How to Restore Your Saved Internet Explorer Favorites

By Kevin Lee

If your computer has critical files, you can ensure that you never lose them by making copies of them. If your Internet Explorer browser contains valuable favorites that you’d hate to lose, you can back them up using the browser’s Export wizard. You may never need to restore your favorites, but if you ever need to recover them, use the Import wizard built in to Internet Explorer.

Step 1

Launch Internet Explorer and click "File."

Step 2

Select "Import and Export" and then click "Import From a File." Click "Favorites," then click "Next" to continue.

Step 3

Click "Browse." The Select Bookmark File window opens and displays your hard drive's files and folders.

Step 4

Navigate to the folder that contains the HTML file of the favorites you'd like to restore.

Step 5

Double-click the folder to open it and then double-click the file that contains the exported favorites.

Step 6

Click "Next." You'll see a list of folders with names such as "Favorites Bar" and "MSN Websites." IE allows you to restore your favorites to one of the folders in this list.

Step 7

Click the folder where you'd like to restore the favorites, click "Import" and then click "Finish." You'll find your restored favorites in the folder you selected.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you exported the favorites, IE walked you through the wizard that stores the favorites in a file on your hard drive. That wizard also allowed you to choose the folder where you wanted to store the file. When the Import Wizard asks you to find that file, you'll find it in the folder you selected when you exported the favorites. If someone else exported the favorites, ask the person for the name of the folder and the file name chosen when the favorites were exported.
  • By default, Internet Explorer names the exported file "bookmarks.htm." However, you have the option to choose your own name when saving favorites to a folder.
  • Rename your favorites folder so you know it's the "former" favorites. Remember to click that folder to open up your former favorites or you will not find them.