How to Stop Your Internet History From Being Deleted

By Aaron Parson

Both Internet Explorer and Firefox have settings to erase your history every time you close the browser. By disabling these options, you can keep a log of sites you visit, up to the browser's maximum history size. As of Chrome version 41, however, Chrome has no such setting built in, and removes history only on demand. If your copy of Chrome keeps erasing your history, check your extensions for the responsible add-on.

Internet Explorer

Step 1

Open the **Tools** menu in Internet Explorer 10 or 11 and click **Internet Options**.

Step 2

Uncheck **Delete Browsing History on Exit** to keep your history between browser sessions. Press **Settings** to change how long IE saves your history.

Step 3

Set the number of days to keep your history, on the History tab. The number represents a rolling expiration date. For example, with a setting of **20**, the browser checks every day and erases sites you haven't visited in the last 20 days.Press **OK** on both open dialog boxes to finish.

Firefox

Step 1

Open the menu in Firefox 29 or above and click **Options**.

Step 2

Switch to the **Privacy** tab and uncheck **Clear History When Firefox Closes** if you have your History option set to *Use Custom Settings for History*. Alternatively, simply set the History option to **Remember History** if you don't use any custom settings.

Step 3

Set the maximum number of pages to retain in history using the **places.history.expiration.max_pages** setting on the about:config page, if you're an advanced user and comfortable editing the browser's configuration. If not, skip this step.To change the setting, browse to **about:config**, right-click a blank space in the window, choose **New** and **Integer**, and then enter the name **places.history.expiration.max_pages** and pick a maximum number of pages to keep. With sufficiently large values, you can retain history indefinitely, but doing so can impact the browser's performance. If you're uncertain, it's best to leave this setting alone.

Chrome Extensions

Step 1

Open the menu in Chrome and click **More Tools** and **Extensions**.

Step 2

Click the trash can icon by an extension that automatically deletes your history to remove it, or uncheck **Enabled** to turn it off temporarily.Some extensions offer detailed settings. Click **Options** by your history-removing extension, if present, to set its options.

Step 3

Uncheck the setting in your extension's options that automatically clears Chrome's history. Every extension works differently, so if you can't find an appropriate option, simply disable or remove the extension instead.

Tips & Warnings

  • Windows has a system setting to prevent users from erasing the Internet Explorer history, but accessing it requires the Group Policy Editor, an advanced-level tool included only with Professional versions of Windows 7 and 8. In the editor, open the directory "User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Internet Explorer\Delete Browsing History" and turn on "Prevent Access to Delete Browsing History."