How to Recover Deleted Google Chrome Bookmarks on Windows

Written by
Approved by
155

recover chrome bookmarksLosing bookmarks can give you a mini heart attack. Take a deep breath because you won’t have to add all bookmarks again from scratch. Thankfully, recovering lost bookmarks is fairly quick and easy. In this guide, we explain how to recover bookmarks in Chrome on Windows.

What Can Cause Loss of Chrome Bookmarks

There are only a handful of reasons that can lead to loss of Chrome bookmarks. Here are the three most common reasons:

  • 🗑️Accidental deletion: You might have accidentally deleted bookmarks when in a hurry.
  • 🔄Sync error after a browser update: If you recently updated your browser or created a new Chrome profile, a sync error could have caused the bookmarks to disappear.
  • 🧹Storage cleaning software: Storage cleaning software might delete files that can lead to bookmarks disappearing from your Chrome browser.

How to Recover Missing Chrome Bookmarks

There are multiple ways to recover missing Chrome bookmarks. The fix depends on what caused the bookmarks to disappear in the first place. If you don’t know the cause, try the fixes in the sequence below.

Before we jump into the fixes, make sure your Bookmark Bar is not hidden. Pressing Ctrl + Shift + B by mistake could’ve led to the Bookmark Bar disappearing. You can bring the Bookmark Bar back using the same shortcut. If that doesn’t work, try the fixes below.

Method 1: Undo Deletion from Bookmark Manager

If you haven’t closed the browser yet after the Chrome bookmarks disappeared, try to reverse the deletion using the undo shortcut Ctrl+ Z. This method works as long as you haven’t closed the browser instance.

Press Ctrl+Shift+O to open the bookmark manager. Alternatively, you can open the bookmark manager by clicking on the vertical ellipsis at the top-right corner and selecting Bookmarks and lists > Bookmark Manager.

Bookmarks Manager in Google Chrome

Once you’re in the Bookmark Manager, press Ctrl+Z.

Note: If you’re on Android, the undo button will only appear for a brief period after you’ve deleted bookmarks.

Method 2: Manually Go through Browser History and Add Bookmark Pages Again

You probably visit bookmarked pages often. That might just be why you bookmarked them in the first place. If the first method doesn’t work, quickly scan your browser history, find pages you had bookmarked, and bookmark them again.

Of course, this can be painful and cumbersome if you have dozens of bookmarks. It’s also possible that you had bookmarked pages containing useful information and you don’t visit them often, which means they won’t be in your browsing history. In those cases, try the next method.

Method 3: Restore Bookmarks From Backup

Google Chrome stores bookmarks in specific files. These files are stored in the following path on your computer (assuming your Windows is installed on disk C):

C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data

Find files named Bookmarks and Bookmarks.bak. You can recover bookmarks from these files using one of the two methods explained below.

Recover Bookmarks Using Chrome Bookmarks Recover Tool

Here’s how the Chrome Bookmarks Recovery Tool works:

  1. Head over to the Chrome Bookmarks Recovery Tool.
  2. Upload the .bak file into the tool. If you have multiple profiles on Google Chrome, you can upload multiple files here as well.Uploading the HTML file containing Google Chrome bookmarks.
  3. The tool will create an HTML file or multiple HTML files. These files include links to all the bookmarks. Download the files by clicking on it.Downloading the HTML file containing bookmarks.
  4. Next, click on the vertical ellipsis icon at the top-right of the Chrome window and select Bookmarks and lists > Bookmark Manager. Or you can press Ctrl+Shift+O.
  5. Click on the vertical ellipsis to the right of the search bar at the top and select Import bookmarks.Importing bookmarks into Google Chrome.
  6. Select the HTML files you just downloaded.

When you’re done, the imported bookmarks will appear in a new folder. Double-click the folder to access your bookmarks.

Recover Bookmarks Manually Using Bookmarks.bak

To recover bookmarks manually using the Bookmarks.bak file:

  1. Click on the vertical ellipsis at the top-right of the Chrome browser and navigate to Settings.
  2. If sync is turned on, select Sync and Google services > Manage what you sync. Select Customize sync and disable syncing for bookmarks.Syncing bookmarks in Google Chrome.
  3. Use the File Explorer to navigate to:
    C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data
  4. Find the Bookmarks file that does not have the .bak extension and rename it to Bookmarks2.bak.
  5. Rename Bookmarks.bak to Bookmarks (remove the extension).Renaming the bookmarks file.

Method 4: Recover Bookmarks File Using Disk Drill

What if you can’t find the Bookmarks files? That’s when a data recovery solution like Disk Drill can help. Here’s how you can use Disk Drill to recover the Bookmarks files:

  1. Download Disk Drill and install it on your device.
  2. Launch Disk Drill and select Storage Devices > Logical Volumes from the left sidebar. Select local disk C (assuming this is where you’ve installed Windows).
  3. Click on Search for lost data to scan the drive.Scanning drive C using Disk Drill.
  4. Once the scan is complete, search through the results and look for the Bookmarks file. Sometimes, the file may appear with a different name. For example, you may see a file called “$SDASSF.bak” in the results.
  5. Recover the file by clicking the Recover all button. After you click the button, select a location where you want to recover the file, and click Next. You should then see the recovered file in the chosen folder.Selecting the BAK file from the files found during the scan.

Method 5: Resync Bookmarks from Other Devices

This method works on all devices. For this method to work, the following two conditions must be fulfilled:

  • You need two devices with Chrome installed
  • You shouldn’t have used Chrome on the second device after losing bookmarks on the original device

Here’s how it works:

  1. Clear the data on the device from which you lost the bookmarks. If you lost bookmarks from your Windows PC, head over to your Chrome account’s sync settings page, scroll to the bottom of the page, and click Clear data. Click OK to confirm when prompted.Clearing data in Google Chrome.
  2. Launch Chrome on the device on which you haven’t used Chrome after the bookmarks disappeared from the PC. When you launch Chrome, you’ll likely be asked to log in again. Log into your account.
  3. Launch Chrome on your PC again and sign into your account.

This will sync bookmarks on your PC again and you’ll be able to see them in the Bookmarks Manager.

Conclusion

Recovering bookmarks is easy, though it may be cumbersome in a few cases. Fortunately, Google Chrome saves bookmarks in a file you can use to recover bookmarks. Even if you lose that file, you can use a tool like Disk Drill to recover the Bookmarks files.

FAQ

When you delete a bookmark, Chrome still keeps it in a backup file. Even if the backup file is lost, you can use recovery software like Disk Drill to recover the file and your bookmarks. However, in some cases, the bookmark may be lost permanently.
Chrome bookmarks may disappear because of various reasons like accidental deletion, sync error, or bookmarks deleted by a storage cleaning software solution.
Chrome bookmark files are stored in the following path in Windows 11, assuming Windows is installed on drive C:
C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data
You can use the Time Machine app on Mac to recover bookmarks. Launch the backup app and navigate to user/Library/App Support/Google/Chrome/Default. You'll find the Bookmarks files here. Restore these files and import them to Google Chrome to restore bookmarks.
Yes, you can, provided you've turned on sync in your account. All you need to do is log into Chrome using the Gmail account where you've saved your personal data. Chrome will automatically sync and show your bookmarks.
Arjun is an Tech ninja, codes HTML and CSS, and has received an honorary mention as the family’s go-to tech help during get-togethers. He has been writing guides for about six years and he’s currently a contributor on major Tech websites.
Approved by
Senior Data Recovery Engineer. Master's degree in Physics, Information Technology for Science Experiments.