8 Good Resources for Google Chrome, Including Alternative Versions

by Ostatic Staff - Jul. 17, 2009

Google's open source Chrome browser is steadily maturing and heading for true cross-platform status as Mac OS X and Linux versions progress. Google has confirmed that many extensions are coming for it and put up instructions for extension developers. Meanwhile, it remains among the fastest of all browsers. If you're running Chrome, here is our updated collection of eight resources for customizing it, getting the most out of it, and even benefiting from alternative versions.

Discuss and Learn. Google Chrome Board is one of the best forums for downloading Chrome enhancements, finding tips and tricks, and discussing the browser with other users. Registration is free, and you'll find everything from themes for Chrome to up-to-date bug reports.

Create and Save Profiles. Google Chrome Backup is a freely downloadable tool that lets you backup and restore profiles you've created in Chrome in flexible ways. It's wizard-driven, to keep the process easy.

Tips for Power Users. Lifehacker's tips for power users of Chrome are excellent. Learn about diagnostics, themes, shortcuts, working with tabs, and more here.

Run Chrome on Mac OS X and Linux. You can now download versions of Google Chrome for Mac OS X and Linux, although they are still early developer-focused releases. Lisa covered the Linux release here. CrossOver Chromium from CodeWeavers can also be used to run Chrome on Mac OS X and Linux. You'll find downloads specific to most popular Linux distros. 

Surf Anonymously in Chrome. The Chromium open source core of the Chrome browser has been tweaked to produce a version of Chrome that can allow for anonymous browsing. People in parts of the world where Internet use can lead quickly to jail time may be interested in this, or hotspot users who want an added layer of anonymity may be interested. Iron is based on the Chromium core, looks and works exactly like Chrome, but introduces several levels of privacy, as we wrote about here. Chrome Privacy Guard is a mini application that removes all client ID information when you use Chrome.

Use the About: Pages. Like Firefox, Google Chrome can pull up a ton of useful diagnostic and other types of information if you type about: commands in Chrome's address bar. For example, type about:plugins to get the list of plugins available for Chrome. The Google operating system blog has a good list of these.

Get a Portable Version of Chrome for Your USB Drive. You can get a lightweight tweak of Chrome based on the Chromium code here. It's specifically designed for use on a USB thumb drive.

Here's a Video Featuring 10 Chrome Basics. In case you missed any.