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Bookmark/Favorites Backup and Migration

When having your computer replaced or reimaged it's always a good idea to make sure your bookmarks are backed up. Most people use one primary browser, and only keep bookmarks there. If that sounds like you, feel free to skip to the section for that browser.


Chrome can sync data connected to your University Gmail account when you're logged in with sync turned on. This includes Favorites, History, Saved Passwords, etc.

To make sure you're signed in and have sync turned on:

  1. Open Chrome and click the icon in the upper right corner. It will either be your account photo or a silhouette of  person. 

  2. You will see one of the following options:

3. Follow Chrome's prompts to "Turn on sync..."

Note on Passphrases

If Chrome prompts for a passphrase you'll need to clear sync data and log in again to activate sync. This should only happen if you haven't signed into sync in the last 5-6 years.

4. The same process applies to access browser data on a new computer.


Although Firefox offers a service that syncs data similar to Chrome it requires creation of a third-party Mozilla account. You're free to use this option, but in this section we'll walk through a manual backup of your Firefox profile. 

  1. Locate your profile folder

    • In Firefox click the menu button

      , click Help and select Troubleshooting Information. The Troubleshooting Information tab will open.

    • Under the Application Basics section next to Profile Folder, click Open Folder. Your profile folder will open.

  2. Close Firefox (if open):

    Click the Firefox menu

     and select Exit.

  3. Go to one level above your profile's folder, i.e. to %APPDATA%\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\

  4. Right-click on your profile folder (e.g. xxxxxxxx.default), and select Copy.

  5. Right-click the backup location (e.g. a USB-stick or a blank CD-RW disc), and select Paste.

To restore your profile:

  1. Locate your profile folder, as explained above.

  2. Close Firefox (if open):

    Click the Firefox menu

     and select Exit.

  3. Go to one level above your profile's folder, i.e. to %APPDATA%\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\

  4. Right-click on your profile folder (e.g. xxxxxxxx.default), and select Rename.

  5. Rename to xxxxxxx.defaultbkp.

  6. Copy your backed up file from the previous section to this folder.

  7. Right-click on your restored profile folder (e.g. xxxxxxxx.default), and select Rename.

  8. Rename the restored folder so the name is the same as the preexisting folder (minus the "bkp")

  9. Re-open Firefox

Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer bookmarks will be moved automatically with Microsoft Sync Center.  If you'd like to back up your bookmarks you can export  a copy.

  1. In the Internet Explorer browser, select View favorites, feeds, and history, Click the Favorite star in the upper right corner or select, Alt + C to open Favorites.

  2. Under the Add to favorites menu, select Import and export....

  3. Select Export to a file, and then select Next.

  4. On the checklist of options, select Favorites, and then select Next.

  5. Select the folder that you'd like to export your Favorites from, and then select Next.

  6. Type or browse to the location where you'd like your file exported. 

  7. Select Export and then Finish.

  8. Your Favorites will now appear in an htm file in the location you've specified.

  9. You'll need to be able to access this file on your new PC, so send this file to yourself, either by emailing it, by saving it onto an external storage device, or by saving it to the cloud with a service like Google Drive.


  1. In the Safari app on your Mac, choose File > Export Bookmarks. The exported file is called “Safari Bookmarks.html.”

  2. Back up this file to a location that will be accessible across computers (eg. Google Drive)

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