Mozilla Suite : FAQs : Profile Portability

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This page will eventually be superceded by Roaming profile.

Profile sharing and roaming are not features of the current Mozilla 1.6 Suite (roaming is expected in version 1.8), but you can manually transfer most profile content between computers and operating systems.

This procedure is not for beginners. It's not an official feature of Mozilla. It's a hack that you should attempt only if you understand what you're doing, and only after you back up your profile.

To manually transfer a profile file between two systems:

  1. Create a new profile on the destination system.
  2. Copy the source file to the new profile folder, overwriting the existing file.
  3. If necessary, change the filename to match the designated file in the new profile (such as for *.s and *.w files). Alternately, create or modify the relevant file's pointer in prefs.js by navigating to about:config.
  4. When moving profile contents to a different operating system, change the file's line-ending format (LF/CRLF) to match the destination operating system. This is not an issue when transferring between Windows systems.
  5. If you are moving information/profiles between system - remember that all mail in incoming are stored in one single file. If you move/copy information from one profile to the other - you are at risk of overwriting incoming mail. Therefore - copy all mail in incoming, in the profile your are moving to a temporary, local folder - first.

The file pref.js does not transfer easily, because it contains absolute paths to disk locations based on the host operating system. Even transferring between different Windows versions is problematic. It is best to use the file created automatically by the Profile Manager, modifying as necessary via about:config.

See also

  • MozBackup: Windows-only utility for backing up and restoring profiles

External resources