How to Use Google Chrome Commands

Access Dozens of the Browser's Features and Settings

google chrome commands
Getty Images (Tang Yau Hoong #585093503)

This article is only intended for users running the Google Chrome browser on Chrome OS, Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows operating systems.

Google Chrome is highly customizable, allowing you to fine-tune the browser through hundreds of settings that affect virtually everything ranging from the application's appearance to its security-related features. While many of these tweaks can be made through the interface's graphical menu buttons and links, Chrome commands let you really get under the hood and take full control of your browser.

These commands, entered into Chrome's address bar (also known as the Omnibox), not only provide shortcuts to settings accessible through the browser menus but also access to advanced options which are only available via this method. Below are some of the most useful Chrome commands along with a brief description of each.

As always, it is best to use caution when modifying your browser's settings. If you are unsure about a particular component or feature, it may be best to leave it as is.

  • chrome://settings/searchEngines: Opens the Search engines pop-out interface, which allows you to change the browser's default search engine, edit individual search strings and remove engines which are currently installed.
  • chrome://settings/clearBrowserData: Opens the Clear browsing data dialog, which allows you to delete browsing history, download history, cache, cookies, saved passwords, other browsing data, and licenses for protected content -- all from a user-specified time interval. For more information about these data components, visit our in-depth tutorial.
  • chrome://settings/autofill: Opens the Autofill settings pop-out window, which displays all street addresses and credit cards currently stored by Chrome for autocomplete purposes. Within this interface, you can view, edit or remove existing autofill data as well as manually add new entries.
  • chrome://downloads: Displays Chrome's download history which contains icons, filenames, and URLs associated with each file within the log. Alongside each file are links to delete the entry from the download list as well as open the folder where it is located.
  • chrome://extensions: Displays all browser extensions currently installed including name, icon, size, version number, and permissions data for each. You can toggle extensions off and on as well as instruct Chrome whether or not to allow each to run while the browser is in Incognito Mode.
  • chrome://bookmarks: Opens the Bookmark Manager, which displays all of your stored Web pages organized by folder and title. You can add, edit or remove bookmarks on this screen as well as import and export them via HTML files.
  • chrome://history: Displays your browsing history, categorized by date and searchable via this screen. Also provided is the ability to remove individual items from this log as well as access to the Clear Browsing Data interface.
  • chrome://memory: Provides both private and proportional memory metrics for Chrome, broken down by extensions, tabs, plugins, and other related processes.
  • chrome://dns: When you click on a link, DNS resolution takes place which can slow down the page load process. DNS prefetching resolves embedded links in advance so that things move faster if and when you eventually click on one. This Chrome command displays prefetching information including hostname, page load count, and the time of last resolution.
  • chrome://cache: Displays links to all files currently residing in the browser's cache. Clicking on one of these links displays detailed information about the file itself including the dates it was initially stored and last updated.
  • chrome://chrome: Displays version information of your browser as well as firmware and platform details on Chrome OS. You can also check for and install Chrome updates from this screen.
  • chrome://crashes: Displays detailed information about recent crashes of the browser. This command only works as expected if crash reporting is enabled in Chrome, which can be done through its Privacy settings.
  • chrome://flash: Displays detailed information about the current Adobe Flash installation being utilized by Chrome including plugin versions, shader and renderer data.
  • chrome://gpu: Provides a wealth of information about your system's graphics card(s) and settings including driver specifications, hardware acceleration data, and workarounds for conflicts and other related problems detected by Chrome.
  • chrome://histograms: Displays dozens of in-depth visual interpretations of browser statistics accumulated from the time you launched Chrome to the most recent page load.
  • chrome://keyboardoverlay: Displays a graphical representation of a keyboard, which shows which keys are mapped to various keyboard shortcuts by hitting the Alt, Ctrl and Shift keys.
  • chrome://network: (Chrome OS only) Displays detailed information about the current network you are connected to as well as others which are in range and those you have accessed the most in previous sessions.
  • chrome://system: Displays comprehensive system diagnostic data, including details about your operating system, BIOS, and various hardware components. The amount of data available is dependent on your particular operating system.
  • chrome://thumbnails: Displays thumbnail preview images, when available, and URLs of the websites that you visit the most.
  • chrome://flags: Allows you to enable/disable dozens of experimental features, some of which are platform-specific. Each feature set includes a brief description as well as a link to toggle it on and off. The key word here is experimental, and it is highly recommended that only advanced users tamper with these settings.
  • chrome://net-internals: Allows you to view all networking events captured by Chrome in real-time, as well as export all relevant data to a file.
  • chrome://quota-internals: Provides details on the amount of disk space allotted for and currently being used by Chrome, including how much each individual site is occupying in the browser's cache.
  • chrome://voicesearch: Displays current details about Chrome's Voice Search feature including language settings, microphone status and much more.