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Chrome portable looses all "extensions" when started on another machine - how to clean up diskspace

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andreask
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Chrome portable looses all "extensions" when started on another machine - how to clean up diskspace

"Chrome Portable" looses all "extensions" when started on another machine.

A PITA really.

And if I just accepted that, and reinstalled all my extensions that I need again and again ...
... I suppose that also wastes a lot of disk space, right?
Because the extensions disappear from the browser, but probably not from the disk, right?

So:

How to clean up the extensions diskspace when ChromePortable has fucked up, and lost all its extensions, just because I plugged in the USB stick into another computer?

Thanks a lot!

John T. Haller
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Log In

You *must* log in to Google to fully use Chrome portably. You should log in to use it at all locally as Chrome treats most of your settings as disposable. This is detailed on the Google Chrome Portable homepage and in the EULA as you install it.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

andreask
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oh, that is REALLY sad.

oh, that is REALLY sad.
I NEVER log into my browser, and I really do not understand why I should. And I have been using the internet for 25 years, there is no reason to upload half of your life into the cloud. And logging into a browser is really the worst you can do, in terms of loss of privacy.
Do you really force me to reveal all my stuff to google now?
Bad bad bad.

Secondly, the folders

K:\PortableApps\GoogleChromePortable\Data\profile\Profile X\Extensions

contain A LOT of megabytes, and for each of the dozen profiles I have.

Very probably that is where the extensions are still stored, even though they do not show up anymore, now that I had started PA on a different machine.
What to do now?
What about providing us with a cleaning tool which removes stuff when chrome has had such an amnesia?

Thanks.

John T. Haller
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Google Chrome itself

The Google Chrome team decided to lock Chrome to a specific Windows install and user profile. You can't even backup a local copy and restore it to another PC as it will trash all your extensions then as well.

Personally, I suggest Firefox. It's self-contained, portability is much better supported in the browser itself, it's fully open source, all your settings are preserved as you move around.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

andreask
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Firefox has become super slow

> Personally, I suggest Firefox

Firefox has become super slow over the past years.

Chrome is much more responsive.

John T. Haller
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Opposite

Firefox was slower a few years ago. Now, it's neck and neck with Chrome on Windows. Firefox wins some benchmarks by a little. Chrome wins some benchmarks by a little. The updating JS and CSS engines as well as ditching legacy extensions had a lot to do with that.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

andreask
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good to hear.

good to hear.

thanks.

might reconsider.

politically I had always preferred firefox, but when it became too slow, I moved to the slicker one.

Good that FF is catching up again.

andreask
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> Secondly, the folders

> Secondly, the folders
> K:\PortableApps\GoogleChromePortable\Data\profile\Profile X\Extensions
> contain A LOT of megabytes, and for each of the dozen profiles I have.
> Very probably that is where the extensions are still stored, even though they do not show up anymore, now that I had started PA on a different machine.
> What to do now?
> What about providing us with a cleaning tool which removes stuff when chrome has had such an amnesia?

Volume in drive K has no label.
Volume Serial Number is 52BD-D7C7

Directory of K:\PortableApps\GoogleChromePortable\Data\profile\Profile 7\Extensions

05/08/2018 10:30 .
05/08/2018 10:30 ..
12/12/2017 08:53 aapocclcgogkmnckokdopfmhonfmgoek
12/12/2017 08:54 aohghmighlieiainnegkcijnfilokake
12/12/2017 08:54 apdfllckaahabafndbhieahigkjlhalf
12/12/2017 08:54 blpcfgokakmgnkcojhhkbfbldkacnbeo
12/12/2017 08:54 felcaaldnbdncclmgdcncolpebgiejap
10/01/2018 02:51 ghbmnnjooekpmoecnnnilnnbdlolhkhi
12/12/2017 08:53 nmmhkkegccagdldgiimedpiccmgmieda
12/12/2017 08:54 pjkljhegncpnkpknbcohdijeoejaedia
10/01/2018 02:51 pkedcjkdefgpdelpbcmbmeomcjbeemfm
1 File(s) 0 bytes
11 Dir(s)

Volume in drive K has no label.
Volume Serial Number is 52BD-D7C7

Directory of K:\PortableApps\GoogleChromePortable\Data\profile\Profile 9\Extensions

05/08/2018 10:31 .
05/08/2018 10:31 ..
01/02/2018 16:23 aapocclcgogkmnckokdopfmhonfmgoek
01/02/2018 16:23 aohghmighlieiainnegkcijnfilokake
01/02/2018 16:23 apdfllckaahabafndbhieahigkjlhalf
01/02/2018 16:23 blpcfgokakmgnkcojhhkbfbldkacnbeo
01/02/2018 16:23 felcaaldnbdncclmgdcncolpebgiejap
01/02/2018 17:58 ghbmnnjooekpmoecnnnilnnbdlolhkhi
01/02/2018 16:22 nmmhkkegccagdldgiimedpiccmgmieda
01/02/2018 16:24 oiigbmnaadbkfbmpbfijlflahbdbdgdf
01/02/2018 16:25 ompiailgknfdndiefoaoiligalphfdae
01/02/2018 16:23 pjkljhegncpnkpknbcohdijeoejaedia
01/02/2018 19:32 pkedcjkdefgpdelpbcmbmeomcjbeemfm
1 File(s) 0 bytes
13 Dir(s)

And I have 11 such profiles.

Folders and files are still there, but within the browser all is forgotten.

What & how exactly to clean now?
Thanks

andreask
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Chromium

What about Chromium? Is it as horrible as Chrome?

I found this https://sourceforge.net/projects/crportable/files/ but last update was 2017.

If Chromium does not have the same illness as Chrome, then please consider to provide us with a portableapps.com-Chromium-portable.

Thanks

John T. Haller
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Windows Builds

There are no stable Windows builds of Chromium. I do not have time to learn how to build it and build it myself.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

andreask
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On my linux system I am using

On my linux system I am using Chromium.

No problems whatsoever during the past ~1.5 years, of heavy usage. I'd call that "stable".

andreask
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https://chromium.woolyss.com/
John T. Haller
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Matching Chromium Build Number to Chrome Version?

These are automated builds that may or may not work of Chromium, since no "stable" supported versions are released by Google for Windows. Do you know how to match up Chromium build numbers to actual Chrome stable version numbers?

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

andreask
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> I do not have time to learn

> I do not have time to learn how to build it and build it myself.

Perhaps someone else has the time and will?
-->

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1abnqM9j6zFodPHA38JG1061rG2iGj_GA...
https://www.chromium.org/Home

Asteriz
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How to reconnect (lost) extensions ?

@John T. Haller : The problem is real - please don't try to deflect by saying "log into google" - if I wanted to be on Google's tether I wouldn't have used GoogleChromePortable.exe in the first place :-)

I thought that GoogleChromePortable.exe protected everything with it's umbrella - I have master password etc. and it did work till now - or I thought it did :-) Was running it on different boxes - never lost an extension. Now I reinstalled Win10, slightly different build (14393.2339, was 14393.1715, LTSB) , ran GoogleChromePortable.exe, tripped on pass (there's a huge UI bug on hi-res 4K screen, latter). Closed, ran again - got pass OK - bookmarks are there, passwords too - life is good :-)

Except that extensions are "lost". Well, they are not - they are still in {My_Root}\Chrome_Portable\Data\profile\Default\Extensions

({My_Root} stands for wherever the copy is, can be as simple as C:\T or as complex as H:\back_laptops\Yoga_710-15IKB\T, can even be 2 things :-) I was running one from C, another from thumb drive at work and they don't fight - they even share the umbrella :-) Has the benefit of not having to reenter pass for 3-6 mo :-)

So I have no interest in "cleanup" at all. What I need is the "place" where Chrome (when under umbrella) keeps the "list", "linkage", call it whatever you want. Even if it's a non-portable registry key I'll re-create it when I know the location and format (hopefully someone can post or send a snapshot so that I can connect the dots with "example"). I do leave an option that something got "reset" when I tripped on the pass the 1st time but I tried with the other 2 copies I have - same result. Maybe there is something left in registry (that umbrella doesn't intercept) after all ?

I suspect that the info is in files under {My_Root}\Chrome_Portable\Data\profile\Default\Extension State\ (I see the "guids" in these files - they look just like what andreask posted) but I'd need a (pointer to a) tool (or tools) to open them properly, figure out the "linkage" and edit safely (I'm a Dev - my hands don't shake when I see binary data in Notepad :-). There are JSON blocks in there. So maybe even some JavaScript code I could run in console or scriptlets or (yet another) extension? Although I wouldn't dare to add new extension till I resolve this - that's sure way lose prior good state.

So a pedestrian workaround would be just fine - once I know what to keep and how to force it back I can maintain a few files for that - beats chasing and reinstalling.

P.S. The GoogleChromePortable.exe UI bug is that it's password dialog doesn't scale (because it's not window) and on hi-res 4K screen it calculates insanely small size for itself => I can't see anything - just ~10 chars of the top 2 rows and I have to type blind. Any inadvertent click (sometimes mouse send "events" one on it's own - modern day jitter) and it trips. Also, easy to miss a char with zero visual feedback.

The version I have is 2.3.6.10. I'd be happy to try newer as long as it's xcopy deployable (not taking any recent Chrome versions, even this 58.0.3029.110 is too much, would put 44 back the sec I'd found it). Running under compat, disabling high DPI scaling doesn't help on 4K (it kind of helped on a smaller LCD but I wasn't paying attention - was happy the sec I saw input field, entered and forgot it - lasted till I returned laptop 6mo latter).

Fell free to delete and/or move the last 2 p-s - it is unrelated matter but I'm too lazy to create a topic :-)

John T. Haller
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Chrome tied to Windows and Windows user

Chrome is purposely tied to your specific Windows install and login by design of the publisher. The settings are all hashed and the file itself is hashed. If Windows changes, your login changes, even a single character in the settings file changes by something outside of Chrome, say goodbye to your settings and extensions. It's the only browser that works that way. As such, no one should use Chrome on any desktop/laptop without logging into Google. Even if you use a local copy of Chrome and do what you did above, reinstall a slightly different version of Windows, your settings and extensions are disposed by Chrome. There is no warning ahead of time. This is why the portable version tells you to login to Google to avoid your extensions being reset. And why I recommend Firefox since it fully works portably.

As for the 4K issue, it's because the launcher is using an older version of NSIS which doesn't support DPI changing. This will be fixed at some point in the future.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

Asteriz
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____

No, no, no - you have it working - maybe even completely :-) Remember that I was running that from a flash drive on 2 different boxes with 2 different "flavors" of Win10 - first Home and LTSB and then 2 (substantially) different LTSB-s (one "anniversary", the other normal :-)

Did some digging (out of sheer desperation, ok and stubbornness :-) The file format is called LevelDB, Google's homebrew, and the word on the net is that it is unreliable format, or at lest code, which does garble it's files occasionally (apparently regularly if it bubbled up) and Chrome is making it worse by using private "comparator" (the thing doesn't have normal key/hash - comparator has to "decide" => it creates primary key on the fly and Chrome folks can't agree between themselves - one in a while :-) with way too complex and fragile "rules" and every time it coughts the file gets corrupted.

Other people seem to be using it independently and there's no noticeable word of similar problems (yet :-)

At one point Chrome said that "settings are corrupted and it forced defaults" ==> I was just lucky for ~9mo. Found independent software to open it and the poor thing just threw and yelled "it's garbled, don't feed me trash" :-)

Mind you that nothing was actually gone - just the "linkage". And passwords were intact (the most critical part - protected by the umbrella).

But there's more. I deleted a few files/folders (probably too much but I have given up hope at that time) and reinstalled 3 crucial extensions. Guess what? uBlock found myFilters :-) On it's own :-))) Meaning that it pays attention to how it forms its own primary keys, what it stores where and probably has a procedure to chase stray dogs. Now I'm sorry I didn't make a copy and tried reinstall with no deletions (uBlock has the same outer "guid" => it is controllable by extension if it knows how).

There might be more to it but it would require tracing to see what actually happens with the "linkage" data and whether there might be additional meaningful OS/registry interaction that could be intercepted to provide frewer tremors to shaky code :-)))) That part shouldn't depend on master pass - just to figure out what Chrome is asking for and to always feed it the const - so to speak :-)

This in turn means that they more or less concocted the story how it "has to be tied" to mask actual problems - easy excuse for resets - it's not a bug, it's feature :-)))))

------ Not to forget - "cleanup" heuristics :

I nuked everything inside [Extension State], Extensions and I think [databases] and [Storage] (probably not a good idea but I was pissed off :-) and IndexedDB (it had actual folders with extensions' guids, if I knew uBlock was so good I would have left at least his folder). I think that [databases] was de-facto empty and there was one with a lot of extension giud named folders but they all had de-facto zero data.

I kept [Local Extension Settings] and I'm so happy I did. uBlock probably keeps all its meat there.

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