Chrome’s Incognito Mode allows you to surf the web and search for stuff without your browsing history being tracked. However, what if you want to temporarily save your browsing history just for that incognito session, so you can go back to pages you just visited? There’s a handy extension that allows you to do this.

The Off The Record History extension in Chrome keeps a history of your current Incognito browsing session. You can view a list of links to all the webpages you visited and incognito tabs you’ve closed. Once you close the incognito window, all that history is deleted.

Of course, this requires that the Off The Record History extension see where you go, so if you’re uncomfortable with that, this extension isn’t for you. Otherwise, read on.

To install Off The Record History, visit the extension’s webpage and click “Add to Chrome”.

On the confirmation dialog box that displays, click “Add extension”.

Once the extension has been installed, a message displays with brief instructions on how to use the extension. The message will automatically close, but you can also click the “X” button to close it.

To allow Off The Record History to save your browsing session in an Incognito window, you have to turn on a setting for the extension. To do this, enter chrome://extensions in the address bar and press “Enter”.

Under the Off The Record History extension, check the “Allow in incognito” box.

To open an incognito window, select “New incognito window” from the main Chrome menu (three horizontal bars) in the upper-right corner of the browser window. (You can also open a new Incognito window by pressing Ctrl+Shift+N on your keyboard.)

Browse like you normally would in the incognito window. To view your browsing history, click the “Off The Record History” button on the toolbar.

A dialog box displays with two tabs: Recently closed and Full history. To access tabs you closed in the current session, click the “Recently closed” tab. You can click on any of the link listed there to reopen those webpages.

The Full history tab lists all webpages you visited in the current incognito browsing session. You can click any of these links to visit those webpages again.

To clear your browsing history during your current session, click the trash icon in the upper-right corner of the Off the record history dialog box.

The Off the record history dialog box shows that all records were destroyed. It doesn’t matter which tab is active when you click the trash can icon. All records from both tabs are deleted.

Now, when you click on either tab, the message, “No records found!”, displays. You will also see this message on the Recently closed tab when you have not yet closed any tabs.

RELATED: How Can I Start an Incognito/Private Browsing Window from a Shortcut?

The moment you close an incognito window, all the browsing history saved by the Off the record history extension is deleted. The next time you open an incognito window, you will start a fresh session with no browsing history. You can also quickly open an incognito browsing window using a desktop shortcut in Windows.

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Lori Kaufman is a technology expert with 25 years of experience. She's been a senior technical writer, worked as a programmer, and has even run her own multi-location business.
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