It is possible that this happened because of the recent Firefox update (from 64.something, to 66.0.2) which claimed that it couldn't download the update by itself, so it asked me to do it manually.

I'll spare the details about the things i did and tried, but the current state of things is this. apt remove firefox claims there is nothing to remove, because package firefox is not installed. The latest installation of Firefox that i made was through snap.

The problem manifests itself in the way that the same Firefox shortcut (the main menu), or also the firefox command ran from terminal, sometimes runs the wrong/other Firefox. I can tell them apart because they have different plugins installed, and i'm signed into one of them. Basically different user configuration. And it's not that it just sometimes doesn't read my user configuration and gives me a default Firefox; both versions have been customised.

The are both reporting to be 66.0.2 64-bit.

The first time i noticed this, i simply removed the snap one, but then the firefox command did not work anymore, and neither did the main menu shortcut. So i don't know how i would run the other one, or even if i actually do have two installed, or just the one installation is sometimes reading two profiles.

How do i find out where these two different versions are coming from, and how do i get rid of one of them?


  • which firefox says:
  • locate firefox-bin says:
  • dpkg -l | grep firefox says:

rc  firefox                                         66.0.2+build1-0ubuntu0.18.04.1               amd64        Safe and easy web browser from Mozilla
ii  firefox-locale-en                               66.0.2+build1-0ubuntu0.18.04.1               amd64        English language pack for Firefox
ii  unity-scope-firefoxbookmarks                    0.1+13.10.20130809.1-0ubuntu1                all          Firefox bookmarks scope for Unity

  • snap list reports, among other programs:
firefox               66.0.2-1                   198   stable    mozilla✓      
  • What does locate firefox-bin or which firefox tell you? – DK Bose Apr 9 '19 at 7:32
  • It could be you have installed a snap of firefox (snap list to view the snaps you have installed), even flatpak, and not just deb/package version which has confused things. Snaps & other packaging systems allow us to have multiple versions of a program that cannot impact on our normal (deb) package version (except for complicating menu's). You can use dpkg -l |grep firefox to list all packages installed which has 'firefox' in name though packages of language can be separate to the main program – guiverc Apr 9 '19 at 7:32
  • @DKBose i've edited the question – Digital Ninja Apr 9 '19 at 7:45

If you still have this problem I found that Firefox works with profiles, you can list them by using:

firefox --profilemanager

I've removed all the profiles. Next time I opened Firefox this profile manager was prompted to me. So I created a new one and that solved it. No more duplicated instances of Firefox.

  • 1
    you removed the instances of user profiles, not the instances of firefox... this is misinformation (as far as the question is concerned) – WU-TANG Nov 16 '20 at 14:26
  • Despite the other comment, this answer solved my issue. – crypdick Jan 15 at 0:02

You cannot install an application twice with one specific package management system. The reason why you have two versions anyway is because you installed Firefox once using the regular package management system (APT), and once using the novel package management system Snap. Installing with Ubuntu software is a matter of clicking, and you do not notice whether you are installing a snap or a regular version.

To remove one of the versions, open Ubuntu Software. Search "firefox" and you will see two entries for the Firefox browser, ("Firefox", which is the snap version, and "Firefox Web Browser", which is the regular APT version that also comes with Ubuntu by default). Remove the one you do not want to keep.

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