Google plans to replace Chrome's cookies and site data controls with an inferior option


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Apr 24, 2016
Comments on the official Chromium issues tracker confirm that Google plans to deprecate the browser's cookies and site data controls in favor of a page that is inferior in functionality at the time of writing.

Many Chrome users know that they can use controls to clear cookies and site data in Chrome. All it takes is to load the internal URL chrome://settings/siteData to get started.

Chrome lists all sites that have stored cookies and other site data on the local system

You may search the selection, browse it, delete individual cookies, and check what a particular site has stored on the local system.

The option gives users control over the data, as they may analyze the stored data from that very page.

A recent comment by a Google employee on the official Chromium bug tracking site confirms that Google plans to deprecate the entire Cookies and Site Data page. Chromium is the base for many web browsers, including Google's Chrome web browser but also Microsoft Edge, Vivaldi, Opera or Brave.

The page is removed and Google plans to direct user attention to another internal page, chrome://settings/content/all.

The page looks like the original one on first glance; it lists the site name, features a search, total storage space used by the site and also options to expand the selection.

When you do that, you will notice that stored site content is no longer displayed on the page. The link points to Chrome's site permissions page for the site, but there is no option anymore on the page to look at the site data itself. Additionally, there is no option to delete individual cookies anymore that a site has set using the page.

Note: you may still clear individual cookies by clicking on the icon in front of the address in the Chrome address bar. Select a line, e.g. about cookies, to display details about all set cookies and an option to remove cookies individually.

Jeff Johnson discovered Google's intent by accident when he filed a bug on the Chromium tracker. Johnson is critical of the change, as it takes away information and control from users. He did not find out why Google plans to make the change, only that it will be made.

There is a chance that the new page will receive the functionality of the old, but Google has not made any comment in this regard and if past changes are anything to go by, it seems unlikely.

Other Chromium-based browsers will get the change as well. While it is possible that some browsers will retain the old page by adding its code back to Chrome, it is likely that most Chromium-based browsers will end up with the inferior option if it is not improved by the Chromium engineers.

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