Mozilla applications, including the Firefox web browser, have a feature called about: config that houses various preferences and settings. Often, these settings can't be found in the usual preferences dialog interface. By accessing about:config, you can modify these settings and even add hidden ones with a "behind the scenes" approach.
One Firefox configuration option users can access via about:config is called browser.download.folderList. This preference lets you choose where to store downloaded files. Here's how to access browser.download.folderList and understand its values.
This article's information applies to the Mozilla Firefox web browser on macOS, Windows, and Linux systems.Yuri_Arcurs / Getty Images
More on the browser.download.folderList Preference
The browser.download.folderList preference lets users choose where their downloaded files are stored.
The value of browser.download.folderList can be set to either 0, 1, or 2. When set to 0, Firefox will save all downloaded files to the user's desktop. When set to 1, these downloads will go to the Downloads folder. When set to 2, the location specified for the most recent download is used again.
How to Use browser.download.folderList
To modify the value of browser.download.folderList, follow these steps:
Open your Firefox browser.
Type about:config in the browser's search bar and hit Enter or Return.
You'll see a Proceed With Caution message. To continue, select Accept the Risk and Continue.
Select Show All on the next page, which warns again that changing these preferences can impact Firefox performance or security.
You'll see a list of all Firefox preferences.
In the search bar, type browser.download.folderList.
Double-click on this entry to edit the value.
Enter the desired value (0, 1, or 2), and press Return or Enter. In this example, we changed the value to 0 so all downloaded files will be saved to the desktop.
Close out of the Advanced Preferences window. You've set your new download preference. When you download a file from a web page, it will save to the new location.
As Firefox evolved, many of the settings available from about:config were added to the main Preferences area. These days, an easier way to change your file-download location is to go to Menu > Preferences > Downloads and choose where to save your files.