Fixing your Dictionary

You are typing some text into an editing window in your FIrefox Browser, and you spell something terribly wrong. Like this:

I am so glad I upgreaded to Firefox 2.0, because it has a built in spell checker.

You see the error where you meant to type “upgraded.” So you right click on it to pick the correct spelling, and accidentally hit the “Add to Dictionary” menu choice, which is annoyingly placed right next to the correctly spelled word.

From now on, you can never be sure if your text will be correct. Bummer.

There is a way to fix this.

A timely repost

In Linux, go to a terminal window.

Change the directory to where Firefox stores the dictionary file. This in your home directory, in a subdirectory with a “dot” at the beginning of the name (to make it invisible), then a couple of subdirectories down below that. The file you are looking for is called “persdict.dat”

Most likely, you can just type this into the terminal window:

cd ~/.mozilla/firefox/*.default

and that will bring you to the default configuration file. The “star” is because the exact name of your configuration file is unknown to me. Your Linux system will magically open to the first directory that fits this “wildcard.”

Now type “ls” to see if you see a persdict.dat.

If it was me, I’d then type:

gedit persdict.dat

so you can edit the dictionary in a nice word processor (gedit).

An even more direct approach which may work nicely is to go to the terminal window and simply type in this command:

gedit ~/.mozilla/firefox/*.default/persdict.dat

Either way, edit the file, save it, and you’re cool.


  1. #1 gruebait
    November 13, 2009

    That’s no star, it’s a ‘splat’. Correct terminology is everything.

  2. #2 Colin
    November 13, 2009

    Now, if I could tell it “case on the first letter of this word does not matter” that would be great.

  3. #3 itzac
    November 13, 2009

    In windows the files lives c:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\*.default.

    I used gvim to edit it, but you can probably use notepad.

  4. #4 Benjamin Geiger
    November 13, 2009

    No, it’s a Nathan Hale.

    (I only regret that I have but one asterisk for my country.)

  5. #5 Nemo
    November 13, 2009

    Wow, I didn’t even realize there was an “Add to dictionary” thingie. I’ve just been double-checking everything with a red line under it (e.g., “thingie”) before I hit Post.

  6. #6 Jason Thibeault
    November 14, 2009

    Oh, Greg, don’t admit you have a spellchecker in your browser! You do realize you’re wrecking the only excuse you had for your misspellings (which lead people to believe you’re full of shit about lions’ manes), right?