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"Breaking profile changes" - how to move to ESR

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custom.firefox.lady
 
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Post Posted June 16th, 2017, 10:01 am

One machine that I've been wanting to move from beta to ESR, just updated to Fx 55. Only after it updated, did I see the release notes:
"Breaking profile changes - do not downgrade Firefox and use a profile that has been opened with Firefox 55+."

Ok, so what do I need to do now to move to ESR? I assume, create a new profile and import/transfer data as per http://kb.mozillazine.org/Transferring_data_to_a_new_profile_-_Firefox. But what is safe to transfer in this case? (I don't need history or passwords, but would like to transfer as much as safely possible otherwise.)

Virtual_ManPL

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Post Posted June 16th, 2017, 2:47 pm

It's because of Bug 977177 - move favicons blobs out of places.sqlite to their own database.
So if you will export your bookmarks as HTML file (as JSON backuping is bugged and won't save favicons), you will be probably safe with that,
but better backup whole old profile and start new one for ESR, with only imported bookmarks from HTML file.
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joeg

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Post Posted June 17th, 2017, 6:19 am

If you have pre-55 profile backup, I think you can safely use it with the latest ESR.

I'm pretty sure someone isn't going to like the advice I'm going to give you here because of the difference between the "candidate" and the "release" versions. If you're concerned, and if what I'm about to describe works for you, when the "experiment" is finished, you can simply delete the zipped-version folder and install the release version. Of course, you can always make a zipped version from the release .exe, a relatively easy process for which there are lots of instructions here on the forum. To be honest, though, I've been using "candidates" for years and have never experienced a problem.

Anyway ...

If you know how to use zip versions of FX, I'd grab this (assuming you want to use the 64-bit version and that you're using Win7, although Win10 should work the same):
https://archive.mozilla.org/pub/firefox ... 2.0esr.zip

1. Unzip it into a folder named FxESR, but don't open Fx yet.

2. Go into your "Roaming" folder or wherever you have your FX profile(s). Rename your current "Mozilla" folder "Mozilla55" or whatever.

3. Go back to the folder containing the unzipped Fx zip version, and double click firefox.exe. Fx ESR should open; if it does, it will generate a new "Mozilla" folder in Roaming.

4. Go to your Roaming folder and rename the new "Mozilla" folder "MozillaESR" or whatever.

5. Assuming it's in your "Roaming" folder, rename your copy "Mozilla"; if it isn't, copy it into the Roaming folder and do the same.

6. Re-open ESR. It should recognize your old profile, and you should be good to go. At this point, you might want to try to update Fx and your extensions manually, just to make sure you're on the latest version.

Last but not least, if you're not happy with the results, you can make a copy of your Fx55 profile, rename it "Mozilla", open ESR, put your fingers in your ears, and see what happens. The point is, if you have enough copies of your various profiles, you can never really irrevocably wreck Firefox. It's one of the beauties of the thing.

By the way, if you're trying ESR in advance of the death of Fx with the web-extensions concept to come in v.57, you might also want to have a look at Pale Moon. With about an hour's work, I've finally got it to where it's a 98% match to my Fx customizations.

Yes, "traditional" Firefox will live on in ESR till next spring, but I ain't gonna wait for the funeral. Proactive is better than reactive in my book.

I hope this helps.
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mightyglydd

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Post Posted June 17th, 2017, 6:50 am

Not sure if this is still the case but..
Only patches classified as critical or high are passed into the Firefox ESR. Patches that are classified as moderate or low are not added to the Firefox ESR.

Because you are not receiving all updates when using the Firefox ESR, it may be less secure than the release version.

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1117407

@ESR= Extended Suffering Release ? ..no thanks
#KeepFightingMichael

Virtual_ManPL

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Post Posted June 17th, 2017, 7:06 am

@ mightyglydd - It's still better to use supported ESR channel, than obsolete not supported 'stable' channel ;)
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custom.firefox.lady
 
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Post Posted June 19th, 2017, 6:04 pm

Virtual_ManPL wrote:It's because of Bug 977177 - move favicons blobs out of places.sqlite to their own database.
So if you will export your bookmarks as HTML file (as JSON backuping is bugged and won't save favicons), you will be probably safe with that, but better backup whole old profile and start new one for ESR, with only imported bookmarks from HTML file.
Thanks. I made backups, created new profiles and transferred extensions, searchplugins, and chrome folders, and prefs.js. Then imported bookmarks.html. Had to reset default search engine, rearrange bookmarks toolbar bookmarks, and temporarily switch back to the default theme, but all seems fine.

joeg wrote:If you have pre-55 profile backup, I think you can safely use it with the latest ESR.
Had some old ones, but they were older than I wanted to use unless really necessary.

joeg wrote:<snip long alternate method>
Not really sure how/why that is better than directly using Fx55 profile with ESR. Had several to do, and they were not in default location. Probably better off leaving some old baggage behind anyway.

joeg wrote:...if you have enough copies of your various profiles, you can never really irrevocably wreck Firefox. It's one of the beauties of the thing.
Indeed, and I figured there'd be a way.

joeg wrote:By the way, if you're trying ESR in advance of the death of Fx with the web-extensions concept to come in v.57, you might also want to have a look at Pale Moon. With about an hour's work, I've finally got it to where it's a 98% match to my Fx customizations.
Good for you. I've decided to move this machine to ESR and the aurora one to nightly. Will see how things progress and reevaluate next winter/spring. To each, their own.

L.A.R. Grizzly

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Post Posted June 23rd, 2017, 1:32 pm

Don't forget, there's always SeaMonkey! Until they ruin it as well...
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The Mechanic

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Post Posted June 23rd, 2017, 1:48 pm

You guys do release that these 'missing icons' are provided by the website(s)? And that - GASP - all you have to do is to go to the websiteto get them back?? :-)

Virtual_ManPL

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Post Posted June 24th, 2017, 1:33 am

@ The Tinsmith - If someone have many bookmarks, this could take good deal of time. That's why you use HTML option, not JSON, if you want to have favicons too with bookmarks when exporting ;)
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The Mechanic

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Post Posted June 24th, 2017, 5:20 am

If someone have many bookmarks, this could take good deal of time.



I don't know what number of bookmarks that you consider as "many" but I have 65 and to download all the favicons takes less that a minute.

Virtual_ManPL

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Post Posted June 24th, 2017, 7:40 am

@ The Tinsmith - I have over 80k, yes, over 80.000.
Most of them all only for archivisation purposes and probably won't be used ever,
but still, good luck with wasting time to get all favicons back when you will be using buggy JSON backup option.
That's why I mention HTML backup option ;)
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WaltS48

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Post Posted June 24th, 2017, 7:49 am

Still don't understand what is so important about favicons. :roll:

All I care about is that the web site appears when I load it.
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The Mechanic

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Post Posted June 24th, 2017, 8:39 am

I have over 80k, yes, over 80.000.


Wow! Really? That does sound somewhat extreme. But then I know people with emails going back years and most of those are old Linux friends with mailing list answers to problems whose software no longer exists. :-)

Aris

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Post Posted June 24th, 2017, 4:01 pm

If you see this after moving from Firefox 55+ to Firefox52 ESR, you might think your Firefox profile is broken...

Image

... but there is a dirty workaround to use your profile anyway:

  • go to Firefox profile folder
  • (backup profile folder just in case)
  • backup prefs.js somewhere
  • start Firefox
  • you will get the above error again
  • close window
  • open the newly created prefs.js in a text editor
  • delete everything and save file
  • start Firefox
  • Firefox will start, but your previous settings are not back yet
  • close Firefox
  • now delete prefs.js file from your profile
  • restore the previously backuped prefs.js file
  • start Firefox
  • Firefox 52ESR will use previous settings again

avada
 
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Post Posted June 25th, 2017, 1:11 am

mightyglydd wrote:@ESR= Extended Suffering Release ? ..no thanks


Because it's imaginary security/insecurity what matters? I think not.

The Tinsmith wrote:
If someone have many bookmarks, this could take good deal of time.



I don't know what number of bookmarks that you consider as "many" but I have 65 and to download all the favicons takes less that a minute.

Well I have thousands. Close to 15000.
WaltS48 wrote:Still don't understand what is so important about favicons. :roll:

All I care about is that the web site appears when I load it.

If you never used a bookmark you wouldn't

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