[Editor’s note: Please read this later Answer Line column to learn how Windows 10’s Anniversary Update improved Edge’s process for importing bookmarks and favorites.]
Roy A. Day wants to use Windows 10’s new browser, Edge. But he’s not clear how he can import his Internet Explorer Favorites. I’ll cover importing from Chrome and Firefox browsers as well.
Usually, when you start a new browser, a dialog box asks you if you want to import bookmarks (called favorites in Microsoft browsers) from elsewhere. Edge doesn’t do that. Nor can you import an HTML file containing your bookmarks. But the transfer is actually pretty easy—provided you’re not using Firefox. A transfer from Mozilla’s browser is a bit trickier.
[Have a tech question? Ask PCWorld Contributing Editor Lincoln Spector. Send your query to firstname.lastname@example.org.]
Let’s start with some basics. Like Internet Explorer, Edge stores each favorite as a separate Internet shortcut (URL) file. But the Edge Favorites folder is at a considerably more difficult location to find. The address is probably %userprofile%AppDataLocalPackagesMicrosoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe ACMicrosoftEdgeUserDefaultFavorites.
Luckily, you probably don’t have to go there.
As I said earlier, importing Internet Explorer and Chrome shortcuts is remarkably easy.
1. Tap the Favorites icon (three horizontal lines of different lengths)
2. Select Import favorites.
Then check either Internet Explorer or Chrome (or both) and tap Import.
Unfortunately, as you may have noticed, that Import panel doesn’t list Firefox. Hopefully, that will be corrected soon. But in the meantime, try this solution, which involves using Chrome as an intermediary. (I tried a similar trick with Internet Explorer, with disastrous results.)
In FireFox, click the Bookmarks icon and select Show All Bookmarks (or press Ctrl-Shift-B). In the resulting Library dialog box, click Import and Backup > Export Bookmarks to HTML. Save the file bookmarks.html to any convenient location.
Now download and install Chrome—if you don’t already have it installed. Don’t worry; you won’t have to keep it.
Once you’re in Chrome, click the menu icon in the upper-right corner and select Bookmarks > Import bookmarks and settings.
In the resulting dialog box’s From pull-down menu, select Mozilla Firefox. Keep Favorites/Bookmarks checked. You can uncheck other settings if you wish.
When you’re ready, click Import.
Finally, go to Edge and import from Chrome as described above.