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Re: [tor-talk] copying old profile to new Aurora not working

On 11/29/2011 3:12 PM, Joe Btfsplk wrote:
1st, I guess some default settings in Aurora are actually stored in prefs.js (as in USER set prefs)? If so, meaning the user prefs file isn't only user prefs - it has prefs set by Aurora devs?

Re: shooting myself in the foot. Maybe there's an issue w/ the prefs.js file - as mentioned - by copying the old prefs.js file into the new Aurora, which would be a valid concern.

There may be a good reason to extract newer versions the way you suggest because of prefs changes, but answering your question, most prefs I want to preserve are ones made by extensions. I also don't use NoScript default settings, exactly as they come in Aurora. There could be a white list of sites in NoScript, (for ex.), which might get wiped out if I just extract the new TBB over old one??? A few other similar situations. This is an issue for me because stock Aurora doesn't block ads, or web trackers, block referrer headers or a # of other things.

I'm willing to try it your way, if it's not going to wipe out all extensions prefs / settings. Ignoring the prefs issue you mentioned for the moment, I still don't see why copying the old profile into the new TBB profile folder shouldn't work (has in the past). Again, maybe it's not a good idea because of what you mentioned.

I take it you're saying if users extract a new TBB into the earlier TBB version's folder, it WON'T wipe out extensions, their prefs, search plugins, etc., that you've already custom installed? I think what it'll do is completely replace the previous prefs.js w/ all custom settings from extension. If it overwrites any extensions' prefs, they'd have to be uninstalled / reinstalled.

But, as far as copying / restoring an older profile into a new Firefox (or just setting an older profile as default to use in new FF ver), that is an acceptable practice - even w/ Mozilla KBs how to do it (ignoring for the moment any issue w/ Aurora's prefs.js file). It may be easier to allow a new ver to overwrite the old program files (assuming it doesn't mess them up as it sometimes does).

Since Aurora is just extracting vs installing, I didn't know how it would affect extensions, plugins (and user prefs) that were already installed in the previous TBB version. An upgrade of Firefox automatically uses the old profile (even if installed to new folder), unless told otherwise. It doesn't (normally) even touch the old profile. In Firefox, it's easy just to tell it which profile (an older one) to use. In Aurora, the profile is self contained w/ prgm files.


On 11/29/2011 2:09 PM, Mike Perry wrote:
You're still doing it wrong, man.

As I said the last time you shot yourself in the foot doing this
copying the wrong way

I would recommend just overwriting your old TBB dir with the new data.
   Sometimes we change prefs+create new ones, which could cause bugs for
   you when you copy old-over-new.

If there are a lot of prefs you need to change, you (or we) might also
   be doing it wrong. Might I ask which ones you need to keep?

I tried extracting the newer TBB 2.2.34-3 into the folder of the older version. It didn't wipe out extensions completely, but as I expected, it over wrote all the extensions' preferences stored in prefs.js. So, all would need setting their preferences again. On some, this is a requirement - not personal choice. You must set the prefs - often from a home page, before using the extensions.

Not sure what all prefs the TBB devs are putting in the prefs.js file, but I don't really want to reconfigure my / the extensions' prefs every few weeks, as Mozilla releases new versions, leading to new TBB versions. I'm not sure why in NoScript, scripts are allowed globally by default or accept cookies for all sites would be enabled by default, but those & a few customizations in the browser are * some * other prefs I want to save. Also don't want to look at ads / waste bandwidth w/ Tor or have trackers following me around, websites tracking me from one to another, which is why I install the extensions. I guess TBB devs never expected anyone to use extensions other than the ones they install in Aurora.

It may be a standoff between needs of developers & a great deal of inconvenience, reconfiguring extensions after every TBB release. Seems maybe there needs to be another file to control the users' actual prefs & one for TBB devs' prefs to control Aurora to preserve anonymity / make it work correctly.

BTW, copying an old profile into new TBB profile folder does work, if you don't accidentally copy it to wrong folder. That doesn't solve the issue Mike brought up earlier about developers changes being made in the prefs.js file.
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