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cannot download files

  • 16 uphendule
  • 3 zinale nkinga
  • Igcine ukuphendulwa ngu FredMcD

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A couple of days ago, my primary Firefox profile suddenly lost its ability to download files from a link. I can still do so from my other Firefox profiles, as well as other browsers (Edge, Opera, Chrome).

If I start this profile in 'safe mode', download function is restored.

Things I have tried with no success:

  • disabling add-ons manually
  • updating to FF 32.0
  • clearing download history
  • changing download folder to default
  • deleting mimeTypes.rdf

This is a Windows 10 machine.


Isisombululo esikhethiwe

All Replies (16)

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You can remove all data stored in Firefox from a specific domain via "Forget About This Site" in the right-click context menu of an history entry ("History -> Show All History" or "View -> Sidebar -> History").

Using "Forget About This Site" will remove all data stored in Firefox from that domain like bookmarks and history and cookies and passwords and cache and exceptions, so be cautious. If you have a password or other data from that domain that you do not want to lose then make sure to backup this data or make a note.

You can't recover from this 'forget' unless you have a backup of involved files.

If you revisit a 'forgotten' website then data from that website will be saved once again.

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I cannot download files from any link on any site, not just one. Deleting the cookies won't do anything for me.


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The profile that is causing the issue, is there anything different about it from the other profiles?

Type about:support in the address bar and press Enter. Under the main banner, press the button; Copy Text To Clipboard.. Now press the Reply button. In the Reply box do a right-click in the box and select Paste.

This will show us your system details. No Personal Information Is Collected.

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Thank you . The only differences are that the other FF profiles do not have add-ons. Here you go: Application Basics

Name: Firefox Version: 53.0 Build ID: 20170413192749 Update Channel: release User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; WOW64; rv:53.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/53.0 OS: Windows_NT 10.0 Multiprocess Windows: 0/2 (Disabled by add-ons) Safe Mode: false

Crash Reports for the Last 3 Days

All Crash Reports


Name: Adblock Plus Version: 2.8.2 Enabled: true ID: {d10d0bf8-f5b5-c8b4-a8b2-2b9879e08c5d}

Name: Amazon Assistant for Firefox Version: 10.1701.20.543 Enabled: true ID:

Name: Application Update Service Helper Version: 2.0 Enabled: true ID:

Name: Classic Theme Restorer Version: 1.6.5 Enabled: true ID: ClassicThemeRestorer@ArisT2Noia4dev

Name: HTTPS Everywhere Version: 5.2.15 Enabled: true ID:

Name: Multi-process staged rollout Version: 1.14 Enabled: true ID:

Name: Nuke Anything Enhanced Version: 1.1.1-signed.1-signed Enabled: true ID: {1ced4832-f06e-413f-aa14-9eb63ad40ace}

Name: Pocket Version: 1.0.5 Enabled: true ID:

Name: Privacy Badger Version: 2017.4.19.1 Enabled: true ID: jid1-MnnxcxisBPnSXQ@jetpack

Name: snoozetabs Version: 1.0.15 Enabled: true ID:

Name: Test Pilot Version: 1.1.2-dev-f3fe9bf Enabled: true ID: @testpilot-addon

Name: Web Compat Version: 1.0 Enabled: true ID:

Name: All Aboard Version: 1.5.7 Enabled: false ID: @all-aboard-v1-5

Name: Xmarks Version: 4.4.1 Enabled: false ID:


Features Compositing: Direct3D 11 Asynchronous Pan/Zoom: none WebGL Renderer: Google Inc. -- ANGLE (NVIDIA GeForce GT 730 Direct3D11 vs_5_0 ps_5_0) WebGL2 Renderer: Google Inc. -- ANGLE (NVIDIA GeForce GT 730 Direct3D11 vs_5_0 ps_5_0) Audio Backend: wasapi Direct2D: true DirectWrite: true (10.0.15063.0) GPU #1 Active: Yes Description: NVIDIA GeForce GT 730 Vendor ID: 0x10de Device ID: 0x1287 Driver Version: Driver Date: 12-29-2016 Drivers: C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvd3dumx,C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvwgf2umx,C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvwgf2umx,C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvwgf2umx C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvd3dum,C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvwgf2um,C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvwgf2um,C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\nvhdcwu.inf_amd64_b4551921048bc87c\nvwgf2um Subsys ID: 292b1462 RAM: 2048

Diagnostics AzureCanvasAccelerated: 0 AzureCanvasBackend: direct2d 1.1 AzureContentBackend: direct2d 1.1 AzureFallbackCanvasBackend: cairo Decision Log D3D9_COMPOSITING: disabled by default: Disabled by default GPU_PROCESS: unavailable by runtime: Multi-process mode is not enabled

Important Modified Preferences

accessibility.typeaheadfind.flashBar: 0 browser.cache.disk.capacity: 358400 browser.cache.disk.filesystem_reported: 1 browser.cache.disk.hashstats_reported: 1 browser.cache.disk.smart_size.first_run: false browser.cache.disk.smart_size.use_old_max: false browser.cache.frecency_experiment: 3 browser.display.use_document_fonts: 0 2 true browser.places.smartBookmarksVersion: 8 browser.sessionstore.upgradeBackup.latestBuildID: 20170413192749 browser.startup.homepage: browser.startup.homepage_override.buildID: 20170413192749 browser.startup.homepage_override.mstone: 53.0 browser.tabs.loadInBackground: false browser.tabs.remote.autostart.2: true browser.tabs.warnOnClose: false browser.urlbar.daysBeforeHidingSuggestionsPrompt: 0 browser.urlbar.lastSuggestionsPromptDate: 20161214 extensions.lastAppVersion: 53.0 font.internaluseonly.changed: true Tahoma font.size.fixed.x-western: 18 font.size.variable.x-western: 18 direct2d1.1,cairo,skia direct2d1.1,cairo,skia gfx.crash-guard.d3d11layers.appVersion: 53.0 gfx.crash-guard.d3d11layers.deviceID: 0x1287 gfx.crash-guard.d3d11layers.driverVersion: gfx.crash-guard.d3d11layers.feature-d2d: true gfx.crash-guard.d3d11layers.feature-d3d11: true gfx.crash-guard.status.d3d11layers: 2 gfx.crash-guard.status.d3d11video: 2 gfx.crash-guard.status.d3d9video: 2 media.benchmark.vp9.fps: 180 media.benchmark.vp9.versioncheck: 2 media.gmp-eme-adobe.abi: x86-msvc-x64 media.gmp-eme-adobe.lastUpdate: 1481496645 media.gmp-eme-adobe.version: 17 media.gmp-gmpopenh264.abi: x86-msvc-x64 media.gmp-gmpopenh264.lastUpdate: 1481496645 media.gmp-gmpopenh264.version: 1.6 media.gmp-manager.buildID: 20170413192749 media.gmp-manager.lastCheck: 1492815596 media.gmp-widevinecdm.abi: x86-msvc-x64 media.gmp-widevinecdm.lastUpdate: 1481496646 media.gmp-widevinecdm.version: 1 media.hardware-video-decoding.failed: false media.webrtc.debug.log_file: C:\Users\grenade\AppData\Local\Temp\WebRTC.log network.cookie.prefsMigrated: true network.http.pipelining: true network.http.pipelining.maxrequests: 50 network.predictor.cleaned-up: true places.database.lastMaintenance: 1492728445 places.history.expiration.transient_current_max_pages: 116509 plugin.disable_full_page_plugin_for_types: application/pdf plugin.importedState: true

privacy.donottrackheader.enabled: true privacy.history.custom: true security.sandbox.content.tempDirSuffix: {eed09596-2869-467f-8767-1a24ab5ffb2b} services.sync.declinedEngines: storage.vacuum.last.index: 1 storage.vacuum.last.places.sqlite: 1492186028 ui.osk.debug.keyboardDisplayReason: IKPOS: Touch screen not found. ui.osk.enabled: false

Important Locked Preferences

Places Database


Incremental GC: true


Activated: false Prevent Accessibility: 0

Library Versions

NSPR Expected minimum version: 4.13.1 Version in use: 4.13.1

NSS Expected minimum version: 3.29.5 Version in use: 3.29.5

NSSSMIME Expected minimum version: 3.29.5 Version in use: 3.29.5

NSSSSL Expected minimum version: 3.29.5 Version in use: 3.29.5

NSSUTIL Expected minimum version: 3.29.5 Version in use: 3.29.5

Experimental Features


Content Process Sandbox Level: 1

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It could be the work of one of your add-ons. Type about:addons<enter> in the address bar to open your Add-ons Manager. Hot key; <Control> (Mac=<Command>) <Shift> A)

In the Add-ons Manager, on the left, select Extensions. Disable a few add-ons, then Restart Firefox.

Some added toolbar and anti-virus add-ons are known to cause Firefox issues. Disable All of them.

If the problem continues, disable some more (restarting FF). Continue until the problem is gone. After, you know what group is causing the issue. Re-enable the last group ONE AT A TIME (restarting FF) until the problem returns.

Once you think you found the problem, disable that and re-enable all the others, then restart again. Let us know who the suspect is, detective.

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Thank you, Fred, but I tried that already. I disabled the add-ons one by one (restarting each time) and the problem persisted throughout that process. I deleted the add-ons one by one (restarting each time) and the problem persisted. In the meanwhile, I created a new profile and installed all the add-ons I have in my primary FF profile. I am able to download files from a link in this test profile.

I then copied the contents of the primary profile folder into this test profile (after backing it up) and was no longer able to download files. I suspected my preferences, since those are also suspended when FF is started in 'safe mode', but don't see anything that would affect downloading.

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Remove the preference file you copied, then redo them manually.

Let us know what happens.

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Did you try to use "Forget About This Site" like I suggested above since you wrote that only this website is affected?

You can try to rename permissions.sqlite to see if that has effect.

When you use extensions ("3-bar" menu button# or Tools -> Add-ons -> Extensions) that can block content (e.g. Adblock Plus, NoScript, Flash Block, Ghostery) then make sure such extensions do not block content. There is security software that can interfere with loading content, so check that as well.

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Cor-el, I am unable to download from any web site, even ones I have never visited (where I have no cookies). I did perform 'forget abut this site' on the ones I normally download from, and that didn't wiork either.

Fred, Do you mean prefs.js? I don't have a user.js file

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Fred, I deleted prefs.js and restarted. Before even modifying any setting, /i tried to download a file and could not.

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I renamed permissions.sqlite then started the profile. I still cannot download files.

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If the new profile worked without making modifications then try another new profile, but this time only copy one file at the time and check if it works and do not install extensions for now.

You can copy files like these to the current Firefox profile folder to recover specific data. Be cautious with copying SQLite databases if you had specific problems.

  • bookmarks and history: places.sqlite
  • bookmark backups: JSON backups in the bookmarkbackups folder
  • cookies.sqlite (cookies)
  • formhistory.sqlite (saved form data)
  • logins.json and key3.db (decryption key) for Passwords saved in the Password Manager
  • cert8.db and possibly cert_override.txt for (intermediate) certificates stored in the Certificate Manager
  • persdict.dat for words you added to the spelling checker dictionary
  • sessionstore.js for open tabs and pinned tabs and tab groups

Be cautious with cookies.sqlite and prefs.js and files that store site specific data like these two.

  • permissions.sqlite for Permissions and possibly content-prefs.sqlite for other Site Preferences
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Alright. I created a new profile and copied the files from the primary folder into it, testing the download capability successfully after each copy. I then moved the folders that weren't related to add-ons one by one, and tested the download capability successfully after each copy. I then began installing my add-ons, and tested the download capability successfully after each copy. The only things left are the plug-ins (OpenH264, and widevine; Shockwave installed itself at profile creation). They "will be installed shortly" according to the add-ons manager.

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Isisombululo Esikhethiwe

So far, so good.

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Alright, the new profile is up and running with all my extensions and preferred settings. I also refreshed the 'bad' profile with a copy from my backup drive. That also now downloads anything I try.

It would have been nice to know what became corrupted/incompatible, but I'm going to move on.

Thanks for your input.

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Glad to help. Safe Surfing.

These add-ons can be a great help by backing up and restoring Firefox FEBE (Firefox Environment Backup Extension)

FEBE allows you to quickly and easily backup your Firefox extensions, history, passwords, and more. In fact, it goes beyond just backing up -- It will actually rebuild your saved files individually into installable .xpi files. It will also make backups of files that you choose. OPIE

Import/Export extension preferences