Knowing fully well Apple’s default apps work better than third-party apps in a lot of cases, I remained stuck with Google Chrome these past few years. I switched over from Firefox years back and never looked back, and now, it looks like I might be jumping ship again. When it comes to power management, Safari is better than Google Chrome on macOS. Apple knows it’s own OS better than anyone.
I decided to try out Safari and I was able to import my history and bookmarks from Google Chrome, but there’s no option to import passwords, unfortunately. I rely a lot on saved passwords to access a lot of websites and I definitely wouldn’t be able to use Safari if I was unable to somehow find a way to import these passwords from Google Chrome.
This isn’t a straightforward process, but it isn’t that difficult either. There are five steps involved:
Download Google Chrome Canary
- Enable password export
- Prepare the exported passwords for Firefox
- Import the passwords to Firefox
- Import the passwords from Firefox to Safari
Download and install Google Chrome Canary
Update: You no longer need to download Google Chrome Canary. This functionality has now been enabled on the regular Google Chrome. Skip this step.
Normally, you should be able to export passwords using the regular Google Chrome, but this functionality was removed when Google introduced the new material design. For now, this functionality is only available in Google Chrome’s experimental version named ‘Canary’. Download and install Chrome Canary, sign in with your primary Google account storing your passwords, and make sure everything is fully synchronized before proceeding to the next step.
Export Google Chrome passwords
– On Google Chrome, go to chrome://flags. You may need to type it into the address bar.
– Search for password export and password import and enable both.
– Relaunch Google Chrome to let the settings take effect.
– Now go to Chrome password settings [Manage Passwords] and let the passwords fully load. This might take a while depending on your machine how many saved passwords you have.
– At the top right, click the menu button and select Export.
– Save the passwords as a CSV file and you can move to next step.
Prepare the exported passwords for Firefox
Before you import these passwords into Firefox, you need to first prepare them and make them compatible with Firefox’s Password Exporter.
– Open the CSV file in Excel or any other program you have. It should have 4 columns: name, url, username, password.
– Delete the whole first column labeled name. You should now have just url, username & password.
– Delete all words in the first row (url, username & password) and replace the first line with this:
# Generated by Password Exporter; Export format 1.0.4; Encrypted: false
– The end result should look like this:
Import the passwords into Firefox
The default password import tool bundled with Firefox by default isn’t there anymore, so you need to install an addon for this. Please note that at the moment, this addon doesn’t work on Firefox Quantum (v57) and later versions, you may need to install an older version like Firefox 56.
– Install the Password Exporter plugin.
– Now go to Preferences > Security > Import/Export Passwords and import the CSV file you exported from Google Chrome earlier.
Now you’ve successfully imported the passwords into Firefox, it’s time to move to the last step.
Import the passwords from Firefox to Safari
– On Safari, go to File > Import From > Firefox.
– Make sure Passwords is checked and click the import button.
You won’t see a progress bar, but the process should take place in the background. This might take a while depending on the number of passwords to be imported.