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Chrome Browser Tips – Profiles, Settings, and Tabs

A great place to start in setting up your work environment is with the Chrome browser itself. Understanding some of the basic features and settings of Google Chrome is the foundation of success when using Google Workspace for Education. You will find that setting your personal preferences can make all the difference in your day to day activities and help you stay organized.

Watch the full training with Diane Sherman below. Click the hamburger icon in the top right corner to open the chapters menu and jump to a specific topic.

Or read the highlights below the video.

Chrome Profiles

You can have multiple people use Chrome on the same device, each with their own settings, bookmarks, and themes. If you have different accounts, like work and personal, you can use Chrome profiles to keep your bookmarks, extensions, and settings separate.

To add a profile:

  • at the top right of your Chrome browser window, click the profile icon profile icon.
  • Click Add.
  • If you choose to sync to your Google account, your profile name will automatically be your account name.
  • Choose a name, photo and color scheme.

Chrome Profile Settings

If you choose to turn sync on in Chrome with a Google account for the new profile, your bookmarks, history, passwords and other settings will sync automatically. Syncing can be a good idea for many reasons, including:

  • Your browsing history, settings and data, such as bookmarks, apps, extensions, themes, are saved to your Google account.
  • Your browsing history, settings, and data can be recovered if your computer is lost or broken. All you have to do is sign into Chrome again to bring them back.
  • Changes are synced instantaneously; changes you make on one computer are automatically reflected on other computers where you are signed in and have sync.
google customize profile

To manage what you sync, click the profile icon at the top right of the Chrome browser window and then click the pencil icon in your profile to customize your profile. 

Next, on the left side of the page in navigation, select You and Google > Sync and Google services > Manage what you sync. You can select to sync everything or customize sync options.

Additionally, within the profile settings area, you can personalize Chrome with extensions or a fun theme. Extensions are features you can add to Chrome, and themes appear around the border of the browser and show a background when you open a new tab. 

On startup

You can also set up Chrome to load your favorite page or pages when you first open Chrome on your computer. Or, you can continue where you left off on the page you had open the last time you used Chrome. For example, a staff member may want to open a specific set of pages such as a tab for email and/or a tab for the MyMeredith portal,  since those are two common systems accessed by staff.

Other Settings

  • Autofill – you can specify whether you want Chrome to offer to save passwords as you browse
  • Privacy and security – run a safety check from within your browser, clear your browsing data, and set options for cookies and other site data
  • Search engine – you can specify which search engine is used when you type a search term in the address bar and manage your search engine options
  • Downloads – While customizing your profile settings, click on Advanced at the bottom of the left-side navigation and then click on Downloads. This area lets you specify where the Downloads are located on your computer and whether the browser will ask you where to save each file before.

Browse In Incognito Mode

Within the Chrome browser is an option to open a New Incognito Window. Incognito windows allow you to browse in private and even provide you the option to block third-party cookies if you choose. So what happens when you browse privately? What does this mean exactly? It simply means that Chrome won’t save your browsing history, cookies and site data or information entered in forms. For example, if you are using a shared computer at home and want to shop for a gift for a family member who also has access to the same computer, you may choose to use an incognito window so that the sites you visit will be kept secret from prying eyes!

There are a couple of things to note about incognito mode, however: 

  • Files you download and bookmarks you create will be kept.
  • Your activity is not hidden from the websites you visit, your employer or school, or your internet service provider.

Using Tabs in Chrome

  • Open a new tab: At the top of your Google Chrome window, next to the last tab on the right, click New tab New tab.
  • Reopen a closed tab, bookmark all tabs, add a new tab: Achieved by right-clicking on the new tab icon
  • Pin a tab: Right-click on an open tab and you can Pin a tab to the browser. Once selected, the tab will move to the far left of the browser window and the tab itself will shrink in size.
  • Mute site: Right-click on an open tab to mute any sounds from the site. This can be helpful when presenting

Tab groups: Right-click on a tab, add the tab to a new group. Now, with a simple right click, you can group your tabs together and label them with a custom name and color. Once the tabs are grouped together, you can move and reorder them on the tab strip.

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