In the event that you have deleted the bookmarks you need in Google Chrome in one way or another, in some cases, if the circumstances are successful, they may be restored. Unfortunately, not always, but worth a try.
This guide details two ways to restore bookmarks in the Chrome browser after they are deleted or otherwise lost. Before proceeding, I strongly recommend that you keep a backup of your bookmarks in case something goes wrong: to do this, open the bookmark manager in Chrome on your PC or Mac in the settings, click on the menu button and select "Export bookmarks".
Restore Chrome bookmarks by re-syncing from another device
If you deleted Chrome bookmarks on one device - a computer or laptop, Android or iPhone, while you have synchronization with your Google account turned on and you didn’t manage to delete them on some other device from the same account, then when connecting this second device to the Internet and launching a browser on it, the changes will be synchronized (i.e. bookmarks will be deleted on it as well). However, until this happens, we can use the bookmarks there to restore. The procedure, depending on the situation, may be as follows.
If both devices, with both saved and deleted bookmarks, are a computer or laptop (i.e. they have the usual desktop version of Google Chrome installed on them):
- Without launching Chrome, turn off the Internet on the second device, preventing it from syncing.
- Launch on the second Chrome device without Internet access and open the bookmark manager with the keys Ctrl + Shift + O (or in the menu - Bookmarks - Bookmark manager).
- In the bookmark manager, click on the menu button and select "Export bookmarks". Specify where to save bookmarks.
- Copy the saved file to the first computer (where the bookmarks disappeared), open the bookmark manager and select "Import bookmarks" in its menu. Import the file from step 3.
If the first or second device is a smartphone or tablet:
- On your device with intact bookmarks, just in case, turn off the Internet (if you are talking about the phone - both mobile and Wi-Fi). After that, you can look in Chrome without the Internet and see if bookmarks deleted on the source device were saved there. If so, you can continue.
- On the device where the bookmarks disappeared, go to https://chrome.google.com/sync
- On the specified page, click the Stop Sync button. In this case, bookmarks and other data will be deleted from the Chrome servers (however, then we can restore them from the “untouched” device).
- After deleting the data on the Google server, turn on the Internet on the second device with the saved bookmarks and launch the Chrome browser. If necessary, log in and turn on synchronization (usually not required) and wait for the synchronization to complete (it may take several minutes). If syncing doesn’t complete, turn off sync in Chrome’s settings and then turn it back on.
- Turn on sync on the device where the bookmarks initially disappeared. Wait for the synchronization to complete. If synchronization does not end for a long time, turn it off (sign out of your Chrome account) and then turn it back on.
As a result, bookmarks from the second device will be placed on Google’s servers and then synchronized with the Google Chrome browser on the device where they were lost in one way or another.
Restore bookmarks from a bookmark backup file (on a computer only)
Google Chrome for Windows and Mac stores an automatically created bookmarked backup file that you can use to restore.
On Windows, this file is located in a folder (the AppData folder is hidden)
C: \ Windows \ Users \ Username \ AppData \ Local \ Google \ Chrome \ User Data \ Default
On Mac OS, the location is as follows:
Users \ UserName \ Library \ Application Support \ Google \ Chrome \ Default
In these folders you will find two files - Bookmarks and Bookmarks.bak. The first is bookmarks in Chrome at the moment. The second is a backup of your bookmarks. You can do this with them:
- Close Google Chrome if it is running.
- Move the Bookmarks file to another location (in case you have to correct the results of the described actions).
- Rename the Bookmarks.bak file to just Bookmarks.
- Launch Google Chrome again.
As a result, bookmarks from the backup will be loaded into Chrome. However, it’s impossible to predict (except for the date of the backup file and its size) whether it will contain the desired bookmarks you lost.