In the summer of 2014, Google introduced a new bookmark manager in beta builds of the Chrome browser. For some users, they loved the visual look of it but the functionality left something to desire. When the build finally rolled out in October of 2014, it seemed Chrome abandoned any fixes to make the new bookmark manager more functional for users.
This update took two months to fully roll out to Chrome users, and now that most have upgraded to the build, they want the old bookmark manager back. Here’s how to disable Chrome’s new bookmark manager and get back the old one.
Why Disable Chrome’s New Bookmark Manager
Chrome’s new bookmark manager takes on the traits and appearance that Google is applying to many of its web app services. It’s called Stars. Visually, it’s beautiful, clean and looks well-organized.
However, if you utilize bookmarks a lot, it makes it very hard to organize, juggle and maintain large amounts of bookmarks because of the way it’s laid out and the lack of customization options. If you need more functionality, you need to disable Chrome’s new bookmark manager.
Disabling Chrome’s New Bookmark Manager
These steps work in Chrome builds 41 and 42. This will most likely work in future builds of Chrome, too. We will keep you updated on that as updates roll out for Google’s browser.
Open up Chrome and click on your navigation bar.
Enter in the following Chrome flag:
The top experimental setting should be Enable Enhanced Bookmarks, which is now enabled by default in the latest build of Chrome.
Click on the drop down box and choose “Disabled.”
Once chosen, you’ll want to close Chrome and restart it. This should make the default bookmark manager the old one you’re used to seeing.
However, there have been some cases where even when disabled, Chrome doesn’t recognize it being disabled. If you restart Chrome and you still see the new bookmark manager still there, close Chrome down and restart your computer. This should finally trigger the old bookmark manager to be used instead of the new one.
At any time, you can re-enable the new bookmark manager by going back to the experimental flag and enabling it again.
Not all changes to our favorite browsers make sense or make our lives easier as they were intended. If you’re not happy with the latest bookmark manager in Chrome, now you can disable it until something better comes along.
If you don’t have many bookmarks, this probably doesn’t matter to you, but for those who do, reverting back to the old bookmark manager in Chrome might offer better functionality for the time being.
Further Reading: Holmes Extension Makes it Effortless to Find Bookmarks in Chrome