Windows 8: Google Chrome app advancing

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 23, 2012
Google Chrome, Windows 8

Before I start looking at recent advances that Google implemented into the Windows 8 version of its Chrome web browser, I'd like to take a moment to point out that I'm still not entirely sure how apps that run on the startpage but not installed from the Windows Store are called. Do I simply refer to them as apps? Or are they called Windows Store apps regardless of the fact that they have no connection with the built-in store?

Anyway, Google like Mozilla, is working on an app version of its Chrome browser that works directly as an application on Windows 8's startpage. Before you can use the app version you need to make Chrome the default web browser on the system.To make Chrome the default browser load the settings using this url chrome://chrome/settings/ and locate the default browser option there to do just that. Once you have done that, you can use Chrome both on the startpage directly as a fullscreen application and on the classic desktop.

First thing that you may notice in the most recent dev version of the browser is an option to switch to the "other" version of the browser. You can switch from the desktop version of Chrome to the app version (Google calls it Windows 8 Mode) and vice versa taking all open tabs with you in the process.

google chrome windows 8 mode

Please note that you can only run one Chrome version at the time. If you have configured Chrome to launch in Windows 8 mode, the browser will launch in that mode even if you launch it from the desktop.

The two Chrome versions on Windows 8 previously were using different user profiles which Google in a recent version changed. Google Chrome on Windows 8 is now sharing the user profile, so that extensions, the browsing history and other data are available in both versions of the browser. This puts Google one step ahead of Mozilla who recently announced that add-ons synchronization between both browser versions is not included in the initial release.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. MikeFromMarkham said on November 19, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    Thanks for the great tip.

  2. Thomas said on November 19, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    I’m wondering: say you use the standard boot policy. And at some point in time something happens and as a consequence windows does not start properly. How do you get in the recovery menu, since you could have pushed F8 in older windows versions, but with windows 8 you have to go through the PC settings (which are not accessible any more in the example)?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 19, 2013 at 5:21 pm

      Windows detects issues automatically as well, and will display the recovery options to you.

  3. jasray said on November 19, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Great tip! Thanks!

  4. Ramesh Khanna said on November 20, 2013 at 10:57 pm

    Thank you once again. I emailed you about problems i had recently. Once i put in this change i will be able to prevent the problem i had in trying to go to a backup which windows refused to use because i had booted up with a Windows 8 repair disc while the backup was win8.1. The boot of 8.1 was succeeding but the system was in a loop in which it would accept the password and then ask for it again so it was not possible to tell it to boot it in safe mode.

    I just hope nothing happens before i am able to put in your fix.

    I will try to print out this page so a fellow user who is very adept will be avle to put in this fix as well

  5. Marius T said on November 21, 2013 at 10:27 am

    To bad I didn’t knew this when my Win 8 had a problem rebooting endlessly and I had to reinstall,great tip thanks!

  6. Rajan said on November 22, 2013 at 3:36 am


    For Windows XP SP3 pc i am having lot of starting problem.
    Actually i am following what you informed tapping F8 several times.
    But it takes 3 to 6 times to switch off and on only and finally starting.
    Can you suggest me any other best idea to start in one time without switching off and on.
    Expecting yours valuable suggestion in this regard.

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