Tricks You Didn’t Know Google Chrome Can Do
Google’s Chrome browser is the most widely used browser, worldwide. Perhaps you've been using it for years, but there's always a new trick to discover. Read on to learn about some awesome, advanced, and hidden features of Chrome that can make it even more useful...
Can You Make Chrome Sit Up and Bark?
Perform a calculation: In Chrome’s “omnibox” (generally known as the address box), you can enter a mathematical calculation such as 60*60, and the result will appear even before you press Enter, in a dropdown below the omnibox. You can also ask things like "how many ounces in a cup" or "how many liters in a gallon" to get instant answers without leaving the page.
Quickly enter a web address: For example, type amazon in the omnibox and press Ctrl-Enter. Chrome will add the "www." and the ".com" and whisk you away to www.amazon.com.
Direct site search: - Start typing yahoo in Chrome’s omnibox. Before you even get to the letter "h" you will see “Press (tab) to search Yahoo!” at the far right end of the omnibox. Press the Tab key and suddenly you are searching only within Yahoo. You just skipped Yahoo's home page and typing your query into its search box.
Chrome maintains a list of “search engines” where this shortcut works, including Bing, eBay, Yahoo, and Wikipedia. To see the rest, go to the “Search” section of Chrome’s Settings and click on the button labeled “Manage search engines.” You can change your default search engine; modify or delete search engine entries; and way down at the bottom of the list you’ll find a form where you can add your own searchable site that you search often. Note that it can be a news or shopping or any other kind of site, as long as it has a “search” box of its own. This feature is also sensitive to sites you often use. I've noticed that as soon as I type the letter "a" in the omnibox, it shows “Press (tab) to search askbobrankin.com”.
Find your downloads: Have you ever downloaded something, and then couldn't find it? Press Ctrl-J and Chrome will open a new tab showing all your recent downloads. From there, you can open the downloaded file, or view the folder where it resides.
Restore a tab: Have you ever closed a tab by accident? That can be annoying, especially if it was a website that required a login, and you had navigated through several pages already. You don't have to redo all that work -- just press Ctrl-Shift-T and the tab will reopen, right where you left off. This is one of my favorite time savers in Chrome.
Multiple Windows For Related Tabs: Have you ever gotten so many tabs opened in Chrome that it’s hard to keep track of them or even read their labels? Just open new Chrome windows (copies of Chrome), then drag-and-drop related tabs into separate windows. Click the triple-line icon in Chrome’s upper-right corner and select “New Window” to open one. Switch back to your overcrowded window and use your mouse to drag and drop the tab to the new window. You can now organize many tabs in many windows, with their label fully viewable. This works especially well on dual-monitor systems, but you can still have multiple browser windows on a single screen. (Use Alt-Tab to switch between open windows.)
Add a bookmarks: That little star at the far right end of the omnibox is a quick way to add a new bookmark. Just click it to add the current web page address to the last bookmark folder you used, or select another from the list of recent folders.
Zoom in or out quickly: Press and hold the Ctrl key while rolling the mouse wheel up or down. You’ll zoom in or out on the current page; very handy for pages where the font is too small, or if you have limited vision. Using the Ctrl key along with the plus or minus key has the same effect. To return to the default zoom state, press Ctrl-0 (that's a zero).
Translate whatever you want: You don’t have to depend on Chrome to ask if you want a page translated. Go download and install the Google Translate extension. Now you can highlight any text in your Chrome browser, click on the Translate icon, and there’s your translation (or a reasonable approximation).
Get a little geeky: Enter chrome://chrome-urls/ in the omnibox and press Enter. You'll see a list of "secret" Chrome pages that are shortcuts to Chrome functions, settings and status pages. Most of them appear to be gibberish, unless you're a programmer, but there are a few links you might find interesting. The chrome://omnibox link lets you control some things about how the omnibox works. The chrome://predictors/ page shows you what websites Chrome thinks you might be wanting to visit when you start typing a URL. The chrome://flags/ page has a list of experimental features that you can enable or disable. I wouldn't mess with any of these without first doing some research. (Experiments can sometimes fail.)
These are some of my favorite Chrome tricks. There are dozens of others. Feel free to share yours in the comments below.
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 25 Jul 2016
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Tricks You Didn’t Know Google Chrome Can Do (Posted: 25 Jul 2016)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved