Pike's Mozilla Firefox Add-ons

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Bookmark Backup

Get Bookmark Backup
Version 0.4.11

Bookmark Backup is a simple add-on that helps to keep your bookmarks (and optionally other Firefox settings) safe. Each time Firefox is closed, a copy of your bookmarks file will be made to a backup location. If Firefox's bookmarks become corrupted or lost, find the most recent uncorrupted backup and copy it into your profile folder.

By default the backups can be found in the Backups folder inside Firefox's profile folder, though this location can be changed in Bookmark Backup's options dialog.

Additionally, thanks to code contributed by Nickolay Ponomarev, other files may also be backed up along with the bookmarks file. You can specify which files to backup in the options dialog. Just check the box for each type of setting you want backed up, any other files can be listed in the following text box separated by a | character. Please refer to the MozillaZine Knowledge Base for details about what data is stored in each file.

Please remember, this add-on should be used in addition to a regular profile backup not as a replacement.

Note: Firefox 1.5 (and later) makes its own backup of your bookmarks, therefore this add-on is only useful if you want to backup other settings or to control where the backups are stored.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. Why is the backed up copy of bookmarks.html an old file?

Firefox 3 and later store their bookmarks in a file called places.sqlite, the bookmarks.html file is no longer used. You can confirm this by checking the last modified date of the original bookmarks.html file in your profile.

2. I have lost my bookmarks, how do I restore the backup?

  1. Close Firefox.
  2. Find the Backups folder in your profile folder (or in your custom backup location, if configured).
  3. Go into the sub-folder from yesterday (don't use today's backup, it will be corrupted). Copy whichever files you wish to restore into your profile folder.
  4. Restart Firefox.

If you use Windows and don't know how to perform any of these steps please feel free to e-mail me and I'll try to walk you through them.

3. Does this add-on work on Mac OS X?

Maybe, some people say it does, other say it doesn't. I don't own a Mac so I can't confirm one way or the other.

4. Why is there a bookmarkbackups folder in my profile? How do I disable it?

The bookmarkbackups folder is created by Firefox itself (this feature was added in Firefox 1.5). The two sets of backups should not conflict, however if you wish to disable the built-in backup you can do so by setting browser.bookmarks.max_backups to 0 (this requires Firefox 2 or later).

5. Will you add support for, timestamped backups, more than seven days of backups, less than seven days of backups, scheduled backups, weekly instead of daily backups, or backing up files outside the profile?

At the moment I have no plans for any of those features.

6. Can I use wildcards in the other files box?

To a limited extent yes, you can backup a whole folder simply by typing it's name (e.g. Cache). You can backup a set of files with the same file extension by typing *.extension (e.g. *.rdf), using the * operator in any other position will not work.

7. Can I use paths in the other files box?

Bookmark Backup supports primitive relative paths, use a forward slash (/) as the path separator. There's currently no way to backup files outside the profile folder.

Contributors

Release History

0.4.11

  • Added support for the latest Firefox 4 nightlies ( and above).

0.4.10

  • Updated the list of backed up files for current trunk builds ( and above).

0.4.9

  • Added support for Firefox 3 final.

0.4.8

  • Updated the list of backed up files for current trunk builds ( and above).

0.4.7

  • Updated the list of backed up files for current trunk builds ( and above).

0.4.6

  • Updated the list of backed up files for current trunk builds ( and above).

0.4.5

  • Updated the list of backed up files for current trunk builds ( and above). Thanks Tony E.

0.4.4

  • Updated the list of backed up files for current trunk builds ( and above).

0.4.3

  • Updated the list of backed up files for Firefox 2.0.0.2 and current trunk builds (thanks Alan Baxter and Tony E).

0.4.2

  • Added support for Firefox 2 final. Due to my lateness in getting the file to the translators not all locales are ready yet, if your locale is missing please check back later, I'll update the add-on and this post as locales come in. The following locales are included at the time of writing (): ca, cs-CZ, de-DE, en-US, es-ES, fr-FR, hu-HU, it-IT, ja, ko-KR, sk, th-TH, zh-CN, zh-TW.
  • Added a Korean (ko-KR) locale, contributed by Junyeob Kim of Mozilla Update Korea.

0.4.1

  • Fixed a potential backup failure when the bookmarks file can't be found.
  • Added a Brazilian Portuguese (pt-BR) locale, contributed by Pedro Failla.

0.4

  • Partially rewritten to make the add-on more reliable, additionally it now performs backups both at shutdown and every 2 hours. The backup interval can be tweaked by setting the bookmarkbackup.interval pref to a value in minutes, you can also enable/disable startup/shutdown backups with the bookmarkbackup.startupBackup and bookmarkbackup.shutdownBackup prefs.
  • Added a logging mode to help track down backup problems. To enable it set the pref bookmarkbackup.loggingEnabled to true, this will create a file named bookmarkbackup.log in your profile folder.
  • Added an icon, contributed by Thomas Bertels.
  • This add-on no longer works on older versions of Firefox, you must be using Firefox 1.5 or above.
  • Added a Catalan (ca-AD) locale, contributed by Toni Hermoso Pulido.
  • Added a Hungarian (hu-HU) locale, contributed by KAMI.

0.3.3

  • Changed the passwords checkbox in the options dialog to also backup pre-Firebird 0.7 style password files (e.g. 1234567.s) since people with old profiles may still be using that style of file.
  • Added an Italian (it-IT) locale, contributed by Giovanni Francesco Solone of eXtenZilla.it.
  • Added a Turkish (tr-TR) locale, contributed by Orçun Apaydýn.
  • Added a French (fr-FR) locale, contributed by Thomas Bertels.
  • Added a Czech (cs-CZ) locale, contributed by Petr Jirsa.
  • Added a Thai (th-TH) locale, contributed by Sampan Sittiwantana.
  • Added a Japanese (ja-JP) locale, contributed by Premier.
  • Added a Slovak (sk-SK) locale, contributed by SlovakSoft.
  • Added a Simplified Chinese (zh-CN) locale, contributed by bigbigbomb.

0.3.2

  • Fixed an issue with backing up whole folders from the profile folder.
  • Added a Traditional Chinese (zh-TW) locale, contributed by Willy Young.

0.3.1

  • The most common settings now have a checkbox in the options dialog to make it easier to specify the files to be backed up.
  • Each day's backups are now copied into a sub-folder of the Backups folder, this keeps the files for each day together and resolves the problem of files getting the wrong extension.
  • Added a German (de-DE) locale, contributed by Patrick Ruh.
  • Added a Spanish (es-ES) locale, contributed by Carlos of Proyecto Nave.
  • Removed the automatic install.rdf update link due to bandwidth constraints, from now on you'll have to manually check for updates.

0.3

  • Bookmark Backup can now optionally backup other files in your profile. Simply go to the options dialog and enter a list of extra files to be backed up (separated with the | character). Code contributed by Nickolay Ponomarev (thanks Nick).

0.2.1

  • Fixed some previously unlocalisable strings.

0.2

  • The backup location can now be specified in Bookmark Backup's options window.
  • Fixed the Linux permissions issue when creating the Backups directory.

0.1.2

  • Now supports the backup of a bookmarks file that has been moved with browser.bookmarks.file.

0.1.1

  • Bookmark backups are now stored in a sub-directory of the profile directory named Backups.

0.1

  • Initial Release.

Comments

#461 Pike

@hartmut

The version of Bookmark Backup on this site should already be compatible with Firefox 3.5.

#462 Dark Raven

Hey,

Firefox 3.5 said: This Version (0.4.10) is not compatible with Firefox 3.5.

Greetings

Dark Raven

#463 Dark Raven

O.K. I will download the 0.4.10 again from this website now my Firefox 3.5 is happy :-)

Thanks

#465 Holly

Mine doesn't seem to be saving the bookmarks. I created a new folder from the one I usually use to test it out (because when I went to check it out in the original folder I was using I had no saved bookmarks) and it created a new folder for Sunday (ie: I refreshed the folder after exiting out of FF and it came up), but when I go to the bookmarks.html page within that folder that page is completely empty, yet in Firefox I have tons of bookmarks in my list. When I hover over the newly "saved" file from the addon it tells me that it was last modified in December of 2008. I'm not sure what the problem is as I have the latest version of the addon. I'm running 3.0.13 of FF because 3.5 was giving me issues. But I still don't understand why my bookmarks aren't being saved properly. I have the folder location pointed correctly and as for additional files (settings) I have everything checked.

#466 Holly

Edit: Apparently this has been going on for a while because in my original folder all the folders (Sun-Sat) all are created/modified in 2009, but all the bookmarks.html files are empty lists with the exception of FF's original bookmarks and were created in December 2008.

I guess it's a good thing that the once in a while I actually go to the bookmark menu to edit/delete bookmarks that I also exported the bookmarks because otherwise I wouldn't have them! For whatever reason it may be the Bookmark Backup plugin just isn't working for me. I hope this can be resolved soon.

#467 Pike

@Holly

In Firefox 3 and above your bookmarks are stored in a file called places.sqlite, the bookmarks.html is a leftover from older versions (December 2008 should correspond to when you last added/edited/removed a bookmark with Firefox 2).

#468 Holly

Okay, but I don't get it. If I wanted to open the bookmarks up as an html file from how your plugin saves it (and/or how FF saves it I guess). How would I do that? I just tried to open that file you said that stores the bookmarks like I would a regular html file but it wouldn't open it. That's a stupid way of storing your bookmarks, imo. You can't get to them easily. I'm not sure I'm liking this new process. It seems more logical to save it as an html file so you can easily browse the file without having to load the actual file in your bookmark panel. So the only way I can actually save my bookmarks to an html file now is if I export them myself? The whole point of having a plugin (and it's not necessarily your plugin's fault if this is how FF saves bookmarks) but the whole point is to make them accessible at your fingertips - to me that is through html. Would there be any possible way to include a save as html option on your plugin in the near future? For now I guess I'll have to keep a post-it on my monitor to remember to save every time I add a new bookmark. I don't really know how to use this places.sqlite file. If I can't load them up as html then I don't believe their truly being saved.

#469 Pike

@Holly

Most people will only ever access their bookmarks through Firefox itself so for them this new system is neither better nor worse and it does have several benefits such as being faster and less prone to losing data.

Anyway, you can access the contents of sqlite files using the Sqlite Manager extension:

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/5817

You can also tell Firefox to save both the places.sqlite file AND a html file by going into about:config (type "about:config" into the location bar and then press enter) then finding the following pref and setting it to true by double-clicking it:

browser.bookmarks.autoExportHTML

The downside is that Firefox will take longer to close down since it has to save both files.

#470 Holly

Thanks for the addon link, but then that's one more addon I have to add just to view an extra file that I don't even want.

After I wrote that last message to you I found the browser.bookmarks.autoExportHTML on FF's support forum. Set it to true, but after I bookmarked the forum page I was on and exited. It didn't save that recently bookmarked page. My other bookmarks were there, but nothing else. I guess I'm in a lose-lose situation. If that config override doesn't save a newly added bookmark then I'm at a loss. My only hope is that I export every day, which will last about three days and then I'll forget I'm sure. I don't usually remember to do things like that.

I don't understand why no one hasn't written a plugin to do exactly what the export feature does except automatically. I would, but I know nothing about programming or plugins. That's not exactly my area of expertise. There's tons of addons on FF's website that are useless imo yet there isn't one to automatically export your bookmarks? Yikes!

Anyway, sorry for taking up your time. But I'm not sure if I will use your plugin now. It doesn't exactly do what I would like it to. But I thank you for all the years in FF2 that it served me well. Those were the days!

#471 Pike

@Holly

The browser.bookmarks.autoExportHTML preference only updates bookmarks.html when you exit Firefox, so as long as you don't leave Firefox running 24/7 you should be OK.

#472 pete

hi itt works with the latest firefox.
just turn extensions.checkCompatibility off!

#473 mistasparkaru

You could also import them into http://www.my-favorite-websites.com/ then you wont have to back them up ever again and you will have access to them where-ever you go and in what-ever browser you choose.

#474 Linda

OK, I feel like a real dunce about this and obviously need help. My files are backed up on Carbonite and I have restored them to a new computer. I can locate my bookmarks which is a .json file and I can locate the places.sqlite file, however, I cannot seem to get either of them to transfer. Well, I take that back; I can copy the file, but cannot view the bookmarks and when I click to open it, it says the file cannot be found. I previously used Firefox, but had trouble installing it on my new computer, so decided to try Google Chrome. I installed Google Chrome which has an option to import bookmarks and settings, but only from Internet Explorer. I have tried importing them with the bookmarks manager, but it doesn't seem to work. What am I not doing correctly? Thanks

#475 Pike

@Linda

I don't know how to import them into Chrome unfortunately. :(

If you can get Firefox working again then you could do one of the following:

With the .json file: In Firefox go to Bookmarks->Organize Bookmarks->Import and Backup->Restore->Choose File to restore it.

Or with the places.sqlite file you would need to quit Firefox, locate your profile folder* and then copy the old places file into the profile folder.

* http://support.mozilla.com/en-US/kb/Profiles

#476 Stephanie

This morning when I went to my computer, my ENTIRE history was erased starting with last May till yesterday. All my recent websites that I went to were erased from my address bar AND everything had been closed - open tabs, documents, outlook etc. I don't know if this is a website issue, cache cleaner issue or crash - but I need my history back. How do I retrieve my history from Firefox and prevent this from happening ever again???

BTW, I also had another browser open called Avant, and when I opened that browser this morning, my history and all recently viewed websites in the address bar were still there.

Since 10AM, there still is no saved history in my address bar of the websites I've visited today, and I've visited around 10. Thanks for your prompt attention to this huge problem I'm experiencing. Stephanie

#477 Pike

@Stephanie

I don't know why your history has stopped saving, you might want to check the Tools->Options->Privacy tab and make sure "Remember history" is selected and that (if it exists) "Clear history when Firefox closes" is not selected. There can also be a problem if another program is locking Firefox's history file but usually when that happens you get an error message so I assume that is not the case here.

As for restoring your old history, I'm not sure from your message whether or not you're using the Bookmark Backup extension. If you are then you can follow the instructions in FAQ2 above and restore the file called "places.sqlite" to restore your history:

http://www.pikey.me.uk/mozilla/?addon=bb#faq2

If you have a backup from another source then you can also try restoring the "places.sqlite" file from that backup.

If you don't have any backups then I don't know of any way to restore your history. :(

If you can't sort this out then your best bet might be to ask for help from Mozilla Support's chat helpers (when they open), they can go through this with you step-by-step over live chat:

http://support.mozilla.com/en-US/kb/Live+Chat?new_chat

You can also post a question on their forums:

http://support.mozilla.com/en-US/kb/Support+Website+Forums

#478 Vladimir

Pike, thank you for your excellent extension!

I've tried probably all the backup add-ons out there (after when my usual routine of manual backups proved to be wrong by a hdd). Tried all because couldn't find the right one - a lightweight, not bloated, and effective.

I don't have any questions or issues - such a boring user I am - just wanted to thank. Keep it up!

#479 Vin

My computer crashed ...sorry I did not backup my bookmarks (too late now I do) but I can access the data on the Hard Drive ..I can also look at the Firefox folder ..but cant find the bookmarks file that I need to copy & paste in my new machine .."places.sqlite" where is this file located in the Firefox folder so that I cud copy this into new machine ..
Thanks for any help

Vin

#480 Vin

My computer crashed ...sorry I did not backup my bookmarks (too late now I do) but I can access the data on the Hard Drive ..I can also look at the Firefox folder ..but cant find the bookmarks file that I need to copy & paste in my new machine .."places.sqlite" where is this file located in the Firefox folder so that I cud copy this into new machine ..
Is this file auto created by firefox? & retrieved from Firefox folder?

Thanks for any help

Vin

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