Chrome's experimental flags are now accessible via direct links

Martin Brinkmann
May 21, 2013
Updated • May 21, 2013
Google Chrome

Google has integrated experimental features in different ways into the Chrome browser. Some can only be enabled if you start the browser with a startup parameter, others are enabled randomly to A-B test certain features before they become live for all users, and a third type is accessible on the browser's experimental features page.

You can access the page by loading chrome://flags in the browser. Here you find a large list of features that you can enable, disable or modify. Not all flags are available for all operating systems, and the page indicates a flag's compatibility by listing the supporting operating systems behind its name.

A short description is displayed underneath each experiment to provide you with basic information about it.

If you wanted to modify a specific feature on the page, you had to either browse the page to find it listed on it, or use the on-page search (F3) to find it. Both options are not really that comfortable to work with.

That's probably the same line of though that Google had, as the company modified the chrome://flags page in the latest Chrome Canary version to include permanent links to features.

When you open the page in supported versions of Chrome, you will see a link after the description of each experimental feature. This link points to the selected feature directly. That's useful for webmasters who write about these features.

Before, instructions usually asked users to open the chrome://flags page, press F3 to open the search and enter the preference name to find it on the page. With the direct links included on the page, it is now possible to link directly to preferences on the page to safe all those steps.

All that is left to do is modify the preference, but that is about it.

The feature is currently available in Chrome Canary, and maybe also in Chrome Dev. It may take a while before it makes its way to other versions of the browser.


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