I'm running Firefox on my computer, a 32 bits portable edition from portableapps.com.

When I click on Help > About Firefox...


The popup informs me that Firefox is up to date.

While, in fact, it is not.


What's happening here?

  • I guess you have to use their platform to have access to their "Automatic Software Updates" feature. Mar 28, 2017 at 10:33
  • 1
    I'd guess that the portable package has automatic updates blocked. It uses their custom launcher to "portabilize" Firefox and it would most likely not play nice with automatic updates.
    – gronostaj
    Mar 28, 2017 at 10:50
  • I do not desire automatic updates. I've always update manually without any problem. I can update manually now if I decide to.
    – user711853
    Mar 28, 2017 at 10:50
  • Today suddenly the about popup informs me that Firefox 52.0.2 was available... I updated, whitout the need of the PortableApps.com app launcher or a fresh install. Still I don't know what happened...
    – user711853
    Mar 31, 2017 at 22:17

2 Answers 2


PortableApps.com disables automatic update to prevent Firefox from updating itself. (It is said in their fine-print.) You need to use the PortableApps.com app launcher to update your Firefox. Or... by downloading and installing a fresh package from PortableApps.com. (That's what the app launcher do anyway. No delta downloading or such bandwidth-saving tricks.)

That said, you might want to check a few things around your Firefox configurations:

  1. Open a new tab
  2. Navigate to about:config
  3. Access the search bar and search for app.update.
  4. Make sure the following parameters are all set to their defaults. If not, you can right-click on them and select "Reset".
    1. app.update.enabled
    2. app.update.url
    3. app.update.channel
  5. Make sure the following parameters are set to "false"
    1. app.update.auto
    2. app.update.silent

Now, restart your Firefox and try again, i.e. go to "About..." dialog box and see if Firefox notices the presence of a new update. But don't update from there. Like I said you need to use the PortableApps.com app launcher to update your Firefox. Or... by downloading and installing a fresh package from PortableApps.com.

  • 1
    Maybe it’s said in their fine print, but it isn’t true. My portable FF updated to version 52 today. It asked first, so it’s not entirely automatic. But I certainly didn’t download anything.
    – Daniel B
    Mar 28, 2017 at 12:06
  • @DanielB Because you can re-enable it by going to about:config or options. Anyway, they disabled it for a reason: If you update Firefox using its built-in updater, only the version you are running gets updated. But in reality, Firefox Portable comes with both 32-bit and 64-bit Firefox. So, if you, for instance, move from the 64-bit computer you always worked with, to a 32-bit computer, you'll notice an outdated Firefox Portable.
    – user477799
    Mar 28, 2017 at 12:08
  • 1
    app.update.auto is false. It will still offer updates and opening the “About” window will properly check for them.
    – Daniel B
    Mar 28, 2017 at 12:18
  • @DanielB Again, not really surprising. Since there are three update states, not two, a simple binary choice is not enough. There must be another config key. (The three update states are automatic update, automatic check, totally manual.) You said it asked you. Hence, yours is on automatic check. I am seeing an app.update.enabled already.
    – user477799
    Mar 28, 2017 at 12:25
  • 1
    Yes, of course. And, believe it or not, it’s enabled by default on Portable Firefox. I created a new installation to check.
    – Daniel B
    Mar 28, 2017 at 12:31

Sometimes, when your internet provider blocks the Firefox-related websites, it can show as "Firefox is up to date", as it cannot connect to check for updates in the first place.

Make sure you have a connection to the website by first checking it in your browser. Then try again! You can also use a VPN service to change your country and then check for updates.

This WILL work although it seems ridiculous. Telling you based on my own experience.

  • Why would my provider blocks Firefox-related websites ?!? My connection is working.
    – user711853
    Mar 28, 2017 at 10:56
  • Well, mine does and it's the only thing I can think of. Please try a VPN service and then check for Firefox updates. Sorry took so long to answer. Jan 10, 2020 at 10:33

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