Customize Google's New Services Menu

Martin Brinkmann
Dec 14, 2011
Updated • Mar 31, 2014
Firefox, Google, Google Chrome, userscripts

Update: Google has modified the layout of the toolbar on Google properties. It removed the toolbar and replaced it with a couple of individual icons and links that are displayed instead. The script discussed here on this page is not working anymore as a consequence. The author has abandoned it as there is nothing he can do about it, and we have removed the link as a consequence.

The majority of users visiting the Google homepage or another one of Google's properties will have noticed that Google made another change to the header area. The company did away with the black bar and replaced it with a menu that is activated with a click on the Google logo. This new menu displays a selection of Google services directly, and additional Google products with a click on the more link.

The menu looks like this when it is fully expanded on the screen. Core Google services like Google+, Google Search, YouTube and Gmail are linked in the main black menu. Secondary services such as Translate, Music, Finance or Wallet in the white menu that is displayed by hoovering the mouse over the More link.

The Even More link opens a page listing additional services. Part of Google's userbase has criticized the new design, particularly that it now takes longer to access services that were displayed directly in the black bar, and that Google offers no customization options based on the user preferences.

That's where the userscript Tweak Google Menu comes into play. The userscript adds reordering abilities to the Google menu.

The options are available with a click on the Even More link in the Google menu. The page lists the main and secondary menu entries, and other options that are not linked at all in the standard menu.

Google services can be moved around by dragging and dropping them to another position. It is for instance possible to remove the Google News link from the main menu to replace it with a link to Google Code. New items can be added without removing existing ones. The menu is automatically expanded to make room for the additional menu items.

customized google menu

Tweak Google Menu allows Google users to modify the Google menu to their liking. An option to add custom links, e.g. to Blogspot blogs, would be useful but is currently not available.

The userscript can be installed from the official UserScripts repository.


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  1. Cheryl said on December 18, 2011 at 9:05 am

    Or you can just bookmark the Google links you want, in your browser.
    Have them on your bookmarks toolbar in a Google Folder.

  2. Ravaella said on December 15, 2011 at 7:33 am

    Hey there! This is a great post. Personally I like the new Google menu. Very minimalist. By the way, can I use a portion of this article on my site? I would obviously link back to your page so people could view the complete post if they wanted to. Thanks either way. Cheers!

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on December 15, 2011 at 9:47 am

      Sure you can, no problem.

  3. Midnight said on December 14, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    Now, this can be very useful as the Google Menu is seriously bloated.

    Thanks for the info, Martin!!

  4. WebHybrid said on December 14, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    It would appear from the illustration here and those on the source page that the inescapable, verminlike Google+ logo might be unmovable/unhide-able; hopefully I am wrong about that.

    A moot point so far anyway; I have nothing on which to try the script. The new services panel hasn’t yet really arrived – and weeks after the big debut announcement, what’s up with that, Google?? It’s only made cameo appearances, then immediately disappeared a few seconds later. Currently it’s nowhere to be seen.

    1. WebHybrid said on December 14, 2011 at 8:58 pm

      OK, well, some further developments of my own…

      The script caused Google Calendar to reload continuously. (Disabling the script stopped the problem instantaneously.)

      Not ready for prime time I guess.

    2. Seth said on December 14, 2011 at 7:19 pm

      There’s code in the script that is supposed to actually give you the new menu if you want it. I already had it so I can’t really tell you if that part works.

      1. WebHybrid said on December 14, 2011 at 8:41 pm

        Thanks Seth. The activation part of the script did work in Firefox and now I see the new menu.

        However, when I reach the ‘Google Menu Customization’ page (via the ‘Even More’ link), nothing works there. There’s no dragging. No dropping. No “press the button Apply Changes” — i.e., no button.

        I’ll keep an eye on further refinements.

  5. Seth said on December 14, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Sadly it doesn’t seem to be working for me on Chrome right now. It’s really a feature that should have been built in.

    It’s kicking out an error:
    chrome-extension://emmdphpdojgkdhpclbgmongklidlnofd/script.js:33Uncaught ReferenceError: $chk is not defined
    (anonymous function)chrome-extension://emmdphpdojgkdhpclbgmongklidlnofd/script.js:264
    (anonymous function)chrome-extension://emmdphpdojgkdhpclbgmongklidlnofd/script.js:306

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