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Retreiving bookmarks after starting Firefox in safe mode

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

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A few months ago I started Firefox in safe mode ( I don't remember why because it was so long ago). After quitting Firefox and starting it up again I lost ALL my bookmarks and other settings (my profile). I researched how to find them again but it would not let me install the old profile. It simply refused to return to the older profile for some kind of security issue. Can anyone explain why this happened and how I can at least get my old bookmarks back?

P.S. The reason I didn't report this earlier is that there was NO WAY I could access this support area even through my account. I now seem to be able to do this so perhaps it was a technical issue with Mozilla that has now been resolved.

All Replies (3)

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Hi drwwilliamson86,

I am sorry to hear you are having issues recovering your old bookmarks and settings for your profile. I also understand it has been awhile since you restarted in safe mode.

Before troubleshooting further, I would suggest some related solutions by our valued contributors on the Support Forum :

My bookmarks have disappeared after I chose Safe Mode, why and how can I get them back? {link}

To make bookmarks toolbar visible :

  • Manually right click the library icon
  • Check mark Bookmarks Toolbar

By chance, did you click Refresh Firefox when restarting in safe mode? If you did, this would have created a file on your desktop called "Old Firefox Data" which you could restore some of your old data by copying the files over to your new profile that was created. {link}

Knowledge Based Article for Restoring bookmarks from backup : Restore bookmarks from backup or move them to another computer {link}

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Hi FancyB,

Firstly, please note I am using a new profile as I couldn't access the old one. I have re-built a lot of my old bookmarks and therefore don't want to lose them. I have also had to restore all the passwords to various sites that were stored by Firefox and I don't want to lose all of them again either.

My bookmarks toolbar is already visible.

Yes there is an "Old Firefox Data" folder on my desktop which I was aware of. (See attached image) Inside is a bookmarkbackups folder with nothing in it. There is also a places.sqlite which is supposed to contain bookmarks but when I open the file in textedit I don't see anything that looks like a bookmark. Please note here that I want to recover my old bookmarks without overwriting the new bookmarks. I would like to add the old ones and then delete any duplicates if necessary.


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You can check if you have orphaned profiles that aren't registered in profiles.ini and that do not show in the Firefox Profile Manager. You can check that by opening the current profile folder via the about:preferences page and go up one level (..) to see if there are unlisted profiles present. If you have found an orphaned profile then you may want to recover some personal data or restore his profile.

You can recover an orphaned profile via these steps:

See "Profile was moved or renamed":

Note you should never use "Choose Folder" to specify a folder that already contains files and that isn't a Firefox profile folder. Only use "Choose Folder" to recover an profile that isn't listed in the Profile Manager.

Modified by cor-el