FAQ: Google Chrome Tips and Pointers

Chrome is Google's newly released browser. It's currently available for Windows only. Following are a couple of FAQ's and bits of interest.

I've set my default search engine to a non-Google one, removed the speed dial page, and cleared all cookies. Yet when I restart Chrome, Google will drop one or two Google cookies in the browser again. What's happening?

I don't know... I asked Google and will add an update if there's more info.

I can't access Hotmail (or another site) with Chrome...

When you want to log-in to Microsoft Hotmail aka Live Mail with Chrome, you'll see the message "Upgrade your web browser" (... to Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Safari). However, you can click the "continue to Windows Live Hotmail" link to use Hotmail anyway, though Microsoft warns that not all things may work as usual.

As for other sites not working with Chrome, you can click the page icon and select "Report bug or broken website". You could also contact the webmaster to ask for Chrome support.

How do I... disable images? Add Greasemonkey scripts? Skin the Chrome theme? Directly subscribe to an RSS feed? and so on...

A whole lot of things indeed aren't supported in Chrome, at least not at the moment... the feature requests group might be good start.

Google Chrome installed in the wrong language, how can I change it?

You can switch to another language in [wrench icon] -> Options -> Minor Tweaks -> Change font and language settings -> Languages -> Google Chrome language/ Spell-checker language.

I've heard there were some problems with Chrome's end user license agreement...?

After some protest in regards to a part of the Chrome legalese, Google said it added it in error and changed it.

How do I disable the default tab homepage with the thumbnails (the one similar to Opera's "speed dial")?

To disable it, click the wrench icon in Chrome and open the options dialog. In the "On startup" section, check "Open the following pages" and add a page with the address about:blank. Add the same about:blank address in the "Home page" section. Note however this will still show the speed dial when you hit Ctrl+N to open a new Chrome window...

How do I add a special site search to the "omnibox" address bar?

The omnibox learns as you go. Let's say you would like Chrome to have a site search available for the blog Google Operating System. First, visit the homepage of the blog. Then, do a site search for that blog by using the search box Google Operating System provides on the page. Now, next time you enter e.g. "googlesys..." in the address bar, you can hit the [tab] key and perform a site search from the address bar.

Furthermore, you can also add a keyword to search the given site. To continue with above example, start by right-clicking the address bar. Pick "Edit search engines" and in the dialog that opens, scroll down to where you'll see "googlesystem.blogspot.com" listed. Double-click that entry. Now in the Keyword field, enter e.g. "gos". Approve the dialog windows.

Now in the address bar, you can type e.g. "gos" + [tab] (sometimes a blank will suffice too) + "hello" + [return], and you'll immediately see the search results from the Google OS site.

What if the site you want to search across does not have its own search engine, or it doesn't have a good one? You can still make it searchable. Let's say the domain in question is example.com. Go to the "Edit search engines" dialog once more, and click the Add button. Enter a fitting name, and in the keywords field enter e.g. "example". In the URL field enter the following:

http://www.google.com/search?q=site:example.com+%s

The URL you entered means: do a site search over example.com using Google, and append the search keyword in the position of the "%s". Approve the dialog and you're ready to search through example.com over your address bar (note this will only find the pages indexed in Google, so there may be some cases where it won't work).

What if you want to search across many different sites at once? This is also possible: just create a Google Custom Search Engine, and during engine creation, provide the domains you want to search through in the "Sites to search" field. When done, add the created Custom Search Engine to the list of Chrome search engines as described above.

Random files are appearing on my desktop after browsing with Chrome, what to do?

Go to the options dialog (via the wrench icon) and in the Minor Tweaks tab check the box "Ask where to save each file before downloading".

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Philipp Lenssen

Network World
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