Have you ever performed a lengthy Internet search to find a web-based resource…taken care to bookmark that web site…and then found yourself futilely looking for the same resource later, while you are working on another computer? Or have you re-organized all your bookmarks on your home desktop…and now dread beginning the same project on your home laptop? Despair not: you can choose from several programs that help you sync your bookmarks across multiple devices.
I am a big fan of Xmarks for this purpose. Xmarks provides “bookmark synchronization, search enhancement and web discovery based on sites bookmarked by users.” In addition to using Xmarks to sync bookmarks across several computers, I also use it for syncing bookmarks across multiple browsers on one device. (Before you do this, though, I recommend that you consider whether this is a good approach for you. For example, you may instead want to limit use of one Xmarks account to a specific browser, for syncing bookmarks that you need to access both at home and at work, and then use another Xmarks account on a different type of browser, to keep track of personal bookmarks that you wouldn’t need to access while you are working.)
Irrespective of how you intend to use Xmarks–or for that matter, any other bookmark sync program–I strongly recommend that before you begin, you save a copy of your bookmark information for each browser that you use, and for each device on which you have bookmarks. Yes, this may take some time. You may be incredibly busy. You may think backing up your bookmarks is completely unnecessary…but please avoid the temptation of skipping this important step. Aside from this project, there are numerous reasons that recommend your backing up your bookmarks on a regular basis. Just one example: if you decide to use a bookmark sync tool and while installing it, accidentally sync your bookmarks “in the wrong direction”, thereby overwriting your newly organized bookmark folder structure, you’ll be able to access your previously saved back-up copy. (Another? Your device is lost, stolen, or damaged: goodbye, bookmarks; hello, dreaded time sink. Do the right thing: invest in a “good sync” that will save you time.)
After you saved a backup copy of your bookmarks, visit the Xmarks Features Overview web page and peruse the options offered. While a basic version of Xmarks is free, if you want to use Xmarks for mobile devices too, you’ll need to pay for the premium version. The process for downloading, installing, and initiating use of the free features is fairly simple; you should be “up and syncing” in no time. And that too will save you time, down the road.
Are you a Firefox fan? Charter Member of the “Mozilla Club”? If so, then you probably already knew that Xmarks originated as Foxmarks, but later was acquired by LastPass. If Firefox is your browser of choice, surf to Xmarks via Firefox’s Add-On page for Xmarks Sync; from there, you can also navigate to more information about the Xmarks Sync developer.