10 Amazing things to do with your Chromebook

We all know Chromebooks are good for school work. But I bet you didn’t know some of the following 10 things your Chromebook can do.

The dino game on chromebook

Play the dino game

Every Chromebook comes with a hidden gem which you can access at chrome://dino. This game was created by the members of the Chrome UX team in 2014 under the code name “Project Bolan”. The word “Bolan” comes from the English Musician Marc Bolan who had a glam rock band called “T. Rex”. And thats the name of the character in the game.

Look at the system internals

Behind every Chomebook there is a Linux operating system running silently. And you can dig deep into this OS by looking at the page at chrome://system. This is where you can confirm what CPU you have, how much memory is installed and learn what version of linux kernel its running. Here is what this looks like

Run diagnostics

Chromebook comes with an interesting diagnostic tool which allows you to inspect the battery life, the CPU performance and network throughput with a click of a button. You can access it at chrome://diagnostics/.

Chrome Diagnostics page

Keyboard shortcuts

Chromebooks have a lot of keyboard shortcuts. For example, did you know that CTRL+TAB takes you to the next tab and that CTRL+SHIFT+TAB take you to the previous one ?

There are dozens of shortcuts like this which you can find by pressing CTRL+ALT+?

ChromeOS keyboard shortcuts

Chromebook perks

There is a hidden link (here) which you can use to find interesting offers/discounts for various services. This will only work from a Chromebook. As an example you can get 3 months of Stadia Pro at no charge.

Do a barrel roll

Pressing CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+Reload will do a quick barrel roll which may be fun to show to your friends. Its a secret/unique feature built into Chromebooks.

Zoom in and out

If you want to increase your font size quickly, you can press CTRL SHIFT + to increase font size. CTRL SHIFT – does the reverse. You can press them multiple times to dramatically change the font sizes.

My favorite is CTRL SHIFT 0 which resets to your default size once you are done with your demos.

Unlock your Chromebook using your phone

If you are tired of typing your long password, and yet uncomfortable leaving your device unlocked, you can choose to pair your Chromebook to your phone such that you can bypass password typing when your phone is near your Chromebook.

To activate it do the following

  • Go to Settings
  • Under “Connected devices”, select your Android phone
  • Select Smart Lock
  • Select Unlock device and sign in to your Google Account
  • After this your device will automatically unlock and sign in when you are closeby

Show all of your active windows together

Display all active windows together

If you use three fingers to swipe up on your keyboard you will notice all of your active windows would show up on your screen together as small windows. Use this feature to quickly switch to a window in dozens of open windows.

Bonus feature: Press on “+” sign on the top to create multiple virtual desktops to allow you to organize your windows based on the type of work you are doing. For example, I keep my work related browsers and personal browsers on separate desktops.

Click for restart

This final one is a naughty one. Use this at your own risk. If you click on the link below you will restart your browsers on your Chromebook. This could be used as a prank if you hide this link pretending to be something else

BIG RED WARNING : chrome://restart

If you liked this blog, please check out the other articles here or the companion Chromebook recommendation engine here.


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