How to refresh your places database.

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Moonchild
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How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by Moonchild » 2015-03-02, 11:51

Since some people run into issues with their places database running amok and inflating to silly sizes, causing very slow operation of the library, here's a small howto of making an in-place refresh of the database without starting a brand new profile:
  1. Make a profile backup! Just in case any of this goes wrong, you won't lose your bookmarks.
    A quick and easy way is using the Pale Moon profile backup tool.
  2. Open your library window by going to Bookmarks -> Organize bookmarks
  3. In the library window at the top, press "Import and backup", then select "Backup"
  4. Save the resulting .json file (which will have all your bookmarks and bookmark comments, etc.) in a safe and easy to find location.
  5. Close the library window
  6. Go to Help -> troubleshooting information
  7. In the page that opens, click "show folder" under profile, to quickly get to your Pale Moon profile folder in your system file manager
  8. Keep the new window open, and exit Pale Moon (Pale Moon button -> Exit or File -> Exit, don't just close the window).
    If your profile is on a slower drive, wait a few seconds to have the shutdown procedure fully complete and write everything to disk.
  9. In the file manager window, delete (or rename) places.sqlite
  10. Start Pale Moon
  11. Open your library window by going to Bookmarks -> Organize bookmarks
    Please note that you may automagically have most of your bookmarks at this point, because it was restored from an automatic backup that Pale Moon makes. This will not reflect the latest state, but if you have not recently added or changed bookmarks, then this may suffice and you can skip the following 2 steps to restore.
  12. In the library window at the top, press "Import and backup", then select "Restore" -> "Choose file"
  13. Select the .json file to import saved in step 4, and let it replace the default/auto-restored ones
Please note that this procedure will remove all history and all favicons from bookmarks.
To restore favicons to bookmarks, I recommend the following extension: FavIcon Reloader
After installation, in the classic menu (tap Alt if you normally have the Pale Moon button), under bookmarks, there is the option "Reload Favorite Icons" which will start the process.
"If you want to build a better world for yourself, you have to be willing to build one for everybody." -- Coyote Osborne
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SvenG

Re: How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by SvenG » 2015-03-02, 13:09

What would you say is a normal size for places.sqlite and when should one start to worry? I am using an extension for regular maintenance (removing unneeded history entries, compressing) and keep places.sqlite at a couple of MB, largest I ever had was about 50 MB. And I am really not like delete history that fast and I also have a couple of bookmarks. I remember the last time we had a question concerning places.sqlite on the forum, the file was at more than half a GB. That's a pretty wide range.

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Moonchild
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Re: How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by Moonchild » 2015-03-02, 13:27

Average use would have it around 25-50MB, I'd gather. A little more if you have an ungodly amount of bookmarks or intensive use. Over 100MB is definitely cause for investigation/cleanup with a normal maintenance tool (placescleaner to expire old visits and/or places maintenance for more in-depth cleanup and repair) or potential refresh. 650MB is most certainly out of bounds for normal sizes for the places sqlite.

For comparison, my own is 40MB right now, and that's containing a lot of info.
"If you want to build a better world for yourself, you have to be willing to build one for everybody." -- Coyote Osborne
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Lucio Chiappetti
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Re: How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by Lucio Chiappetti » 2015-03-02, 13:48

I have never been aware to have a "places database" (perhaps because I jumped from FF3.6 to PM 24 with only a couple of months in FF 28?). Is it something subsuming bookmarks, history and what else, I suppose.
Anyhow my places.sqlite is exactly 10MB. My policy is to keep history for 2 days (so even if I rarely log off, I never see older entries), and I keep only a few high importance bookmarks in the bookmarks menu, and a random collection in a "volatile" subdir of the bookmark toolbar. Periodically I move the latter to something I manage outside of the browser, and access via a web page. So I presume no worry for me.
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man. (G.B. Shaw)

SvenG

Re: How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by SvenG » 2015-03-02, 14:36

Thanks Moonchild, that's about what I figured but it always good to know for certain. :)

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Re: How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by wavymoon » 2016-02-27, 13:44

If that procedure deletes history can I use a backup like FEBE to restore my history? I do like to maintain a long rap sheet :lol:

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Re: How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by Pale Moon Rising » 2016-03-29, 17:11

wavymoon wrote:If that procedure deletes history can I use a backup like FEBE to restore my history? I do like to maintain a long rap sheet :lol:
Yes, a restore of browser history is one of the individual options FEBE provides.
FEBE Restore options.png
List of Restore options provided by FEBE including Browser History
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wavymoon
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Re: How to refresh your places database.

Unread post by wavymoon » 2016-04-03, 14:17

trying to solve other problems I have restored history with FEBE I don't recall if it was after deleting the places db, it is good to know that it works for that situation. (BTW the 'situation' is a recurrent loss of added toolbar shortcuts. A total profile restore is the only cure I have found for that, followed by an individual restore of other backed up items w/ FEBE. I would love to know what governs the availability of items in the Toolbar, but likely it would be beyond my capabilities to solve my problem soooo :? )
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