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When I open firefox it tries to restore my previous session. A tab from my previous session causes firefox to crash, meaning I am unable to open firefox at all
I can't get into the settings as it crashes as soon as it opens. I can't close the windows when it opens. I can't do anything that would involve running my computer as an administrator as this is a work computer. Any suggestions?
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Sorry, it's really annoying when this happens. I don't think there is a handy bypass, but you have two options:
To avoid an unwanted session recovery, you could either modify a settings file or hide your session history files from Firefox so that it can't restore the unwanted page at the next startup. Here's how:
Step #1: Open the profile folder
Type or paste the following into the Windows Run dialog or the system search box, and press Enter to launch Windows Explorer into this folder:
You should see at least one semi-randomly-named profile folder there. (If you see more than one, you'll want to figure out which one has the unwanted session history in it by checking each one.)
Double-click into the profile folder.
Mac or Linux
Your Firefox profile folder would be accessible in a different way than on Windows. Please see these articles for information on how to locate it:
- Profiles - Where Firefox stores your bookmarks, passwords and other user data
Step #2: Your Choice of...
Modifying a Settings File
At startup, Firefox will check whether to restore tabs automatically or show you a list so you can make your own selections. In the most recent versions of Firefox, you may need to click a button to see the list.
In your profile folder, locate the file named prefs.js and open it in a text editor -- if you are running Windows, make sure to right-click > Edit or right-click > Open With to avoid executing the script.
By default, Windows hides the .js extension, so to make sure it's the right file, you may want to set Windows to show all extensions. See: https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/tutorials/how-to-show-file-extensions-in-windows/
Paste this on a new line at the end and save the change:
When you save, make sure to avoid adding any formatting (save using a plain text format) or changing the file name (you don't want to end up with .txt on the end).
If you're not sure it worked, you could also do the next option.
Hiding Session History Files
This is less convenient if you want to restore some of your tabs, but if you don't care, you may prefer this.
- Right-click the sessionstore-backups folder and rename it to sessionstore-backupsOLD (later you can mine the files in this folder for any important tabs you want to restore)
- Check for any files with these names and:
- sessionstore.jsonlz4 - created by Firefox 56-63 when it shuts down normally - rename to OLDsessionstore.jsonlz4
- sessionstore.js - created by Firefox 55 and earlier when it shuts down normally - rename to OLDsessionstore.js
- sessionstore.bak - obsolete file from years ago - delete
When you start Firefox up again, it should just show the home page.
If you need to read the contents of any of those hidden files, you can use this tool on my websites to extract out a list of the tabs: