Firefox saves your personal information such as bookmarks, passwords, and user preferences in a set of files called your profile, which is stored in a separate location from the Firefox program files. You can have multiple Firefox profiles, each containing a separate set of user information. The Profile Manager allows you to create, remove, rename, and switch profiles.

Note: You normally don't need to create a new Firefox profile unless you are troubleshooting a specific problem with Firefox.

Note: The Refresh Firefox feature can fix many issues by restoring Firefox to its factory default state while saving your essential information. Consider using it before going through a lengthy troubleshooting process.

Table of Contents

Starting the Profile Manager

Important: Before you can start the Profile Manager, Firefox must be completely closed.

  1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and then click Exit Close 29

  2. Press Windows Key R (click the Windows Start button and select Run... on Windows XP).
  3. In the Run dialog box, type in:
    firefox.exe -p
  4. Click OK.
Note: If the Profile Manager window does not appear, you may need to specify the full path of the Firefox program, enclosed in quotes; for example:
  • On 32-bit Windows: "C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe" -p
  • On 64-bit Windows: "C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe" -p


If the Profile Manager window does not open, Firefox may have been running in the background, even though it was not visible. Close all instances of Firefox or restart the computer and then try again.

Creating a profile

  1. To start the Create Profile Wizard, click Create Profile... in the Profile Manager.
  2. Click Next and enter the name of the profile. Use a profile name that is descriptive, such as your personal name. This name is not exposed on the Internet. 

  3. You can also choose where to store the profile on your computer. To choose its storage location, click Choose Folder....

    Warning: If you choose your own folder location for the profile, select a new or empty folder. If you choose a folder that isn't empty and you later remove the profile and choose the "Delete Files" option, everything inside that folder will be deleted.

  4. To create the new profile, click Finish.

Removing a profile

  1. In the Profile Manager, select the profile to remove, and click Delete Profile....
  2. Confirm that you wish to delete the profile: 

    • Don't Delete Files removes the profile from the Profile Manager yet retains the profile data files on your computer in the storage folder, so that your information is not lost. "Don't Delete Files" is the preferred option because it saves the old profile's folder and allows you to recover the files to a new profile.
    • Delete Files removes the profile and its files, including the profile bookmarks, settings, passwords, etc.

      Warning: If you use the "Delete Files" option, the profile folder and files will be deleted. This action cannot be undone.

    • Cancel interrupts the profile deletion.

Renaming a profile

  1. In the Profile Manager, select the profile to rename, and then click Rename Profile....
  2. Enter the new name for the profile. Type in the new profile name, and click on OK.
    • Note: The folder containing the files for the profile is not renamed.


Work Offline

Choosing this option loads the selected profile and starts Firefox without connecting to the Internet. You can view previously viewed web pages and experiment with your profile.

Don't ask at startup

If you have multiple profiles, Firefox prompts you for the profile to use each time you start Firefox. Select this option to allow Firefox to load the selected profile without prompting at startup.

  • To access other profiles after selecting this option, you must start the Profile Manager first.

Moving a profile

To copy all of your Firefox data and settings to another Firefox installation (e.g. when you get a new computer), you need to make a backup of your Firefox profile, then restore it in your new location.

Recovering information from an old profile

If you have important information from an old Firefox profile, such as bookmarks, passwords, or user preferences, you can transfer that information to a new Firefox profile by copying the associated files.

Share this article: