I take privacy and local storage of any private data very seriously and I've always set Firefox to delete all data other than "Saved Passwords" upon closing a browser ses… (meer info)
I take privacy and local storage of any private data very seriously and I've always set Firefox to delete all data other than "Saved Passwords" upon closing a browser session.
The last several Firefox versions, however, haven't been deleting "Site Preferences" and "Form & Search History" whereas the other fields seem to be properly deleted. Running CCleaner shows that the content-prefs.sqlite and permissions.sqlite (corresponding to "Site Preferences" and "Saved Form Information", respectively) have been propagating across multiple browser sessions. One might be tempted to think that perhaps CCleaner selects and deletes these files on a pro-forma basis regardless of their state. However, there is conclusive evidence that information is being saved across sessions when that particular information has specifically been selected to be deleted upon the closing of every session.
The particular information which I know is being saved is Bookmark preferences. In a fresh browser session after you've confirmed that all privacy data has definitely been deleted, typing the name of a site stored in your bookmarks in the address bar (when you have set the address bar to autofill from your bookmarks) will be history agnostic. What I mean by this is that if you have three bookmarks starting with the letter G - for example: gamespot, github, and google -, typing the letter G in the address bar will populate the autocomplete pulldown list with the three sites in alphabetical order. However, if you have repeatedly selected github and not the other two across several firefox sessions, this behavior changes. Now, as either Site Preferences or Saved Form Information is being saved across sessions, the pulldown list WILL NOT be history agnostic. Suddenly, github will appear as the first entry in the pulldown list upon typing the letter G, not the middle entry as alphabetical order dictates. Furthermore, running CCleaner after you experience this behavior corrects it; the pulldown list will once again be history agnostic and only ordered alphabetically.
This is the one bit of unwanted privacy behavior that I can confirm. I would greatly appreciate future Firefox versions correcting this and making certain that the chosen fields to be deleted between sessions are, in fact, actually deleted. I would also appreciate someone pointing me towards a trustworthy extension or userscript as a temporary relief. Thank you
Edit: CCleaner is deleting THREE files, not two as previously identified. It's after the deletion of these three files from the profile and none others that the unwanted behavior of remembering (at least) bookmark preferences is reset. The three files are:
Edit #2: It seems that two more files are modified but not deleted per the CCleaner operation:
It's likely that places.sqlite is the file storing the bookmark "Frecency" data. I manually deleted the three files previously mentioned between firefox sessions without using CCleaner. The bookmark frecency behavior still persisted between sessions, allowing me to rule out content-prefs, permissions and formhistory as the root causes of bookmark frecency.
Though I can see how bookmark frecency can be treated as a better-usability feature, I believe that it's privacy related and should also be under user control. Something for future Firefox versions...