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Support for "Date first visited" for history items was removed from Firefox. What was going on behind the scenes to cause this to happen?

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  • Igcine ukuphendulwa ngu jscher2000

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Information about "First date visited" *was* available on previous versions of Firefox. Well, if I had to guess, someone at Mozilla thought it would be a good idea to exclude this information, and the problem is, "Why do that?" You can see the "date added" for bookmarks, yet there is no equivalent for history items. I am left with the disturbing impression that someone at Mozilla was thinking, "Why should you care about the first date you visited a website anyway? Is it that important to know?" Imagine if Microsoft no longer supported fields such as "Date created" or "Date last modified" in future versions of Windows. I'm pretty sure that would upset a good number of people.

Okulungisiwe ngu firefox86

Isisombululo esikhethiwe

So even though NirSoft shows that column on the page, the column does not appear in the current version? Since it is not a Mozilla product, I don't know that anyone at Mozilla could explain how or why it changed. Perhaps it's simply much less convenient to access in the SQLite database than it was in the history.dat file.

As mentioned above, it's possible to determine the earlier visit date still on file. For example, to see the earliest visit to the Google home page, you could run this query in the SQLite Manager extension:

SELECT url, title, visit_count, datetime(first_visit/1000000,'unixepoch') AS EarliestVisit, datetime(last_visit_date/1000000,'unixepoch') AS LatestVisit
FROM moz_places INNER JOIN 
 (SELECT place_id, MIN(visit_date) AS first_visit 
  FROM moz_historyvisits 
  GROUP BY place_id) AS FirstVisits 
 ON FirstVisits.place_id = moz_places.id
WHERE url LIKE 'https://www.google.com/' OR 
url LIKE 'http://www.google.com/'
ORDER BY url

(I'm not a SQL guru, so I certainly do not guarantee that this is the most efficient code.)

A screen shot of the result is attached.

Funda le mpendulo ngokuhambisana nalesi sihloko 👍 2

All Replies (13)

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Which version had "date first visited"?

Looking at the places.sqlite database, I am not sure that date can be determined accurately in Firefox 15. You can look at the earliest visit on record, but if that data is incomplete, there would be no way to reconstruct it from other fields.

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the change was probably made over 4 years ago, when the bookmark & history system was redesigned for firefox 3 and combined into the places.sqlite database.

https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Places/History_Service_Design

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Isisombululo Esikhethiwe

So even though NirSoft shows that column on the page, the column does not appear in the current version? Since it is not a Mozilla product, I don't know that anyone at Mozilla could explain how or why it changed. Perhaps it's simply much less convenient to access in the SQLite database than it was in the history.dat file.

As mentioned above, it's possible to determine the earlier visit date still on file. For example, to see the earliest visit to the Google home page, you could run this query in the SQLite Manager extension:

SELECT url, title, visit_count, datetime(first_visit/1000000,'unixepoch') AS EarliestVisit, datetime(last_visit_date/1000000,'unixepoch') AS LatestVisit
FROM moz_places INNER JOIN 
 (SELECT place_id, MIN(visit_date) AS first_visit 
  FROM moz_historyvisits 
  GROUP BY place_id) AS FirstVisits 
 ON FirstVisits.place_id = moz_places.id
WHERE url LIKE 'https://www.google.com/' OR 
url LIKE 'http://www.google.com/'
ORDER BY url

(I'm not a SQL guru, so I certainly do not guarantee that this is the most efficient code.)

A screen shot of the result is attached.

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Thanks! You rock!

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I noticed that if remove the lines:

WHERE url LIKE 'https://www.cicisvisit.com/' OR url LIKE 'https://www.cicisvisit.com/'

I get a fuller list.

Okulungisiwe ngu firefox86

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I don't know whether History is allowed to grow indefinitely; I do not have Firefox pruning my history, but there could be some routine maintenance.

I currently show 153,771 "visits" dating back to June 23, 2011. Dividing by 455 days, that's an average of 338 history entries per day. Perhaps I need to get back to work. ;-)

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It turns out that I was opening an older database before I replaced my computer last year. Now I'm looking at the new database. The list seems complete :) GREAT!!!

Okulungisiwe ngu firefox86

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Glad you found it. I forgot to mention that the (Select Profile Database) button is a shortcut to your currently active profile folder.

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On the WHERE clause, if you want all URLs on a domain, add a % before the closing ' mark. In other words:

WHERE url LIKE 'https://www.cicisvisit.com/%' OR 
 url LIKE 'https://www.cicisvisit.com/%'

Of course, if you want everything, just leave out the WHERE clause completely (as I assume you have discovered).

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You can of course also leave out the starting part.

WHERE url LIKE '%mozilla.org%'
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Count me in among the people who would like to see the first visit date and time a specific website was visited on in the history view (and bookmark) in Library in future versions of Firefox. Please add this column if the information is recorded in the places database anyway.

Here is another example of a query that lists all dates and times that a website was visited on.

SELECT url, datetime(visit_date/1000000,'unixepoch') AS Time
FROM moz_historyvisits, moz_places
WHERE
moz_historyvisits.place_id=moz_places.id
AND
url LIKE 'http://www.domain.com/'
ORDER BY Time DESC

Okulungisiwe ngu cor-el

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Hi Fractalogic, this support forums doesn't work very well as a suggestion box because of the volume of posts and the audience reading it. You can try the following to get more visibility on the proposal:

  • Help > Submit Feedback

You might also try recruiting any developer that created a useful history-related add-on to incorporate this feature.