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Bookmarks constantly freezes while manually sorting in Firefox 19 and onwards

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There is a bug in bookmarks. I use Firefox 19 one one Mac and firefox 20 on another. Whenever I arrange my bookmarks into the relevant folders using the "bookmarks manager" (i.e., manual sort), every few minutes bookmarks manager freezes and does not respond. This freeze manifests through things like -- not being able to scroll up or down, not being able to move files into a particular folder and so on. Its frustrating... as I constantly have to wait till it unfreezes. It happens every single time! Have tried disabling any add-ons that could have been issues, but it hasn't helped....

There is a bug in bookmarks. I use Firefox 19 one one Mac and firefox 20 on another. Whenever I arrange my bookmarks into the relevant folders using the "bookmarks manager" (i.e., manual sort), every few minutes bookmarks manager freezes and does not respond. This freeze manifests through things like -- not being able to scroll up or down, not being able to move files into a particular folder and so on. Its frustrating... as I constantly have to wait till it unfreezes. It happens every single time! Have tried disabling any add-ons that could have been issues, but it hasn't helped....

Chosen solution

How many bookmarks do you have?

Problems with bookmarks and history not working properly can be caused by a corrupted places.sqlite database file.

You can check for problems with the places.sqlite database file in the Firefox Profile Folder.

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cor-el
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17473 solutions 157932 answers

Chosen Solution

How many bookmarks do you have?

Problems with bookmarks and history not working properly can be caused by a corrupted places.sqlite database file.

You can check for problems with the places.sqlite database file in the Firefox Profile Folder.

How many bookmarks do you have? Problems with bookmarks and history not working properly can be caused by a corrupted places.sqlite database file. You can check for problems with the places.sqlite database file in the Firefox Profile Folder. *http://kb.mozillazine.org/Bookmarks_history_and_toolbar_buttons_not_working_-_Firefox *https://support.mozilla.org/kb/Bookmarks+not+saved#w_fix-the-bookmarks-file
John99 971 solutions 13138 answers

IIRC at one time there was a warning that hangs could occur when sorting or moving large numbers of nested bookmarks. Have you got a massive library on one machine but not the other ?

Are you saying you are seeing this in Firefox 19 and 20 but not Firefox 18, if so it is an issue that I may have expected to be already reported if it is a Firefox bug. Possibly it is more likely to be a problem on your computers.

Some troubleshooting ideas to try

  1. Install and run https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/places-maintenance/ on each machine
    • that may sortout the problem
    • it also has an option to generate a short status report, paste those into your reply
  2. try swapping over the bookmarks on the machines
    1. backup the bookmarks twice see Restore bookmarks from backup or move them to another computer and http://kb.mozillazine.org/Backing_up_and_restoring_bookmarks_-_Firefox
    2. keep one copy safe and outside any firefox paths, and use the other as a working copy to transfer.
  3. you may need to work on places.sqlite rather than just using the bookmarks backups but let's try the simplest options first. The next step will be to try the places.sqlite in a clean profile with all plugins disabled.

Turn on telemetry, that sends data so developers are able to spot such problems see

IIRC at one time there was a warning that hangs could occur when sorting or moving large numbers of nested bookmarks. Have you got a massive library on one machine but not the other ? Are you saying you are seeing this in Firefox 19 and 20 but not Firefox 18, if so it is an issue that I may have expected to be already reported if it is a Firefox bug. Possibly it is more likely to be a problem on your computers. Some troubleshooting ideas to try # Install and run https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/places-maintenance/ on each machine #* that may sortout the problem #* it also has an option to generate a short status report, paste those into your reply # try swapping over the bookmarks on the machines ## backup the bookmarks twice see [[Restore bookmarks from backup or move them to another computer]] and http://kb.mozillazine.org/Backing_up_and_restoring_bookmarks_-_Firefox ## keep one copy safe and outside any firefox paths, and use the other as a working copy to transfer. #you may need to work on places.sqlite rather than just using the bookmarks backups but let's try the simplest options first. The next step will be to try the places.sqlite in a clean profile with all plugins disabled. Turn on telemetry, that sends data so developers are able to spot such problems see * [[Send performance data to Mozilla to help improve Firefox]]

Question owner

@cor-el I have a few hundred bookmarks. I am going to check the database as you have suggested. Ill post back later with results.

@cor-el I have a few hundred bookmarks. I am going to check the database as you have suggested. Ill post back later with results.
John99 971 solutions 13138 answers

A few hundred bookmarks will be no problem. Searching for a colon
:
and scrolling down will effectively list all bookmarks and display a total number at the end.

The addon I mentioned will not only display that and other information it will also attempt to repair the places.sqlite database if you run it.

A few hundred bookmarks will be no problem. Searching for a colon <br />''':'''<br/> and scrolling down will effectively list all bookmarks and display a total number at the end. The addon I mentioned will not only display that and other information it will also attempt to repair the places.sqlite database if you run it.

Question owner

Ok, tried a combination of suggestions from both @john99 and @cor-el.

What ultimately seems to have worked is in the following order:

  1. Exported html bookmark file to desktop (before attempting any database fixes)
  2. Quit Firefox
  3. Deleted "localstore.rdf" and "places.sqlite" from ~/Library/Application Support/firefox/Profiles
    (On a Mac, in the Finder menu up the top, click "Go", select "Go To Folder" and type the path ~/Library/Application Support/firefox/Profiles)
  4. Restarted Firefox (which automatically replaced "localstore.rdf" and "places.sqlite"

Now I'm manually sorting within the bookmark manager without annoying freezes :)

Thanks once again to both @cor-el and @john99

Edited format (Use the format icons & tags) ~J99

Ok, tried a combination of suggestions from both @john99 and @cor-el. What ultimately seems to have worked is in the following order: # Exported html bookmark file to desktop (before attempting any database fixes) # Quit Firefox # Deleted "localstore.rdf" and "places.sqlite" from ~/Library/Application Support/firefox/Profiles <br />(On a Mac, in the Finder menu up the top, click "Go", select "Go To Folder" and type the path ~/Library/Application Support/firefox/Profiles) # Restarted Firefox (which automatically replaced "localstore.rdf" and "places.sqlite" Now I'm manually sorting within the bookmark manager without annoying freezes :) Thanks once again to both @cor-el and @john99 <sub>Edited format (Use the format icons & tags) ~J99 </sub>

Modified by John99

Question owner


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Modified by p1553d0ff

John99 971 solutions 13138 answers

Glad we helped thanks for posting back.

The problem with that method is

  • using HTML as an export method loses information. Especially if you had tagged any bookmarks.
  • deleting places.sqlite looses even more information: all your History information. (Remember that the Awesome Bar uses that for suggestions)

Had you tried the add-on it would have produced stats including the amount of History information you held. Firefox gives precedence to Bookmarks. Some users do not realise how much they use History until they delete it. (Firefox does not back up History any where it is only in the places.sqlite database)

Glad we helped thanks for posting back. The problem with that method is *using HTML as an export method loses information. Especially if you had tagged any bookmarks. * deleting places.sqlite looses even more information: all your History information. (Remember that the ''[[Awesome Bar - Find your bookmarks, history and tabs when you type in the address bar|Awesome Bar]] '' uses that for suggestions) Had you tried the add-on it would have produced stats including the amount of History information you held. Firefox gives precedence to Bookmarks. Some users do not realise how much they use History until they delete it. (Firefox does not back up History any where it is only in the places.sqlite database)

Question owner

@john99 I had tried that particular 'add on' before I tried this forum for help. But for whatever reason it had not solved the issue…

Over the years I have found (at least for a semi-lay person) sometimes solutions do come from a mix and match of trial & error. That said, the solution of deleting .sqlite did come from an article in Mozilla Support. I missed mentioning one step in my previous post -- I did make a copy of .sqlite before I deleted it (just in case).

The tags in my bookmarks are all intact. But for future reference its good to know that sometimes html export can mess up tags. Thanks.

@john99 I had tried that particular 'add on' before I tried this forum for help. But for whatever reason it had not solved the issue… Over the years I have found (at least for a semi-lay person) sometimes solutions do come from a mix and match of trial & error. That said, the solution of deleting .sqlite did come from an article in Mozilla Support. I missed mentioning one step in my previous post -- I did make a copy of .sqlite before I deleted it (just in case). The tags in my bookmarks are all intact. But for future reference its good to know that sometimes html export can mess up tags. Thanks.
John99 971 solutions 13138 answers

Good that it is working again.

I was just trying to give you a heads-up about History. And also make sure there are notes about that in this thread for anyone else following these suggestions.

 Some users do rely over heavily on History and do not realise they are loosing it as a result of actions taken relating to bookmarks. 

The mozillazine linked article does explain that, & also suggests first of all trying the addon.

Tags will be restored for the bookmarks in your .JSON auto-backup that Firefox uses to rebuild your bookmarks. The HTML ones will loose tags, but I guess you did not import them, they would only duplicate the .JSON ones.

I have taken the liberty of marking cor-el's post as the solution.

Hope you are less p1553d0ff now. ;-D

Good that it is working again. I was just trying to give you a heads-up about History. And also make sure there are notes about that in this thread for anyone else following these suggestions. Some users do rely over heavily on History and do not realise they are loosing it as a result of actions taken relating to bookmarks. The mozillazine linked article does explain that, & also suggests first of all trying the addon. Tags will be restored for the bookmarks in your .JSON auto-backup that Firefox uses to rebuild your bookmarks. The HTML ones will loose tags, but I guess you did not import them, they would only duplicate the .JSON ones. I have taken the liberty of marking ''cor-el'''s post as the solution. Hope you are less ''p1553d0ff'' now. ;-D