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Back up and restore information in Firefox profiles

Mozilla Firefox stores all your personal settings, such as bookmarks, passwords and extensions, in a profile folder on your computer, in a location separate from the Firefox program. This article explains how to back up your profile, restore it, or move your profile to a new location or computer.

Locate your profile folder

Click the menu button New Fx Menu , click help Help-29 and select Troubleshooting Information. The Troubleshooting Information tab will open.

  • Under the Application Basics section, click on Show FolderOpen FolderShow in FinderOpen Directory. A window with your profile filesfolder will open.
  • Note: If you are unable to open or use Firefox, follow the instructions in Finding your profile without opening Firefox.

    Backing up your profile

    To back up your profile, first close Firefox if it is open and then copy the profile folder to another location.

    1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and then click ExitQuit Close 29 .
    2. Locate your profile folder, as explained above.
    3. Go to one level above your profile's folder, i.e. to %APPDATA%\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\~/Library/Application Support/Firefox/Profiles/~/.mozilla/firefox/
    4. Right-clickHold down the Ctrl key while you click on your profile folder (e.g. xxxxxxxx.default), and select Copy.
    5. Right-clickHold down the Ctrl key while you click the backup location (e.g. a USB-stick or a blank CD-RW disc), and select Paste item.

    Restoring a profile backup

    1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and then click ExitQuit Close 29 .
    2. If your existing profile folder and profile backup folder have the same name, simply replace the existing profile folder with the profile backup, then start Firefox.
      Important: The profile folder names must match exactly for this to work, including the random string of 8 characters. If the names do not match or if you are restoring a backup to a different location, follow the steps below.

    Restoring to a different location

    If the profile folder names do not match or if you want to move or restore a profile to a different location, do the following:

    1. Completely close Firefox, as explained above.
    2. Use the Firefox Profile Manager to create a new profile in your desired location, then exit the Profile Manager.
      Note: If you just installed Firefox on a new computer, you can use the default profile that is automatically created when you first run Firefox, instead of creating a new profile.
    3. Locate the backed up profile folder on your hard drive or backup medium (e.g., your USB-stick).
    4. Open the profile folder backup (e.g., the xxxxxxxx.default backup).
    5. Copy the entire contents of the profile folder backup, such as the mimeTypes.rdf file, prefs.js file, bookmarkbackups folder, etc.
    6. Locate and open the new profile folder as explained above and then close Firefox (if open).
    7. Paste the contents of the backed up profile folder into the new profile folder, overwriting existing files of the same name.
    8. Start Firefox.
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    I reviewed the latest revision to this article and it is looking good.

    Before approving it, I think we should also add information to the Easy Way section that describes syncing data to another device to cover the backup part of the process.

    We should also add information about the fact that add-ons aren't synced since this article covers add-ons backup in the hard way section.

    Thanks, Michelle

    After hearing from engineering about this, it is inappropriate to refer to Sync as a "backup". Sync isn't a reliable backup because a client could wipe it out by accident without the possibility of recovery. Maybe there is some other easier method of backup we could document, but we can't support Sync as a backup mechanism.

    I renamed this thread title based on the above.

    Related discussion:


    I recently replaced my desktop computer and downloaded Firefox onto it. After installing Firefox on the desktop I noticed that my bookmarks are no longer there. All the bookmarks needed for my desktop appear on my android tablet only. How can I sync the bookmarks from the tablet to my desktop?


    This area is a place for article writers to talk about amendments and suggestions they have for articles. This is not a support forum. Sorry for the confusion.

    Please copy and paste your question to the support forum:
    By using the link above, many contributors there are ready to help and will respond as soon as possible.

    Thank you for your understanding!

    Warmest Regards,


    In "Backing up your profile" section first we close Firefox (step 1) and then we open profile folder (step 2) by using "explained above" reference.

    That "explained above" uses Firefox (which we just closed in step 1) to open profile folder.

    So, I suggest to reverse the order of first two steps similar to this: 1. Open profile folder from Firefox 2. Close Firefox

    P.S. This error happened because we don't instruct to open the profile folder manually anymore.

    Regards, Sergiy