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Browsing history/open tabs all gone after PC crash

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Following a PC BSOD, upon the restart Firefox launched empty - blank - with nothing there! All my browsing history and all my open tabs were gone! This is the 2nd time this has happened in the last Month, and it's VERY annoying. Is there any way to restore my previous session? I can't find the relavant index.dat file.

All Replies (2)

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Sorry to hear about this problem. Can you start by backing up your session history files. Here's how:

Do not exit Firefox, or if you closed it, don't re-open it.

(1) To open your profile folder...

If Firefox is still running:

You can open your current Firefox settings (AKA Firefox profile) folder using either

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

In the first table on the page, click the "Open Folder" button. Edit: Forgot to mention, it's the one on the "Profile Folder" row, not the "Update Folder" row.

If Firefox is closed:

Type or paste the following into the Windows Run dialog or the system search box and press Enter to launch Windows Explorer:

%APPDATA%\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles

In that folder, do you see a semi-randomly-named folder? If so, click into it. If you find multiple such folders, find the one that was most recently updated.

(2) Copy out session history files

In your profile folder, double-click into the sessionstore-backups folder. Save all files here to a safe location such as your Documents folder.

(3) What files did you find?

The kinds of files you may find among your sessionstore files are:

  • recovery.jsonlz4: the windows and tabs in your currently live Firefox session (or, if Firefox crashed at the last shutdown and is still closed, your last session)
  • recovery.baklz4: a backup copy of recovery.jsonlz4
  • previous.jsonlz4: the windows and tabs in your last Firefox session
  • upgrade.jsonlz4-build_id: the windows and tabs in the Firefox session that was live at the time of your last update

If necessary, we can later discuss how to use these files or extract their contents.

Modified by jscher2000

Helpful?

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Next steps:

First, if you haven't already, do a normal shutdown and restart of Windows to release any potentially locked files.

Then the next time you start Firefox, if it is plain vanilla uncustomized installation, check whether your stuff is available in a different profile, as follows:

Profile Manager Page

Inside Firefox, type or paste about:profiles in the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it.

This page should list at least one profile and could list many. (Each profile has two folders and one or more buttons. Do not use any Remove buttons!)

The profile that Firefox is currently using will have this:

This is the profile in use and it cannot be deleted.

Do you have another profile listed on this page? If so, you can check whether it is the one you were using recently by clicking its Launch profile in new browser button.

If the last session isn't restored automatically, try restoring it from the menu, either:

  • "3-bar" menu button > Restore Previous Session
  • (menu bar) History > Restore Previous Session

If this profile isn't what you want, simply close that new window.

If it IS what you want, back on the about:profiles page, click the Set as default profile button for that profile so Firefox uses it automatically at the next startup.

Any progress so far?

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