An unofficial blog that watches Google's attempts to move your operating system online since 2005. Not affiliated with Google.

Send your tips to gostips@gmail.com.

May 13, 2009

Sample Google Chrome Extensions

Last time when I wrote about Google Chrome extensions, they were nothing more than repackaged user scripts. Since March, the extension system has been improved by adding new APIs and options to create custom UIs.

If you use a recent version of Chromium or a Google Chrome dev build, you can already install two useful extensions. But first you should find a Chrome shortcut on your desktop, right-click, select "Properties" and append a flag to the target field: --enable-extensions. Restart the browser to use the new option.


The sample extensions are actually enhanced bookmarklets that show the number of unread messages in your Gmail inbox and an option to subscribe to feeds in Google Reader.


For those that want to write similar extensions, there's a tutorial that will walk you through creating a very simple extension.

In other news, Linux and Mac users can try some early builds of Chromium. "The software, available for download from the Chromium Web site, is incomplete and definitely buggy, as one would expect for a developer version that reflects all the latest changes programmers are making with the project," says Stephen Shankland from CNet, who tested the Mac version.

36 comments:

  1. Thank you so much,
    Have a look on my Chrome extension :)
    http://www.htmlremix.com/projects/developer-style-switch-chrome-extension

    ReplyDelete
  2. The minute there's a working Delicious plugin for Chrome, I'll uninstall Firefox from my Windows partition.

    ReplyDelete
  3. When I try to download the latest Chromium for Linux, I get an error message "You don't have permission to access /buildbot/snapshots/chromium-rel-linux/15951/chrome-linux.zip on this server."

    ReplyDelete
  4. @ign:
    You can also try this page [Ubuntu daily builds of the Chromium browser].

    ReplyDelete
  5. I can get the extension to work.

    Can anyone post detailed instructions on how to run extensions in chrome?

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  6. just how does one enable a flag- i added the -enable extensions to the highlighted chrome.exe but good a message box that this not valid,check your text...

    ReplyDelete
  7. As you can see in the screenshot, you need to separate the path from flags using a space.

    For example:
    C:\Users\Daniel\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe --enable-extensions

    ReplyDelete
  8. Shrink my browser space with a new status bar? I don't think so.

    ReplyDelete
  9. @Anonymous: yeah, my thoughts exactly :-)
    And it's a shame because those two extensions are the first 2 I wanted!
    now, move them to the bookmarks bar and I'll be a happy man...

    ReplyDelete
  10. @May 13, 2009 10:51 AM

    I semi-agree on this.
    I would love to be able to add them on the Bookmarks bar, even more points if i can put all of them inside a folder like i do with my current scripts.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I tried the beta version of Chrome to tried and add some extension but it didn't work. I saw on Lifehacker a post about extension but when I went to add the extensions, Chrome wouldn't load Gmail. The extension was Better Gmail for Chrome.

    Google said Chrome isn't going after Firefox, and that might be the case, but it's Firefox users who are waiting for Chrome to support extensions, not IE users.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Better Gmail is a collection of Greasemonkey scripts. Chrome has some basic support for user scripts, so a few of those scripts will probably work in Chrome too.

    Chrome doesn't use Firefox's rendering engine and it doesn't implement XUL, so you can't expect that it will support Firefox extensions.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Chrome won't change to Dev Channel..cant make those work. Oh well.

    ReplyDelete
  14. @Alex Chitu: I think the Better Gmail scripts were for Chrome. Maybe I did something wrong when I tried to add the extension but I went back to the "stable" release of Chrome. I'm going to wait for something easier from Google.

    http://lifehacker.com/5180011/better-gmail-for-google-chrome

    ReplyDelete
  15. I'm not that cut because I removed the favorites bar (pointless imo).

    What I am cut about is you can't have it use your domain account.

    ReplyDelete
  16. CNet recently mentioned the latest Chrome, especially the extension side:

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-17939_109-10240057-2.html

    ReplyDelete
  17. I still haven't heard what to do with the ext files once they are dl'd.

    ReplyDelete
  18. @Anon:
    You need to have a version of Chrome that supports extension (try the dev builds), then you need to enable the extension support (I mentioned how to do this in the post). If all is set and done, when you click on the extension link, it should install automatically.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I guess I'm the idiot of the day. I have a dev build running. Now that I know to click on them instead of dropping them into the browser window, I still get the same result: it loads them into the download bar at the bottom with a sequential number on the end. Clicking on that, just does the same thing again.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hi Alex, Do you have any idea why it is taking them so long to develop a social bookmarking plugin for Chrome? Chrome rocks, but I really miss my social bookmarking abilities I get from Firefox. -Sarah

    ReplyDelete
  21. You have to turn “Ask where to save each file before downloading” OFF if you want it to prompt you for installing extensions. I’m assuming they will fix this in the future.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I'd like to point out that there's an ad blocking extension, adsweep, that's been out for a while. http://adsweep.org . It purports to be better than Adblock Plus, which is not true, since it uses site specific filters, so if you go to sites that are less common, it's useless. Still it's better than nothing.

    ReplyDelete
  23. @Ibrahim:
    The user script works exactly like AdBlock Plus, except that it doesn't have an interface. The filters are regular expressions for URLs and they're not necessarily site specific. You can also add your own filters.

    ReplyDelete
  24. You might also be interested in checking Cleeki. Cleeki has provided its add-on for Chrome. You can consider Cleeki as an alternative to IE8 accelerators, only superior. Select any text, and Cleeki can search/share/publish on the Internet and preview the results immediately in the same page. Check it out yourself:

    http://blog.cleeki.com/?p=70

    ReplyDelete
  25. 1. High time they were available for all - at least the vital ones!

    2. Judging from this thread, there's work to be done on making them match Chrome's mission - they need to be USER FRIENDLY!!!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I tried adding the text in the target path but it said it is not valid?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Did you also add a space before the flag? I bet you didn't.

    ReplyDelete
  28. is there a different process 4 xp cos i tried whatever uve mentioned but wati manage to get is only an error message tellin the target is not valid

    ReplyDelete
  29. For Windows XP users, change the target to this:

    "C:\Documents and Settings\*user*\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe" --enable-extensions

    Windows XP has quotation marks unlike Vista, you need to put the --enable-extensions after these quotation marks.

    ReplyDelete
  30. If you can't get it to work, you're the idiot.

    ReplyDelete
  31. I have the same problem "IT DOESN'T WORK YOU IDIOTS!!!" works for me too. I read 100 pages but IT DOESN'T WORK. I'm with XP as well. Please make the extensions easier to install :(

    ReplyDelete
  32. Can you give more details? Extensions are now enabled by default in the dev builds, so the only thing you need to do is to download Google Chrome Dev Channel and then to click "Install" next to one of the sample extensions.

    ReplyDelete
  33. I'm sorry if my computer skills are not enough. I installed the Google Chrome Dev and it keeps saying "extensions are not enabled". The extension I want to put is adblock or adsweep for them it sais "invalid value for 'permissions[0]'." I tried also from this website http://www.chromeextensions.org/

    ReplyDelete
  34. Well you're right Alex Chitu. I only had to restart my computer and now it works. Thank you :D

    ReplyDelete
  35. Hi,
    Actually I have built an Extension for Chrome which will check bugzilla page and if found then it will add some link to that page and put some validation on form submit,same javascript which i had used for Mozilla and which was working fine there is not working in chrome can anybody tell me the reason and solution..?? Please it will be very helpful.

    Thanks in advance..

    ReplyDelete