I was using Chrome halfway when the computer crashed. Usually if I restart and re-run Chrome, there would be a Restore button to recover my lost Chrome session.

However, I restarted in Safe Mode, and re-ran Chrome. I saw no Restore button (just a blank window). Sensing trouble, I restarted the computer in "normal mode" and re-ran Chrome again. But there was still no Restore button. (Ctrl-Shift-T isn't working either.)

I quickly did a backup of the user data folder, but the files "Last Session" and "Last Tabs" are only 1 KB each (so the actual data is no longer within those files):

enter image description here

How do I do a "session restore" now that the Restore button is gone?

How do I do a "session restore" when Chrome has already overridden "Last Session" and "Last Tabs"?

(Is there any way to restore the lost session using other files like "History Index" and etc?)

C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe --restore-last-session

(suggestion was to create a shortcut since this appears to not be a one time occurrence.  I have created the shortcut, but have not tested it yet.)

Way back someone posted this solution for basically manually pulling the tabs even after missing the .1 sec 'RESTORE' FROM CRASH.

But I was able to recover my tabs and here is what I did:

  • Kill your Chrome via Task Manager
  • Go to C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default
  • Rename "Current Session" to "Current Session.old"
  • Rename "Current Tabs" to "Current Tabs.old"
  • Rename "Last session" to "Current Session"
  • Rename "Last Tabs" to "Current Tabs"
  • Restart Chrome and there you go!

This worked after Ctrl+Shift+T would not (no response for even the 1st tab), and after right-clicking on new tab and selecting 'restore' was greyed out. Of course I already had the Settings|'On Startup|Continue where I left off' selected long ago, to no avail.

Now if we could only stop Google from crashing in the first place.

I will be checking out "SessionBuddy extension" for Chrome as well, but this solved last night's dilemma.

Of course, if your home/profile directory is somewhere other than C:\Users\%username%, use the appropriate path.

  • 2
    +1 Awesome (I missed the 1 second (!?) restore from crash notification - damn you Chrome!) - For those using XP... C:\Documents and Settings\%username\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default – MrWhite Sep 22 '13 at 10:32
  • LastSession and Last Tabs are both 0 bytes. I really doubt this is going to work. – mcv Nov 22 '13 at 12:11
  • +1 Awesome, this saved me from a lot of trouble. Thanks! I would give it 2 upvotes, but that is not possible :( – jaraics Jan 23 '14 at 17:14
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    Great answer! It saved me once more, so I honored it with a bounty. Thanks again! – jaraics Jan 31 '14 at 8:44
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    Remember, --restore-last-session. – Константин Ван Mar 31 '18 at 10:03

The History Index files contain your navigation history. The one without dates is from the current month.

With regards to restoring the previous session, try passing --restore-last-session in the command line.

  • This is working however my "last session" is now not the session I wanted anymore (when it crashed), I'd guess essentially what is required is a --restore-last-last-session or a way to copy around the data in C:\pocket\chrome such that I can get the --restore-last-session to restore the "crashed session". – Pacerier Oct 3 '11 at 18:18
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    Sorry, there is no way to do this, as it only preserves the current and last sessions. – Aluísio A. S. G. Oct 3 '11 at 22:15
  • Where does Chrome save the data for the sessions before the previous session? – Pacerier Oct 5 '11 at 1:30
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    It doesn't. Only the current and previous sessions are stored. – Aluísio A. S. G. Oct 5 '11 at 23:55

Take a look at the recently closed link

Chrome recent closed

Your previous tabs are likely to be there.


I have (what I think is) a surefire way of restoring your tabs, as long as you haven't recently deleted your internet history.

Go to history in your browser (ctrl+h) and keep scrolling until you start recognizing the links/pages you lost in the crash. Every tab you're looking for should be there in a row. The reason they are, is that Chrome saves your whole sessions every time you start it up.

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    This doesn't work for me... I usually kill tabs as they open up... Stuff that has been open for months do not show up in the history... – Gert van den Berg Nov 13 '17 at 20:29

Go to History and click Closed Tabs.

It will open another window with all tabs that had been closed previously.

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