Roaming profiles - SeaMonkey

From MozillaZine Knowledge Base

A roaming profile is a collection of user settings which can be seamlessly shared between different machines or applications, or different instances of the same application. This can be useful for users who wish to work in a familiar environment regardless of the specific machine or application used, and who have personal data to which they always wish access. SeaMonkey (all 1.x versions since 1.0) includes has support for roaming profiles via File Copy, HTTP and FTP, although this feature is buggy at present.

Note that other Mozilla applications do not currently support roaming profiles as a program feature. As an alternative, you can approximate roaming profiles or share a fixed profile. See this article for details.


Setting up a SeaMonkey roaming profile

The "Roaming" component must be installed, either by selecting it in a Custom setup or by installing SeaMonkey using the "Complete" setup. Roaming profiles can be stored on a HTTP or FTP server. You will need a user name and password on that server, so that you can have write access to the appropriate directory for storing and retrieving your profile. Alternatively, for computers that use a common file share, you can store the profile in a local directory using the Copy method. Once remote profile storage is enabled, selected profile data is uploaded whenever you shutdown SeaMonkey and profile data is downloaded whenever you start SeaMonkey.

Warning! The roaming profile feature is buggy at present (December 2007) and is usable only in certain limited circumstances. Enabling this feature may prevent SeaMonkey from properly starting up. Since roaming settings in SeaMonkey 1.x are stored in the Mozilla profile registry (registry.dat [1] [2]) and not in the SeaMonkey profile folder itself, deleting the profile from the Profile Manager and creating a new profile may be necessary if SeaMonkey won't start [3][4] (choose the "Don't Delete Files" option when deleting the profile and then transfer the data to the new profile).

The following instructions are taken from the SeaMonkey Help Contents under Roaming Profiles, where additional information can be found.

Enabling the roaming profile feature

  1. Open the SeaMonkey Edit menu and choose Preferences.
  2. Click on the Roaming User category.
  3. Select "Enable remote profile storage" to activate roaming for the current profile.
  4. Select one of the following.
    Note: "File Copy" can be selected instead of "HTTP / FTP" via the drop-down menu.
    • HTTP / FTP: Choose this if you wish to have the profile information copied to a FTP or HTTP server.
      • Base URL: Type the URL of the directory where the roaming profile will be stored. This can be an FTP, HTTP or HTTPS URL. FTP is probably easiest to set up on a home network. In other cases, especially when transmitting over the Internet, it is strongly recommended to use HTTPS, because otherwise, all your saved passwords and bookmarks (depending on your Item Selection) might be read by other people on the same network. Examples:
      • Username: Type the user name that will be used to access the FTP or HTTP server.
      • Save password: Enable this option to save the password for the user name that you have supplied.
      • Password: Type the password for the user name that you supplied.
    • File Copy: Choose this if you wish to have the profile information copied to a local directory.
      • Click Browse and select the directory where you wish the profile information to be copied to and retrieved from.

Roaming User Item selection

' By default, only bookmarks, cookies, and the personal addressbook are stored on the roaming server. If all items are greyed out, make sure to have Roaming enabled.To enable or disable roaming of other profile informations, follow these steps:

  1. Open the SeaMonkey Edit menu and choose Preferences.
  2. Under the Roaming User category, click Item Selection. (If no subcategories are visible, double-click Roaming User to expand the list.)
  3. Select the items that you wish to be included in the roaming profile synchronization.


You cannot roam your local email, partly because that would take too long. Use IMAP for this purpose. Note: If you are using a slow connection, be aware that some files can be quite large, so this will impact your startup time. SeaMonkey will have to download locally all of the files you selected from the list before being fully functional, and save them back to the remote server when you exit SeaMonkey.

Related bug reports