Maybe you’re feeling nostalgic or maybe you’re looking for something important you shared with friends on Facebook a long time ago. Either way, it can be a pain to sort through ALL of your Facebook posts right on your timeline.
Most people don’t know that you can download a file that contains EVERYTHING you’ve ever done on Facebook since the first moment you created your account. This includes every post, every photo, every video, and every friend…even every ad that you’ve clicked on.
In fact, you can even find out your Facebook “birthday”. You know…the exact day and time you decided to allow Facebook into your life. 🙂
Apparently my Facebook birthday is: January 28, 2008 at 12:13 am EST. #ihadnoidea
OK, so how do we go about finding stuff on Facebook that we posted a long time ago??
1. Log into your Facebook account (desktop version).
2. Go to your account settings under the main drop-down menu (the little arrow all the way over to the right side of the menu bar) or visit http://facebook.com/settings
3. Under the list of General Account Settings you’ll see a link that says DOWNLOAD A COPY OF YOUR FACEBOOK DATA. Click on that! 🙂
4. You’ll then be taken to a new screen that looks like this:
Click on the button that says DOWNLOAD ARCHIVE. You’ll be prompted to enter your FB password. Once you do that you’ll receive an email that says Facebook is working on putting all of your information together. When that’s done you’ll receive another email from Facebook with a link to access your ZIP file. I received the second email within just a few minutes.
5. When you receive the second email you’ll need to re-enter your password. Download the ZIP file to your computer (this will probably take a few minutes depending on how often you use Facebook!). When the download is complete you’ll need to “unzip” the folder or extract the files so you can view them on your computer. To do that on most computers you’ll just need to right click and select UNZIP or EXTRACT ALL.
6. Once the files are extracted click on the new folder and look for the INDEX file (it will be an HTML document). Double click on that and it will open up in your browser (ie. Chrome, Firefox, Explorer). It’s important to know that even though you’re viewing this information in your Internet browser all of the data that’s used to display the information is being stored on your computer’s hard drive (not the Internet). So if you wanted you could look at this info even when you’re offline.
In a way, you’ve basically just created a backup of everything you’ve ever shared on a Facebook. This could be important especially when it comes to photos that you may not have created a backup for anywhere else.
7. On the left you’ll see a menu of the different options you can click on…WALL posts, PHOTOS, VIDEOS, etc. If you’re looking for a particular wall post click on WALL and then you can use your browser’s “find” command (CTRL + F) to search for keywords. That way you don’t need to scroll through hundreds of lines of posts. 🙂
A major downside is that you won’t be able to see any of the comments that were left on your wall posts. Although you can see them on your photos and videos. However, if you’re really interested in the comments you can at least pinpoint the date of the post you were looking for, and then click on the month on the right side of your Facebook timeline to narrow down your search.
So what do you think? Is this a handy feature you’ll be using in the future? Or do you think it’s kinda creepy?
Feel free to join the discussion over on Facebook by clicking on the link below!