Well, welcome another post in the series called 100+ Google Chrome Tips & Tricks. Here are part 1, part 2 and part 3, which are packed solidly with lots of tips and tricks you may not already know about. If you’re new to the series, here’s a quick intro: This is a series of posts containing 20 tips and tricks regarding Chrome browser each. It intends to cover at most 100 or more than tips.
Tips? Like what? Like how to mute tabs in Chrome, what are experimental features, how to drag & drop tabs like a pro, what’s “Pin tab”, built-in Chrome password manager, using download bar like a power user, how to get a Chromebook-like experience on Windows 8 and many others. Of course, none of these tips and tricks mean anything if you only read them but don’t apply them. So please, take a minute and try each tip. Needless to mention you’re welcome to comment tips I may have missed unknowingly or a new tip.
By the way, one of my favorite parts about Chrome is its user-friendliness, which is down to earth. Also… don’t forget to tell us your favorite part of Chrome in comments section! 🙂 Now.. without further ado, let’s dive in:
- Don’t let audio/video play without consent – Well, if you don’t want Chrome browser to play audio, video or Flash-supported content automatically as you open a page and you wish Chrome ask your consent first, there’s a way. How? Type chrome://settings/content in omnibox, scroll down to “Plugins” section, select Let me choose what to play, which will configure the browser in a way, so whenever there’s something audio/video embedded, it will appear like a grey-box and will play only when you click it.
You will want to click Manage exceptions and add some sites excluded from this behaviour, for sites you regularly visit like Vimeo, etc.
- Think F4 is far? – Chances are you know keyboard shortcut of closing a tab – pressing Ctrl + F4, but since F4 key might feel too far to many users. If that’s the case, well, good news – you can shut a tab down by pressing Ctrl + w key, easy, right?
- Search Drive files via omnibox – Oh, man I love this omnibox. It’s got so many tricks as this series reveals. Guess what you can even search Drive files via omnibox too! But needless to mention, you must be signed into your Google Account before that could be possible.
OK, so how’s done? Here: Go to Settings, click Manage search engines under Search section. There, add a new search engine row, with its name being anything you like (mine’s “The Drive”), add “gd” as keyword and copy/paste this URL in search query URL field: http://drive.google.com/?hl=en&tab=bo#search/%s Click Done. Now.. open a new tab, press gd then press Tab and there goes your query.
- Control synced stuff – I have told you about Chrome Sync feature already (regular readers). By default, if you sign in to your account, all your extensions, tabs, apps, themes, browsing data, download history, etc. is being synced across devices you’re signed into, right? But did you know you have control over whether extensions, tabs, etc. are synced or not? Yes, you do. How you do you control that?Well, here’s how: Go to Settings page, click Advanced sync settings… at top, check items you want to synchronise and uncheck ones you don’t. Then click OK. Though to be able to check/uncheck, you need to select Choose what to sync from the dropdown at top of dialog.
- Voice search via omnibox – Fan of Android’s OK Google? Then you would love official Voice Search Hotword extension, which makes this feature a possibility. Add it to Chrome and then have fun!
- Apply a theme – Best browser is one that’s most customizable accordingly personal preferences, agree? Chrome, at least, agrees with on that. And provides you with the ability to change its default white theme to beautiful, dark, Mac like, Firefox like, cartoon inspired, etc. themes. Go here and choose your favorite.
- Create desktop shortcuts – Did you know that you could highlight any URL from omnibox box, drag it on desktop and make its desktop shortcut? You would be able to click this desktop icon and get to that page quickly.
- Know your Chrome version – Is your browser up to date? Or, you need to know what version is of your browser. You can find that easily. Two ways: click hamburger-icon and select About Google Chrome under Help and about. Or, type in chrome://chrome/ in new tab and hit Enter.
- Custom keyboard shortcuts – Predefined shortcuts for extensions are not always comfortable, right? Always times when you want to customize shortcuts your way, agree? There’s a way with Chrome for that: Go chrome://extensions, scroll to the bottom, click Keyboard shortcuts and set up your own.
- Restart Chrome its way – Go to chrome://restart and your browser will be restarted. Warned you already.
- Allow extensions in incognito mode – Extensions are not enabled in incognito mode of Chrome by default. However you can enable them always, just go chrome://extensions and check Allow in incognito checkmark beneath the extension you want to enable.
- No need to type “WWW” or “.COM” – One of the most common things people do is they type whole addresses like www.facebook.com, instead you could save some time and keystrokes by just typing facebook and press Ctrl + Enter. It will automatically add WWW and .COM part. Not sutiable for URLs like wikipedia.org though.
- Integrate dictionary in Chrome – Install official Google Dictionary extension, enable it and then double-click any word to highlight it. And you should see a little popup spring with definition inside it.
- Set Chrome as your default browser – Making the switch to Chrome? Make it your default browser by going to Settings page and clicking Make Google Chrome the default browser under Default browser.
- Chrome as file explorer – Bored of default Windows file explorer? You can type in C: or any local address and it will let you navigate.
- Print pages directly – Press Ctrl + P to view a dialog window to print the webpage. You can even customize page layout, color, etc.
- Save files from web to Drive directly – Looking to download/save a webpage? Just press Ctrl + S. Done!
- Search as image – You can right-click any image you like on the web and find images similar to that or same image in different sizes. How? Just right-click image and select Search as image….
- View cache of any page – Cached pages are, in context, the way page/website looked like the last time Google crawled it. Just put a cache: in front of any URL/website and there you go.
- Don’t be asked to save passwords – You may want to trust Chrome with your passwords, that’s alright. Or you don’t want to save passwords for some other reasons. There’s a way to make Chrome not ask you to save passwords. Go to Settings page, click Show advanced settings… and uncheck Offer to save your web passwords under Passwords and forms section.
Finally.. we’re done with 80 tips so far! Awesome, right? Well, you must be feeling like a power user already. But of course, it takes some time and constant use of these tips and tricks that you will actually be a power Chrome user.