Making newer versions of Firefox work like a fresh install

About a year ago, I told you about how to vacuum Firefox’s SQLite database to make it run better.

The trick still works, but they moved stuff around on us in Firefox 7.

Now what you have to do is go to Tools, Web Developer, Error Console (or just hit ctrl-shift-j) and paste in the following long line:

Components.classes["@mozilla.org/browser/nav-history-service;1"].getService(Components.interfaces.nsPIPlacesDatabase).DBConnection.executeSimpleSQL("VACUUM");

The line ends in a semicolon, so make sure you get the line in its entirety. The easiest way to do that is to triple-click on the line. Thanks to Bill James for reminding me of that.

After pasting in the line, click evaluate. Firefox will appear to freeze, but behind the scenes, it’s working overtime. Wait for Firefox to recover, and it’ll run a lot better afterward with all that slack space dumped from the database. How often you’ll want to do this depends on how heavily you use Firefox, but I find I need to do it every 6-12 months.

2 thoughts on “Making newer versions of Firefox work like a fresh install

  • October 30, 2011 at 7:35 am
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    I’d completely forgotten that trick. Thanks. I’ll update the post accordingly.

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