Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I access the same Firefox profile in Ubuntu 12.04 and Windows 8.1 (Windows fast startup disabled). I have the newest version of Firefox (26.0) on each system.

Every time I launch Firefox in Ubuntu after using the profile in Windows, I notice that autoscrolling is disabled. So I have to manually enable it every time after using my profile in Windows.

Conversely, every time I launch Firefox in Windows after using the profile in Ubuntu, I'm asked whether I would like to set Firefox as my default browser. I choose "No", first making sure that there is no check mark next to "Always perform this check when starting Firefox". I have to do this every time after using my profile in Ubuntu, despite the fact that if I check my preferences in either OS, "Always check to see if Firefox is the default browser on startup" is not enabled. Note that Firefox is my default browser in Ubuntu but not in Windows, but I have no need for Firefox to check whether it's the default every time it starts in either OS.

I don't know for sure whether these problems are related, but it seems likely that they are. Is there a way that I can keep these settings constant, so they don't reset every time I switch operating systems?

I asked about this one week ago on the Firefox Support forum but haven't found an answer so far. Since I know a lot of Ubuntu/Windows dual-booters frequent Ask Ubuntu, I thought this question might be useful here for others facing the same problem.

share|improve this question
why not use two separate profile and firefox sync everything? – Web-E Feb 8 '14 at 14:43
@Web-E 1) That requires an active internet connection for synchronization. 2) I would have to manually sync every time before I exit Firefox to ensure I'd have the most up-to-date data. 2a) It's not easy to tell whether sync is complete or not. 3) Although Firefox syncs my bookmarks (and preferences, I think) well, I can never get it to properly sync tabs. (Yes, "Tabs" is selected in the Sync menu.) 4) Why keep two sets of the same data when I could just have one? tl;dr Using FF Sync takes more time, space, and effort; doesn't work offline; and (in my experience) leads to more problems. – Cerran Feb 8 '14 at 15:26

The latest version of Firefox allow syncing across devices with a Firefox Sync account. Simply create an account on one computer where you have the settings the way you like them, and then log in on your other devices to sync them.

How do I set up Firefox Sync?

I am using this with an Android tablet, an Android phone, an Arch Linux desktop, and a MacBook Pro. I have another Firefox Sync account that connects two Ubuntu desktops. So far, I love it!

share|improve this answer
Thanks, but this doesn't actually answer my question, which was about how to fix some issues when sharing profiles. Sure, "don't share profiles" fixes these problems, but even with Firefox Sync, this method introduces a lot of other problems. (See my other comment on the question for just a few of those problems.) I'll admit that since I upgraded to 14.04, I gave up sharing profiles in favor of Firefox Sync, but it's not an ideal solution. However, note that at least the new sync system improved upon the old one by properly syncing tabs and visually indicating when a sync completes. – Cerran May 30 '14 at 21:12
I see what you are saying, Cerran. It sounds like not everything is syncing properly. I notice similar issues across operating systems when using Google Chrome where pined tabs and what to do when launching Google Chrome do not seam to stick. I suppose these are works in progress. I hope this will improve since I have gone from carrying around a single laptop to mostly using multiple desktops and an occasional tablet at work. At home I use a desktop, an Android tablet and an Android phone. I foresee full laptops only being used by those who need to work on the go. – HarlemSquirrel Jun 2 '14 at 17:56

for autoscrolling:create a file in /opt/firefox/ and name it mozilla.cfg.
add These lines to mozilla.cfg:

lockPref("general.autoScroll", true);

then go to /opt/firefox/defaults/pref and create a file and name it local-settings.js and add these lines to the file:

pref("general.config.obscure_value", 0);
pref("general.config.filename", "mozilla.cfg");

now close firefox (if it's open) and open it. go to preferences, in advanced/general tab you see that use autoscrolling is checked and locked.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.