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Lost bookmarks backup files. Found an old places.sqlite file. How to restore from this file?

  • 10 replies
  • 4 have this problem
  • Last reply by joske

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W7 - 64bit. After last update FF 18 was restarting FF only possible with restart of pc. Therefore I ran uninstall and re installed FF hoping this would resolve the problem. All bookmarks and history was probably lost with uninstall. None of the support and help sites suggestions could resolve it. I found a place.sqlite file of 10 MB in an old profiles backup but no json file. Would like to recover at least the bookmarks. Is it possible in this situation?

All Replies (10)

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Hi joske,

I'm sorry to hear that you have lost your bookmarks during an update process in your Firefox - this is not very common.

Have you tried copying the entirety of the old profiles backup into the new profile? Please refer to this article for additional information:

Recovering important data from an old profile

Does this solve your issue? Please write back to let us know.


- Ralph

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Uninstall should not remove bookmarks etc unless you use an option to remove personal information.

Can you give a bit more detail about the problem you had, you may find it re-occurs,and the type of problem may influence the decisions as to which files to try to restore.

The automated bookmarks backups are within a Bookmarksbackup folder within the profile.

Make copies of any profiles you are able to find,the files they contain may be useful. Backup any current bookmarks you have both as the default firefox type .json files and also as html (The recent HTML may be appended to any restored bookmarks library, but .json backups overwrite any existing bookarks.)

Some useful links

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You can also try if you can restore (undelete) the previous profile folder and places.sqlite and possible JSON backup in the bookmarkbackups folder with Recuva or another undelete utility if you didn't succeed in restoring the bookmarks from the places.sqlite backup copy

Always make sure NOT to choose to remove personal data when uninstalling Firefox unless you have a backup because this will remove all Firefox profile folders.

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Hello Ralph, Thanks for your reaction; I already had gone through all this literature but none of it worked. That's why I ended up on this forum. joske

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I already had gone through all this literature, including your suggested links but none resolved my problem. That's why I ended up on this forum. After update FF crashed every time at start-up . Decided eventually to remove and re-install. Believe to have inadvertently selected to remove personal information. Bad luck!. Went to look on my backup drive(external HD) and noticed that the monthly backed-up 'Profiles' file was the wrong one, i.e. AppData>Local >Mozilla... instead of AppData>Roaming>Mozilla>....The latter does not have a bookmarkbackups folder. Could not find an old bookmark backup but managed to recover an older 'places.sqlite' file using Recuva. Thought this would be ok to at least recover part of my bookmarks. Have renamed the new file places.sqlite to old and copied recovered file into profiles default folder. Restarted FF but no bookmarks found.

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See reply to john99.

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It is usually better to try to recover a JSON backup. Such a file is a text file and you can more easily see if the file isn't corrupted and it is also much smaller in size. It should also be possible to extract some links from a JSON back up in case the file is partly corrupted, but you can't do anything with a corrupted places.sqlite file.

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I have searched for bookmarks.Json file but nothing found. I think I'l have to resign myself to the situation. FF crash at subsequent start-up has returned. I give up and use another browser. Thanks for your support anyway.

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A bookmarks.json file doesn't exist. Such a backup always has the date in the file name: bookmarks-2013-01-18.json

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Yes, I know. But thanks anyway.