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I'm on OS X 10.9 using Chrome 36.0.1976.2 dev. I want to "downgrade" to the beta track. Do I need to back up my user data and reinstall Chrome as outlined (for Windows but I get the gist) in this question? Or can I switch and just wait for the next beta update? The second seems to be described on the Chromium website:

If you decide to switch from Dev to Beta or from Beta to Stable, the new channel will be on an earlier version of Google Chrome. You won't get automatic updates on that channel until it reaches a version later than what you're already running.

But I can't find any outline of a procedure to "switch tracks" like that.

Am I stuck reinstalling?

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If you've synced your profile with Google, you can wipe the entire Chrome installation and it'll re-sync from Google's servers. – slhck May 14 '14 at 6:24
@slhck that doesn't include locally written extensions. – Jakob Weisblat May 16 '14 at 17:05
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Short answer: Yes, but with some trickery.

First off, the page is most likely talking about behavior Google used at one point but got rid of (you can see remnants of it in the Windows code). Now, Google just wants you to get back to the stable release as fast as possible since that's most likely what you want.

To really get this behavior you first have to pause Google Chrome's auto update checking mechanism by opening up a terminal and running:

defaults write checkInterval 0

Check your current Chrome version on about:chrome. Every few days a new beta release comes out. Watch for them on the Chrome release blog and when a beta version comes out that is newer, (has a bigger version number) (I would wait for a full major release, e.g. beta is on 44 right now, wait for 45) download and install its DMG file. That'll update your version to that version. Now re-enable automatic updates by opening a terminal and running

defaults write checkInterval 18000
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