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New member
Status: New idea

I HATE THIS!!!  Please do not block my browsing session just to force me to restart!  Let me restart when I want to.  For security reasons, I'm almost always browsing in Private Mode, and as such, logins and passwords are not saved.  So when I'm forced to restart because of an update, I have to save my current tab session, reopen them after FF has restarted, and re-login to every site I was using—many of which require 2FA, so it's extra annoying.

This is bad UX!  Put a notification, or even a whole separate tab telling me I need to restart.  But don't block out everything I was doing.  Even Windows doesn't do this...

New member

When using Private Windows, Firefox will occasionally force me to close out all my tabs because it says it needs to update. It _says_ that it will restore all the tabs, but this isn't true for Private Windows. I suggest that users not be lied to and not be forced to lose all their progress, because this makes me not want to use Firefox.

Status changed to: New idea
Community Manager
Community Manager

Thanks for submitting an idea to the Mozilla Connect community! It is now open for voting (kudos) and comments.

New member

I was in the middle of filling out a fairly long application form that required a lot of information lookup while Firefox updated. I went to lookup an account number on a website and Firefox wanted to restart. This forced me to open another browser to get this information. Then, at the end when I submitted the information, again Firefox insisted on restarting, causing failure of my session.

This is enough to make me start looking for an alternate browser. It is TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE to treat users with such disregard, and makes me no longer trust Mozilla to have my best interests in mind.

I've been a Mozilla user being a beta tester for Netscape in the 1990s, and won't be happy leaving, but perhaps it's time, much as I hate to change.


Right, it can't be true for private windows because those tabs are not written to disk. Unfortunately, by the time you get that screen, it's probably too late to do anything with the information anyway.

For more control of update timing, you can use the "Check for updates but let you choose to install them" choice on the Settings/Preferences page.

(Note that if you use a version of Firefox customized by a particular Linux distribution, the package manager may override the built-in setting and install updates in the background.)

Making moves

Honestly I think this should have more votes.  I've not encountered this behaviour in other browsers, which manage to update in-place without forcing a restart. 

My request would be please find a way to do updates in the background.  You can let the user know that an update is ready, with a little dot or some visual cue.  The user can then choose to carry on their work if it's important and restart when they are ready.

However, having this screen appear is very disruptive, it blocks all the work.



Making moves
New member

agree, there should be a better option to "save" your private browsing session rather than to just select all tabs and bookmark them - which I do when update notification becomes really annoying and I have time, however, re-opening these bookmarked tabs is similarly annoying.

I'm using private mode pretty much all the time and when there is an update, then firefox usually waits for couple of days, and then forces restart, losing all opened tabs. same happens when there is memory overload on linux (debian) and firefox crashes due to it - not able to restore tabs, only the most recent ones which I remember.

I see 2 options to solve it: allow firefox to have a selection for users in private mode to save the session either once or constantly.

Making moves

I don't know if I'm the only one to think so.

In my opinion Mozilla becomes like Microsoft which considers that the users of their programs only have to pay and close their mouths.

I know that Firefox is free but then why do we constantly receive emails asking for donations?

Community Manager
Community Manager

Hey all! In case you're interested, a Product Manager from the Firefox Desktop team is currently leading a discussion about private windows here: Private Windows on Firefox 

This is a great chance to connect with our product team and play a role in improving this feature, so feel free to join the conversation 😃

New member

Forced restarts, usually at the worst possible moment, are not only bad, they are insane, unless you really really want to drive users to other browsers. I use a lot of private windows for various reasons - and they do not recover, so I have to somehow start backing up links if I want to continue using the browser. I would welcome updates - if I could restart when I want i.e. not when I am busy. I do it all the time with package updates in my linux distribution - I start the update when I go for a lunch or something. Sneaky background updates, which cannot be turned off, are not necessary at all - give us the option to turn it off and do the update at the time when we want.

For Mike's love stop this insanity !! I use Firefox from its inception, with satisfaction, but his is driving me away.