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Firefox refresh

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I was asked to refresh my Firefox, because it started slowly. Frankly, I'm very hesitant to do so. Last time I did that, which was some time ago, I had many problems and it took some time to repair those problems that it created. What does Firefox help suggest I do? Is there still going to be problems once I do a refresh of my computer browser? Thank you.

All Replies (19)

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Refreshing Firefox {web link} is a LAST RESORT ! !

Refreshing Firefox -- easily fix most problems

If you're having problems with Firefox, refreshing it can help. The refresh feature fixes many issues by restoring Firefox to its factory default state while saving your essential information like bookmarks and open tabs. Everything else, like user settings and add-ons, are removed. Note: Refresh saves your old profile to the desktop in a folder called Old Firefox.

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FredMcD, thanks for your reply. Yes, it is running slow, and I have problems with Google Street View as I have mentioned before on this forum. Not sure if the two are related though? Looking at some of Firefox's fixes, they seem to imply a refresh would help. But, again because of the last experience of a refresh and how it caused a lot of problems I'm hesitant. Because the refresh was done quite some time ago I can't recollect the exact problems that were created. But, I believe I restarted my computer to a earlier time so as to get back to normal operation with my system. Has there been any updates to a refresh that might make the experience better and have no repercussions? Thank you.

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You can create a new profile as a quick test to see if your current profile is causing the problem.

See "Creating a profile":

If the new profile works then you can transfer files from a previously used profile to the new profile, but be cautious not to copy corrupted files to avoid carrying over problems.

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We still get complaints about Refresh.


Back up and restore information in Firefox profiles {web link} I use a Legacy add-on that makes backups of my user profile, Just In Case. Unfortunately, it is not compatible with the current Firefox.

Every now and then, open the profile folder and create a copy of the current profile as is to another location on your hard drive. This way you will have a backup.

If you do this each day, you will not lose much data. This should be done with Firefox Closed.

Note: In case you need to restore from these backups, you may need to overwrite old or corrupted files.

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FredMcD, thanks for your reply. Your statement,"If the new profile works then you can transfer files from a previously used profile to the new profile, but be cautious not to copy corrupted files to avoid carrying over problems". How do I know and realize corrupted files on my system? If I were to know where they are and recognize them, I would just delete them in the first place, and see how my computer works there after. Frankly, your comment " we still get complaints about a refresh is somewhat concerning. As I asked, has there been any improvements to a refresh. Does that mean evidently not, FredMcD? Thanks.

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sciencemagic said

. . . . Your statement,"If the new profile works . . .

That was said by cor-el

If the new profile works with no problem, we can Copy parts of the old profile to the new one. We will tell you what to do.

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FredMcD, thanks for your reply. Understand I misunderstood who sent the message. But, again, how do I detect a corrupt file to begin with? As I recall now, bookmarks, and what bookmarks I lost was the problem when I refreshed my system. I understand how to backup my bookmarks now and I have done that. The new bookmark backup is now a file in my documents folder. So, I guess? I could retrieve them there if I have problems in a refresh? Does that sound correct? But, before I try a refresh, how do I determine if a refresh is necessary to begin with? Yes, my computer is running sort of slow, but I have done NUMEROUS alleged fixes over time from possible virus issues to what ever issues and have not gotten any better performance with my computer. It is possible my old computer is just the issue? That is why I think it best to try and determine if my computer is at fault or not first, before I get too involved in trying to fix a non existent Firefox issue. Is there a way I can segregate a computer issue from a Firefox (browser) issue before I got far over my head here? My C drive shows 335 GB free of 449. Thank you one and all.

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Firefox would tell you if there is a file problem. Also, if the browser acts weird. At that point, you tell us the problem, and we can tell you what to do about it.

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FredMcD, thanks once again for your reply. Understand your comments. Being Firefox didn't contact me regarding a file issue, I can assume a corrupted file is not a problem. But, some time back, I asked why my Google Street View has gone sort of hay wire when I try and navigate the street view. This was not a problem in the past, but has been in the last few weeks or so. As I mentioned when I first asked about this problem, I do not have a problem navigating the street view when I go directly to Google Earth and then go to street view. Doing so, I don't go through the browser, Firefox. So, it appears something is happening with Google street view in my Firefox. I did try the suggested, as did another user, possible fixes to no avail. It seemed the issue just sort of died without any resolution to the problem. I still get the very poor performance trying to navigate the street view and the slowness in trying to move the location of the street view. In the last few weeks, have you gotten any more feed back about the issue? Thanks.

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As cor-el suggested, create a new profile and use it as is. Is the problem still there?

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FredMcD, thank you for your reply. I did create a second Firefox profile as suggested. When I went to Google Maps and then street view in the new profile, the street view worked just fine, the way it has in the past before the problem existed in my original profile. So, being the problem with Google Maps street view went away in the second generated Firefox profile, what can be done to correct the problem with my original profile? Evidently, there is some kind of problem with it? Thank you.

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You can copy certain files with Firefox closed to the current profile folder to transfer or recover personal data. Be cautious with copying files that aren't mentioned and installing extensions.


  • bookmarks and history: places.sqlite
  • favicons: favicons.sqlite
  • bookmark backups: compressed .jsonlz4 JSON backups in the bookmarkbackups folder
  • cookies.sqlite for the Cookies (you may want to leave out this file)
  • formhistory.sqlite for saved autocomplete Form Data
  • logins.json (encrypted logins;32+) and key4.db (decryption key;58+) for Passwords saved in the Password Manager
    key3.db support ended in 73+; to use key3.db in 58-72, make sure to remove key4.db
  • cert9.db (58+) for (intermediate) certificates stored in the Certificate Manager
  • persdict.dat for words added to the spell checker dictionary
  • permissions.sqlite for Permissions and possibly content-prefs.sqlite for other website specific data (Site Preferences)
  • sessionstore.jsonlz4 for open tabs and pinned tabs (see also the sessionstore-backups folder)

Modified by cor-el

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FredMcD, I've another question. When I created the second Firefox account, and it worked better than my original in so far as Google street view was concerned, but when I logged off of Firefox and restarted Firefox the second edition came up, not the first edition. Being all my bookmarks are not in the same order as before and I have to log onto various accounts now, how do I switch back to my original Firefox? Also, how do I switch from one Firefox account to another WITHOUT losing my original account? It was pretty handy switching from one to the other from two Firefox icons at the bottom of my screen. How do I do that permanently, or how can that be done every time I log onto Firefox when I open the browser? Thank you.

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cor-el, thank you for the reply. I guess I'm getting ahead of myself here? Was your reply concerning my Google street view issue I'm having with my original Firefox browser? If so, I guess I'm confused. Are you implying I can take Google Maps street view from the second Firefox I created and install it in my first or original Firefox? Also, as I mentioned to FredMcD, I couldn't find a way to get back to my first or original Firefox once I was in the second or newly created Firefox. Very frustrating. I found I had to do a lot of work to get some things to work in the second Firefox I created. Being I have about 400 bookmarks, having them in specific order is VERY important. So, I guess for the time being, I would prefer to stay with my original Firefox. Just would be nice to solve the Google street view issue I'm having with the original Firefox so as to work like the Google street view works in the second Firefox I created. Being I couldn't figure out a way to get back to my original Firefox, I had to restart my computer to a earlier time. So the second Firefox is not loaded in my system any longer.

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Since the new profile works, I suggest that you copy personal data from the old profile with the issue to the new profile. Copying the files I suggested above shouldn't transfer the problem. Copying a file like cookies.sqlite or prefs.js can easily transfer the problem from the old to the new profile, so you can leave out these files and test if the profile is still working.

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cor-el, thank you for your reply. Can you explain in detail, I'm not real computer savvy, how to copy files correctly? It seems you have 10 files you listed above to copy? If I were to copy those files, particularly the bookmarks, would all those bookmarks be in the order I have them listed currently? Being I have so many, it would take forever to reshuffle them to where I have them now? Also, as I mentioned, is it possible to load both profiles at once? Or, can I load a new profile and use it for it's intended purpose (having two Firefox browser profiles) showing in the task bar and then be able back to my original profile when I close the browsers? Last time when I closed the Firefox browsers, only the updated one was available. Can you help, cor-el? Thank you.

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For bookmarks and history you can copy places.sqlite and favicons.sqlite. You can also copy the bookmarkbackups folder with the automatically created backups. For the logins you can copy logins.json and key4.db If you also need open and pinned tab then you can copy sessionstore.jsonlz4 Those files are usually sufficient to get the most important data.

You can use the button on the "Help -> Troubleshooting Information" (about:support) page to go to the current Firefox profile folder or use the about:profiles page.

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cor-el, thank you for the reply. Using the "You can use the button on the "Help -> Troubleshooting Information" (about:support) page to go to the current Firefox profile folder or use the about:profiles page." didn't really help solve the issue I'm asking about. I understand from your comments I need to copy info as you stated "For bookmarks and history you can copy places.sqlite and favicons.sqlite. You can also copy the bookmarkbackups folder with the automatically created backups. For the logins you can copy logins.json and key4.db If you also need open and pinned tab then you can copy sessionstore.jsonlz4.

It seems a lot of info needs to be copied. I understand that. But, how do I copy that info to go evidently to a new profile? I just don't see a method or instructions to do so? Maybe I'm looking in the wrong place but I can't located how to copy or transfer the info I need? I guess I need more help to get done what I need to get done. Thank you.