How to completely reset Google Chrome

Written by adrian grahams Google
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How to completely reset Google Chrome
Return Google Chrome to its default state. (Patrik Stollarz/Getty Images News/Getty Images)

Resetting the Google Chrome Web browser removes all your preferences, browsing history data, cookie files, extensions and bookmarks to return the browser to the same state as when you first installed it. Google Chrome doesn't offer a one-click reset option from its settings or tools menu, but you can completely reset the browser by deleting the contents of the Chrome user data folder on your computer.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Shut down all instances of Google Chrome running on your computer. Chrome sometimes runs background processes, so to ensure you've closed everything, press "Alt-Ctrl-delete" on your computer keyboard and launch the Windows Task Manager tool.

  2. 2

    Click to select each entry for "Google Chrome" and then "End task." Exit the Task Manager window when you've closed down all Google Chrome processes.

  3. 3

    Press the "Windows-D" key to launch your computer's desktop screen and then click the "Windows Explorer" button.

  4. 4

    Select "Computer" in the left menu pane, and then double-click your computer's hard drive -- usually the "C:" drive on home computers -- in the main Windows Explorer window.

  5. 5

    Go to "Users | UserName | AppData | Local | Google | Chrome" in Windows Explorer. Double-click to open the "User Data" folder.

  6. 6

    Press "Ctrl-A" to select all contents and then "Backspace" or "Delete" to remove the folder's contents. Launch Google Chrome to open the completely reset Web browser.

Tips and warnings

  • After resetting Google Chrome you won't be able to restore your data. If you want to save your bookmarked favourites before resetting Chrome, export them as an HTML file from the Bookmarks Manager in your browser's Options menu. You can then import this file after resetting Chrome to restore your bookmarks.
  • The information in this article applies to Microsoft Windows 8 computers. The steps may differ with other versions of Microsoft Windows.

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