Categories Firefox

Automate backup of your bookmarks in Firefox 3

Previously, we have seen how to save/restore your bookmarks in Firefox 3. But why not ask the browser to automate such a process? Thus, there is no need to handle this tedious process, since a simple configuration change makes it possible to do so transparently!


This tip allows you to automatically export your favorites to HTML format to a named file bookmarks.html which will be kept in the folder of your Firefox profile.

The path to such a file is as follows:



Launch Firefox 3 and enter about:config in the URL bar and validate.

Capture d'écran - Firefox 3, about:config
Screenshot — Firefox 3, about:config

Override the warning and copy/paste the name of the following parameter in the filter bar:


To enable automatic export, a single double-click is enough to tilt the value false (default) on true.

Capture d'écran - Firefox 3, about:config
Screenshot — Firefox 3, about:config

To reverse the trick, return the value to false.

Simple but effective, right?



Leave a Reply

  • Thank you for this precious tip.
    However, the backup is only done when this manipulation has been done or the bookmarks are saved at regular intervals?
    If it’s saved at regular intervals, then when is it? Every use of Firefox 3? Every day? Every week? ...
    Yes, I know, I missed an important detail, because I don't understand everything there. s

    • Papynano

      nice backup but lately I lost everything on my dd and with my wife’s page marks (I let you guess next) so I'm looking for a way to do either every time we leave or rather once a week an automatic backup of page marks on a key.
      someone more gifted than me would have the solution
      thank you

  • @agatzebluz: you are right FEBE is one of the most popular backup solutions under Firefox. I intend to present it in the near future, which will complement this series of articles focused on the backup/restore of profiles for Firefox 3.

  • Alain

    Interesting this trick for backing up the profile but if I understand well the bookmarks are saved in the Firefox profile.
    On the other hand, if there is a big crash and you have to restore the whole (formatting etc...), this backup will have disappeared.
    For this reason, I use Foxmarks Bookmark Sync which save my bookmarks on a server and that automatically syncs upon a change (withdrawal or addition of a page) or when Firefox is closed.
    It’s an extra security for me and she’s served me several times already. And it’s free.

  • Steph

    Interesting all this but nothing that works for me...

    I just want to avoid losing the added pagemarks while browsing when closing Firefox. However, this is the case with all blows ONLY if before closing I went through the menu “Marque-pages/Organise the bookmarks/Save”.

    > The about:config + browser.bookmarks.autoExportHTML does not work
    > Xmarks is excluded, I am against non-confidentiality almost (euphemism) mandatory
    > Febe does not offer automatic backup at closure

    And anyway I'm not looking for a solution to save/restore, that I know how to do it, I just want the pages I add do not disappear between sessions, without having to make systematic backups (I only do them when I consider it indispensable)

    An idea?

  • Steph

    Following my message not yet moderate... Maybe it would find its place in “6th tip”

    I finally found the solution to my bookmark problem that disappears with each closure: starting from the wording “browser.bookmarks” with Google. So thank you to the author of the trick that allowed me to find the “just word”.
    It’s here.

    and for those who will need it but don't speak English, it goes like that (for screenshots see at the top of this page, it’s similar)

    Launch Firefox 3 then type about:config in the URL bar and validate

    Override the warning and copy/paste the name of the following parameter in the filter bar:


    Right-click one of the values in the list that appears with the “user-defined” parameter and choose “reset” (e.g. browser.bookmarks.autoExportHTML)

    Note that the reset does not cancel your user preferences, as I later checked...