Problems with Chrome browser, settings, or extensions? Follow these simple steps to reset the Chrome browser and settings.
Resetting the Chrome browser can be a useful troubleshooting step if you’re experiencing problems with the browser or want to start fresh with a clean slate. It can also be helpful for issues such as crashes, errors, or slow performance or if you want to remove unwanted extensions or protect your privacy by clearing your browsing data.
When you reset Chrome, it restores the browser to its default settings, removes all your extensions and themes, and clears your browsing history, cookies, and other data. The good thing is that resetting eliminates the need to reinstall the Chrome browser.
So, without further ado, let me show you how to reset the Chrome browser.
Table of contents:
- Why reset the Chrome browser?
- How to reset Chrome browser without data loss
- How to factory reset the Chrome browser
Why reset the Chrome browser?
There are several reasons to reset a browser in Windows. These reasons include but are not limited to the following:
- Fixing browser problems: If you’re experiencing issues with Chrome, such as crashes, errors, or slow performance, resetting the browser can often help resolve these problems.
- Removing unwanted extensions: If you’ve installed a lot of extensions and themes in Chrome and want to start fresh, resetting the browser can help you.
- Protecting your privacy: If you’re concerned about your privacy and want to clear your browsing history, cookies, and other data from Chrome, resetting the browser can help you do this.
- Removing malware: If you suspect that a Chrome extension has been infected with malware, hard resetting the browser can help remove the malware and restore it to its original state.
- Resetting settings: If you modified a lot of settings and preferences and want to revert them at once, resetting the browser can help you do this.
How to reset Chrome browser without data loss
If you want to reset the Chrome browser without losing data, then you reset Chrome settings using the built-in options. This method will modify all the settings to their default, disable all installed extensions & themes, reset the startup page, new tab page, search engine, content settings, and clear temporary data like cookies & site data.
This method will not delete your bookmarks, history, and saved passwords. To put it simply, you can think of it as a soft reset.
Here are the steps to reset the Chrome browser:
- Open the Chrome browser.
- Type “chrome://settings” in the address bar.
- Press the “Enter” button.
- Click “Reset and clean up” on the sidebar.
- Press the “Restore settings to their original defaults” option.
- Press the “Reset settings” button.
- With that, you are done resetting the Chrome browser.
- Relaunch the Chrome browser.
Steps with more details:
Since the option is built into the browser itself, open the Chrome browser. You can search for “Google Chrome” in the Start menu or click on the icon on the desktop or taskbar.
After opening the Chrome browser, type “Chrome://settings” in the address bar and press Enter. You can also get to the same page by clicking the “Menu” (three vertical dots) icon and selecting the “Settings” option.
In the Settings page, select the “Reset and clean up” option on the sidebar. As the name implies, this page hosts the option to reset the browser.
Now, click the “Reset settings to their original defaults” option.
You will see a warning pop-up showing all the settings affected by the reset. Click the “Reset Settings” button to continue.
That is it. As soon as you click the button, Chrome will reset to its default settings.
As I said earlier, your personal data, like browsing history, passwords, etc., are not deleted. However, all the extensions and themes are disabled and must be enabled manually. Also, all your personalized settings and preferences are removed, and you need to set those up again.
How to factory reset the Chrome browser
If you want to start fresh, then you must hard reset the Chrome browser. i.e., factory reset the Chrome browser.
On factory reset, all the settings & preferences, browsing history, cookies, extensions, bookmarks, etc., will be removed locally. Essentially, your browser will be new again.
Important note: The below steps will also remove all the Chrome profiles. If you have multiple Chrome profiles, please keep that in mind and back up any important information, especially if the data is not synced with your Google account.
Here are the steps to factory reset the Chrome browser.
- Close the Chrome browser.
- Press the “Win + R” shortcut.
- Paste the path below in the blank field.
- Press the “Ok” button.
- Delete the “User Data” folder.
- Reboot the Windows.
- With that, you are done with factory resetting the Chrome browser.
- Open the Chrome browser, and it is new again.
Steps with more details:
Since we want to factory reset the Chrome browser, the first thing to do is close the browser. To do that, click the “X” button on the top right corner of the window.
After closing the browser, press the “Win + R” keyboard shortcut to open the Run dialog box. Paste the path below in the blank field and press the “Ok” button. It will take you to that Chrome’s User Data folder in File Explorer.
As the name implies, this is where Chrome saves all the files related to user settings, extensions, browsing history, and more.
Select the “User Data” folder and delete it. You can press the “Delete” key on your keyboard or right-click on the folder and select the “Delete” option.
After deleting the folder, close the File Explorer window and restart the computer.
That is it. Launch the Chrome browser after restarting, and you will see the welcome screen. Sign in to your Google account, and the browser should automatically sync data like your bookmarks, extensions, history, etc.
As you can see, it is pretty easy to reset the Chrome browser.
I hope this simple and easy Windows how-to guide helped you.
If you are stuck or need help, send an email, and I will try to help as much as possible.
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