CyberNotes
Web Browser Wednesday
  How To Upgrade Your Portable FirefoxPortable Firefox (now known to the world as Firefox Portable) makes it easy to always take a great Web browser with you. Besides for the usefulness of portability users can also use it to test experimental builds without fear of losing their existing settings, passwords, and bookmarks. John Haller recently updated Portable Firefox to the most recent builds but before that I frequently received requests from people to update the build for them. It is actually super easy to do and so I thought I would walk you through the few steps that you need to do in order to upgrade Firefox builds yourself. The first option that I will recommend is going to your Help menu and selecting “Check For Updates.” The new version of Portable Firefox supports the partial updates for Firefox but previous versions will still be able to update properly. The older versions will normally have to download the entire Firefox file which is around 7MB instead of being able to download a small patch that is just 400KB. If checking for updates doesn’t work then you can just do it manually. It really isn’t difficult to do and the funny thing is that an extra step is required for versions of Firefox that have been released. It is a little easier for the test builds of Firefox that are released every night. –Instructions for Released Builds–
  1. Download the released version of Firefox that you want to run unless you have already installed that version on a computer. If you have installed it then skip to step 3.
  2. You have to install Firefox because Mozilla doesn’t offer a ZIP version of builds they release.
  3. Download Portable Firefox (argh, I just can’t get use to the Firefox Portable name so excuse me if I don’t say the proper name throughout the article). Extract the contents wherever you would like.
  4. Find the installation folder of Firefox which is “C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox” by default. Just right-click on the Mozilla Firefox folder and select “Copy”.

    Portable Firefox




  5. Browse to where you extracted Portable Firefox and open the App folder. Delete the folder named “firefox”.

    Portable Firefox

  6. Paste the Mozilla Firefox folder into this directory and rename it to “firefox” (without the quotes).
  7. That’s it, go ahead and execute the FirefoxPortable.exe file.

–Instructions for Nightly Builds–

  1. Download the ZIP file of the Firefox nightly build you want to run. The latest nightly build of Firefox 2.0 can be found here.
  2. Download Portable Firefox. Extract the contents wherever you would like.
  3. Extract the contents of the nightly build you downloaded in step 1. Copy the folder named “firefox”.

    Portable Firefox

  4. Browse to where you extracted Portable Firefox and open the App folder. Delete the folder named “firefox”.

    Portable Firefox

  5. Paste the “firefox” folder from step 3 into this directory.
  6. That’s it, go ahead and execute the FirefoxPortable.exe file.

By doing it that way you are able to keep all of your settings, bookmarks, extensions, and anything else that you do to customize your Firefox. If you don’t mind waiting for a release of Portable Firefox to come out then you can always copy your profile over from your old installation to your new installation. You can locate your Portable Firefox profile in the “FirefoxPortable\Data\” and once you are there just copy the “profile” folder over to the same directory in your new Portable Firefox. Whatever way you choose to use Portable Firefox I am sure it will be a good one. Testing the nightly builds would be a little more cumbersome without using Portable Firefox but it can still be done.