Google Chrome 79 began rolling out on desktop and mobile platforms last week, and a bug in the release was later discovered that caused data stored by web applications (as well as native apps using a WebView container) to vanish. After a few days of troubleshooting, the Chrome team is now rolling out a fix.
The bug stems from a simple change made in Chrome 79, where the location where web data is stored was updated. As one comment on a Chromium bug page pointed out, data from localStorage and WebSQL — two types of storage commonly used by web apps and packaged apps — wasn't migrated properly. When devices were updated to Chrome 79, some (or all) local data for apps relying on those storage methods vanished.
Google says that Chrome 79 only rolled out to 15% of devices by the bug was discovered, not 50%, as was previously reported. The company provided us with the following statement:
The M79 update to Chrome and WebView on Android devices was suspended after detecting an issue in WebView where some users’ app data was not visible within those apps. This app data was not lost and will be made visible in apps when we deliver an update this week. We apologize for any inconvenience.
A bug page comment explains some of the technical details — the latest update properly migrates the storage, and if new data has been created in the new storage location (e.g., if the user already updated to the broken Chrome 79 build), the new data will be overwritten with the pre-79 storage. Data created while the broken Chrome 79 update was installed will remain accessible in a separate location, so web apps can recover that information if absolutely necessary.
So, long story short, any information you may have lost after the Chrome 79 update should come back to you shortly.
- Chrome Releases Blog