Search Support

Avoid support scams. We will never ask you to call or text a phone number or share personal information. Please report suspicious activity using the “Report Abuse” option.

Learn More

Lolu chungechunge lwabekwa kunqolobane. Uyacelwa ubuze umbuzo omusha uma udinga usizo.

What are there different profiles? Why is "default" not the default?

  • 3 uphendule
  • 2 zinale nkinga
  • 49 views
  • Igcine ukuphendulwa ngu cor-el

more options

Today I stumbled on an issue that seems to have affected a number of users who care about profiles. The issue is articulated well here. It appears that a clean installation of Firefox results in the creation of two profiles, one called "default-release" and another "default" where "default-release" is the default. Ugh.

Can any user safely delete the "default" profile and rename the "default-release" profile to "default" to restore a simple, uncomplicated configuration? Why wouldn't Firefox do this by default?

I understand from question 1264072 that Firefox did this intentionally to support multiple installs and release channels, but why shouldn't the "default" profile be used by default? Surely a user who is not performing multiple installs or dealing with multiple release channels shouldn't have their profile names polluted by unaffected concerns.

Today I stumbled on an issue that seems to have affected a number of users who care about profiles. The issue is [https://superuser.com/questions/1507251/firefox-has-two-default-profiles-default-release-and-default-which-one-sho articulated well here]. It appears that a clean installation of Firefox results in the creation of two profiles, one called "default-release" and another "default" where "default-release" is the default. Ugh. Can any user safely delete the "default" profile and rename the "default-release" profile to "default" to restore a simple, uncomplicated configuration? Why wouldn't Firefox do this by default? I understand from [https://support.mozilla.org/gl/questions/1264072 question 1264072] that Firefox did this intentionally to support multiple installs and release channels, but why shouldn't the "default" profile be used by default? Surely a user who is not performing multiple installs or dealing with multiple release channels shouldn't have their profile names polluted by unaffected concerns.

All Replies (3)

more options

Hmm, I don't think Firefox 67 and later would have a reason to create a "default" profile. Could that be from an earlier installation?

Jason R. Coombs said

Can any user safely delete the "default" profile and rename the "default-release" profile to "default" to restore a simple, uncomplicated configuration? Why wouldn't Firefox do this by default?

You can remove unwanted profiles. Due to some hardcoded paths in a profile folder, it's better not to change the name.

To remove unwanted profiles:

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

The profile that Firefox is currently using will have this:

This is the profile in use and it cannot be deleted.

If you want to make a different profile your default so you can delete this one, you'll need to make the change and then restart Firefox to release the folder lock before returning to this page.

All profiles NOT in use will have a Remove button. When you click Remove, you should be given the option to also remove the files from disk (if you don't, the folder will remain but be removed from the index files Firefox uses to build the about:profiles page.)

more options

jscher2000 - Support Volunteer said

Hmm, I don't think Firefox 67 and later would have a reason to create a "default" profile. Could that be from an earlier installation?

It's not. On my macOS machine where this occurred, I installed Firefox myself onto the machine that was factory new in January of this year. Separately, in this comment, the user reported a new installation on Ubuntu with the same behavior (two profiles in a new install).

You can remove unwanted profiles. Due to some hardcoded paths in a profile folder, it's better not to change the name.

I ended up removing 'default' and renaming 'default-release' to 'default'. I hope that doesn't come to bite me. Probably the UI shouldn't offer a rename function if it's known to be unsafe.

Moreover, Firefox should figure out why it's providing this clunky interface (default name with irrelevant concerns, multiple profiles by default).

more options

There are several Firefox versions each with its own update channel and each use their own profile folder that have a name like xxxxxxxx.default-<update-channel>, where update-channel can be 'release' or 'esr' or 'beta' or 'nightly'. Only the Developer Edition has another name as the version already used its ow xxxxxxxx.dev-edition-default profile for a lot longer time.

You shouldn't rename a profile folder on the hard drive and there is also a secondary profile in "AppData\Local".