Is it normal or legal for chrome to have a list of recent items I've opened in my computer?

I have an old version of chrome installed in my PC. Then recently, I downloaded a newer version. But before I did that, I cleared all history, cache, cookies, etc. in my old chrome version, then proceed with the installation of the newer version.

After it got installed, I checked the history and saw a list of files I've opened from my computer, similar to what microsoft stored in their "Recent Items". They list all the files I've opened, movies I've watched, pictures and documents I've opened. I thought it was just a glitch so I cleared chrome's history, cache, cookies,etc. again.

But when, I was browsing chrome's files, I found out that it still have the history of files I've opened. The file was "History Provider Cache" found at "C:\Users(user)\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default"

My OS: Windows 7

Old chrome version: 23.0.1271.64

New chrome version installed: 25.0.1364.68

1 Answer 1


It is certainly normal for Chrome to do this. It is part of the Omnibox functionality, helping google provide you with the results you want.

To get rid of the history provider cache, simply delete that file.

You could have a read of this question on SU discussing editing it.

  • If I delete it, does it delete my web browsing history too? Or just the recent opened items? I don't understand how google would provide me with results I want by knowing that I opened xxxx.jpg file... It seems like they just want to spy on users and want to know what files I have...
    – user20960
    Oct 27, 2013 at 19:12
  • Google uses all your activity to provide: you with targeted results, and google with useful demographic data. They don't care about what files you have but they do care about what advertising they can sell.
    – Rory Alsop
    Oct 27, 2013 at 19:41

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