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How to solve “Your profile could not be opened correctly” issue in Chrome

I worked for a company that uses Google Chrome as there default browser. The reason for this is because they migrated to Google Apps.  One Monday morning [like always, it always has to be on Mondays],  one of the users in the office came up to me saying that there Google Mail was not loading up in chrome.  When I went to the user’s workstation I saw this dialog box:

The cause of this issue seems straightforward and I was assuming that some files were corrupted. I did notice that chrome.exe in the task manager did not want to go away, so I had to restart the machine to flush it out of the system.

I was able to finally solve the issue with the below method:

Removing Web Data file

It seems that  Google Chrome has a file called “Web Data” which stores a lot of information in it – including your passwords and other important information. In my case this file was corrupted. I deleted this file and all worked well. 🙂

In Windows 7, the “Web Data” file is located in  C:\Users\\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\ . Delete the file and restart Chrome. Hopefully everything should work well. Of course, you will lose all your stored passwords and the search engines stored information. [make sure you tell the user that]

Another method I found online was to create a new profile with most of the data from old profile, these are the steps for that:

This method is very similar to the previous methods where instead of removing “Web Data”, it tries to create a new profile with most of the useful data from old profile copied in to it. The steps are :

  1.  Rename the Default folder at  C:\Users\\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\ [ I named it “Default.old” – when I tested it out]
  2. create a new folder with name “Default”
  3. copy the files/folders given below from original Default folder (currently named “Default.old”) to the new Default folder one by one . After each step, try opening Chrome to see if the error comes. If an error comes, then the latest object you copied caused the issue.

What’s important to copy if you don’t want to lose anything. I suggest copying over:

  • Preferences file
  • Bookmarks file
  • Extensions folder (contains all your extension’s source code)
  • Local Storage folder : copy only files beginning with “chrome-extension_” (other files are most likely not needed )
  • History* (all your history )

Keep me mind, that you will get a profile that is very close to the previous profile but it will not have the old stored passwords or the custom search engines you had.

if this post was helpful. please take the time to +1 it, comment or rate it. thanks.

About BjTechNews (1061 Articles)
An IT guy trying to learn everything about technology and sharing it with you all. I'm a blogger and video blogger who highlights daily news in the tech industry, promoting tips and hacks for fellow techies.

122 Comments on How to solve “Your profile could not be opened correctly” issue in Chrome

  1. I still have the problem and I tried what you did but still did not work. I think I messed it up when I changed the permissions to read and write. I don’t know how to undo it.

  2. Thank u , very useful info. its work.

  3. In my case I had to recreate the “default” folder and move files. It end up been both “History Provider Cache” and “History” files! I lost my extension and maybe other stuff! I need to reopen Chrome and explore a little bit more and see if I can fix more. Good luck.

  4. Second method worked perfectly for me. I chose not to bring in history but otherwise followed directions shown.

  5. Thanks..it was worked to my machine…

  6. It did not work I use Windows Vista. Please Help Me!!

  7. PAOLONEEDHELP // November 21, 2012 at 4:06 pm // Reply

    Please sir :(( im crying in real life

  8. Thanks bro, its works using your guide

  9. Great work buddy, it working, thnx and God bless you

  10. Thank you, thank you it worked. The video was EXTREMELY HELPFUL!! The only thing that was different I didn’t have to type anything, the files were already there and I clicked on them. I did not delete the Web Data, instead I renamed the Default folder to Backup Default.

  11. can’t open my Facebook a/c (amitesh.apd007@yahoo.in)

  12. my chrome dose not open facebook properly what i should do

  13. bjtechnews – For some weird reason I dont have the chrome folder in appdata:( I tried un-hiding it and its still not available.Plz advice

  14. Hi, I deleted the web data and i don’t get the message. But when i go onto gmail my Email’s don’t load in properly. Please Help.

    • Hey EJ,

      the web data file doesn’t deal with gmail only chrome settings. have you tried another browser to see if it happens or have you rebooted your machine since you deleted web data folder. Let me know. i’m here to help


      • HI, I don’t know how i got gmail working again but thanks a lot for all of your help, cheers.

  15. Gabriel Louis Gauci // July 21, 2012 at 6:18 pm // Reply

    Hello, thanks alot for this, it started to bother me so I checked it out, Thanks again. 🙂 I’ve been moving files one by one from default.old to default 🙂 Thanks. My problem was the History 😀

  16. I tried all the suggestions here but nothing worked more than once or twice.

    I run a performance checking program and it pointed out that at start up an automatic Google update function was activated. I disabled it and now I only get the problem may be once or twice a week.

    I am now considering deleting that update function altogether.

  17. Dave Wyatt // July 13, 2012 at 4:11 pm // Reply

    Seems ok today. Not had the error at all.

  18. Thanks a ton!! I renamed the old folder to Default.old, create a new Default folder, copy everything from the old folder except the last two files (Web Data and Web Data-journal) and restart Chrome. Voila! It works perfectly fine. ^^

  19. How come there is not a single word from google? They should address this issue since it is from their end that this problem started. To delete web data is unacceptable since it took hundred of hours to create. I think we should migrate to mozilla again!

  20. Thanky you very much man for the video. Good lookin’ out!

  21. Solution #1 did the trick! Thanks so much … irisonthego

  22. As I said earlier, I followed Tony’s instructions exactly and it didn’t work. Then, I read here to actually shut the computer off, not just reboot it. I did that and all day yesterday, Chrome worked perfectly. Today, I started up my computer since it was off overnight and guess what, the Profile Error message is back yet again! The web data file has reloaded itself, despite the fact that I deleted it.

    I have a guaranteed solution. Delete Chrome and use a different browser.

    • one of my youtube subscribe had the same issue this is what he did:

      i think i may of found a fix for this problem ( your profile couldn’t open blah blah ) as it has worked for myself and the other computer in the house right .
      1.got to the wrench select settings.
      2.show advanced settings .
      3.then uncheck back ground apps
      4.after that go to default folder in google chrome
      5.delet web data and web data journal
      6.uninstall google from the computer and then reinstall google chrome from there main sight
      and thank god no problems since

      hope it helps.

  23. PleaseDoHelp // July 8, 2012 at 4:10 am // Reply

    mine almost worked out. but when i tried to delete “Web Data” it leaves a message that “The action can’t be completed because the file is open in Search Settings” sucks.. anything that i could do sir? thankss..

    • It seems “search settings” is a processes that is held onto Chrome. Try going to Task Manager – Processes – and see if you see anything with “Search Settings” Process and end it.
      I would try logging into another account first. I had the same problem with the user at my office. I rebooted > logged with Administrator account and it worked out for me. Let us know, what happens.

  24. whattheheck // July 7, 2012 at 7:05 pm // Reply

    I think some have some wording messed up. Two things…rebooting computer you need to shut down completely instead of simply restarting. Makes a difference. Many people have tried the steps above and when you completely shut down for a few minutes and restart the error message is still there.

  25. well I tried creating new default folder and copying from the old, that didn’t work. Also tried deleting web data and un-checking the background apps, worked for that moment, but after a restart again I have the error message and also new web data (still background apps are un-checked). I guess I have to wait for Google to come up with a solution, till then will go back to Firefox.

    But thanks anyway for advises..

  26. deleting the web data helped but now every time i turn my computer off, the next time i turn it on and try to use chrome, it starts all over again. is there any way to impermanently remove the error message?

  27. I followed Tony’s instructions exactly. I rebooted and sure enough, the profile error message still comes up. I checked Chrome and the Web Data file has been restored, even though I deleted it and unchecked the “Background Applications” box.

    If I delete the Web data file again and don’t reboot, Chrome works properly. As soon as I reboot though, Chrome reloads the Web Data file and the profile error message comes back.

    Any other suggestions? I’m about ready to solve this problem by deleting Chrome entirely and using Firefox again!

    • Mark, to this point that’s all you could do is delete the web data file and work with Chrome. the strange thing is that many people tried it and when they rebooted the issue was gone others were not lucky. If not, I would leave the headache alone and use Firefox until Google fix this issue on there next update. hoepfully!

      • Just tried it again and the Profile Error Message is still there. Wonder why it works for some and not for others? I have Windows Premium 7 Home Edition


  29. Thanks, it worked out very well.

  30. @ Tony Balson

    Tried your approach. there is no Background Apps to uncheck on my version of chrome. It was an update by google which showed the message . I un-installed it and loaded the latest version and the problem continued.

    I will try to get hold of the previous version or open a new account or use another browser . I have three on the PC.

    It just consumes so much time.

    Tried Google support. they wanted to charge me between $A 36-58 depending on urgency.

    Already knew it was a stuff up by Google and I was not going to pay to have it sorted out.

  31. Ahsanul Habib // July 6, 2012 at 1:31 am // Reply

    Thanks. Deleting the file “Web data” resolved the problem. P.S. The alternative method of renaming the folder Default to something else and then starting Chrome did NOT work for me.

  32. Hey, the issue is related to background processes being left running when you close Google Chrome. If they are running when you shut down your computer, they are forced to close and then corrupt the Web Data file. The fix for the latest version is as follows:
    First, delete the “Web Data” file as mentioned above.
    Next, close Google Chrome and then re-open it. You should not get the error message.
    Then to ensure the problem does not happen again, even after rebooting do the following:
    Go into Settings (click on the wrench then select settings), then select “Show Advanced Setting” at the bottom of the page. Next, scroll down to the bottom of the page and un-check the “Background Apps”. This should solve your issues. You should be able to close Google Chrome and reboot without the error showing up again.

    • that makes sense, wonder why Google doesn’t fix the problem.

    • In addition to my previous comments addressed to you under @Tony Balsdon.

      I have tried your suggestion again and the Background Apps come up after I started chrome 2 or 3 times. It was unchecked already. It may never have been checked but I can’t fully remember because over the last two days I tried all sorts of steps over and over again.

      Anyway I have shut down and started the PC now twice and the error message is gone, I hope it will stay that way.

      To delete the Web data file was suggested at another forum ( there were 4 suggestions) but it only worked until the next shut down and restart. Your further suggestion re un-checking the Background Apps seems to have done the trick.. I am only puzzled about the fact that this line did not appear until I tried it just now .

      Anyway it is not important now.

      Thanks for your tips. Three cheers for Tony.

      Its a shame that Google seems incapable to come up with something like that and put a lot of users minds at ease.

      • @John what version of Chrome are you running?

      • Awesome! Happy that everything worked out for you and you didn’t have to pay. But the issue now is when is Google going to patch this problem? and why when people deleted the web data file and rebooted the issue didn’t come up only for some the issue came back for them.

  33. Karen Cappleman // July 5, 2012 at 4:37 pm // Reply

    I don’t understand a word of this and I’m totally fed up with it.

  34. So I got a called this morning from Google, and @etoricoxib is correct. it seems that new version pushed out to everyone is causing the issues. So you have two choice one uninstall and install an old version from archives or wait until Google fixes the problem and pushes out an update to us.

    here is the email i received this morning, after I got this I got the call:

    Hello Bernardo,

    Thank you for your message. I understand that your users are now getting the same error message when launching the Chrome browser. I’ll do my best to assist you with this concern.

    Since Google Chrome isn’t part of the core services handled by the Google Apps Enterprise Support team, as listed in the Support tab of the Google Apps Control Panel, the information available to me and the assistance I can provide is very limited.

    This error message hasn’t been listed yet on the Troubleshooting support page for Google Chrome, at http://support.google.com/chrome/bin/static.py?hl=en&topic=14684&page=table.cs

    In the forum where many users are reporting the issue, I found mention that deleting both ‘Web Data’ and ‘Web Data-journal’ worked for some users, and another post that mentions creating a new profile and how to back up data from your previous one:

    – Google Product Forums – Google Chrome Forum – ‘Your profile could not be opened correctly…’, at http://productforums.google.com/forum/#!search/%22Your$20profile$20could$20not$20be$20opened$20correctly%2

    – Google Product Forums – Google Chrome Forum – ‘error: Your profile could not be opened correctly.’, at

    I hope this information can be helpful.

  35. Ok, so it seems the issue (mine anyway) comes back everytime I start my comp back up. Very strange.

  36. I believe the latest update is the cause to this issue. I solved it by removing the latest version of Google Chrome on my notebook & replaced it with the archive version from this website http://www.oldapps.com/google_chrome.php

    Rebooted my notebook & walla the error gone!!!… Please note that Chrome will auto update the browser each time you connected to the internet & this will update your archive version installed earlier. To prevent the auto update from Chrome I have to use TuneUp Utilities application to stop it from updating the browser.

  37. Welp, had the issue again, after my comp crashed for some unknown reason today. Gonna try to delete the web data again. I hope Google are working on this.

  38. Same problem here, strangely only here at home. It worked fine today at work… Did google update itself today or something? And possibly effecting when ur logged in to more than one computer?

  39. I have the same problem – resolved by deleting the folder, but as soon as I reboot …… it’s back! So annoying!

  40. Hi Guys,
    I can confirm the EddyH post that when I deleted my “Web Data” file in the ~\Chrome\User Data\Default folder the error stopped. Thanks for your help.

  41. I too have tried to resolve this error dialog without success.
    Tried several times by deleting/re-naming the default folder.
    Also removed and re-installed chrome.

    Works fine until I reboot….

    Then we are back to the same old error dialog every time I start chrome.

  42. i don’t know if this helps but i found out my corrupted file was the one – “Web Data” so just in case, you might wanna try getting rid of that first. Also is it okay for me to delete the backup default after i have copied everything out? thanks

  43. Odd. All of this is happening around this time of month, so perhaps it has something to do with Google upgrading its stuff?

    I’m not going to delete, as you suggested; I’ll wait and see what Google has to solve this.

  44. I’ve taken one Evan said relating to XP but I still can’t seem to find the file. I don’t seem to have local settings folder. It goes straight to application data and the only related folder I find there is Google and the only folder in there is Local History, I tried just deleting it but that didn’t fix it.

  45. Dave Wyatt // July 2, 2012 at 8:47 am // Reply

    I’ve tried the suggestions posted here yesterday. Just switched on my laptop for the first time today an get the same error!!! 🙁

    Seems bizarre as there are loads of posts on the Internet about this and all around the same time too. Makes me think there are gremlins at Google!

    • I would agree with you, it strange that it works out for some and stop working. I think Google is too busy working on there Tablet project. This needs to be fixed.

      Try the suggestion again but don’t reboot the machine. work on chrome and rebuild that database again.

  46. i cant even find the file that every one is talking about have searched high and low

    • What Operating System are you running? should be in C:\Users\\appdata\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default

      • George Starner // July 3, 2012 at 11:36 am //

        I am running Windows 7 and there is no such file. Under C:\users\\ … there is no folder named appdata.

      • you should be able to type it into your windows explorer address bar or into your run command.

  47. When i try to delete it, it says the file is open in search settings?

  48. Worked perfect by renaming old file and creating new and copying across info.

  49. yep same here i have the exact same problem and just started like hm maybe before 1hr or so.. i guess is a Google problem with the data base, not with all of us in same time

    • I opened up a case from Google, so I am playing the waiting game with them to find out what is going on. I will let you guys know what they say….

  50. Sorry did not finish. Chrome has worked fine and all of sudden it has gone buggy as can be. Strange.

    • I think Google is to busy trying to complete their tablet project then focus on the projects that they have in the field. My guess is that this bug is going to be around for a while. I will continue to do some research and testing and I will open up a case with Google to see what they say.

      • Thanks for the quick response. After getting by the error message screen about the profile, Chrome appears to be working normally. It is just that when you see the error message, you wonder what else is broken and if some trojan or malware has hacked into Chrome and is doing bad things.

      • im glad i read this as i have same problem

  51. I have the same problem as well. I’ve tried deleting the ”user data” folder and the same thing is being shown when I start my google chrome. Did restart my pc after trying few other methods & re-installed my google chrome, but it’s still the same. or this is not our problem? maybe Google is doing maintenance? since everyone has the same problem on the same date. Just wondering.

    • that can be possible, but weird that for some users to do the deletion and it worked for them. What version are you running in chrome are you running the latest version?

      • Yeah. My chrome’s running the latest version since I uninstalled the old one and downloaded the new setup. Actually all of these given methods are working, but after rebooting my pc, the chrome still has the same problem. It’s not that critical but it annoys me everytime I open up my chrome. I’ll try to figure out the solution later. Anyway, Thanks!

      • Yan, exactly the same for me. I even tried deleting all of user data and reboot. Same error. I really do not understand. Chrome has worked great for a long time

  52. Amanpreet // July 1, 2012 at 8:48 am // Reply

    Thank you…. it really works.. 🙂

  53. After a little bit of digging I figured out where the Web Data file is located in XP so I thought I’d share it. C:\Documents and Settings\User\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default

    • I am using XP when Google bugged out, and I can’t find this folder. If I follow the user folder, it does not have a choice for local settings, my only recognizable choice is AppData, which opens to LocalLow, followed by DataMngr, and ends with a file that can’t be opened. I’ve been searching for an hour and can not find the Google Chrome folder.

      • you should be able to type it into your windows explorer address bar or into your run command.

        if not what version of xp do you have?

      • I also use XP…Perhaps you have already fixed your problem. I’ve had a heck of a time fixing mine (has taken me several months) but have found the solution:

        1 Quit Google Chrome.
        2 Open My Computer.
        3 Click on tools, folder options, view, then click on Show Hidden Files and Folders
        4 In windows explorer (right click on the start button and click on “explore”), click on “documents and settings”. You should see your name under “default user” Click on your name.
        5 Click on “local settings”
        6 Click on “application data”
        7 Click on “google”
        8 Click on “chrome”
        9 Click on “user data”
        10 Click on “default” and scroll all the way down and delete both “web data” and “web data journal”
        11 Start Google Chrome and the error should be gone.

      • thanks for the steps on Windows XP :).

  54. Same problem reappeared after reboot. I tried uninstalling and reinstalling Chrome. Same thing. It worked at first until the reboot.
    I tried renaming the default folder as directed. same thing.

    • try deleting the “User Data” folder and let me if this helps you out. I tried it in my test machine and when you start chrome up it will re-create the “User Data” folder.

      I would delete it > restart > open chrome > restart > and check chrome again.

      Let me know!

      • Thanks man. I did everything but nothing helped. but this worked 🙂 🙂 🙂

      • Many thanks Bjtechnews, I have tried many ways but only your solution of deleting “User Data” folder works.

  55. Hi, this worked until I rebooted my computer. Then the same “profile could not be opened correctly” error box popped up again. Any suggestions? Please help. Thanks.

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  2. Episode 34 – How to solve “Your profile could not be opened correctly” issue in Chrome – Part II « BJ's Technology News Blog
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