Firefox Profile Cleaner

Martin Brinkmann
Aug 16, 2010
Updated • Feb 24, 2015
Firefox, Firefox add-ons

Most Firefox users experience problems with the web browser eventually. While most of them can be fixed easily, some appear to be resistant to troubleshooting.

Profile Cleaner is a new Firefox add-on that offers to be a last resort for some of those situations.

Update: Actually, the last resort is to reset Firefox.

The Firefox profile contains various files that store information relevant to the operation of the browser.

Problems can occur if the information that are stored differ from the information expected. This can happen because of various reasons, write errors, crashes, virus attacks or any other form of interruption or interference that directly affects profile files.

A common solution in those cases is the deletion of files in the profile. Many of the files in Firefox are automatically generated by the Internet browser if they are missing from the folder.

This ensures that the information stored in those files match the data expected, so that the browser can operate normally.

Profile Cleaner automates the deleting for the two profile files compatibility.ini and secmod.db. The two files are automatically deleted by the add-on and automatically created again by Firefox on startup.

  • compatibility.ini, Stores version and path of the application this profile was last used with. When the profile is loaded with an application of a different version/path, the XPCOM components registration process is triggered. This file is automatically generated and can safely be deleted.
  • secmod.db, security module database, stores PKCS11 modules

But who needs Profile Cleaner? Only users who are experiencing constant freezes, hangs or other problems related to one of those two core files. If a test reveals that at least one of the files needs to be deleted every time for Firefox to function normally then this tool may be used as a temporary fix, until the underlying problem has been analyzed and resolved.

Firefox users who do not experience those difficulties regularly do not need to use Profile Cleaner. The add-on offers a temporary solution for users who do not have the time for troubleshooting the issue.

Update: Firefox Profile Cleaner has been removed from the Mozilla Add-On repository by its developer. There does not seem to be a comparable add-on available at this point in time.

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Software Name
Profile Cleaner

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  1. Sep said on August 17, 2010 at 2:57 am

    Here’s another tool to help cleanup leftovers from uninstalled addons.

  2. paul(us) said on August 16, 2010 at 1:17 pm

    Hoi Martin, Thanks a lot for your tought about this Firefox add-onn. This Kristal clear explanation gives me the insight i needed about this application, that i hopefully do not have to use. But ferry handy this application when you need it.

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