LogMeIn, parent company of LastPass, announced today that it will shut down the cross-browser bookmark synchronization service Xmarks on May 1, 2018.
Xmarks launched its service at a time when browsers did not support native synchronization functionality, let alone syncing data between different browsers.
We reviewed the service back in 2009 for the first time and the rocky pass in the years that followed. The creators wanted to shut down the service back in 2010 but LastPass, makers of the password manager, stepped in and acquired Xmarks in the same year.
LastPass introduced premium accounts to add a revenue stream to Xmarks. The service's password sync functionality was removed in 2011 as it stood in direct competition with the password manager LastPass.
Reliability of the bookmarks syncing service deteriorated in recent years. This led to the "What's going on with Xmarks for Firefox" article in 2017.
When you visit the official Xmarks website right now, you are notified at the top that LogMeIn is shutting down the service and that users won't be able to access Xmarks from May 1, 2018 on.
LogMeIn is retiring Xmarks from its line of products as of May 1, 2018. After this date, you will no longer have access to Xmarks.
Existing Xmarks users are notified about the shutdown of the service:
On May 1, 2018, we will be shutting down Xmarks. Your account will remain active until then. After this date, your bookmarks should remain available in any previously accessed browser, but they will no longer sync and your Xmarks account will be deactivated. There will be no impact to your LastPass Premium account. In addition, any remaining balance previously paid towards Xmarks will be applied as a credit towards your LastPass Premium account.
At LastPass, we’ve staked our claim in password management, and providing our community with a high level of password security. After careful consideration and evaluation, we have decided to discontinue the Xmarks solution so that we can continue to focus on offering the best possible password vaulting to our community.
Xmark users should make sure that bookmarks are synced to all their browsers and on all devices as syncing functionality will shut down.
I recommended you create a backup of the full bookmarks database to have it as a backup if things go wrong during the shutting down of the service.
You may want to uninstall the extension from your browsers after you have made sure that all bookmarks synced correctly.
One of Xmarks greatest strengths was that it supported cross-browser syncing of bookmarks. All native solutions that support sync synchronize bookmarks only between different instances of the same browser.
Eversync is a free and paid service that is available as extensions for Firefox, Chrome and Internet Explorer, and Android and iOS. It supports cross-browser syncing of bookmarks and open tabs but seems to lack some advanced functionality such as making sure the order of bookmarks is retained.
The free version is limited to 15000 bookmarks, 500 private bookmarks and 500 archive bookmarks. Additionally, it does not support automatic syncing but only manual syncing to the Everhelper server.
The price is $4.99 per month or $44.99 per year.
Ymarks is a free solution that is open source. A browser extension is only available for Google Chrome, but it may work in Firefox as well.
What's interesting about Ymarks is that it comes with a server component. Good for users who value privacy, not so good for users who have no place to set it up.
It was created as part of Donation Coder's NANY 2018 event.
It is sad to see Xmarks being retired as it was one of the few cross-browser sync solutions available but it was clear that LogMeIn / LastPass had other priorities for a long time.
Now You: Do you sync bookmarks? Did you use Xmarks?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.