saved Bookmarks & Passwords.

  • 3 replies
  • 2 have this problem
  • Last reply by cor-el

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Every few days Firefox is creating a new profile and using the new profile as the default resulting in saved bookmarks and password to not appear. I have been working around this by copying the name of the new profile in the /AppData/Roaming/ folder tree and using it to rename my old profile. (Making Firefox believe my old profile is actually the new one). However, this solution is only temporary and has only been getting me by for a few days until I need to go through the process once again.

Current Process: 1) Copy the Old Profile (the one with bookmarks and passwords) to the Desktop 2) Delete all profiles from the Profiles folder 3) Delete Profiles.ini 4) Start Firefox 5) Rename Old Profile with the name that was given to the New Default Profile 6) Delete the New Profile 7) Place the Old Profile with the New name back into the profiles folder

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What profile are you currently using? Is this a xxxxxxxx.default-release profile because that is what is preferred for the current Firefox release? Note that you shouldn't rename a profile on the hard drive because some file contain an absolute that that would still refer to the original profile.

You can create a new profile to test if your current profile is causing the problem.

See "Creating a profile":

If the new profile works then you can transfer files from a previously used profile to the new profile, but be cautious not to copy corrupted files to avoid carrying over problems.

You can copy files like these with Firefox closed to the current profile folder to recover specific data.

  • bookmarks and history: places.sqlite
  • bookmark backups: compressed .jsonlz4 JSON backups in the bookmarkbackups folder
  • cookies.sqlite for the Cookies
  • formhistory.sqlite for saved autocomplete Form Data
  • logins.json (passwords) and key4.db (58+) or key3.db (57 and older) (decryption key) for Passwords saved in the Password Manager
    if you only have key3.db then make sure to remove an existing key4.db
  • cert9.db (58+) or cert8.db (57 and older) for (intermediate) certificates stored in the Certificate Manager
    if you only have cert8.db then make sure to remove an existing cert9.db
  • persdict.dat for words you added to the spelling checker dictionary
  • permissions.sqlite for Permissions and possibly content-prefs.sqlite for other website specific data (Site Preferences)
  • sessionstore.jsonlz4 for open tabs and pinned tabs (see also the sessionstore-backups folder)

You can use the button on the "Help -> Troubleshooting Information" (about:support) page to go to the current Firefox profile folder or use the about:profiles page.

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This issue came up following a recent update to Firefox, it has occurred throughout a whole network after the update was pushed. Being the IT I used the profile renaming as a quick fix, but even today people are back with the same issue. I can try to move specific files into the new profile such as decrypt keys and bookmarks, but I'm not sure how much that differs from what I have already done to temporarily fix this. The current profile is a xxxxxxxx.default-release profile. I also see a xxxxxxxx.default profile that was created after clearing both the Profiles folder and deleting profiles.ini, however the xxxxxxxx.default profile only contains a times.json file. I will poke around with the Profile Manager to see if I can lock down the default profile I have rigged up.

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If the xxxxxxxx.default-release is already being used then there is no need to create a new profile. I'm not sure why Firefox would create a new profile unless another Firefox installation is used (Firefox locks the profile against a installation path) or there is a problem with profiles.ini. If there are other no longer used profiles then it might be an idea to removes them. Firefox may scan compatibility.ini in each profile to see what Firefox version last used a profile.

Firefox 67 and later can use a dedicated profile for each of the Firefox update channels and will lock the profile, so it can only be used by Firefox in a specific installation folder. For Release versions this profile would be a xxxxxxxx.default-release profile, profiles used in older Firefox versions usually used a xxxxxxxx.default profile with a possible time stamp appended due to a refresh.