Isolated and Self-Destructing Chromium Session Profiles (Linux Desktop)

Isolated and Self-Destructing Chromium Session Profiles (Linux Desktop)

One of the easiest first steps you can take to drastically reduce cross-site tracking and privacy invasion, before even needing to set up a DNS server and change any network configurations, is to implement isolation of browser profiles and sessions.

This isn't quite the same as private/incognito browsing, though it's similar in some regards. Unlike private browsing windows, which still run from your existing browser profile and require launching the browser and loading the profile into memory, these will be fully standalone sessions that launch independently of your main (or other) profiles, run from their own data directories, get their own dock and launcher icons, can retain login sessions within themselves (so you can use them to log into a specific website, email or social media account), and can be individually customised with themes, cookie policies and other settings.

In addition, you can also create a self-destructing launcher that starts a temporary session using a randomised profile directory within /tmp and then launches the browser using that as its user-data-dir. You'll be able to launch as many independent self-destructing instances as you'd like at any time, they'll all be separate from each other, each get their own separate dock icons, do not load or require your main or any other profile, and will automatically self-destruct once you've closed their last window.

It's the easiest way to quickly start a completely fresh browser session on-the-fly, that you know for sure has no history, cookies or any other site sessions or data.

You'll find sample .desktop files for common sites and use cases, a collection of custom icons (including re-coloured Chromium icons you can designate for different uses or privacy tiers), and a single BASH script that creates the self-destructing sessions, along with detailed instructions and explanation of what everything does and how to set it up.


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