A future version of Google Chrome may make it a cinch to clean up messy settings cast into chaos by malware (or your own misguided hands).
Digging deep into the latest build of Chromium-the open source browser that serves as the wellspring of new Chrome additions-evangelist François Beaufort discovered the Chrome team added the ability to return aspects of the browser to their default states.
After you enable the chrome://flags/#enable-reset-profile-settings flag in Chromium, you'll find a bevy of new reset options in the browser's Settings menu, as you can see in the screenshot above. Expect to see the feature pop up in Chrome proper somewhere down the line.
When it does land in Chrome, it'll be lagging behind the times a bit, as Internet Explorer and Firefox both already offer default restoration options of some kind. That said, Chromium's new options already outshine the competition, largely thanks to their granularity.
Cleaning up malware one setting at a time
Internet Explorer's default restoration options are few and scattered among its myriad settings options. Firefox, meanwhile, takes the all or nothing approach: It has the ability to restore just your homepage to the default, or-buried deep within the Troubleshooting Information menu-a "Reset Firefox" option that completely wipes the slate clean. (IE also has a reset option.)
Chromium's new features prevent the need to raze everything to the ground if Bad Things Happen to a single aspect of your browser. For example, if a rogue Gmail extension borks your browser, you'll be able to reset just your extensions and leave your homepage and content settings alone. Plus, Chromium's profile settings bring all the default restoration options together in a single, easy-to-find menu. Win-win!
Google is constantly iterating Chromium and Chrome alike. Chrome 27 hit release status just the other day, bringing along speed improvements and the ability to bark search queries at your browser. The very next day, Chrome 28 hit beta stage.
Here's hoping we'll see these default restoration options hit Chrome proper before long. Between tools like this and the refresh and reset tools hidden in Windows 8, cleaning up your computing mess has never been easier.
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