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How to Fix “Preferences Could Not Be Read” Error on Google Chrome

Chrome Constantly Crashing

Google Chrome Errors

Google Chrome is one of the best web browsers that work on different platforms. Generally, it is solid when it comes to standard browsing sessions and so forth. Sometimes though, users run into errors or issues that make the browser unstable. In certain cases, refreshing error tabs, closing and reopening Google Chrome, fixing internet connection problems, resetting the browser, or even rebooting the computer helps to resolve some of the Chrome browser issues. However, doing the recommended solution might not always work. In such a case, you may have to uninstall and reinstall Google Chrome as a last resort, depending on the issue.

The reinstallation of the Chrome browser can resolve several issues, including the following ones.

  • Proxy errors denoted by “connection failed” or “connection closed”
  • Chrome not responding error
  • Chrome constantly crashing
  • The browser running slow
  • Advertisements constantly popping up after adware infection
  • “Your preferences could not be read” error at startup

Decide if you Want to Uninstall Google Chrome

Note that in case you remove Google Chrome from your device, then you will lose browser passwords, bookmarks, settings, and everything saved in the browser. Therefore, do it only if other solutions for an error fail to resolve it. For instance, if you come across the “Your preferences could not be read” error message, then perhaps your user profile is corrupt or malicious extensions have compromised the settings of Google Chrome. To resolve the issue, you can try recreating the profile folder of the browser after taking a backup of bookmarks file.

Steps to Take a Backup of the Bookmarks

  • Open Windows Explorer and type the following path on its address bar and press Enter

C:\Users\<YourUserName>\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default

Chrome Constantly Crashing

  • From the Default folder, copy the Bookmarks file and paste it in a location where you want to keep its backup. Note that you should keep a backup of Chrome bookmarks on a location other than the drive where Windows is installed.

Steps to Recreate the Profile Folder

To perform this task, you should first enable hidden files on your Windows 7 computer. For that, follow the steps mentioned below.

  • Open Windows Explorer or a folder, click Organize and choose Folder and search options.
  • In Folder Options, switch to View tab and choose Show hidden files checkbox under Advanced settings.
  • Exit Google Chrome or close all open tabs in the browser.
  • Access the User Data folder using the aforementioned path, and rename the folder to User Data.OLD.
  • The preferences error should now be gone from Google Chrome.

You can restore the bookmarks, which you have backed up earlier. For that, follow the steps mentioned below.

  • Open the backup location on your computer, copy the Bookmarks file and paste it in the Default folder of Chrome.

If issues including “Your preferences could not be read” persist, despite trying recommended solutions for it, you might have to uninstall and reinstall the browser and get rid of all its traces from your Windows system. To do that on Windows 7, follow the below steps.

Steps to Uninstall Chrome

  • Exit the browser completely. Click on the Start button on the desktop, search for Add or remove programs on the search box of Start Menu and click on the respective link from the search results.
  • In the list of programs window, select Google Chrome and click on Uninstall
  • Follow the instructions or prompts on the Uninstall Wizard to complete it.

Now make sure files are not set as hidden in case you have changed it. Then, you have to rename or delete the Chrome folders on Windows.

  • To find the first of the two folders through Windows Explorer, navigate to C:\Users\<YourUserName>\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome, and delete the folder.
  • Then, you have to go to C:\Program Files\Google\Chrome and delete that folder also.

Steps to Reinstall Chrome

  • To reinstall Google Chrome on your PC download it using a different browser. For that, search “Download Google Chrome” on the search engine and open the respective link from the search results.
  • From the Google website that appears, click on the DOWNLOAD CHROME
  • Open the downloaded setup file location and follow the on-screen prompts or instructions to complete the installation of the browser.

When you are done, open Google Chrome to see if the issues you were facing are fixed. It is also recommended to scan for malware and do a quarantine procedure in order to fix Chrome constantly crashing, slowness of the browser or other issues that persist. If any the above troubleshoots do not resolve an error on Google Chrome, you can contact our browser support professionals through the toll-free helpline mentioned above for immediate help.

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