How can I export my Google Chrome search engines (the ones behind the address bar)?
Question by Tilman /

If you use Google Chrome, you most likely appreciate the feature to add, manage and edit search engines. Well, I loved that feature so much, that I created a large number of customized keywords for myself – and I used them so much on my previous computer that I can’t live without them!

Well, now I have a new computer but Chrome’s sync feature does not sync the search engines!! :( How can I get them to my new computer? I do not want to retype them all manually (with individual keywords and URLs with “%s” in place of query) because this would be too much work. I was hoping that the browser’s sync feature would help but unfortunately it syncs only apps, autofill, bookmarks, extensions, passwords, preferences, and themes! :(

Does anybody have an idea? I’m sure there must be a way to do it automatically… In case you don’t know what I am talking about, the search engines can be found in chrome under options -> basics -> search -> manage search engines.

Thanks in advance for your help!

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Answers (3)
  • Tilman

    Thanks, ha14! I noticed that those three files include so much more information than just the search engines – I don’t want to overwrite my current files (preferences, etc)! So I just decided to copy all my search engines on the old computer into an excel file and then insert them into the new chrome. It took me in total about an hour (a lot of copy-pasting), but I got the job done, I still have my current preferences and web data, and I am again a happy chrome user =) I did, however, vote in chrome development forum for implementing a search engine sync in the next release.

    Thanks for your help! Thanks to you, I did manage to sit down for that hour ;)

    • Tina

      Thanks for the update, Tilman.

      PS: I’m coming to Sweden (Karlskrona) in August. :)

  • Anonymous

    Windows PowerShell and Dropbox to sync the search engines portion of your Chrome profile across multiple computers!

    http://lifehacker.com/5721178/sync-your-custom-chrome-search-engines-across-windows-and-mac-systems
    Bookmarks Here, Bookmarks There, Bookmarks Everywhere
    http://blog.chromium.org/2009/08/bookmarks-here-bookmarks-there.html
    how to synchronize Google Chrome to Google Bookmarks. Now you can access them anytime, anywhere, on any computer

    Poor man’s search engines sync for Google Chrome (version 2)
    http://ludovic.chabant.com/devblog/2011/01/18/poor-mans-search-engines-sync-for-google-chrome-version-2/

    or

    ON WINDOWS XP: Go to C:Documents and SettingsYourUserNameLocal SettingsApplication DataGoogleChromeUser DataDefault
    ON WINDOWS 7: Go to C:UsersYourUserNameAppDataLocalGoogleChromeUser DataDefault

    2) Back up or copy these 3 files:
    • Preferences
    • Web Data
    • Web Data-journal

    3) Put those 3 files onto the destination machine … check your chrome.