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I am having trouble when I try opening firefox - it only "flickers" on screen and won't stay open - keeps trying to "re-open" over and over!

Posted

When I try to open Firefox I get a small screen saying it is "checking compatibility of add-ons" (or something like that) which alternates with a quickly flashing window of Firefox. Neither one really stays open long enough to get a look at what is being displayed. I had an earlier version installed which I thought might have been the problem. I uninstalled that version and today installed the updated version - still having the same problem! Any ideas?

Additional System Details

Application

  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64) AppleWebKit/537.17 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/24.0.1312.57 Safari/537.17

More Information

Andrew
  • Top 25 Contributor
  • Moderator
252 solutions 3023 answers

Certain Firefox problems can be solved by performing a Clean reinstall. This means you remove Firefox and any leftover program files and then reinstall Firefox. Please follow these steps one by one:

  1. Download the latest Desktop version of Firefox from http://www.mozilla.org and save the setup file to your computer.
  2. After the download finishes, close all Firefox windows (click Exit from the Firefox or File menu) and confirm all upcoming messages.
  3. Now, uninstall Firefox by following the steps mentioned in the Uninstall Firefox article.

IMPORTANT: On Windows, the uninstaller has the option to remove your personal data and settings. Make sure that you do not check this option; otherwise all of your bookmarks, passwords, extensions, user customizations and other Firefox user profile data will be removed from your computer.

After uninstalling Firefox on Windows, delete the "Mozilla Firefox" program folder, located by default in one of these locations:

  • (On 32-bit Windows) C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox
  • (On 64-bit Windows) C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox
  1. Go to the Windows Start menu and click on "Computer".
  2. In the Explorer window that opens, double click Local Disk (C:) to open the C:\ drive.
  3. Find the "Program Files (x86)" folder or "Program Files" folder.
    • On 32-bit Windows, double-click the Program Files folder to open it.
    • On 64-bit Windows, you will see a "Program Files (x86)" folder AND a "Program Files" folder. Open the Program Files (x86) folder.
  4. Look for a Mozilla Firefox folder. If you find one, right-click it and select Delete and confirm that you want to move the folder to the Recycle Bin.

Now, go ahead and reinstall Firefox:

  1. Double-click the downloaded installation file and go through the steps of the installation wizard.
  2. Once the wizard is finished, choose to directly open Firefox after clicking the Finish button.

Please report back to see if this helped you!

cor-el
  • Top 10 Contributor
  • Moderator
10776 solutions 96959 answers

You can check for problems with preferences and try to rename or delete the prefs.js file and possible numbered prefs-##.js files and a possible user.js file to reset all prefs to the default values.


It is possible that there is a problem with the file(s) that store the extensions registry.

Delete the files extensions.* (e.g. extensions.sqlite, extensions.ini, extensions.cache) and compatibility.ini in the Firefox profile folder to reset the extensions registry.

New files will be created when required.

See "Corrupt extension files":

If you see disabled, not compatible, extensions in "Tools > Add-ons > Extensions" then click the Tools button at the left side of the Search Bar (or click the "Find Updates" button in older Firefox versions) to check if there is a compatibility update available.

If this hasn't helped then also try to delete the addons.sqlite file.

Question owner

Tried all these suggestions and it is still doing the same thing! Now I have to exit everything and do a restart on the computer in order to get things to stop!

cor-el
  • Top 10 Contributor
  • Moderator
10776 solutions 96959 answers

Start Firefox in Safe Mode to check if one of the extensions (Firefox/Tools > Add-ons > Extensions) or if hardware acceleration is causing the problem (switch to the DEFAULT theme: Firefox/Tools > Add-ons > Appearance).

  • Do NOT click the Reset button on the Safe mode start window or otherwise make changes.

You can use one of these to start Firefox in Safe mode:

  • On Windows, hold down the Shift key while starting Firefox with a double-click on the Firefox desktop shortcut
  • On Mac, hold down the Options key while starting Firefox
  • Help > Restart with Add-ons Disabled