How to Delete Autofill Options in Firefox

Mozilla recently released Firefox 2.0.  While the esthetics of the changes were minimal, the browser has clearly come a long way.  With 2.0, the interface icons are more refined and the tabs look a little more polished.  Perhaps the most impressive and long overdue feature to be added is spellchecking.  But for all of its refinements, sometimes Firefox still manages to leave me frustrated.  In this case, the browsers autofill feature can be problematic.

Firefox’s autofill feature can make filling out web based forms a breeze.  It can also drive one quite insane.  Since filling out forms can sometimes be tedious, Firefox routinely caches recently used values specific to any given form field.  This can be a real time saver for people who need to login to password protected areas of different web sites.

But what happens when mistype your username a single time?  Suddenly you visit your login screen and Firefox no longer autofills in your login information.  Clicking in the field reveals a list of possible user names where there had once only been your own.  Now you must select either the correct login name from the list of options, or your typographical error.  Why should you be forced to look at your typo every time you login?  Isn’t there a way to deleted the incorrect value?

Search Firefox all you like… you simply won’t find a place to clean up the values stored in the autofill for forms.  But if you know the trick, its actually very easy to remove the unneeded autofill options from any given field.

When clicking on the offending field (or sometimes double clicking), a list of autofill options will appear.  Simply use the keyboards arrow keys to travel down the list until the erroneous value is highlighted.  Then, just hold down the Shift key and strike the Delete key.  That value will no longer appear in the form field as an autofill option.

This a simple and powerful feature that is simply not well documented.  Autofill options are great time savers, but they can also be the source of great frustration.  This simple tip can prevent annoyance while restoring productivity.


Steve

42 Responses to How to Delete Autofill Options in Firefox
  1. Anonymous Reply

    Hey good article.. was searching the net for deleting stored autofill info.. very very valuable info…

    Thnks..

  2. Pauline Ann Fudge Reply

    Had not completed form before it disappeared from the screen.

    How do I find it again?

  3. smanke Reply

    If you double click on the field that has saved historic data in it, you will see a list of past entries.

  4. Rose Reply

    Thank you, thank you! I have looked for this feature several times, to no avail. Now if we can just get the Mozilla guys to document this.

    But I do love Firefox…

  5. Michael Reply

    Some tips are simply priceless. This is one! BTW, tip works in Windows too.

  6. Anonymous Reply

    Awesome. I’m looking for option

    for autofill to remember only last 2 values for a field.

    IS there a way to option to do so ?

  7. smanke Reply

    Not that I’m aware of.

  8. bootcbeatz Reply

    Fantastic explanation! This is the only place on the web I could find thorough information that was WELL WRITTEN! :)

  9. phobic9 Reply

    Dude…. I just want to say THANKS… what a great tip!

  10. ericketeer Reply

    Thanks a lot for the lists tips … been wondering how to do that for a long time. First page I look for (this one) and bingo, right on the money

  11. Jacob Reply

    Here’s the Permanent Solution:

    (1.) Click on the Firefox Menu.

    (2.) Preferences

    (3.) Privacy tab

    (4.) Under the History title uncheck the box that reads ‘Remember what I enter in forms and the search bar’

    I hope this helps.

  12. Anonymous Reply

    Thanks!

  13. Gareth Reply

    Thank you Jacob, that feature annoyed the pants off me!

  14. Ben Reply

    Wow!! – Fantastic. – I accidently wrote my password in the username field instead of the password field, and it’s been bugging me for ages that this appears (unencrypted) everytime I log in. – A bit of a security nightmare really. – Your excellent tip saved my bacon. – Thanks!

  15. channelspace Reply

    This is an excellent tip! How were you able to find this out?! Thanks a lot.

  16. Chris Reply

    I tried to delete an autofill option by removing my it from the drop-down list using Ctrl + Delete. Now it is impossible to (actually) remove it using Shift + Delete, as it still automatically appears in the form but no longer appears in the drop-down list.

  17. jmc001 Reply

    Thanks for the tip!

    But why did I put up with this for years before searching for a solution?

  18. SSS Reply

    Thanks a lot dude!!!

    Came in handy…

  19. Anonymous Reply

    Thank you! Hard to believe something so frustrating was so easy to resolve…

  20. M Reply

    Nice one Steve! that’s been driving me insane lol!

  21. Anonymous Reply

    This does not work for me on auto fills except for the browser address bar. How can I delete entries on other forms?

  22. smanke Reply

    This does work on auto fill options in forms.

  23. Anonymous Reply

    Oh, okay. Is there another way to do it? I can’t even erase them by deleting history and cache.

  24. Anonymous Reply

    Sorry smanke I misread your answer. That still does not work for me. Is there another way I can do this? What am I doing wrong?

  25. smanke Reply

    I’m not sure why that’s not working. I have the latest Firefox installed (3.53 as of right now) and it still works for me. Keep in mind that most keyboards have 2 delete keys. I wonder if you are using the wrong one.

    Some call it delete, others call it back space. The one I am using is the one NOT in the row of keys with the numbers. Its normally near the Home or End keys.

  26. Anonymous Reply

    thank you! drove myself crazy trying to do this!

  27. Simon Reply

    Brilliant, thank you been going mad trying to work out how to do this!

  28. greenae Reply

    THANK YOU. So essential.

  29. Bhamra Reply

    God bless you! I was going crazy looking for ways to do it!

  30. peho Reply

    Thank you very much! This is so useful!

  31. Anonymous Reply

    THANK

    YOU

    OK

  32. KatieM Reply

    Thanks so much! I kept getting Tool>Option solutions and there isn’t a Tool>Option path.

  33. E Reply

    I appreciate you going to the trouble of posting this solution, but I’m finding that it doesn’t work–at least for me. I can delete as per your suggestion, but then with every new URL I enter the same old auto-fill addresses are there. Tools, Clear Recent History, doesn’t do the trick either. I’m thinking of just uninstalling Firefox and reinstalling it.

  34. smanke Reply

    @E:

    I normally use this tip to remove auto fill values from form fields, but I just tested it on an auto fill URL in Firefox 4.01 and was able to delete it from the auto suggested list the nest time I started typing the same URL.

    I did notice that I needed to go up to the URL and delete a couple of different ties if my goal was to remove any mention of a visited domain name.

    I’m not sure what is different about your install…

  35. E Reply

    smanke,

    Thank you most kindly for your help.

    I’m using 3.6.17. Maybe that’s part of the problem.

    Best wishes,

    E

  36. JY Reply

    Thank you so much for taking the time to show us how to fix this annoying issue in Firefox.

    It’s great when someone somwhere cares enough to help the rest of us!

    Much appreciated.

  37. Anonymous Reply

    BRILLIANT!

  38. REH Reply

    Thanks a million. You’re a lifesaver.

  39. Rizi Reply

    Great :)

  40. emmy Reply

    Thnxxxx .. that helped me a lot :)

  41. Anonymous Reply

    omg …so obvious but i couldnt figure it out

    you also dont want to know how long it took me to find this post : (

    THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

  42. Anonymous Reply

    Thank you so much for this great article. The auto fill of my incorrect uid (w/ pwd ) was driving me paranoid about security. Thanks to you the typo was finally obliterated :-)

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