Abhilash Meesala

Rewriting TabMate

Before browsers introduced features like tab searching and grouping, switching to the tab you were looking for was tedious, especially if you are a tab hoarder like me. I tried a bunch of extensions that offered this functionality, but I didn’t like any of them. Coupled with a healthy dose of NIH syndrome, I wrote TabMate over a weekend a decade ago.

Since then, I have barely updated the extension. It was stable and did its job well, so I was never compelled to update it - until now.

Google announced that it’s phasing out Manifest v2 extensions starting June 2024—this would have been an easy change if only I hadn’t lost the original source code! 🤦. I’m now forced to update or abandon the extension.

Initially, I was inclined to abandon the extension, but then I saw about 1600 odd users actively using this extension. Since there’s no export functionality built into TabMate, they’ll lose all their data if the extension is disabled. That sucks. So, I’ve decided to rewrite it instead.

The catch? I only have 15 days to complete this rewrite, bug for bug. Plus, I haven’t worked on frontend or Chrome extensions in a few years, so this is definitely going to be interesting.