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Every time I open Firefox it acts like it's my first time

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Every time I open Firefox it acts like it's my first time. It asks me to log in, forgets any bookmarks I created, forgets the home page I set...everything. This computer is less than a month old; the first thing I did with it was add Firefox. But if it can't remember anything, I'll be forced to switch to Chrome. Can anybody help me?

Every time I open Firefox it acts like it's my first time. It asks me to log in, forgets any bookmarks I created, forgets the home page I set...everything. This computer is less than a month old; the first thing I did with it was add Firefox. But if it can't remember anything, I'll be forced to switch to Chrome. Can anybody help me?

All Replies (19)

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Oh, forgot to include: it not only wants me to log in, but makes me get a security code fom my email. Why can't it remember me?

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Hmm, did that just start recently after earlier normal behavior?

Could you test a new profile in case something is terribly wrong with your current one:

New Profile Test

This takes about 3 minutes, plus the time to test your problem site(s).

Inside Firefox, type or paste about:profiles in the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it.

Take a quick glance at the page and make a mental note of which Profile has this notation: This is the profile in use and it cannot be deleted. That is your current default profile.

Click the "Create a New Profile" button, then click Next. Assign a name like Oct2020, ignore the option to relocate the profile folder, and click the Finish button.

Firefox will switch your default profile to the new one. You can exit Firefox now, start again and test whether the new one has a longer memory through a few restarts. Any difference?

To switch back, if you like, use the about:profiles page again, and click "Set as Default profile" for your regular one.

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What security software do you have?

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To answer the second question first: the free version of AVG, the same one I had on the last computer on which I installed Firefox.

I also turned on the computer's firewall when I got it, if that makes any difference.

As to the first response, no, there was no earlier normal behavior. This computer is only a week old. I installed Firefox, and it hasn't remembered a thing since day one.

I will try all that stuff you mentioned and report the results.

Okulungisiwe ngu whatsitsgalore1

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Okay, I'm back. That text: "This is the profile in use and it cannot be deleted." is nowhere on that page. I even did a "find" for it in case I missed it. No results.

The closest thing is "This is your default search engine." Sorry.

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You did open about:profiles and not a page like about:preferences ?

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Oops. I did now.

Okay, I did all that. And there's my proper home page at last!

Thank you; I'm guessing everything else will be right now. But can I make a suggestion?

I signed up to get an email when my question received an answer. And I got the email, but couldn't find a link in it to the question. Or maybe I'm just too dumb to see it. But I had to go back to my history to find the question again. If it had been a day or two later, I might never have found it. Just sayin'.

Anyway, thanks again for fixing that. I never would've figured it out on my own.

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This worked great for 10 days. Today, the computer asked to be updated, and like a good girl, I performed the update. And now Firefox is back at square one, forgetting everything I set.

I went back to the about:profiles page, and there's the new profile I created 10 days ago, marked as "This is the profile in use and cannot be deleted."

Are all the hours I spent fixing the browser the way I want wasted? Are you going to tell me to start over yet again? Is this going to happen every time I have to update?

Okulungisiwe ngu whatsitsgalore1

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How many profiles are listed on about:profiles ? Can you go back to another profile that you may have used before ?

You can open a profile's root location via the about:profiles page and check the file dates in each profile to see whether it was used recently. The content of compatibility.ini shows what Firefox version last used this profile.

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There are 6 profiles on that page. I can open one easily enough, and the second-to-last has everything I created so far in it.

So how do I get this profile to be my default profile?

How do I get this profile to STAY as my default profile? Because I'm not doing this again.

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Okay I marked the good one as the default. How do I stop Firefox from doing this again?

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What names do these profile have?

Firefox 67 and newer use a dedicated profile for each Firefox installation and lock this profile to prevent other Firefox installations from using this profile.

If you are sure that you do not need these other profiles then you can remove them to prevent Firefox from using them. You can keep a backup copy of these profiles in "AppData\Roaming" if you aren't sure.

Best is to use the profile manager or use the about:profiles page to remove the profiles as this removes the profile in both locations (main/root: AppData\Roaming and local: AppData\Local).

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I deleted them all except one. If that works, then great. If not, if it doesn't stay, if it keeps generating more profiles, then that's the end, I'll go to a different browser.

Thanks for your help.

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What is the name of this profile folder ?

Best is to use a default-release.xxxxxxxx profile as this is the preferred name for the profile used on the release update channel. If you use a profile named differently then there is an increased risk that might create a new default-release profile in some cases.

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I wrote a message with the names of all 6 profiles, but somehow it didn't get posted. I don't understand how, but when I came back here, it was gone. And I already deleted all the profiles, so I can't tell you the names. Sorry. There was a Default, I'm pretty sure; definitely several named default-release with numbers after them. Best I can remember.

I can easily change the name of the last one to default-release, if it's important. Thanks for the tip.

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It is best not to rename the name of the profile folder on the hard drive. If you want to have a profile named default-release.<eight-random> then you can use the Profile Manager to create such a profile and transfer personal data from your current profile to this new profile.

You can copy certain files with Firefox closed to the current profile folder to transfer or recover personal data. Note that best is to avoid copying a full profile folder.

  • bookmarks and history: places.sqlite
  • favicons: favicons.sqlite
  • bookmark backups: compressed .jsonlz4 JSON backups in the bookmarkbackups folder
  • cookies.sqlite for the Cookies
  • formhistory.sqlite for saved autocomplete Form Data
  • logins.json (encrypted logins;32+) and key4.db (decryption key;58+) for Passwords saved in the Password Manager
    key3.db support ended in 73+; to use key3.db in 58-72, make sure to remove key4.db
  • cert9.db (58+) for (intermediate) certificates stored in the Certificate Manager
  • persdict.dat for words added to the spell checker dictionary
  • permissions.sqlite for Permissions and possibly content-prefs.sqlite for other website specific data (Site Preferences)
  • sessionstore.jsonlz4 for open tabs and pinned tabs (see also the sessionstore-backups folder)

You can use the button on the "Help -> Troubleshooting Information" (about:support) page to go to the current Firefox profile folder or use the about:profiles page.

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Jscher told me to rename my profile in the first reply.

Just to be clear, I don't particularly want to have a profile with that name, only you made it sound like it was important.

Okulungisiwe ngu whatsitsgalore1

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When the information stored in profiles.ini and installs.ini that locks a profile to a specific installation is gone then Firefox might create a new profile instead of suggesting the profile you used before if you used a profile with a name that isn't a recognized default-release.

You would normally rename a profile in the Profile Manager and not the folder on the hard drive.