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I just submitted a form that included a text box, in which I had written a quite long text. In another textbox, I filled in a date in the wrong format - and instead of getting an error message, the web site just acted as if my form submission was valid, except nothing was saved.

Is there any way to see the history of what has been POST-ed (in the current session, at least), from where I can recover my lost text?

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For this reason, I made it a habit of Ctrl-C'ing everything longer than a sentence. It's just so damn annoying when this happens. – Daniel Beck Jan 11 '11 at 14:22
@Daniel: For Chrome and Firefox, there's an extension called "Lazarus" which saves form entries. – grawity Jan 11 '11 at 14:36
@grawity Thanks for the info. Not for Safari though, it seems. – Daniel Beck Jan 11 '11 at 14:39
@grawity: I tried Lazarus (on Firefox) for a while, but it was very buggy and more often than what is acceptable caused the entire browser to freeze. The concept is exactly what I'm looking for, but without the bugs =) – Tomas Lycken Feb 20 '11 at 23:17
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I don't think Chrome (or any other browser, for that matter) saves a history of <textarea> (multiline input) contents.

If the form uses normal (non-Ajax) submission, and you haven't navigated away from the result page, there's a trick you can try: Open burp suite (the free version, of course), configure your browser to use localhost:8080 as a HTTP proxy, and press Refresh on the result page. The browser will ask you if you want to repeat the submission - which should then be captured in burp's "proxy" tab. (For unsecured HTTP, a packet sniffer such as Wireshark would work too.)

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Ok for real, I had to deal with this problem myself and I think I found a reliable solution:

  • first don't close the tab which you lost your post data.
  • then from the tools menu open task manager of chrome and find the pid.
  • afterwards use the process hacker to search for a portion of the string you have lost and continue till you find the longest consecutive data.
  • then copy and paste it to a text editor.

This way I was able to save my work today.

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!!!!!! Wow, you just saved me a ton of frustration. The Process Hacker operation is to right-click on the process with the matching PID and select "Create Dump File..." which creates a huge file but I was able to find the text in question. – Jason S Oct 2 '14 at 21:56
Thank you! I lost over an hour of work when I tried to save a wordpress post and this was the only way I could get it back. – Eddie Loeffen Dec 21 '14 at 1:57

There is in fact a (somewhat cumbersome?) method of doing this in Chrome (and, in fact, any WebKit browser with WebInspector).

  1. On the page with the form, open the development console. This can be done by pressing F12.
  2. In the console that opens up, switch to the Network tab.
    • Optionally, ensure Preserve log is ticked and filter by Documents or XHR, as the case may be.
  3. Submit your form. Click on the newly created entry and go to the Headers tab. You'll see your submission under Form Data.
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This does not seem to correspond with the presentation in my current version of Chrome (47.0.2526.111 m). Would be nice to find out how it can be done. – James Poulson Jan 16 at 3:32
@JamesPoulson The UI hasn't changed much, but Chrome now defaults to opening it in a side panel rather than a popup, and it shows a graph by default. You may need to click the double chevron (>>) in the top-right to find the Network tab. – Schism Jan 16 at 4:16

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