Move some extension icons into the Hamburger menu

Martin Brinkmann
Jul 7, 2014
Google Chrome

The Chromium web browser and browsers based on it such as Google Chrome are not very flexible when it comes to placing extension icons in the interface.

Extension icons are always displayed in the main toolbar of the web browser. You can right-click those icons to hide them, or use drag and drop to change the position of icons on the toolbar.

What you cannot do is move them to another toolbar, or create a folder of sorts and move some of them inside.

Google resolves the "too many icons in the toolbar" issue by limiting the available space. You can resize the space by moving the mouse cursor on the end of the address form of Chromium and either move it to the left or right to increase or decrease the space that extensions have at their disposal.

The Chromium team is testing a new feature currently in the browser that looks very similar to how Mozilla handles icons in the Australis Hamburger menu.

It replaces the right arrow icon that users need to click on to display overflow tabs with a place in the Hamburger menu instead.

What this means is that all extension icons that do not fit on the main toolbar are displayed in the Hamburger menu instead.

Here is how this looks like

chrome extension icons

As you can see, space on the toolbar is reserved for a single extension only. The two other extensions that display icons in the toolbar have been moved to the menu instead from where they can be accessed.

You can use drag and drop to order extensions, for instance by dragging one of the extensions in the menu to the toolbar.


The feature is experimental which means that it is not clear if it will ever find its way into Chromium or Chrome natively. To use it right now, you will have to run Chromium with the --enable-extension-action-redesign parameter.


To do so on Windows, you would right-click the Chromium shortcut, select properties from the context menu, and add the paramter chrome-parameter to the target field. Make sure there is a space between chrome.exe and the parameter.

Restart Chromium and the feature is enabled in that version. It is likely that this is also working in Chrome Canary and Dev, or that it will be made available shortly.

To undo the change, delete the parameter from the target field again.


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  1. Trebuchette said on July 12, 2014 at 5:12 am

    I hate the hamburger SO MUCH. It’s the ugliest thing in the world (oh, LINES! Maybe it’s an editor!) but the worst infraction of that dumbass icon is the complete LACK of consistency between apps and websites who use the damned things. (Just saw it on Time magazine’s website, AND on a new browser I’m trying for mobile — now THAT’S crazy, to see an android browser with icons for “home”, bookmarks, etc and even settings, plus a hamburger menu for no reason, framing Time Mag’s website with it’s own hamburger that supposedly helps you navigate the site BUT FAILS…aargh!)

    I don’t use Chrome, but for all the things for it to copy from Australis!!! (I dumped FF and use Pale Moon; got sick of all the updates and the resulting updates of add-ons for the updates… just, NO!). But when I WAS on FF 29, I dragged that damned burger out FIRST THING. At that time, a few releases ago now I guess (last month?), I opted to use an add-on that allowed me to customize my menu bar, and CTR, to get some functionality out of FF. That was a great extension (and too bad it doesn’t work in FF ESR/Pale Moon, *or* FF 30 and up). When that bit the dust, well, so did my attempts at trying to force FF to be customizable.

    Don’t others see how incredibly anti-intuitive and stupid the “ux” for the hamburger really is? OMG they have it TWO TIMES on Facebook, lol! I’m half expecting hamburgers to get hamburgers WITHIN the hamburgers. Who designed that? Can someone call a name? A team? WHO did this to the internet? Whoever it is, go stand over there with Al Gore, “inventor” of the “Web”. /rmde

  2. GunGunGun said on July 8, 2014 at 5:13 am

    Finally, Chrome copied from Firefox.

  3. Ray said on July 7, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    Nice, didn’t know about that command switch. Hope it also works for Opera.

    Is it really called the Hamburger menu or is this something you just coined, Martin :)

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on July 7, 2014 at 11:13 pm

      No that is the real name :)

  4. Niks said on July 7, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    You might wanna publish this . Filehippo now includes download manager/installer like cnet/download dot com did .

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on July 7, 2014 at 10:49 pm

      Can you provide me with a link to a download where this is the case. It does not seem to be enabled on many.

      1. Niks said on July 7, 2014 at 11:09 pm

        For Teamviewer

        [Links removed, thanks!]

      2. Niks said on July 7, 2014 at 10:51 pm

        Media Player Classic Home Cinema 1.7.6

        BitTorrent 7.9.2 Build 32241

        TeamViewer 9.0.29947

        You want screenshots ?

      3. Martin Brinkmann said on July 7, 2014 at 11:00 pm

        Yes please, I’m not getting this for the files you have listed.

  5. vux777 said on July 7, 2014 at 8:59 pm

    Hi Martin,
    There is one more action that users can do with extension icons
    It’s possible to drag end of ominibar to the right (or left if hidden) to hide some or all extension icons on the bar

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