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Firefox not loading tabs from last session

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New User

Firefox not loading tabs from last session

A few days ago I set up my laptop from scratch after a long time of not using it. In the process, I set up Firefox Sync to link it to my desktop's browser. This is the only thing I have changed recently. However, after rebooting my laptop, I noticed that whenever I closed the browser and reopened it, it would not restore my previous tabs. Of course the options are set to restore my tabs from last time. Even the manual options to restore my previous session from the history menu are greyed out. And perhaps more bizarre of all, when I click the 'x' button to close the browser, I have to click it twice to close it - clicking it once does nothing. Firefox is the only application experiencing this odd issue.

I thought it was just my laptop and decided it was too much of a headache to worry about for now, since I rarely use that. I've been going about my business as usual on my desktop for the past few days with no issue...until I booted up my computer this morning and found the same situation. None of my tabs (and I had numerous tabs across multiple tab groups that I've been using with no problems for months!!), when I close and reopen the browser it still doesn't remember what was open when I closed it, and once again I have to click the close button twice for it to take. The 'restore session' options in the history menu are once again greyed out.

Everything else appears fine - all my add-ons are still there, and it's still recording my history when I open new pages and close the browser. It's just not restoring the tabs. This is extremely frustrating to me as someone who ALWAYS has several tabs open at any given time. At least on my desktop, Firefox says it's up to date, so that shouldn't be an issue (I thought maybe a browser update could fix it). Is there anything I can do to fix this, preferably recovering my previous sessions in the process? I lost quite a bit and I'm not too happy about that...but even if recovery is impossible, can I at least fix it so it retains my session history going forward? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

16 REPLIES
Regular User

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

Hello,

The Reset Firefox feature can fix many issues by restoring Firefox to its factory default state while saving your essential information.
Note: This will cause you to lose any Extensions and some Preferences.

  • Open websites will not be saved in Firefox versions lower than 25.

To Reset Firefox do the following:

  1. Go to Firefox > Help > Troubleshooting Information.
  2. Click the "Reset Firefox" button.
  3. Firefox will close and reset. After Firefox is done, it will show a window with the information that is imported. Click Finish.
  4. Firefox will open with all factory defaults applied.

Further information can be found in the Refresh Firefox - reset add-ons and settings article.

Did this fix your problems? Please report back to us!

Thank you.

Site Moderator

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

Use "Firefox > Exit" (Windows: Firefox/File > Exit; Mac: Firefox > Quit Firefox; Linux: Firefox/File > Quit) to close Firefox if you are currently doing that by clicking the close X on the Firefox title bar.

You can check for problems with the sessionstore.js and sessionstore.bak files in the Firefox profile folder that store session data.

Delete the sessionstore.js file and possible sessionstore-##.js files with a number and sessionstore.bak in the Firefox profile folder.

Deleting sessionstore.js will cause App Tabs and Tab Groups and open and closed (undo) tabs to get lost and you will have to recreate them (make a note or bookmark them if possible).

You can reset browser.sessionstore.* prefs that are user set (bold) to the default value via the right-click context menu on the about:config page to make sure that Session Restore is enabled and working properly.


In case you are using "Clear history when Firefox closes":

  • do not clear the Browsing History

Note that clearing "Site Preferences" clears all exceptions for cookies, images, pop-up windows, software installation, and passwords.

New User

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

Nothing seemed to work so I ended up resetting firefox to the default settings. I haven't even tried reinstalling my add-ons or anything yet - the first thing I did was change my options for startup to open windows and tabs from last time, open some bookmarks up, then close and reopen the browser. Every time I launch the browser, it shows me the Mozilla start page, and NOT my windows and tabs from last time. This time, the browser closes right away when I hit the 'x' button solving that unusual issue from before, but I'm still not getting my sessions restored upon relaunching the browser despite having that option selected after resetting the browser to the defaults. I'm getting quite frustrated...it's clearly not an issue with my add-ons or anything if it's still happening after a reset to defaults. Is there any way to solve this problem?

New User

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

Update: I uninstalled Firefox and removed all my user preferences from my appdata folder, both local and roaming. I did a 100% clean, fresh install, AND THE PROBLEM CONTINUES TO PERSIST. Regardless of my 'show windows and tabs from last time' option, it shows my homepage on launch. Furthermore after poking around a bit it seems I am not even given the option to create tab groups!! Something is seriously wrong that I can't even comprehend. I have not changed anything on my computer in months, and firefox is the only thing I am experiencing issues with. I don't understand why I never had any issues with it until I made the apparent mistake of setting up sync...but even now that sync is turned off, and I've CLEANED MY COMPUTER of all traces of Firefox and reinstalled it, why is this still happening?! I'm getting very upset about this now. I had already switched from Chrome back in June or so back to Firefox and had been satisfied until now. I'd like to continue using firefox, but if it continues to prove problematic I'm not going to have a choice but to switch to something else...

New User

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

Bump. I'd really like to know why a fresh install has not solved my problems.

Site Moderator

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

Do you see a sessionstore.js file in the Firefox profile folder?

You can use this button to go to the Firefox profile folder:

  • Help > Troubleshooting Information > Profile Directory: Show Folder (Linux: Open Directory; Mac: Show in Finder)

Note that Windows hides some file extensions by default.
Among them are .html and .ini and .js and .txt, so you may only see the name without file extension.
You can see the real file type (file extension) in the Properties of the file via the right-click context menu in Windows Explorer.

You can check for problems with preferences and delete a possible user.js file and numbered prefs-##.js files and rename (or delete) the prefs.js file to reset all prefs to the default value.


Create a new profile as a test to check if your current profile is causing the problems.

See "Creating a profile":

If the new profile works then you can transfer some files from an existing profile to the new profile, but be cautious not to copy corrupted files to avoid carrying over the problem.

New User

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

I had a sessionstore.js in the folder. I tried deleting it (well, I moved it to another folder so I could restore it easily) and launching firefox but noticed it did not create a new sessionstore.js even though, in options, it was still set to 'show my windows and tabs from last time'. I also tried removing prefs, and when I launched firefox it did create a new prefs.js file.

I decided to create a new profile. I deleted the old profiles and created a brand new one. Once again I tried opening some tabs and setting the options to restore my tabs from last time, and once again, it failed. I am utterly baffled by this entire experience. I PURGED FIREFOX from my machine and reinstalled it. I used the reset firefox feature. I've deleted and recreated my user profile. And yet nothing, no matter what, is allowing me to restore my tabs from last session. Despite having worked perfectly and without issue since June. I'm getting seriously fed up with this entire situation, but I don't want to switch browsers. I had switched from Chrome back to Firefox for the first time in years because of frustrations, I tried Opera which feels like a less intuitive Chrome clone, and no way do I have any desire to touch internet explorer. Firefox is the browser I want to use, but this is making it extremely difficult to do so!! I've even tried session restore add-ons, but not even those work. I CANNOT continue my most efficient workflow without restoring my previous session when launching my browser...please, is there any way to solve this problem?! I don't understand what could possibly be happening!!

New User

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

I have exactly the same issue that you describe above and have tried all the remedies you and others have described, including purging all traces of Firefox from my machine. Nothing works. In addition, I have tried to reconfigure Firefox's settings in numerous ways. Nothing, so far, solves the problem. This all started when I updated to Firefox 26. My wife uses a separate computer totally unconnected with mine and she has the same issue, again after update to Firefox 26. To make matters worse, we both have the issue of Firefox failing to show bookmarks in the bookmarks toolbar at start-up. This second problem is random and periodic, with no pattern to its occurrence that I can detect. Bookmarks (but not tabs or windows) can be restored by opening a new window, where they magically reappear, and closing the original window. As this is happening on two unconnected computers, I can only assume it is a Firefox issue, and related to version 26.0

New User

Re: Firefox not loading tabs from last session

It's reassuring to see that I'm not the only one experiencing these issues...but not so much to see there's still no solution. I've tried everything but I still cannot use Firefox the way I should be able to. Please, I'd like to return to using Firefox full-time...is there anything that can be done?