My favorites | Sign in
Project Home Wiki Issues Source
How to set up a develop environment for BrowserSync
Updated Feb 4, 2010 by

Setting up BrowserSync for development is pretty easy.

Check out the code

To check out the code, you'll need an svn client. Download one here:

Once you have one, go to the source tab to see the commands to issue to check out.

Set up a development profile

Life will be easier with a special Firefox profile for BrowserSync development. Here's how to set one up:


mkdir -p p1/extensions
echo "path/to/browsersync/checkout/client/" > "p1/extensions/"


mkdir p1
mkdir p1\extensions
echo "c:\path\to\browsersync\checkout\client\" > "p1\extensions\"

For example, if you checked out BrowserSync to c:\browsersync, the path to put in this file would be c:\browsersync\client.

Next, create a file called user.js in the profile folder, and copy the following lines into it:


Development Extensions (Optional)

There are some extensions that are useful for extension developers:

Running it

To run Firefox with your development BrowserSync, start Firefox like this from the command line:


c:\program files\mozilla firefox\firefox.exe -profile p1 -no-remote -console


/path/to/firefox -profile p1 -no-remote -console

Firefox will load the extension directly from your extension directory. This means that there is no build phase to hacking on BrowserSync. Just make your changes and restart the browser.

Comment by, Jun 26, 2008

// Extension developer's extension does not currently work cause it doesn't support secure updates which is required for 3.0 One might be able to force it to install manually maybe

Comment by, Jun 30, 2008

Florian, install the version of Extension Developer's Extension from instead. Works fine with 3.0.

Comment by, Jun 30, 2008


Comment by, Jul 1, 2008

Is anyone tinkering with this code? Please post your results/project URL here. Weave 0.2.0 leaves a lot to be desired.

Comment by, Jul 1, 2008

I'm curious what Weave can learn from this code.

Comment by, Jul 3, 2008

Good luck, hope someone makes something better than Weave!

While I don't think that should be hard, I know I can't do it...

Comment by, Jul 10, 2008

What's wrong with Weave? I haven't tried it.

Comment by crazydelta, Jul 10, 2008

Weave is still only in version 0.2.2 and is still very much in development. I had to jump into using weave when I found out the Google Browser Sync was not supported for FF3. Weave's performance does not even match Browser Sync yet, though of course it has great potential for the future.

In the mean time, I would love to see someone port Google Browser Sync for FF3. It was solid as a rock when I was using it and would love to go back to it again.


Comment by, Jul 11, 2008

Same for me : I tried Weave 0.2.2, but it doesn't work on Mac PPC nor on 64bit. You have to compile or install special stuff. It is very slow, sometime hangs. So it is a real 0.2.2 for development and testing purpose I would say. It is a bit sad to have to start all over again. But I don't care if I use Mozilla Weave or ex-Google Sync, I will pick the first to sync passwords and cookies securely without getting in my way.

Comment by, Jul 13, 2008

I hate it when companies develop something that users start to depend on and then suddenly discontinue it! Shame on Google. They have loads of money (earned by exploitation of us users) but just pull the plug. I have 2 laptops and 6pc's and using browsersync was a gift from heaven..... Oh well, I will check Weave I guess. Haven't updated to FF3 just because of Sync....

Comment by, Jul 16, 2008

Weave says

"We've reached our account limit, and have stopped accepting any new registrations for at least a few days."

Google ...u should have kept this alive ..

Comment by, Jul 18, 2008

I never got a chance to try it, by the time i even heard it was too late. But, I'm glad google has released the code. Maybe some talented programmer can do something with it. I am mostly in need of some sort of firefox synchronizer that will sync extensions and add-ons.

Comment by, Jul 19, 2008

I think that it would work if someone could make some site asking for donations and then payed a programmer to port GBS, I would donate something.

Comment by strenght55, Jul 25, 2008

Comment by strenght55, Jul 25, 2008

Comment by strenght55, Jul 25, 2008

Comment by strenght55, Jul 25, 2008

Comment by strenght55, Jul 25, 2008


Comment by, Aug 10, 2008

just stick with ff2

Comment by, Aug 15, 2008

It would be really awesome if Mozilla would take this under their wings and make it a part of FireFox? itself (wink wink)

Comment by, Aug 25, 2008

I used Google browser sync and now i am using weave how can I extract the data stores in google server from my account in browser sync.

Comment by, Sep 12, 2008

I also would be willing to make a donation. If we all could put in some cash, we probbably can find som cheap coder to do it :D


Comment by, Sep 16, 2008

I followed the instrux, startup the browser and don't see anything in the extensions section, nor do I get the GBS stuff in the top right corner.

 Item Location path changed: D:\project\GBS\test\p1\extensions Item ID: brows Location Key: app-profile, attempting to upgrade item... 
Comment by, Sep 16, 2008

I installed FF2 and now I get this with the same issues as above

*** Item Uninstalled via file removal from: rel%{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0005-ABCDEFFEDCBA} Item ID: {CAF
EEFAC-0016-0000-0005-ABCDEFFEDCBA} Location Key: app-global, uninstalling item.
*** Blocklist::_loadBlocklistFromFile: XML File does not exist
Comment by, Oct 12, 2008


Comment by, Dec 30, 2008

Browser sync is/was such an obvious and effective tool. If it was an experiment, did it fail? It sure was successful and critical for me.

I'm surprised that Google hasn't built this in to Chrome?

Doesn't any budding young engineer want to take this project on? I'd pay $5 or $10 for it to defray your server costs.

Comment by, Jan 4, 2009

So looking at the code, getting this to work is not a simple matter. What needs to be done is the following: - Implement a server to respond to the protocol used by extension. Not a lot of info on this is in the code(since any service would be using Google's tech), but we can reverse engineer that and implement a dummy server for testing. - Re-implement the parts the deal with bookmarks, history, passwords..etc to use the places system that is in FF3.

Considering that both of these would have to be done at the same time, it gets a bit more complex. I need a working system like this, so i am considering my options. If people are willing to help to port this, let me know.

Comment by, Jan 7, 2009
alaasalman, I would like to try resume this project and port to FF3, but I don't know how to begin because I'm a VC++ and Java developer. How I could start? Do someone wants to join me int this task?
Comment by, Jan 25, 2009

Why not just use Foxmarks?

Comment by, Feb 11, 2009

Foxmarks ONLY sync bookmarks... Ambaquista

Comment by, May 29, 2009

any body can help in browser content reading apis in java i need to automate a web page like google r yahoo login page by java can any one know any api.

Comment by, Jun 2, 2009

Since it needs a server, why not use the account's email? It has to be logged in right?

Comment by, Jun 4, 2009

There seems to be some interest in reviving this tool or something similar. What exactly are people after - something which allows synchronisation of tabs only or more?

Comment by, Mar 15, 2010

syncs everything. sessions, cookies, favorites, history, tabs, everything. When I switch computers and restart firefox, it behaves exactly like the previous computer would.

Comment by, Sep 13, 2010

Hi! On the search for the way to copy all my (numerous) bookmarks from my Nokia N95 to Google Bookmarks (still did not find the way... :( ) I found this site...

1. Could anyone please send me the "revived" Google Browsersync (or the link were I could download it)?

2. Could anybody please help me with moving all my Nokia N95 bookmarks to Google Bookmarks (WITHOUT using OVI Suite!)?

Thanks a lot in advance, kind regards, Julia

Sign in to add a comment
Powered by Google Project Hosting