I was just looking at my backup scripts when I realised that something changed in Firefox 3. Browser information isn’t that critical to me, which probably explains why I only found out now. Well it turns out that in Firefox 2, bookmarks were stored in bookmarks.html. In Firefox 3, bookmarks are actually stored in a database file called places.sqlite, and not in bookmarks.html.
A plain HTML file like what Firefox 2 used to have is easier to work with because you can get all the bookmarks and export and sync with other browsers or other machines very easily. But I can see the use of a database file – it’ll allow things like tags and other metadata on top of your bookmarks that a HTML file would be hard-pressed to beat – not that it’s impossible, but it’ll win out at least in terms of efficiency.
Thankfully the people at Firefox actually put in a way to automate the whole process of exporting Firefox bookmarks to HTML still. So if you want to use bookmarks.html in Firefox 3, follow these steps to change the settings:
- Type “about:config” (without the quotes) in the Firefox 3 address bar.
- Click “Ok” when the warning message pops up.
- Type “bookmarks” in the filter, and look for “browser.bookmarks.autoExportHTML”
- You should see the value as false by default. To change it, just double click on it to change it to true.
- That’s it!
Now your bookmarks in Firefox 3 will automatically be exported to HTML, so you can use bookmarks.html on top of places.sqlite. There are limitations though – bookmarks.html will not have the metadata such as tags that I mentioned. Firefox stores your bookmark location in a particular directory, so to get to your bookmarks location, it’ll be in this format:
C:\Documents and Settings\