An Easier Way to Find Previously Closed Tabs in Chrome

Chrome, the popular web browser from Google, has much going for it, including speed (though it is becoming a bit more bloated these days), a clean interface, a customizable New Tab page and loads of extensions. It also features an easy way to reopen a tab that was accidentally closed — right click on any tab and choose “Reopen closed tab” from the context menu.

While that sounds simple enough, it is not as good beneath the surface. You see, it will only give you the last tab closed. If you need to go back further, say five tabs ago, then the process must be repeated, without killing each one, as you slowly move backwards through time. It works, but it is certainly not elegant.

This is where that wealth of handy little extensions comes in. Head to the Chrome App Store and look for one called Recycle Bin. As with every extension, this one is free. Grab it and we will get started.

Once installed, you will find a multi-colored icon will find a home up in the menu bar, appearing with any others you may have, just to the right of the omnibar. Note that this can vary, as there are different choices — more on that in a bit.

recycle bin icon

An ever-changing number appears laid over the icon, representing the number of previously closed pages it contains at a given moment.

Click the icon and a list appears, with a scroll bar if there are enough tabs here to require it. You can now scan the list for the tab you are looking for and click to reopen it, even if was 15 tabs ago.

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tab list

There is also a menu across the top that contains Share, Comment and Rate — all designed to get word out regarding the developers work. A brief break is followed by Options and a link to the developer’s web site.

Click options, and you will find a sparse, but simple design containing the customizations that can be made to the add-on. There are several icons that you can choose from. There is also an option for the number of past tabs it will save — this is set to 20 by default.


There are a number of extensions available in Chrome, providing various ways to control your tabs. For those of us who spend our days working with multiple sites open simultaneously, this is just one way of making life just a little bit simpler.



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