This is the official user feedback forum for Sidewise, the Google Chrome extension that brings a dockable sidebar and Tree Style Tabs to Chrome.

Saving tab trees to bookmarks

Muntoo Meddler 8 years ago updated by Joel Thornton 8 years ago 0

The problem

In the event of a Sidewise/browser malfunction, or accidental closing of a branch, the ability to save all tabs (including hibernated) to a folder in the bookmarks would be very useful.

Currently, I manually hibernate everything, and then individually wake trees that need to be saved. I then use the "FreshStart - Cross Browser Session Manager" extension to save these tabs. Unfortunately, it is a slow method when I have a large number of tabs in a tree.

A solution

Saving the bookmarks to a folder like FreshStart does would be useful. Each folder in Sidewise will correspond with a folder in the bookmarks.

This is just an idea (and a bad one): a 'metadata bookmark' could be saved as well to record the state/location of each tab in the branch, as well as its labels/highlights.

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P.S. You may want to take this into consideration before implementing "non-core features" -- even if I suggest some! ;)

Joel Thornton 8 years ago

An ability to save both single tabs and branches of tabs to bookmarks is definitely planned and I consider it a core feature. The "metadata bookmark" idea is an interesting one; I'll have to give this some consideration. It would definitely be a hack, but it would sure be nice to have those Sidewise-specific states retained. Perhaps it will be a (default off) option that users can turn on if they want to make that trade-off.

Regarding the issue of feature bloat: I agree this is something to be studiously avoided; I can think of numerous examples of once-great lightweight apps that gradually become laden with features that are low-value cruft, and which end up detracting from the performance, usefulness, and clarity-of-vision of the earlier versions.

I have in mind a "core" feature set that will eventually result in a total of about 9 sidebar panes that will come "built in" with a Sidewise install, and I plan to have 4 or 5 of these *at most* turned on by default, along with an ability for the user to control which panes are visible (and their ordering) in the options page. I consider these "built in" panes to be a part of my original vision for Sidewise, together comprising a comprehensive set of sidebar-oriented tools that give great visibility and control over the user's browsing experience. All of these panes will be designed to work together in a holistic manner.

Any additional sidebar panes will likely be made available by installing extra "sidebar pane" extensions from the Chrome Web Store, which will also allow for other folks to create their own sidebar panes, or give existing extensions the ability to show up as a Sidewise pane.

I am taking a similar tack with the options page, with an overall goal of the default "non advanced" options page taking up about one screen-height at the most. Power users can then "reveal advanced options" if they really want to get customization-crazy.


Sidewise won't launch anymore

barracuda 5 years ago 0
Sidewise won't launch anymore. The icon is still there but nothing would happen when you click it.

I've been using Sidewise for about 2 months and have accumulated more than a thousand hibernated tabs. Before this problem of Sidewise not launching occurred I'd noticed that some of tabs I opened were not appearing in Sidewise. But, when I restarted Chrome and reloaded the last session tabs, the tabs previously not appearing could now be seen in Sidewise.

But now when I click Sidewise icon nothing happens. I tried restarting Chrome and also restarting computer but it still won't work. I'd like to try reinstalling Sidewise but I'm afraid that I might lose my hibernated tabs.

Please advise on how can I make Sidewise work again or how to recover my hibernated tabs. Thanks in advance.

Use rather than localStorage

Sae Hirak 8 years ago updated by nao 4 years ago 8

As the title says, it might be better to use rather than localStorage. There's two reasons for this: is asynchronous, which supposedly makes it faster. But more importantly, localStorage is limited to either 2.5MB or 5MB of data. But if you use, you can use the "unlimitedStorage" permission.

Speaking from experience writing Chrome Extensions, is the best way I've found to persistently store user data. And if you're worried about it being async, it's easy to write a buffer so that the API remains synchronous, but behind the scenes it's still async. I can give more details if you like, including working code.


new version chrome (32.0.1700.76) trouble

yakuza 7 years ago updated by IvanS 7 years ago 1
I have new chrome (version 32.0.1700.76)  with sidewise (Version 2013.9.15.0). Behavior is unstable. Often sidewise is crashed and ask for close. Sometimes (very often) chrome is blinking. Restart chrome is not helps.

Open new tabs at the top instead of bottom

onguarde 8 years ago updated by Chris Appleby 4 years ago 9

The idea is to make it easier to see...

Currently, when you have a lot of tabs, you have to frequently glance down!

This is inconvenient because we are usually focussed in the top left of the screen. (where the text starts on the page view).

As such, the best place to put the tabs we're currently working on will be near the top.

The older tabs should be at the bottom.

(The concept is similar to webpage design. The prime view estate is the top part. The bottom parts is not where the eye lands first.)

Joel Thornton 8 years ago

I don't have a date for this, but consider it on the priority todo list.

What I would really like to do is just rethink how the tab-ordering/nesting logic works overall, and create options for each specific case, e.g. "where to place new tabs opened via address bar", et al.


sorting options, especially by names - duplicates removal tool

acetrip 7 years ago updated by Darren F 7 years ago 1
this is crucial to be able to keep control of houndreds of links

How do i disable last session feature?

Lee 7 years ago updated by marcus shmidt 5 years ago 4

I don't need it because i use History in chrome if i want to restore last session. 

i can't understand even why the feature made in.. 

i found this session feature at other simillar ext. but ... why? Chrome's History feature is enough.

annoying so much. i everytime remove it. 

btw thanks to nice ext.

I'm going to donate some $ if few problems solved.


Anyway to disable the top tabs if Sidewise is enabled?

Ben Galiagos 8 years ago 0

 Seems silly to have two tab locations in the browser.


Dark theme or just custom css

Pshirshov 5 years ago updated by Serge Kosyrev 3 years ago 1

Save my eyes please...


Backing up / Importing Sessions or Synchronizing across computers

Nayelianne 8 years ago updated by SkepticalViews 5 years ago 10

First of all I'd like to commend you on the great extension. Back when I used firefox I was a Tree Style Tab user and recently I found the need for keeping my tabs organized. The folder and renaming tab feature is great and the "Note"  button is super handy. So far your extension was the closest(and best functioning) I found to an integrated sidebar on chrome(the whole auto-resize and positioning saves me of a lot of trouble) :)

But more often than not I have the need of working on more than one computer, which means I'm using a different app for keeping those tabs stored on the cloud (it uses google authentication), loading them on the second computer and then manually reorganizing everything on Sidewise to match the other computer. It'd be okay if that list of tabs didn't change as often as it does, but lately, it's been agonizingly time consuming and very tiring to reorganize everything properly.

I tried copying the entire extension folder that's buried inside the AppData folder and replacing it on the second computer, but nothing happened... So I'd really love to know if there's any way to export the saved settings and tabs, even if I have to manually copy files/folders and replace them every time I make a switch.

Anyway, thanks for the great work so far. <3

Joel Thornton 8 years ago

Some kind of syncing and export functionality is on the todo list, though probably won't make an appearance for some time. I want to get most of the planned core features in place first, which will give me a good idea of what should be syncable/exportable and how it should function -- i.e. what should be synced when, should everything be considered one big "shared session" or do we want to have separate "work", "home", etc. sessions, and so on.

Regarding a manual export/transfer mechanism, there isn't a real clean way to do this right now. While it is possible to dump all of Sidewise's settings and pagetree/notepad content and import it on another machine, the bigger problem is getting the specifically currently-open tabs to carry over from one machine to another, which is more of a Chrome-specific thing. This might be well-accommodated by Chrome's own ability to sync "open tabs" but I haven't tried it.

That being said, if you want to give it a try, I'll give you the basic starting points.

Firstly go to Chrome's Extensions page, check the Developer mode checkbox in the upper right, then click background.html under the Sidewise entry in the extension list. From there switch to the Console tab. We'll be entering Javascript commands into Sidewise's background page to export/import its state data.

Quick and dirty export of Sidewise's state:


This exports a copy of Sidewise's state data to your system clipboard.

Quick and dirty import of state from the clipboard:

var s = <PRESS CTRL+V TO PASTE THE DATA><press Enter>
for (var k in s) { settings.set(k, JSON.parse(s[k])); }

This imports the state data from the clipboard into Sidewise's current settings, overwriting whatever's there currently.

Then disable/enable Sidewise from the Extensions page to restart it.

I haven't tested this across multiple machines but I was able to export, hand-modify, and then import the state data on my single Chrome instance and after restarting Sidewise the modifications were there.

But again this doesn't address the issue of which tabs are open on each machine. During its startup, Sidewise will do its best to figure out which open tabs correspond to which entries in the tree, but this is definitely unexplored territory :)

Good luck!