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how do I remove long lists of old bookmarks?

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For over a year now, I have created html files of my bookmarks in Firefox from my main PC and then copied them to my laptop version of Firefox. I thought that would just rewrite the old bookmarks, but I see now it just adds to the old bookmarks. I've tried deleting the old bookmarks one at a time but that takes forever and it will not delete large collections of bookmarks in the old bookmark menus.

    How do I delete most or all of my old bookmarks (now hundreds) on my laptop, so I can add the new bookmarks from my main PC?
For over a year now, I have created html files of my bookmarks in Firefox from my main PC and then copied them to my laptop version of Firefox. I thought that would just rewrite the old bookmarks, but I see now it just adds to the old bookmarks. I've tried deleting the old bookmarks one at a time but that takes forever and it will not delete large collections of bookmarks in the old bookmark menus. How do I delete most or all of my old bookmarks (now hundreds) on my laptop, so I can add the new bookmarks from my main PC?

Chosen solution

Many users will have hundreds or thousands of bookmarks. Note Firefox's bookmarks library may use nested folders.

If you import HTML favourites they get appended to the end of your bookmarks, possibly in a folder. You may mark select multiple bookmarks or even folders and delete or copy them. You may find it best just to put the old bookmarks in a folder in case you need them. If you are deleting most of them maybe it is easiest just to select those bookmarks you want using Ctrl + Left Click and copy those to a folder and then delete the remainder. Note Ctrl+A will select all the bookmarks in a pane including those scrolled off the screen. Just one warning sometimes firefox may be rather slow in doing big tasks on the bookmarks.


You may find it wise to make backups of the.json type whilst you work with your bookmarks so that you can go back if something goes wrong. CARE take note .json type restores overwrite your existing bookmarks. (.json tyoe have more features: tags, keywords, and a folder structure)

Note also it is possible to automatically sync bookmarks between devices.

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John99
  • Top 25 Contributor
  • Moderator
725 solutions 10015 answers

Chosen Solution

Many users will have hundreds or thousands of bookmarks. Note Firefox's bookmarks library may use nested folders.

If you import HTML favourites they get appended to the end of your bookmarks, possibly in a folder. You may mark select multiple bookmarks or even folders and delete or copy them. You may find it best just to put the old bookmarks in a folder in case you need them. If you are deleting most of them maybe it is easiest just to select those bookmarks you want using Ctrl + Left Click and copy those to a folder and then delete the remainder. Note Ctrl+A will select all the bookmarks in a pane including those scrolled off the screen. Just one warning sometimes firefox may be rather slow in doing big tasks on the bookmarks.


You may find it wise to make backups of the.json type whilst you work with your bookmarks so that you can go back if something goes wrong. CARE take note .json type restores overwrite your existing bookmarks. (.json tyoe have more features: tags, keywords, and a folder structure)

Note also it is possible to automatically sync bookmarks between devices.

Many users will have hundreds or thousands of bookmarks. Note Firefox's bookmarks library may use nested folders. If you import HTML favourites they get appended to the end of your bookmarks, possibly in a folder. You may mark select multiple bookmarks or even folders and delete or copy them. You may find it best just to put the old bookmarks in a folder in case you need them. If you are deleting most of them maybe it is easiest just to select those bookmarks you want using Ctrl + Left Click and copy those to a folder and then delete the remainder. Note Ctrl+A will select all the bookmarks in a pane including those scrolled off the screen. Just one warning sometimes firefox may be rather slow in doing big tasks on the bookmarks. *[[Use bookmark folders to organize your bookmarks]] You may find it wise to make backups of the.json type whilst you work with your bookmarks so that you can go back if something goes wrong. CARE take note .json type restores overwrite your existing bookmarks. (.json tyoe have more features: tags, keywords, and a folder structure) * [[Import Bookmarks from an HTML file]] *[[Restore bookmarks from backup or move them to another computer]] Note also it is possible to automatically sync bookmarks between devices. *[[How do I manage my Firefox Sync account?]]

Modified by John99

cor-el
  • Top 10 Contributor
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12751 solutions 117172 answers

You can delete the places.sqlite file to reset the bookmarks and the history.

You can delete the places.sqlite file to reset the bookmarks and the history. *http://kb.mozillazine.org/Profile_folder_-_Firefox *http://kb.mozillazine.org/Backing_up_and_restoring_bookmarks_-_Firefox

Question owner

JNA Penna reply: I found this solution by john99 most effective: the responder is quite right that Firefox was very slow to delete large numbers of bookmarks (I had hundreds)- I would keep getting to NOT Responding even if I used Control A to delete a group (20) of bookmarks- so what I found most effective was to simply delete them one at a time with the delete key. That way when it would stall at a big folder, I waited for it to disappear than zip through others that went right away.

     Then I imported the html file with the best set of bookmarks which I wanted to use and from the backup folder that I created before deletions, I selected those that were not in my new file and placed them in the new bookmark files.
     Many thanks
JNA Penna reply: I found this solution by john99 most effective: the responder is quite right that Firefox was very slow to delete large numbers of bookmarks (I had hundreds)- I would keep getting to NOT Responding even if I used Control A to delete a group (20) of bookmarks- so what I found most effective was to simply delete them one at a time with the delete key. That way when it would stall at a big folder, I waited for it to disappear than zip through others that went right away. Then I imported the html file with the best set of bookmarks which I wanted to use and from the backup folder that I created before deletions, I selected those that were not in my new file and placed them in the new bookmark files. Many thanks

Modified by JNAPenna

John99
  • Top 25 Contributor
  • Moderator
725 solutions 10015 answers

Glad it worked.

cor-els's solution would have been quicker in clearing your bookmarks but has the big disadvantage that it would have deleted all History and all bookmarks, and I thought you may have wanted to keep some of the existing ones.
Thanks for posting back.

Glad it worked. ''cor-els'''s solution would have been quicker in clearing your bookmarks but has the big disadvantage that it would have deleted all History and all bookmarks, and I thought you may have wanted to keep some of the existing ones. <br />Thanks for posting back.