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I was a Microsoft Windows (98 to 8.1) user up until now , and I have recently made the switch to Mac OSX completely. While I have managed to familiarize myself with quite a few things so far, there is a complicated issue which I haven't been able to deal with, yet.

Up until the switch to Mac OSX, I have been using Google Chrome for all my online work. I frequently tend to bookmark web-sites and over the long period, I have accumulated many bookmarks which are neatly organized into folders on the Google Chrome bookmark bar. I feel a screenshot would make it absolutely clear in case of any confusion, so here's one:

A screenshot of Google Chrome running on iMac

The interesting point to note here is: the iMac is not my own, it is my work computer, and yet by logging into Google Chrome on this iMac (refer next screenshot), I can access all my bookmarks, saved passwords (and what not) in a matter of seconds.

Logging into Google Chrome via my Google account on my work computer

So, my question is:

How do I get to perform the same sync in Safari, as is possible through Google and Google Chrome?

I do have an Apple iCloud account, but I don't see how I can replicate the syncing on Safari via iCloud, the way it can be done through my Google account and Google Chrome. I also have a personal Macbook Pro and an iPad, and I need to sync the iMac safari bookmarks with those on the Pro and the iPad.

The only thing which I can think of is: Exporting Google Chrome bookmarks into an HTML file and importing them back into Safari, each time both on the iMac and the Macbook.

Not only is this tedious, but it's also extremely clumsy. If there is a way iCloud can be used to do the sync on Safari, I'm not yet aware of it. External sync apps (Evernote and the like) might not work because they have limited storage.

I would also like for Keychain to be enabled across all my Apple devices via the sync, so I do not need to remember passwords.

Any suggestions/help would be highly appreciated.

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iCloud syncs Safari bookmarks as well as Keychain passwords across your Macs and iOS device today. Simply sign into iCloud on your Macs, and configure both "Safari" and "Keychain" in iCloud settings in System Settings. If you are having trouble getting this to work, check here: http://support.apple.com/kb/TS4001

In my experience, iCloud is not as quick, nor as persistent as is Google Sync. It can often take many minutes to get updates, and sometimes it seems to fail outright. This has been improving for sometime now, but IMHO, its not as good as Google.

Alternatives include Xmarks and LastPass. XMarks syncs bookmarks across everything, whether you use Safari, Chrome, Firefox, Mac or Windows. Highly recommended. The Safari support is a little odd, due to Safari not having a similar plugin capability. Lastpass manages passwords for websites, recommended as well.

For your use case, of syncing across Chrome and Safari, ipad, etc: XMarks doesn't work on iPad Safari. You can use Chrome on iPad, and get your bookmarks synced from Chrome, but this doesnt work for Safari. To get Safari to share the same bookmarks:

  1. On your Mac, Install XMarks for Chrome
  2. Create XMarks account, and sync your bookmarks
  3. Install XMarks for Safari on Mac
  4. Sign into your account, and allow XMarks to overwrite your Safari bookmarks
  5. Make sure iCloud is syncing Safari Bookmarks
  6. Ipad/iPhone Safari will now contain same bookmarks as Chrome.
  • +1 for Xmarks. Have used it for years to sync between Safari, Chrome and Firefox, on Mac, Windows, Solaris, Android and iOS. It has the occasional hiccup and you have to turn off the other browsers' native syncing mechanisms for it to work smoothly, but they keep a history of your synced bookmarks on their website too. So if it does go badly wrong you can get back to the last good version fairly quickly. – calum_b Oct 18 '14 at 20:46
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Alternatively, if you don't want to add more apps to your devices, you can use Pinterest for an easy bookmark storage location that you can access from any device, any browser. I save by pinning, you can make boards secret, and when working on a collaborative project, invite others to pin to it. No need to mess with your device or app or browser settings. And very handy.

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