My Firefox bookmarks just vanished!

I can’t figure it out! This has happened before on another computer which was glitchy anyway, so I paid it little mind. Now it has happened again: they were simply gone when I started up my computer this afternon. :loco:
Two questions for the panel:
Is there anything I can do to get my bookmarks back?
How do I prevent my bookmarks from vanishing in the future?

Presuming you have a standard installation under Windows XP.

In the folder:
C:\Documents and Settings[your login name]\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles[random].Default User

There should hopefully be a file called ‘bookmarks.bak’ which should be a backup copy of your bookmarks file.

Also if you have a sufficently recent Firefox build there will be a folder called ‘bookmarkbackups’ in which you’ll find enough money, beer and nubile women to take your mind off the misery of loosing your bookmarks.

The Application Data folder is set to be hidden by default, so if you can’t see it do the following:

Select Tools>Folder Options>View
Select ‘Show hidden files and folders’
Click Apply

It’s happened AGAIN. This morning I started up Firefox and got redirected to a page which joyfully exclaimed “Frirefox has been updated”… and all my bookmarks were gone. :noway: WTF? :fume: Is there some way to prevent this from happening? Or do I need to shop for a new browser?
Last time I followed the steps mentioned by the previous posts and recovered a few bookmarks, but it was still an annoying setback for my browsing habits.