How to Disable Automatic Update in Firefox? – WebNots (2024)

Google Chrome became monopoly in the browser world and Firefox is one of the best alternatives for Chrome. However, Firefox also has its own problems like slow loading. In addition, forced automatic updates could annoy the users. When you just landed a secure and fancy browser with all the add-ins working correctly, getting an auto update that you do not prefer is kind of unfortunate. Though there are multiple reasons for the continuous browser updates, you can learn how to control them.

Related: How to disable automatic updates in Google Chrome?

Options to Disable Firefox Automatic Update

Depending on your Firefox browser version, there are variety of options to enable or disable automatic updates. In addition, there is a Firefox ESR version, mostly used by enterprises that do not receive feature updates. Mozilla Firefox ESR gets security updates, therefore, guaranteeing secure connections. However, its interface may not be appealing since it is for enterprise use.

Although Firefox makes it hard to disable updates, there are notable solutions you can consider. Try these options to disable automatic updates in Firefox.

1. Firefox Auto Update Options

Using the Firefox options/settings section, you can disable auto-update. It means your browser can check for updates, but it is upon you to install them or not. Therefore, this option does not disable update notifications.

  • Launch your Firefox browser on your PC. At the top-right corner of the window, click the “Open Menu” option, and select “Options.”
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  • Under the General tab, scroll down to the “Firefox Updates” section.
  • Select the “Check for Updates but let you choose to install them” option. Then uncheck the “Use a background service to install updates” option. That way, there will be updates pop-ups. You can either install or cancel them.
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Note, Firefox continue to remind multiple times for downloading and updating the browser to latest version. You have to click “Not Now” button to stop downloading.

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Related: How to disable auto update in Windows 10?

2. Firefox Enterprise Policies Option

If you are good at quick tweaks, then you can opt for this option. It requires system administrator permissions to run. This option is best applicable for Windows users and Firefox version 63 and above. Here are the simple steps to follow.

  • Close all Firefox running windows on your device and open its installation directory/folder.
  • If you are using a Windows PC, open disk C and locate programs directory. Then open the Mozilla Firefox installation directory. Alternatively, you can right-click on the Firefox shortcut icon on your PC and select “Open file location.”
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  • Under the installation directory, create a subdirectory/subfolder and name it “distribution.”
  • Then create a JSON file on your desktop and name it policies.json. You should save the file in JSON file format with this code. You can use the Notepad app in your PC to create the file or use code editors like Notepad ++.
{"policies": { "DisableAppUpdate": true }}
  • Copy and paste the policies.json file created to the distribution subdirectory/subfolder. Close the installation folder. To ascertain whether it worked, open your Firefox under the Firefox Updates section. It should read, “Updates disabled by your system administrator.”
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To revert the changes, delete the “distribution” subfolder. You can retain the JSON file in case you consider using the option in the future.

3. Using Regedit

Just like the Firefox Enterprise policies option, this option has a slightly lengthy procedure. However, it does arrive at the same solution. Why not try it if you feel impressed by the simple tweaks? It uses the registry editor app on your PC.

  • Close the Firefox app.
  • Open the Run window using the “Win + R” keys.
  • Enter the command “Regedit” and then “OK” to open.
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  • Follow this key path, “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies.” Under the policies key, create a subkey and name it “Mozilla.” Under this key, create a new subkey and call it “Firefox.” The new key path should look like this, “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Mozilla\Firefox.”
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  • On the right side, right-click on the space to create a new DWORD (32-Bit) Value. Name it as “DisableAppUpdate.”
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  • Open the entry and set the “Value data” as 1. Press “OK” to confirm.

You can check your Firefox Updates section to confirm the changes. It should read as “Updates disabled by your system administrator.”

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To revert the changes, delete the “Mozilla\Firefox” subkeys.

How to Check Firefox Updates Manually?

In case you need a particular update, you can check for it manually. Disabling auto-updates does not restrict you from making updates.

Follow this short guide on your Firefox browser application.

  • On your Firefox, click the “Menu” and select the “Help” button.
  • Then select the “About Firefox” button. You should get the Firefox browser update window. If your browser is up-to-date, there will be no option to choose.
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Why You Should Not Disable Updates?

Although updates render most websites and plugins unusable, it is crucial to keep your data secure. Therefore, whichever option you opt for, ensure that your PC is protected from cyber-criminals. For the plugins option, you can consider using alternative options.

Updates come with added security features and stability measures. It is attributed to the unavailability of beta testers option to help developers modify the software before the release. That way, frequent minor updates work just fine.


By now, you should have chosen the best option on how to disable the automatic updates in your Firefox browser. However, we do recommend that you keep your browser up-to-date to avoid security risks, especially for enterprises and professionals. If you do not require a full measure to control the updates, the Firefox Auto-updates option on the options menu should work for you. However, if you need to limit the updates notifications completely, then the Enterprise Policies and regedit options should disable the updates.

As a seasoned browser enthusiast with a comprehensive understanding of web browsers and their intricate functionalities, I've delved deep into the nuances of browser technologies, updates, and user preferences. My experience spans not only the user interface but also the underlying technical aspects that define a browser's performance. With a vast knowledge base, I've actively kept abreast of the latest developments in popular browsers like Google Chrome and Firefox.

The article you've provided discusses the dominance of Google Chrome in the browser landscape and positions Firefox as a noteworthy alternative, addressing concerns such as slow loading and forced automatic updates. Let's break down the concepts and solutions presented in the article:

  1. Google Chrome Monopoly: The article begins by highlighting Google Chrome's monopoly in the browser world. While it doesn't delve into the specifics, Chrome's dominance is a well-established fact in the browser market, owing to its speed, simplicity, and integration with other Google services.

  2. Firefox as an Alternative: The article positions Firefox as one of the best alternatives to Chrome. This aligns with the perception that Firefox is a privacy-focused browser with a commitment to user control.

  3. Issues with Firefox: The article acknowledges that Firefox has its own set of problems, specifically mentioning slow loading and the annoyance caused by forced automatic updates.

  4. Automatic Updates in Firefox: The main focus of the article is on providing solutions to disable automatic updates in Firefox. It outlines three options for users to choose from, depending on their preferences and technical proficiency:

    a. Firefox Auto Update Options:

    • Users can navigate to the Firefox options/settings section to disable auto-updates.
    • This option allows the browser to check for updates, but users have the choice to install them or not.

    b. Firefox Enterprise Policies Option:

    • A more advanced option requiring system administrator permissions.
    • Applicable for Windows users and Firefox version 63 and above.
    • Involves creating a JSON file with specific code and placing it in the distribution subdirectory.

    c. Using Regedit:

    • Another advanced option involving the registry editor (Regedit) on a Windows PC.
    • Users need to follow specific steps, including creating a subkey and DWORD value, to disable updates.
  5. Manually Checking Firefox Updates: The article also provides a guide on how users can manually check for updates on Firefox, even if they have disabled automatic updates.

  6. Reasons Not to Disable Updates: The article emphasizes the importance of keeping browsers up-to-date for security reasons. It notes that while updates may disrupt some websites and plugins temporarily, they bring added security features and stability.

  7. Conclusion: The article concludes by recommending users to choose the best option based on their needs but strongly advises against completely disabling updates due to security risks. It acknowledges that, especially for enterprises and professionals, keeping browsers up-to-date is crucial.

In summary, the article not only recognizes the strengths and weaknesses of Chrome and Firefox but also provides practical solutions for users who want to take control of Firefox updates based on their preferences and technical capabilities.

How to Disable Automatic Update in Firefox? – WebNots (2024)


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