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something added many bookmarks deleting crashes firefox

  • 5 replies
  • 1 has this problem
  • Last reply by cor-el

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Something added about a bazillion bookmarks to my bookmarks toolbar. Trying to delete these, but even selecting one or two to delete hangs firefox for 3 or 4 minutes. Then deleting takes 2 or three minutes. How can I edit the saved bookmarks externally like we used to do in precious versions of firefox? Windows 7 32 bit. Not this computer - I am using my old standby windows XP computer while the other one is trying to delete bookmarks

All Replies (5)

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Your bookmarks are stored in a places.sqlite file, which is very difficult to edit. Your bookmarks also are regularly backed up to a JSON format data file which, despite being plain text, is very difficult to read and not safe to edit. So you are slightly stuck, but I have an idea. That is to create a new Firefox profile which will have factory default settings (plus your plugins), restore one of your JSON backups to the new profile and do your edits there, then create a new backup. When you return to your regular profile, you can restore the cleaned up backup.

I am concerned, however, that you may have a bad add-on in your regular profile that is causing this problem and therefore it may recur. But let's set that aside for a moment and try the experiment.

Create a new Firefox profile

On your Windows 7 PC, exit Firefox and start up in the Profile Manager using Start > search box (or Run):

firefox.exe -P

Any time you want to switch profiles, exit Firefox and return to this dialog.

When creating a new profile, I recommend using the default location suggested, and to avoid data loss, not re-using any existing folder. Before deleting unneeded profiles, I suggest making a backup first in case something were to go wrong.

Restore Bookmarks

First, let's get the path to your new profile. Open your newly created Firefox settings (AKA Firefox profile) folder using

Help > Troubleshooting Information > "Show Folder" button

If you go up a level, you should find both your new and your old profile folders. Click into your old folder and copy the path from the Windows Explorer address bar.

Back in Firefox, use the steps in the below article to Restore a JSON-format backup file from your old profile. After selecting "Choose File..." from the menu you can paste the path you copied, then drill down into the bookmarkbackups folder. If this problem just started today, it might be easier to go back to an earlier dated backup, but if that would lose too many changes you want to keep, go ahead and grab the latest backup.

Restore bookmarks from backup or move them to another computer

Backup Clean Bookmarks

Using the steps in the above article, create a new JSON-format backup, but save it in a convenient location such as your Documents folder so it's more readily accessible.

Restore to Old Profile

Exit Firefox and use the Profile Manager to start up in your old profile. Then use the restore process to overwrite the bad bookmarks with your good backup.

Does it work? Does it stick?

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Wow! Thanks jscher2000! What took you so long to respond? (Insert BIG GRIN here>. THANKS for the detailed instructions. I will jump on that shortly and report back. Again, a thousand thanks for your quick reply.

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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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Another user reported a similar occurrence today: what is nsTaggingService.js.

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