Transfer of a Linux Installation to another PC

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This article should cover - over time - the transfer of settings from one to another PC. I discuss the problems I discountered for each program try to give a practical answer. I will follow this scheme:

  • Data: where is the directory to hold the programs information
  • Copy: how to copy the data
  • Result: what went ok
  • Problems: what went wrong



Firefox holds its data in the following directory:


Thereby using a special profile directory in a form like


This directory is named and configured in this file



I had some problems with upgrading to a new firefox version, when importing the whole tree like


from firefox 2.0.1 to 2.0.3. The extensions would malfnction. So I tried and excluded all extensions:

cd ~/.mozilla/firefox/myNewProfile.default
rsync --exclude extensions/ --exclude extensions* --delete -av --delete /old_dir_to_users_home/.mozilla/firefox/oldProfile.default/. .


Everything went o.k. My bookmarks are there, all themes and extensions/plugins previously installed (e.g. for lacalisations!!) are o.k.


  • Needed to install several extensions again, but the setting had been there!