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Windows 10/Edge - after an update all saved favorites missing from Edge

Windows Vista

Asked
Asked by: BettyHackett

I logged into my Windows 10 PC and launched Edge. I immediately noticed that all my saved favorites were gone.  The only items displaying under 'Favorites' are MSFT default links for 'HP', 'Bing' and 'Favorites Bar' folder (which is empty).  Where did all my SAVED favorites go? 

Please don't tell me to import from Internet Explorer because the saved internet links do not exist in IE. This is a new machine so all internet links saved to 'Favorites' were new.

Answered
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I logged into my Windows 10 PC and launched Edge. I immediately noticed that all my saved favorites were gone.  The only items displaying under 'Favorites' are MSFT default links for 'HP', 'Bing' and 'Favorites Bar' folder (which is empty).  Where did all my SAVED favorites go? 

Please don't tell me to import from Internet Explorer because the saved internet links do not exist in IE. This is a new machine so all internet links saved to 'Favorites' were new.

Yeah, this problem is well documented on this forum... favorites just tend to magically disappear (typically associated with a windows update).  For some, it happens more than once... and for countless thousands of others, it never happens at all.

We haven't heard from Microsoft what the root cause is... or how to prevent it from happening again.  Instead, they merely suggest that you ignore the problem and reload your favorites from Internet Explorer.

However, "Reload your favorites, and hope it doesn't happen again"... isn't very comforting.

So, first let's get your favorites back... and then we can show you an easier way to protect them for the "next time" this happens

Part 1:  Restoring your favorites

Microsoft has a built-in feature called System Restore that takes a "snapshot" of your system before it does an install, update, etc.  This is a good thing, since a lot of people have trouble with missing favorites after a Microsoft update.

So, that means that this snapshot will most likely have the missing favorites.  And now the questions are: "Do I have a viable snapshot", and "How do I get my favorites from the snapshot"

There is supposed to be a feature in File Explorer that allows you to right click on a file (or directory) and go to properties, and select "Previous Versions".  Unfortunately, that doesn't work for most versions of Windows 10.

Step 1 – Do I have a viable snapshot?

The first step is to see if you have a recent snapshot. So, type "create a restore point" at the Cortana prompt to bring up the settings... then click on the "System Restore" button to get to the next prompt. 

This will show the list of available restore points.  Hopefully, you’ll have a recent one to use.

Step 2 – How do I get my favorites from the snapshot

So, there are two approaches... the first is a "broad approach" that just restores everything on your PC from that snapshot.  However, that might not be the best approach, since the snapshot may be several days old... and you'd lose everything that you did from that point in time.  You'd also have to reinstall whatever update that originally caused this problem.

So, look at the date of the restore point, and decide if you want to restore everything from the snapshot or not.  If so, just click on the Next button to start the restore.  Warning, this takes a lot of time to complete the process (about 20 minutes or so).

The other approach is to extract only parts of the data from the restore point.  This would probably be the most appropriate since you won't lose anything else you've done since the last snapshot.  Plus, it will take a heck of lot less time to do.


Microsoft doesn't have a "selective restore" option, but there are some free 3rd-party applications that can do this.  Personally, I use one called ShadowCopyView.  It will allow you to view the snapshot as a hard drive... and then copy the specific files/folders that you want to restore.   See the website http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/shadow_copy_view.html for more information.

In this case, you'd be wanting to copy the contents of the UsersYOUR_NAME_HEREAppDataLocalPackagesMicrosoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe folder from the backup to the same location on your C: drive.   Note: The AppData folder is hidden, so you might have to tweak the File Explorer settings to be able to see that folder.  Also, this particular utility doesn’t overwrite existing files, so you should delete that folder first.


Congrats to BeefRWijker for figuring this out (and for being patient with me for not believing that the technique worked).

Part 2:  How to backup and restore your favorites

There are several techniques that you can use to backup your favorites (after you've restored or reimported them and fixed them the way you want them).  There is a simple technique that only works if you're using the Edge "Sync your content" feature, and a more turn-key version where you install a 3rd-party application that can also protect a lot of the Edge settings

1) If you are using "Sync your content", you can copy the contents of the %USERPROFILE%AppDataLocalPackagesMicrosoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbweRoamingState for safe keeping.  And then just copy it back after a crash/reset.   See Edge Bookmark Backup for more information

2) You can use the free 3rd-party EdgeManage application to import/export your favorites to an HTML-based "bookmarks" file or perform a full database backup/restore (plus many more features).  This technique works without regard to the "Sync your content" settings.

I would highly suggest that you use the Edge "Send feedback" tool to let Microsoft know that you've had this problem.  The more people who report it, the less likely they will be able to ignore it.

Answered
Other Windows apps 10/01/2017 0 Comment 10 views
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