How to Set Google Chrome to Remember Tabs After Exit


I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had 12-20 work-related tabs open, only to lose all of them from an accidental close or crash.

Update: This article was originally written 10 years ago. Check out our new and updated piece on setting Chrome to remember tabs after exit.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had 12-20 work-related tabs open, only to lose all of them from an accidental close or crash. Chrome itself is rather stable, and if you close it manually you can always reopen your tabs from the New Tab page under “Recently closed.”  My problem usually occurs when I put my Laptop to sleep and it doesn’t wake up properly. When the computer boots back up, the tabs aren’t in the recent list. But, with the right setting for Chrome startup pages -this shouldn’t be a problem anymore.

Step 1

In Chrome, click the Wrench (menu) button at the top-right corner of the browser.  From the menu, click Options.

Chrome wrench options menu button

Step 2

Now at this point, there are a few different options to set startup to.

Remember pages that were open last

Since you’re reading this page, this is likely the setting you are looking for.  If you set On startup to Reopen the pages that were open last Chrome will always re-open your browser just as it was when you closed it. Personally, this is my favorite setting because it lets me easily shut down my computer without much of what I’m doing.

Reopen pages that were closed

Open a custom list of pages

You can also set a custom list of pages that you’d like to open.  This is useful for websites that you use every day.*  The easiest way to set this one up is to go and open all of the pages that you want to add to the list, then click Open the following pages > Use current pages.  Don’t worry if you add any extra, you can just remove them by clicking the small x to the far-right of each website on the list.

*For the same purpose, you can also Right-Click a tab and Pin it to the tab bar.

Chrome startup custom page list

Custom Chrome Pages

Another idea for setting up startup pages is to use Chrome’s built-in pages.  If you use the “chrome://pagename” URL you can add almost any part of Chrome to your startup.  As an example, these New Tab pages and the History page are a cool addition. Their URLs are:

  • chrome://history/
  • chrome://newtab/

Just use the Add… button to insert the URLs and that is all there is to it.

Chrome startup Add pages to open


That’s all for setting up Startup pages in Google Chrome.  If you have a tip we missed or if you really enjoyed this post, tell us in the comments section below!



  1. Mozze

    ..informative..av always thot on thz i know wat to do..great..

  2. Nicco

    It doesn’t remember if you have two or more instances open each with multiple tabs, it sucks.

  3. HS Soni

    Thanks krause for the nice info, can you tell me the same for the new version of chrome

  4. Sage Joyner

    I accidentally closed a tab that can keep track of the open tabs when requested and I can see a list of those tabs after closing and reopening my browser. Do you know the name of this handy feature and how to install it?


  5. Des

    That doesn’t make any sense. I’ve never seen that spanner icon, for a start. The first instruction should be telling me where to find the spanner, (Americans call it a wrench). Should the item at #1, above, actually be #2?

  6. Charles Foreman

    I had to renew my google chrome as the update was finishing. Since I got my new box I have to hit RESTORE as all the tabs are closed, every time I close down at night. It didn’t use to do this, and the ”Continue where you left off” is set in settings. I don’t know what else to do as I have looked everywhere for help. Restore might not work one of these days, and all the work I am doing will be lost.

  7. ssiemgss

    there’s no ‘options’ menu

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