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How can I turn off Automatic Updates in Firefox 70?

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I am on a metered connection. Updates chew up my data, and I want to CHOOSE when to use that data for updates. There is no toggle in the configuration screen that would allow me to turn off automatic updates, and setting the preference via about:config hasn't worked. I am very irritated by this. It's my computer, it's my browser, and I don't like being forced to do what someone else has decided I should do just because they thought it would be a good idea. If I can't find a way to turn off auto updates then I'll abandon Firefox for something more user-friendly.

All Replies (5)

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You cannot disable updates. However, Firefox updates fairly rarely (only every 4-6 weeks or so), except for small updates, and if you don't skip updates they are typically only 4-8mb in size. If you skip updates, then they become bigger. So it's suggested that you never skip an update.

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I have been a firefox user since it's inception, and am highly disappointed in the fact that I cannot turn off automatic updates. I could give you a long drawn out explanation as to why this is a deal breaker, but it sounds like others have voiced this and it's fallen on deaf ears. Suffice it to say, there are practical reasons to turn off automatic updates, and the fact that you don't allow this is a direct violation of your assertion that your suite of browsers "Put your privacy first". If I can't stop you from updating software on my machine, how is that putting my privacy first?

In a free market society, the only real voice I have is my ability to choose, and I choose to no longer use firefox.

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Hi romanevilbox, are you referring to a desktop version of Firefox (Windows, Mac, Linux)?

Firefox has a built-in setting on the Options/Preferences page to ask you whether to install a new update (search for update in the search box built into the page). Firefox also has a policy mechanism intended for managed environments to prevent Firefox from checking for updates, even if you tell Firefox to check for updates. I'm not sure what research you have done, but if you want to use Firefox, you should search around a bit more.

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romanevilbox said

If I can't stop you from updating software on my machine, how is that putting my privacy first?

The automatic installation of updates has no impact on your privacy. In fact, it protects your privacy by installing critical security patches that will help prevent attacks on your system.

That said, as jscher2000 has already stated, Firefox already has the Check for updates but let you choose to install them option that prevents the automatic installation of updates. It will still notify you when updates are available, but you will be able to install them when you want to.

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Note that if you skip minor updates you may have to download the full version if there isn't a minor update available and the full version is considerably larger then a minor update.

If you use Firefox on Linux from the Ubuntu repositories like the OP appears to have then updating is controlled by Ubuntu software support and is outside of Firefox.