How to add an extensions menu to Microsoft Edge (Chromium)

Martin Brinkmann
Aug 29, 2019
Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge

The latest Canary version of the upcoming Microsoft Edge browser that is based on Chromium supports an extensions menu to improve extension manageability; when enabled, it reduces space on the toolbar but still gives users options to display specific extension icons on the toolbar.

Microsoft Edge supports extension installations from the Microsoft Store and from the Chrome Web Store; this is one of the advantages that Edge has over Chrome as Microsoft's extensions policy does not impose the same limitations as Google's.

An icon is automatically placed in the Microsoft Edge toolbar when you install an extension. While you can move the extension icon to the Menu instead, you cannot remove it completely. Google Chrome has the same limitation whereas Vivaldi, another Chromium-based browser, does not.

microsoft edge extensions menu

What that means, essentially, is that you end up with extensions icon in one of the two places even if the extension icon does nothing. Google started to work on an Extension icon in Chrome to display all active extensions using a single icon when enabled.

Microsoft added a similar option to the Canary version of the Edge browser.  Edge moves all extension icons underneath the icon by default when the feature is enabled; specific extensions may be pinned so that their icons remain visible on the main toolbar.

The feature is not enabled by default and needs to be enabled by starting Microsoft Edge with a parameter. You need to launch Microsoft Edge with the parameter --enable-features=ExtensionsToolbarMenu.

Here is how you do that on Windows:

  1. Right-click on Microsoft Edge in the Start Menu or taskbar, and select Properties. You may right-click a second time on the taskbar on the Microsoft Edge entry in the menu that opens before you may select Properties.
  2. Switch to the Shortcut tab if it is not active by default.
  3. Append --enable-features=ExtensionsToolbarMenu after the path in the Target field, and make sure there is a space between the end of the path and the parameter. Here is a sample line to get a better idea how it looks like: "C:\Users\Martin\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Edge SxS\Application\msedge.exe" --enable-features=ExtensionsToolbarMenu
  4. Select ok to save the selection.
  5. Restart Microsoft Edge.

Microsoft Edge should display the Extensions menu in the toolbar. A click on the icon displays the list of all extensions that are installed and active, and an option to manage extensions.

You may pin extensions to the main Edge toolbar by moving the mouse over the extension in the menu and selecting the pin option that is displayed. A click on menu next to an extension displays the usual extension options and the pin option as well.

Closing Words

The Extensions Toolbar Menu is a pre-release feature. While it is likely that it will find its way into Stable Microsoft Edge eventually, there is also a possibility of it being removed by Microsoft at any point in time.

I like the Menu as it brings order to the toolbar especially if you have installed more than one or two extensions.

Now You: Would you use the Extensions Menu? (via Winaero)

How to add an extensions menu to Microsoft Edge (Chromium)
Article Name
How to add an extensions menu to Microsoft Edge (Chromium)
The latest Canary version of the upcoming Microsoft Edge browser that is based on Chromium supports an extensions menu to improve extension manageability.
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  1. Alex Brenneman said on July 6, 2021 at 8:42 pm

    Thumbs up to Martin Brinkmann for his solution.

    It works perfectly when Edge is launched via the start menu but, frustratingly, it does not work if launched from the pinned icon on the taskbar. To fix that, edit the taskbar shortcut:
    1. Right-click on the task bar icon
    2. Right-click on “Microsoft Edge”
    3. Click “Properties”
    4. Repeat step (3) above by appending –enable-features=ExtensionsToolbarMenu to the end of the Target field

  2. M said on July 21, 2020 at 9:18 am

    I don’t have the extensions button for some reason despite installing an extension?

  3. Dimi said on September 2, 2019 at 1:55 am

    Only Microsoft fanboys could ever use Edge.
    Because they think Microsoft’s spyware are good, Google’s and Apple’s spyware are bad,
    1,000,000 downloads out of billions Windows users is a joke, no matter how much Microsoft is pushing it in various sites with daily articles even if it’s still a beta spyware.
    Edge is a spyware, it sends the full URL of pages you visit (minus a few popular sites) to Microsoft.

  4. Ed Nott said on August 31, 2019 at 9:24 am

    Really looking forward to trying out Microsoft’s new Chromium-based Edge browser – said nobody!

    1. Bruce Roberts said on September 1, 2019 at 4:23 am

      And yet it’s had 1,000,000 downloads and 140,000 feedback items:

      That’s a lot of nobodies!

    2. Bruce Roberts said on September 1, 2019 at 1:59 am

      And yet it’s had 1,000,000 downloads and 140,000 items of feedback:

      That’s a lot of nobodies!

  5. Not Bill said on August 31, 2019 at 12:09 am

    MS Edge Chromium calls 50 different datacenters with something like 150 calls AT STARTUP.

  6. Zero said on August 30, 2019 at 7:03 am

    Cool tip. They released the Beta version already, was expecting to read about it here.

  7. DComedian said on August 29, 2019 at 11:52 pm

    Very nice, thanks for the tip. For the foreseeable future I’ll be sticking with Vivaldi as my default browser, with PaleMoon as my secondary browser, but I’ll be keeping an eye on Edge to see if it offers anything better.

    There seems to be rather too much space between the icons I choose to pin in Edge though?

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