Thoughts: Chrome Not Importing Fx Settings

Posted: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 by El Guru in Browsers, Firefox, Fx 2.0, Fx 3.0, Google, Yahoo
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Wow, I have to say I am impressed at the number of comments I have received on the Google Chrome post. Further it has been a while since this blog has gotten this much traffic.  Anyway, I’ve been thinking about what could cause Chrome not to recognize I have Firefox and import my settings. My first thoughts were may be because I am running a Nightly Build version of Firefox 3 (Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.0; en-US; rv:1.9.0.3pre) Gecko/2008090306 Firefox 3/3.0.3pre ID:2008090306). However it may have to do with the version of Firefox, based on these comments from PatrickD, Emanuel Nordrum and AaronE:

“I could not get Chrome to import Firefox settings at all. It never offered the option and choosing to import bookmarks from the options, only IE bookmarks are an option, not FireFox. I am using the latest version of FireFox but Chrome does not seem to see it at all.”

I’m using Firefox version 2, and it worked just fine, importing my settings without a hitch.

I’ve installed Chrome on 3 machines – 2 of them automatically “found” and imported my Firefox settings, but my home machine only recognizes IE.

Now I am wondering if Chrome is not able to work with the new Firefox 3 bookmarking system. Although, I would think it would just simply read the Bookmarks.html file in the profile folder. Not sure what other files are involved when it imports the preference. Now last week I had to do a complete system restore on my Vista system and reinstall all my browsers. I still use Netscape 9 even though it is defunked because it is built off of Firefox 2. This is handy when I am doing testing and need to see how something works (or doesn’t work) with Firefox 2. Anyway, it imported all my Firefox 3 settings with no problem. So I was a little surprised Chrome couldn’t. But then again Netscape 9 is a Gecko based browser so I am guessing that is why it was able to import my settings with no issues. But with that being said, using the assumption that Netscape 9 is the same as Firefox 2, how come Chrome didn’t give my the option to import from Netscape? The only option in the drop-down menu was Internet Exploiter. So, for those of you who were able to get Chrome to import your Firefox settings, what version of Firefox are y’all using?

As for why Chrome was using Yahoo! as my default search engine, turns out that was my default on Internet Exploiter (which I never use). This time around when I went to launch Chrome to take a look at the built-in task manager everything (including Yahoo!) seemed to load smoother. I kinda wished it worked like Firefox where it would remember what tabs you had opened when you closed it. Yes, you can specify multiple ‘home pages’ but I do like the Firefox setting which will reopen the browser. No big deal though as I was able to quickly reopen everything when I opened a new tab and it brought up my ‘most visited’.

Below is the built-in task manager (activated via Shift+ESC), which is kinda a neat feature I would love to see implemented into Firefox. However, that would likely require a major redesign of Firefox to handle tabs as processes instead of the browser as a whole being a single process. I also did see the ‘mini status bar’ on the bottom left when I was looking at earlier. The only thing that is odd and I mentioned this earlier is I can not get to my taskbar which is set to auto-hide when I have Chrome maximized. No big deal, nothing a simple ALT+TAB or Windows Key won’t take care

Chrome Built-In Task Manager

One last thing, while I was waiting for Gran Paradiso to apply the new nightly build I was checking my Windows Live Mail in Chrome, which works fine once you ignore Microsoft’s incompatiable browser warning. I clicked on a link in an email and Chrome opened this link in a new tab right next to my Windows Live Mail instead of the end of the tab bar. I am sure this is possible with Firefox 3 with one of the tab extensions, but it is nice to see Chrome does this by default.

Comments
  1. owlswell says:

    I had this same problem with XP SP2 and Firefox 1.5.0.7. Chrome only lists IE in the “Import Bookmarks” dialog box.

  2. Scott says:

    I’ve had the same problem of not being able to import bookmarks from Firefox. I use both Firefox 2 and 3 on different PCs and neither picked up Firefox bookmarks when installing or using Chrome. I did come up with a solution, though.

    The process is to export your bookmarks from Firefox, then import them into Internet Exploder, then import them from IE to Chrome. It’s a roundabout method, but it gets the job done.

    You probably don’t need to export the bookmarks from Firefox and just import into Exploder using the bookmarks file in the application data directory.

    And as a sidenote, I hate how Chrome puts opens new tabs next to the currently-active tab. I wish there was a way to turn it off. In Firefox, though, you can get the same effect by installing the Classic Compact Options extension (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/6969).

  3. […] Open Relative I mentioned last week in the Thoughts: Chrome Not Importing Fx Settings post that Chrome opens a new tab just to the right of the current tab. I clicked on a link in an […]

  4. MikeF says:

    Chrome imported bookmarks directly from my default browser, Firefox 3.0.1 – didn’t even offer to import any others, even though I have IE7 and Maxthon 2.1.4 installed. (I’m running Win XP SP2 by the way, fully updated.) Does Chrome look for the default browser, perhaps, to import from?

  5. Rod says:

    Here’s a potential fix for this problem from the Chrome help group. Some registry editing involved but it’s worked for everyone there including me. There’s two different ways in that thread and I took the simpler route of the second and just edited my FF current version number that hadn’t updated on its own..

    http://groups.google.com/group/google-chrome-help-troubleshooting/browse_thread/thread/0105388b11ddc32b/ceb88483b4330586?hl=en&lnk=raot#ceb88483b4330586

  6. taltamir says:

    It imported from FF3 on my brother’s computer, it did not in mine. I think it is because I have my FF userdata in a different then default folder (i edited the file in the userdata folder to point into a folder in my documents on a different drive, one that is getting backed up).

    I also bemoaned the lack of ability to reopen last open tabs, until I looked into it and I saw it DOES have that option. Click on the wrench icon, and then select options, it is there… to close all WINDOWS at once (and thus have them reopen next time) also click on the wrench and select exit (it will close all windows and all tabs at once, reopening all of them next time).

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