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52 Google Chrome Tips and Tricks

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Here is a collection of 100 useful Google Chrome tips and tricks Whether you are new to Chrome or an expert, you will learn a thing or two from this list.

Google Chrome Tips and Tricks for 2019

1. View tabs from other devices

If you have signed into Chrome using your Google account (Chromesync), you can access tabs from all your devices. For example, if you were reading an article on your laptop and want to continue on the mobile, that’s possible.

To do this, open the History page (chrome://history or CTRL+ H) and look at Tabs from other devices.

Chrome's "Tabs from other devices" feature.
Tabs from other devices

If you are on mobile, you can do this by going to Settings (three dots menu) and selecting Recent tabs. This will list will include your tabs from other devices:

Recently closed tabs from Chrome for Android
Recently closed tabs from Chrome for Android

2. Add the ‘Home’ button to the address bar

To quickly access your Home tab from anywhere, you can add the home icon to the address bar. To do that, open Settings > Appearance and enable Show home button.

Enable "Show Home Button"
Enable “Show Home Button”

3. Use Chrome’s Task Manager

Chrome has a built-in task manager. It lists all the open tabs and their resource usage. To open this, use the keyboard shortcut:

  • SHIFT + ESC on Windows
  • CMD + ESC on macOS
  • SEARCH + ESC on Chromebooks

4. CTRL + SHIFT + DEL to delete browsing history

To quickly access the delete browsing history page, use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + SHIFT + DEL. On a Mac, use CMD + SHIFT + DEL.

If you are a Chromebook user, use the CTRL + SHIFT + BACK. For more information about deleting browsing data, refer to our guide here.

5. Use ‘Paste and search’ or ‘Paste and go’

Google Chrome offers an easy way to use copied text and URLs. Copy some text and right-click on the address bar (also known as Omnibox). You will see “Paste and search”. This option allows you to start a search using the copied text using your default search engine. This will make searching faster for you.

Paste and search option in Chrome
Paste and search option in Chrome

Similarly, if you copy a web address and right-click on the address bar, you will see “Paste and go”. This will paste the copied URL into the address bar and open the website.

Paste and go option in Chrome
Paste and go option in Chrome

6. Use the address bar for basic calculations

You might have used Google.com for basic calculations. If you search 4+6 on Google, you will see the answer and also a calculator. You can do similar calculations from Chrome’s address bar.

To try this, enter a simple calculation into the address bar. For example, try 10+10. You will immediately see the answer.

7. Resize Text Areas

Click and drag the bottom-right corner of text areas to resize them. For example, if you are submitting a comment on a website and the text area is small, you can resize it.

Resize text areas
Resize text areas

Note: This will be available only on supported fields.

8. Useful keyboard shortcuts

In this section, we will look at the most useful keyboard shortcuts for Google Chrome.

ShortcutAction
CTRL + SHIFT + NOpens Incognito Window (Private browsing)
CTRL + SHIFT + TOpens the last tab you closed. Chrome remembers up to 10 tabs you closed.
CTRL + 9Takes you to the last tab on your Chrome window.
CTRL + SHIFT + BToggles the bookmarks bar on or off.
CTRL + SHIFT +VPaste content from the clipboard without formatting (as plain text)
CTRL + SHIFT + DBookmarks all open tabs into a new folder within your Bookmarks.
ALT + F or ALT + E Opens Chrome settings menu (the menu you open clicking the hotdog icon, not the chrome://settings page)

Here is the official (and complete) list of Chrome keyboard shortcuts.

9. Middle-click a tab to close it

To quickly close an open tab, use your mouse’s middle-click. You can also use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + W (CMD + W on a Mac)

10. Drag a tab away to make it a separate window

You can drag any tab from the current window and make it a separate window. In the same way, you can drag a window back to a set of tabs.

You can do this with multiple tabs as well. Hold down CTRL (CMD on macOS) and select multiple tabs. You can now move them around or move them away from the current window to create a new window.

11. SHIFT + Click opens links in a new window

If you click any ink while holding down the SHIFT key, the link will open in a new window.

12. CTRL + Click opens links in a new tab

Hold down CTRL and click a link to open it in a new tab. Useful when you find links on the page that you are currently reading. The link will open in a new tab while you continue reading the current page.

13. Drag Text To Omnibox To Search

Drag text to the Omnibox (address bar) to search. Try this now by selecting text from this page and dragging it to the address bar.

14. Click and hold the back button to see a tab’s history

If you click and hold the back button (or the forward button) Chrome will show you the history of that tab. Here is how it looks like:

15. Explore chrome:// URLs

Google Chrome allows you to access a lot of its settings using chrome:// URLs. Here is a list of the most useful chrome:// URLs.

URLUse
chrome://settings/Access Chrome settings.
chrome://chrome-urls/List of all Chrome URLs.
chrome://bookmarksManage bookmarks
chrome://downloads/Download history
chrome://extensionsManage extensions
chrome://restartRestarts Chrome. (Your unsaved work and Incognito windows will be lost)

16. Increase Text Size (Zoom)

To increase or decrease font size, use the following keyboard shortcuts:

  • CTRL + + (plus key) to increase text size
  • CTRL + – (minus key) to decrease text size
  • CTRL + 0 (zero) to reset the zoom.

17. Play the dino game even when you are online

You might have noticed the dinosaur game on Chrome’s offline error page. This page and the game show up when your computer does not have an internet connection. However, you can play this game by going to the following URL:

chrome://dino

To find more details about this game, read our article here.

18. Use drag and drop to get things done

There are a few things that you can get done by dragging and dropping links and files to and from Chrome.

  1. After downloading a file, copy it to the desktop or to any other folder by dragging them directly from Google Chrome’s downloads bar (the small bar at the bottom of the page with download progress, when you are downloading a file ).
  2. You can drag a file from this download bar to upload files as well. For example, you downloaded a photo your friend sent to you via email. While it is still showing on your downloads bar, open Google Drive or Dropbox (or any website that supports drag and drop to upload). Drag the file from the downloads bar directly into the upload field to start the upload.
  3. Drag Text To Tab Bar To Search In New Tab: Drag it to the omnibar, that is the area above the address bar next to the new tab button, to open search in a new tab.
  4. Drag Links To Omnibox to open them in the current tab.
  5. Drag Links to Tab Bar To Open In New Tab
  6. Drag and drop files from your computer to Chrome address bar to open with Chrome. This works with PDF files, images and HTML files.
  7. Drag Links to Bookmarks Bar to Add Them To Bookmark

19. Open the default new tab page

If you have installed a Chrome extension that customizes your new tab page, you can open the default new tab page from here:

 chrome://newtab

20. Change the background of your new tab page

Google Chrome provides a lot of options to customize your new tab page. There are a few categories of pictures to select from. You can upload an image from your computer as well.

To change the background, click the Customize link on the new tab page and choose Background. Read our article to learn more about this feature.

21. Use Tab Groups

If you keep a lot of tabs open while browsing, you can group tabs to organize them. To group a tab, right-click and choose Add to New Group.

Read our Tab Groups guide to learn more.

22. View cached versions of websites

Google stores a cached version of the websites in its index. You can access this quickly from Chrome’s address bar. To do this, type cache: followed by the website name.

For example, to view Chrome Story’s cache, type cache:chromestory.com and press Enter.

23. Edit search engines from the address bar

To quickly edit search engines or change the default search engine, right-click within the address bar and choose Edit Search Engines.

Edit Search Engines option from the address bar.
Edit Search Engines option from the address bar.

Please note that these are experimental features and may not work as expected. They might even break some of the existing features. Read the warning on the chrome://flags before proceeding.

24. Explore chrome://sync-internals/ to investigate sync issues

The chrome://sync-internals/ page provides a lot of information on Chromesync. You can view and export all the sync events to investigate issues. The page also provides detailed information on what you are sending to Chromesync.

25. Try new features from chrome://flags

The chrome://flags page lists all the ongoing Chrome experiments. These features are not complete and may not always work as expected. However, you will occasionally find interesting features that you can test.

26. Use Chrome to take notes

To use Chrome as your notepad, type the following into the address bar and hit Enter:

data:text/html, <html contenteditable>

This makes the Chrome tab a notepad. Read more about this feature here.

27. Rotate PDF Files

Chrome can open PDF files. While viewing PDF files, using the following keyboard shortcut to rotate it to landscape or portrait mode:

CTRL + [

The PDF file will rotate clockwise each time you press that keyboard combination.

Note: Use the same keyboard (CTRL, not CMD) on macOS as well.

28. Import or export bookmarks

You can import bookmarks from other browsers to Chrome. In the same way, you can export bookmarks from Chrome as a backup or to import it into a new browser.

To import bookmarks:

  1. Open chrome://bookmarks in a new tab.
  2. Click the three dots settings icon on the top-right corner.
  3. Select Import bookmarks.
  4. Select the bookmarks file and click OK.

29. Pin Chrome tabs

Right-click any tab to “pin” it. When you pin a tab, it moves to the left side of your toolbar. It also hides the title of the website and displays the site’s icon instead.

Pinned tabs save space on your Chrome window and are useful when you have a lot of tabs open. It is also helpful when you have to keep a tab as the first tab on the list. For example, if you want gmail.com always on the first tab, you can pin gmail.com.

Pinned tab
Pinned tab

You can tab multiple tabs. To unpin a tab, right-click on the tab and choose Unpin.

More Quick Chrome Tips

  1. Type a URL, then press Alt + Enter to open the URL in a new tab.
  2. Easily bookmark a page clicking the “star” icon on the right end of the address bar. You can do this with the keyboard shortcut “Ctrl + D” too.
  3. Another use for “Pinned Tab”: when you pin a tab, the close button goes off, and you are less likely to accidentally close it.
  4. Right-click and select Duplicate tab to create a new tab with the same webpage.
  5. Press Alt and click a link to download the target of the link.
  6. Right-click on any extension’s icon to hide it or disable it. ( hide = extension is running but no icon is visible.)
  7. If you have set up Chrome to ask you where to save the downloaded file, Chrome will start the download in the background while you are deciding which folder to put that file in. You can take a break, and come back later to select a folder.
  8. Get all Google Toolbar features on Chrome, follow the guide.
  9. Enable “Do Not Track” on Google Chrome
  10. Decode Base64 Strings With Google Chrome
  11. How to View Saved Passwords Hidden Under Asterisks on Chrome
  12. How To Control Permissions for Any Website From Google Chrome Address bar
  13. Custom Keyboard Shortcuts for Extensions – A New Chrome Feature
  14. How To Backup Your Chrome Bookmarks Without “Chromesync”
  15. “Back To Top” From Bookmarksbar Without Extensions
  16. Make a Favicon only bookmarks bar for adding more number of links there.
  17. Custom Keyboard Shortcuts for Extensions
  18. How to Create Your Own Custom Google Chrome Theme
  19. When you are on the chrome://downloads page, press <Alt>+C to clear all your downloads history.
  20. Search Your Bookmarks from Chrome’s Address bar Without Any Extensions
  21. Want to Remove Passwords from PDFs Using Chrome? Simply “Save As PDF”
  22. How to Remove the “Apps” icon from Chrome Bookmark Bar
  23. You can search your open tabs using the keyboard shortcut CTRL + SHIFT + E.

Do you have a tip to share? Share it with us in the comments section.

Note: This is an on-going effort. We regularly edit this article, add new tips, and remove things that are no longer relevant. Your feedback is appreciated.



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