When we surf the web with our favorite browser like Firefox, it remembers various kinds of information about our visits to sites and task. This includes but not limited to browsing history, search history, login history, form and fill data, etc. But the problem is, if we are using the browser in a public computer or sharing our PC with else other, we may not want to have our browsing history stored in browser. In that case, after we finish browsing, we have to manually clear browsing data about our surfing. But it’s not convenient to do this every time before you close your browser.

To make a simple solution to the problem, every modern browser comes with a built-in feature called ‘Private mode‘. Private mode enables you ‘private browsing’ on a browser, with which you can browse the web without leaving any trace, history, browsing data, passwords, etc. In private mode, whenever you close your browser, you browsing data will be erased. This is useful when you are browsing from a shared PC or doing any confidential job.

Private mode is know as Incognito mode‘ in Chrome, ‘inPrivate‘ in Internet Explorer and ‘Private Browsing‘ in Opera browser.

Now, if we need to browse in private mode continuously, it’s a hassle to open the browser normally and then more clicks to bring private mode. So, to make private mode permanent, here some simple steps for Firefox.

Start Firefox in Private Mode by Default

1. Open Firefox browser normally. Click Firefox menu from top-right corner that looks like three horizontal bar. In menu window, hit Options.

Access Firefox options from menu

2. In the Options window, go to Privacy tab.

Go to Firefox Privacy tab

3. Select ‘Use custom settings for history‘ from drop down menu under the label ‘Firefox will:’ in History section.

Choose 'Use custom settings for history'

4. After you choose to use custom settings for history, you will be presented with more options. Notice the option ‘Always use private mode’?

Firefox custom history settings

5. Enable Always use private browsing mode as I did. Hit OK when it asks for restart.

Enable Firefox private mode by default

6. On restart, Firefox will run in Private mode by default. And if you again close and start Firefox again, it will run in private mode again. You are done setting Firefox private mode permanent.

Firefox running in private mode by default

7. To make Firefox back to normal or to disable permanent private mode, just revert the setting in history setting by choosing Remember history.

Things that are not stored in Private mode

  • History: Pages or links you visited will not be added to History menu or Awesome Bar.
  • Caches: Browsers tend to save cache files and offline contents to make sites faster. In private mode, no cache will be saved.
  • Login credentials: Passwords, etc will automatically be removed after you close private mode.
  • Search bar history and form fills: Search history from Firefox Search Engines, Awesome Bar will not be saved. Any form fill will not be saved too.
  • Download history: Files you download will not be listed in Downloads window.

For more information about Firefox’s private browsing, head to Mozilla’s support page.


Jaber is a Programmer and Tech Enthusiast Geek from Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is the founder and Chief-Editor of TechGainer. While he is away from his keyboard, either he's fishing or messing with wildlife. In case, you can contact him at rijans[at]techgainer[dot]com.