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How to restore deleted Google Chrome bookmarks: all the possible methods
Written by: Ilia
Data recovery specialist, guest author, journalist.
Google Chrome browser synchronizes data in online mode which seems to make it highly unlikely to lose the data. But anyway when you uninstall Google Chrome, perform disk formatting and etc. information (such as bookmarks) can disappear.
Further we're going to tell you how to return bookmarks in this browser if you've accidentally deleted them or
Chrome bookmarks have disappeared by themselves.
Restoring deleted bookmarks from a backup file
If you have been creating backups before, it'll be much easier to restore your disappeared bookmarks. In order to save all the changes, create a Google account and open the browser only through it. Remember to check whether your bookmarks are synchronized or not what you can do in the settings menu, just choose the tab "Advanced Sync Settings" (Settings – Sync). Then any changes will be recorded automatically.
Restoring lost Chrome bookmarks via Google browsing history
In the browsing history you can find the websites you've visited in the last 3 months (assuming that the user hasn't erased it). Of course, URLs and bookmarks aren't the same thing, but you can restore at least some information.
If you sync your history upon logging in Chrome, you can see a list with browsing data from all the devices you've been online through.
Note. When you open a browsing page in incognito mode, the address of this page can't be saved.
You can find Chrome browsing history in the following way:
- Via the browser menu which will open after you click on the ellipsis in the upper right part of the program. Browsing history is available in the "History" section.
- By simultaneously pressing the hotkeys "Ctrl" + " H " (for Windows).
- Or after typing chrome://history/ in the address bar (press "Enter").
How to find Bookmarks.bak files
If the first two methods didn't manage to help you with restoring bookmarks, give a try to special programs. Recuva is a popular utility for searching for deleted files. In order to restore disappeared Chrome bookmarks:
- Download Recuva program from the developer's website.
- Launch the program and in the settings specify the folder you want to find. In our case, this is the browser folder: C:\User\[username]\AppData\Default or C:\Users\[Username]\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Bookmarks.
- The program will search for you and find Bookmarks file, if you're lucky enough. You have to restore it onto your PC and copy it to Default folder thus overwriting the current file.
Where are Chrome favorites stored
Chrome stores all the bookmarks created by its user in Bookmarks file, but without json extension. You can open and view its content via Windows Notepad.
You need two files which are the ordinary Bookmarks and Bookmarks.bak. To check their contents, you can copy them onto the main desktop and open them via Notepad.
If you find a lot of important data in the files, you should rename the bookmarks.bak by deleting .bak, copy them into browser profile folder on the C drive, close Chrome (as you have to exit the browser) and update your bookmarks.
Protecting Chrome bookmarks from sudden loss
Here is a note for the future: export bookmarks in the form of a separate file. The most convenient aspect of this method is that website addresses copies will always be at your disposal, moreover, you'll be able to import them into any other browser.
Note. You can't export bookmarks from Google Chrome mobile app.
How to export bookmarks into a local file:
- Open the browser and click on Google Chrome icon placed in the control panel.
- After the menu opens click on "Bookmarks".
- Press "Bookmark Manager".
- Click on ":" icon placed on the right blue strip and select "Export Bookmarks" in the popped up menu.
- In File Explorer window specify the name of the file you want to save and choose a folder for it.
- Click "Save".
And that's it. Now you have a file with all your exported bookmarks, which you can always open in order to recover bookmarks in Chrome.
Although in the mobile app there is no automatic access to deleted bookmarks from the exported file, we'll teach you how to trick the app. Launch Google Chrome app on your mobile device and open the same account as you use for signing in on your PC.
Rolling back Windows
Instead of logging out from my account I deleted bookmarks in Google Chrome browser on a working laptop. I decided to delete them since it was time for me to go on vacation (and I did it in order to prevent children from opening them). I came home, launched the browser... Well, I'm shocked. Then I quickly turned off the internet on the smartphone since all the bookmarks are safe and sound there. But what is the next step? Is there a way to recover my hundreds of bookmarks when I don't have to remember each of them and manually create it?
Method 1. Roll back the system via a restore point to the point when you still had the bookmarks:
- Control Panel - System - System Protection.
- Select a drive and restore point before the date when the problem occurred.
- Choose "Restore".
Method 2. Via your smartphone sync Google Chrome with the cloud, then sign in via your browser account on your PC.
Questions - Answers
The problem: I accidentally deleted Google Chrome bookmarks. As taught, without closing the browser I copied the "Bookmarks.Bak" file in order to replace it with "Bookmarks".
But why on Earth did I decide to check the contents of the file by opening it via Notepad? As a result, replacing the empty file "Bookmarks" with a saved backup copy of the old file didn't lead to the recovery of the bookmarks (previously when I didn't open the file "Bookmarks.Bak" via Notepad, I have successfully done this procedure several times).
Can anyone suggest a solution to this problem? If possible, clearly and step by step.
Thank you in advance for your help!
I switched to Windows 10. All my bookmarks disappeared from Google Chrome. How can I recover them?
You can roll back to Windows 7, copy the bookmarks on a USB flash drive or another partition via Bookmark Manager and then install Windows 10 again. It will take you 10-15 minutes to return Windows 7 and restore Chrome bookmarks.
After a Google Chrome update an entire list with bookmarks was lost. Resyncing was helpless. The browser old version works as usual on my computer at work. How can I recover the lost bookmarks? Or where can I find them?
The answer. Go to С:\Documents and Settings\Username\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\
Find the "Bookmarks" file in this folder. In the context menu select “Open with”, then choose "Notepad" (or any other text editor) and press "OK". Your favorites (URLs and page titles) are stored in the "Bookmarks" file.
There is an easier way:
- Create several tabs in Chrome,
- Find the file at the same path,
- Replace it with the old "Bookmarks" file which you've copied before at the path specified above.
Check in your browser settings whether syncing is enabled. But honestly, you should have exported your bookmarks before reinstalling Windows. Now it's too late to do anything.
If you toggle on the feature of syncing in Google Chrome, all your bookmarks should be saved. Simply resign in to your Google Chrome account via the browser menu.
Bookmarks disappear almost every day: the bookmarks bar or whole folders with them go missing. I tried to retrieve everything from the "Bookmarks file.Bak" file, but didn't find the missing bookmarks there. I gave a try to closing-opening in order to sync everything, but the lost bookmarks won't appear!
What is another way to recover the disappeared chrome bookmarks?
- Go to C:\Users\your_username\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default
- Apart from "Bookmarks.Bak" you can also find there the files called "Bookmarks111.Bak", "Bookmarks222.Bak" or something like this.
- Find the one that weighs the most or the most recent one (counting from the date of loss) and copy it to your Desktop.
- From the title of the "Bookmarks222.Bak" file delete the numbers so that you get "Bookmarks.Bak" and then replace it with the empty file.
I tried to solve the problem by restoring the system. Alas, the only system restore point I manage to find has been created after the actions that led to the problem were performed. No other options of restore points are offered (I didn't forget to check the "Show other restore points" point).
Other solutions haven't yet been found.
Does anyone have any other ideas? Is there a chance I can fix this problem?