Mozilla Firefox has been my primary web browser for over a decade now. It might not be the fastest browser out there for Windows operating system but does the job for me.
Before Firefox 57 (Firefox Quantum), we could easily import and export passwords saved in Firefox browser by installing an add-on. This helps when you want to backup passwords saved in Firefox or when you want to reinstall Windows OS.
As you likely know, add-ons that help you import and export passwords saved in Firefox don’t work in Firefox 57 and later versions. Although you can view the passwords saved in Firefox by navigating to Preferences > Privacy & Security > Saved Logins section, there is no option to export or import (import from a file) passwords.
Most of the Firefox users are using third-party password saving solutions like LastPass and KeePass and won’t need an option to export passwords. Since these password managers are cloud-based (save passwords in the cloud), not all users want to use them for security reasons. Like many of you, I prefer using the Firefox’s built-in password manager (with a master password, of course).
Like me, if you also use Firefox’s built-in password manager and looking for a way to backup Firefox passwords, you have very limited options.
In this guide, we will discuss the three easy ways out there to backup Firefox passwords in Windows.
Method 1 of 3
Manually backup key4.db and logins.json files
Firefox saves your passwords in key4.db and logins.json files. These files are located in your Firefox profile folder. You can backup these two files to export all passwords. After reinstalling Windows or Firefox, you can restore these two files again to import passwords. Here is how to do that.
To export passwords
Step 1: Open the Run command dialog. Type the following path and then press Enter key to open Firefox Profiles folder.
Step 2: Under the Profiles folder, you should see your profile folder. If you have more than one profiles, you will see two or more folders. If you have only one profile, your passwords are stored in the default profile.
Step 3: Open up the profile folder and locate key4.db and logins.json files. Copy these files and save them in a safe location (preferably offline) to backup passwords.
To import passwords
We advise you to do this immediately after reinstalling Firefox or Windows as replacing existing key4.db and logins.json files with previously backed up files will delete currently saved passwords, if any.
Step 1: Open the Run command box, type the following path and then press Enter key to open Profiles folder.
Step 2: Open up the profile folder. Copy and paste the previously backed up key4.db and logins.json files to your profile folder. That’s it!
Method 2 of 2
Use PasswordFox to backup Firefox passwords
PasswordFox is a free utility from the well-known NirSoft and is trustable. Simply download and run PasswordFox to view all saved passwords in Firefox. It shows all password saved in Firefox along with username and URL. It’s important to note that this tool works great on Firefox 57 and 58 as well.
To export all passwords to an HTML file, select all passwords and then click HTML Report – All items option. If you want to backup only select passwords, select passwords that you want to backup and then click HTML Report – Selected items option.
Method 3 of 3
Manually note down Firefox passwords
If you don’t want to use a third-party solution and don’t want to backup Key4.db and Logins.json files as well, you have no option but to manually backup all saved passwords by noting down each username and password. The method becomes cumbersome when you have tens of passwords.
Step 1: Open Firefox. Press the Alt key, click Tools, and then click Options.
Step 2: Switch to the Privacy & Security tab. Click the Saved Logins button and then click Show passwords button to view all saved passwords. If you have set a master password, you need to type the same to view all saved passwords.
Step 3: Note down all usernames, URLs, and passwords in a text editor or piece of paper.
You might also like to read our how to backup passwords saved in Chrome browser.