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Ask How-To Geek: Exporting Google Web History, Importing Evernote to OneNote, and Recovering Product Keys

Once a week we round up some of the great reader questions we get in the Ask How-To Geek mailbox and share the solutions with everyone. This week we’re looking at how to export your Google Web History, importing Evernote notebooks to OneNote, and recovering product keys.

How Can I Export My Google Web History?

2012-02-27_135001

Dear How-To Geek,

I saw your article about how to delete your Google Web History before Google consolidates services. Is there anyway to save your web history before you wipe it? I don’t really want Google to keep it and meld it with everything else, but I would like to have a copy for myself.

Sincerely,

Web History Wondering

Dear Web History,

Google is, compared to just about everyone else in the industry, pretty good about letting you export your data. In fact you can visit Google Takeout to easily export data from many of their core services. Google Web History is kind of an odd duck in the mix. It seems like it would be so simple to just let you download a huge HTML document or other container with your web history in it but, alas, there is no way to do so. The only way to get your web history out of the Web History system is to use, of all things, RSS. It’s really an awkward way to get at the data but it works.

You’ll need to log into your Google account and then visit the following URL to pull up the RSS feed of your Web History:

http://www.google.com/history/lookup?q=&output=rss&num=1000

The function will only pull up 1000 entries max at a time. If you have a long Web History you’ll need to due a little URL tweaking in order to extend the reach (incrementally) of the retrieval function. We’ll save you the hassle of typing it all out and include enough links here to get you up to 5,000 past Web History entries:

http://www.google.com/history/lookup?q=&output=rss&num=1000&start=0

http://www.google.com/history/lookup?q=&output=rss&num=1000&start=1000

http://www.google.com/history/lookup?q=&output=rss&num=1000&start=2000

http://www.google.com/history/lookup?q=&output=rss&num=1000&start=3000

http://www.google.com/history/lookup?q=&output=rss&num=1000&start=4000

To go beyond that simply keep upping increasing the number at the end of the URL by 1000. Thus, if you have 10,800 past entries, you’d need to work your way all the way up to &start=10000 to get yourself into the 10,000-11,000 range. As you enter each URL, just save the resulting XML file on your computer.

How Can I Import My Evernote Notes to Microsoft OneNote?

Dear How-To Geek,

Now that there is finally an iPad OneNote application, I’m ready to go back to using OneNote. How can I export my notebooks from Evernote to OneNote with the least headache?

Sincerely,

OneNote Lover

Dear OneNote Lover,

Exporting from Evernote to OneNote, while not a simple one-click migration, is simple enough. There are a variety of ways you can go about it from emailing the notes to export them, exporting them as HTML, or using the Print to OneNote functionality. We detail all three methods in our guide to importing Evernote notes into OneNote here.

How Can I Recover Software Keys From a Broken Computer?

Dear How-To Geek,

I’m pretty good about keeping my data backed up… so when my laptop died I didn’t lose any important files. One thing I didn’t think of was my product keys. I’d really like to pull the product keys for various products (like Office and purchased software) to make setting up my apps on my new machine easier. What can I do?

Sincerely,

Key Hunter

Dear Key Hunter,

Assuming that the reason your laptop died wasn’t hard drive failure, you can easily pull the files off the old hard drive. You’ll need some way to access the old hard drive, like a hard drive dock or  using a Linux LiveCD. You’ll also need access to a new Windows machine to run the extraction application. We detail all the steps in our product key recovery guide here.


Have a pressing tech question? Shoot us an email at ask@howtogeek.com and we’ll do our best to answer it.

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 02/27/12

Comments (1)

  1. Henry

    Thanks for the post. I found the same solution by trial-and-error using various params like output. Tried output=xml and num>1000, but doesn’t work. Using it 1000 entries at a time is ok. But the problem is that the overview page https://www.google.com/history/lookup says I have over 10,000 searches, but I get zero results after https://www.google.com/history/?output=rss&num=1000&start=6000. Also, when going to the very last entry, I see a few searches in the overview page that are not listed in the RSS feed…?

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