3 Cool Hidden Chrome Features

Alan Buckingham
Sep 22, 2012
Google Chrome

Chrome, the popular web browser from Google, is known for being fast and reliable, but there are countless other reasons why users, especially techie-types (geeks) love this web browser.  The software has the ability to kill individual tabs to prevent one web site crash from taking down the whole system.  There is the ability to sync virtually all user settings across computers, even re-opening tabs from one PC on another device.  There are, of course, the popular extensions and themes that let users customize the software.

In addition, Google also has built in a lot of features that most users will never see.  That's a shame because many of them are cool and useful, but unfortunately they just aren't well publicized and are certainly not obvious for new users, or even many long-time users of the web browser.

1. Add a Home Button

The Home button, and even the notion of a homepage, just aren't what they used to be.  Google announced a few weeks ago that they would kill off iGoogle in 2013 and other popular homepages of the past like Yahoo and MSN have lost popularity, while portals like PageFlakes have completely ceased to exist already.

With all of that said, Chrome doesn't display a Home button by default, but it's easy enough to add one.  Head over to the Settings and under "Appearance" you will find an option to "Show Home button".  Just click the radio button to enable the feature.

chrome 23 show home button

2. See What's Using the Memory

If Chrome begins running slow then there are several possible reasons, including a lot of open tabs or an usresponsive extension.  Fortunately, the browser has a built-in way to view everything that is using the memory and exactly how much it is using.  In fact, it even shows usage from any other browser that happens to be running.  You can't make changes from here, but once you know then those changes can be made from the Tools menu.  To access this you can simply type about:memory in the address bar.

chrome about memory

3. Create Shortcuts

If you have some particular websites that you want quick access to on a regular basis then Chrome will actually create shortcut links to them in several locations, like the Desktop, Start Menu, and Taskbar.  You get to choose which of those locations the link is added to.  To do this simply browse to the site and then click the "Tools" button at the top right and mouse over the "Tools" setting in the menu.  Now click "Create application shortcuts...".

chrome create application shortcuts

There are hundreds, and perhaps thousands, more tips for the Google Chrome web browser.  And, if you can't find it built-in then chances are there is an extension to do it.  This is simply three of my favorites, but if you play around and check all of the options then you will probably find many more on your own.


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  1. Mallory said on October 17, 2012 at 6:55 pm

    Great Google Chrome tips! It is always good to share tips like this with my clients when they are brainstorming which websites they are drawn to. Creating shortcuts helps them keep everything they like in one spot instead of trying to remember the link later on.

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