- What's the difference between Chromebooks and other computers, like Windows or Mac OS?
- Do Chromebooks work offline?
- What is the Chrome Web Store?
- Install and organize apps and extensions
- Customize your desktop
- Use your Chromebook keyboard
- Chromebook keyboard shortcuts
- Use your Chromebook touchpad
- Change background and wallpaper
- Updating your Chromebook
Chromebooks are a new type of computer designed to help you get things done faster and easier. They run Chrome OS, an operating system that has cloud storage, the best of Google built-in, and multiple layers of security.
Yes. You can use offline-ready apps to keep using a Chromebook when it’s not connected to the Internet. Below are some examples:
- Read and write emails with Offline Gmail
- Write a note or make a list with Google Keep
- Create and edit documents, slides, or spreadsheets with Google Drive apps (Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides)
- View and RSVP to events with Google Calendar
- View and edit photos saved with the built-in photo editor
- Enjoy music or movies with the built-in media player
TSC students using the Google Chrome web browser, whether on a Windows laptop or a Google Chromebook, have access to a variety of web-based applications and extensions. Applications and extensions can be found in the Chrome Web Store. Using their TSC device, students will only have access to applications and extensions that have been reviewed and made available by TSC, which are listed in the "TSC Recommended Apps" section of the Chrome Web Store. In other words, students cannot install any application or extension they want, as not all applications and extensions are related to education or are secure to run on the TSC network. Below are short videos explaining both web applications and extensions, as well as the listing of available applications and extensions for elementary, middle, and high school students.
Below the listing of available applications and extensions, requests for new applications/extensions not currently available for students should be submitted in Incident IQ (tech help ticket system). Once the ticket is submitted, the requested application or extension will be reviewed to determine if its educationally relevant and suitable for TSC students.
Add apps and extensions
You can add apps and extensions to give your Chromebook more features and functionality. To add an app or extension:
- Open the Chrome Web Store
- In the left column, click Apps or Extensions. TSC students can only install apps and extensions identified in the "TSC Recommended Apps" area
- Browse or search for what you'd like to add.
- When you find an app or extension you'd like to add, click Add to Chrome.
- If you're adding an extension:
- Review the types of data that the extension will be able to access
- Click Install
You'll see your apps in your launcher, and your extensions in your browser window as buttons on the toolbar.
How apps and extensions work
Apps and extensions work like regular programs for desktop computers, but they run entirely in the Chrome browser. You don't need to install software or restart your computer.
Manage apps and extensions
- Sync your apps and extensions so you'll see them anywhere you sign in to Chrome.
- Pin apps to your shelf for easy access.
- Manage your extensions by clicking More and going to More tools > Extensions.
- Learn how to uninstall an app or extension.
Find an app you've previously installed
To search for an app on your Chromebook:
- On your keyboard, press the Search key .
- Type the name of the app you want. The app will show in your search results.
Open an app
- Sign in to your Chromebook.
- Click the Launcher .
- You'll see a list of apps you've used recently. Click the app you'd like to open.
- [Optional] To see all your apps, click All Apps.
Organize your apps
Put apps in folders
- Put apps together in a folder: Drag an app on top of another app.
- Name a folder: Click the folder.
Move apps around
Click and hold an app, then drag it.
At the bottom or side of your screen, you'll see a row of apps, called the shelf, and your account picture. You can change which apps are included and bookmark webpages.
Next to your account picture, you can see notifications, check your Chromebook’s battery life, raise or lower the volume, or change other settings.
Add, move, or remove apps
You can add an app that you use often to your desktop.
Add an app
- Click the Launcher All Apps.
- Find the app you want to add.
- Right-click the app icon.
- Click Pin to Shelf.
When you pin an app to your shelf, the app will stay there until you move or remove it.
Change the order of the apps
To change the position of an app:
- Click and hold the app you want to move.
- Drag it to a new position.
- Release to put the app in a new spot.
Remove an app
- Right-click the app you want to remove.
- Click Unpin.
Pin a webpage to your desktop
If you go to the same webpage often, you might want to pin it to your desktop.
- Open the webpage in Chrome.
- Click More More tools.
- Click Add to shelf Add.
Move or hide the row of apps
You can change the position of the row of apps, also called the shelf:
- Right-click the shelf.
- Point to Shelf position.
- Choose where you’d like the shelf to go: on the bottom of the screen (default), or on the left or right side.
To hide the shelf and status area, right-click the shelf and select Autohide shelf. When they're hidden, move the pointer to that side of the screen to see your apps, bookmarks, and account picture.
To stop hiding the shelf, right-click the shelf and uncheck Autohide shelf.
Your Chromebook keyboard works just like a regular keyboard, with a few differences.
Unique keys on your Chromebook keyboard
|Search your apps and the web|
To turn Caps Lock on or off, press Alt + Search.
|Go to the previous page in your browser history (F1)|
|Go to the next page in your browser history (F2)|
|Reload your current page (F3)|
|Hide the tabs and launcher in full-screen Immersive mode (F4)|
|Show all windows in Overview mode (F5)|
|Dim the screen (F6)|
|Make the screen brighter (F7)|
|Lower the volume (F9)|
|Raise the volume (F10)|
Note: If you're using a Windows keyboard with your Chromebook:
- The F keys work like the keys above, sometimes with a few differences
- The Windows key between Ctrl and Alt works as the Search key
You can use keyboard shortcuts to complete some tasks more quickly.
Tip: To find shortcuts on this page, press Ctrl + f and enter what you're looking for.
- Take a screenshot: Press Ctrl + (or Ctrl + F5)
- Take a partial screenshot: Press Ctrl + Shift + (or Ctrl + Shift + F5), then click and drag
- Turn Caps Lock on or off: Press Alt + Search
- Lock your screen: Press Search + L
- Sign out of your Google Account: Press Ctrl + Shift + q (twice)
- See all keyboard shortcuts: Press Ctrl + Alt + ?
All other shortcuts
Note: If you’re using a Windows or Mac keyboard, use the Windows key or Command key in place of the Search key.
|Open a new window||Ctrl + n|
|Open a new window in incognito mode||Ctrl + Shift + n|
|Open a new tab||Ctrl + t|
|Open a file in the browser||Ctrl + o|
|Close the current tab||Ctrl + w|
|Close the current window||Ctrl + Shift + w|
|Reopen the last tab or window you closed||Ctrl + Shift + t|
|Go to tabs 1-8 in the window||Ctrl + 1 through Ctrl + 8|
|Go to the last tab in the window||Ctrl + 9|
|Go to the next tab in the window||Ctrl + Tab|
|Go to the previous tab in the window||Ctrl + Shift + Tab|
|Switch quickly between windows||Press & hold Alt, tap Tab until you get to the window you want to open, then release.|
|Open the window you used least recently||Press & hold Alt + Shift, tap Tab until you get to the window you want to open, then release.|
|Go to previous page in your browsing history||Alt + left arrow|
|Go to the next page in your browsing history||Alt + right arrow|
|Open the link in a new tab in the background||Press Ctrl and click a link|
|Open the link in a new tab and switch to the new tab||Press Ctrl + Shift and click a link|
|Open the link in a new window||Press Shift and click a link|
|Open the link in the tab||Drag the link to the tab's address bar|
|Open the link in a new tab||Drag the link to a blank area on the tab strip|
|Open the webpage in a new tab||Type a web address (URL) in the address bar, then press Alt + Enter|
|Return the tab to its original position||While dragging the tab, press Esc|
|Dock a window on the left||Alt + [|
|Dock a window on the right||Alt + ]|
|Page up||Alt or Search and up arrow|
|Page down||Alt or Search and down arrow|
|Scroll down the web page||Space bar|
|Go to top of page||Ctrl + Alt and up arrow|
|Go to bottom of page||Ctrl + Alt and down arrow|
|Print your current page||Ctrl + p|
|Save your current page||Ctrl + s|
|Reload your current page||Ctrl + r|
|Reload your current page without using cached content||Ctrl + Shift + r|
|Zoom in on the page||Ctrl and +|
|Zoom out on the page||Ctrl and -|
|Reset zoom level||Ctrl + 0|
|Stop the loading of your current page||Esc|
|Right-click a link||Press Alt and click a link|
|Open the link in a new tab in the background||Press Ctrl and click a link|
|Save the link as a bookmark||Drag link to bookmarks bar|
|Save your current webpage as a bookmark||Ctrl + d|
|Save all open pages in your current window as bookmarks in a new folder||Ctrl + Shift + d|
|Search the current page||Ctrl + f|
|Go to the next match for your search||Ctrl + g or Enter|
|Go to the previous match for your search||Ctrl + Shift + g or Shift + Enter|
|Perform a Google search||Ctrl + k or Ctrl + e|
|Add www. and .com to your input in the address bar, then open the page||Ctrl + Enter|
|View page source||Ctrl + u|
|Show or hide the Developer Tools panel||Ctrl + Shift + i|
|Show or hide the DOM Inspector||Ctrl + Shift + j|
|Show or hide the bookmarks bar||Ctrl + Shift + b|
|Open the History page||Ctrl + h|
|Open the Downloads page||Ctrl + j|
|Open the Files app||Alt + Shift + m|
|Preview a file in the Files app||Select the file, then press Space|
|Display hidden files in the Files app||Ctrl + .|
|Open the status area (where your account picture appears)||Shift + Alt + s|
|Click icons 1-8 on your shelf||Alt + 1 through Alt + 8|
|Click the last icon on your shelf||Alt + 9|
|Use F keys (F1 to F12)||Search + 1 through Search + =|
|See your notifications||Alt + Shift + n|
|Change screen resolution||Ctrl + Shift and + or -|
|Reset screen resolution to default||Ctrl + Shift + 0|
|Rotate screen 90 degrees||Ctrl + Shift +|
|Switch to the next user||Ctrl + Alt + .|
|Switch to the previous user||Ctrl + Alt + ,|
|Turn Caps Lock on or off||Alt + Search|
|Select everything on the page||Ctrl + a|
|Select the content in the address bar||Ctrl + L or Alt + d|
|Select the next word or letter||Ctrl + Shift and right arrow|
|Select text to the end of the line||Shift + Search and right arrow|
|Select text to the beginning of the line||Shift + Search and left arrow|
|Select previous word or letter||Ctrl + Shift and left arrow|
|Move to the end of the next word||Ctrl and right arrow|
|Move to the start of the previous word||Ctrl and left arrow|
|Go to end of document||Ctrl + Search and right arrow|
|Go to beginning of document||Ctrl + Search and left arrow|
|Copy selected content to the clipboard||Ctrl + c|
|Paste content from the clipboard||Ctrl + v|
|Paste content from the clipboard as plain text||Ctrl + Shift + v|
|Cut||Ctrl + x|
|Delete the previous word||Ctrl + Backspace|
|Delete the next letter (forward delete)||Alt + Backspace|
|Undo your last action||Ctrl + z|
|Redo your last action||Ctrl + Shift + z|
|Switch between the keyboard languages you've set. Learn how to choose your keyboard language.||Ctrl + Shift + Space|
|Switch to the previous keyboard language you were using. Learn how to choose your keyboard language.||Ctrl + Space|
|Dim keyboard (for backlit keyboards only)||Alt +|
|Make keyboard brighter (for backlit keyboards only)||Alt +|
|Turn ChromeVox (spoken feedback) on or off||Ctrl + Alt + z|
|Turn on high contrast mode||Shift + Search + h|
|Highlight the launcher button on your shelf||Shift + Alt + L|
|Highlight the next item on your shelf||Shift + Alt + L, then Tab or right arrow|
|Highlight the previous item on your shelf||Shift + Alt + L, then Shift + Tab or left arrow|
|Open the highlighted button on your shelf||Shift + Alt + L, then Space or Enter|
|Remove the highlight from a button on your shelf||Shift + Alt + L, then Esc|
|Switch focus between:||Ctrl + or Ctrl +|
|Highlight the bookmarks bar (if shown)||Alt + Shift + b|
|Highlight the row with the address bar||Shift + Alt + t|
|Open right-click menu for highlighted item||Shift + Search +|
|Use shortcuts on a braille keyboard||See braille keyboard shortcuts|
You can use your Chromebook's touchpad to right-click, switch between tabs, and more. Here's how it works:
|Move the pointer||Move your finger across the touchpad.|
|Click||Press or tap the lower half of the touchpad.|
|Right-click||Press or tap the touchpad with two fingers. You can also press Alt, then click with one finger.|
|Scroll||Place two fingers on the touchpad and move them up and down to scroll vertically, or left and right to scroll horizontally.|
|Move between pages||To go back to a page you were just on, swipe left with two fingers. To go forward to a page you were just on, swipe right with two fingers.|
|See all open windows|
Swipe up or down with three fingers.
If you have Australian scrolling turned on, swipe up. If you have traditional scrolling turned on, swipe down.
|Close a tab||Point to the tab, then tap or click the touchpad with three fingers.|
|Open a link in a new tab||Point to the link, then tap or click the touchpad with three fingers.|
|Switch between tabs||If you have multiple browser tabs open, swipe left and right with three fingers.|
|Drag and drop||Using one finger, click and hold the item you want to move. Drag the item to its new spot, then release your finger.|
Choose background wallpaper
You can personalize your Chromebook with a custom wallpaper for your desktop.
Use wallpaper from Chromebook
- Right-click your desktop and select Set wallpaper.
- Click one of the images to set your wallpaper. You can also get a randomly selected image by checking the box next to Surprise me.
Use a custom wallpaper
- If you haven't yet, download an image (.png or .jpg) from the web that you’d like as your wallpaper.
- Click the Launcher All Apps.
- Select Files .
- In the left column, click Downloads.
- Right-click the image you want as your wallpaper, then click Set wallpaper.
Use the same wallpaper across multiple Chromebooks
- Click your account photo.
- Click Settings .
- In the "People" section, click Sync.
- Choose what you'd like to sync. To use all the same settings (including wallpaper) on every Chromebook you sign in to, turn on Sync everything.
Your Chromebook automatically checks for and downloads software updates by itself. This happens when your Chromebook is:
- Turned on
- Connected to Wi-Fi
- Not connected to a mobile hotspot or mobile data
Finish an update
When your Chromebook downloads a software update, you’ll see an arrow near your account photo:
To finish the update, click Update Restart to Update. Your Chromebook will restart.
Check for updates yourself
- Click your account photo.
- Click Settings .
- Click Menu About Chrome OS.
- Under "Google Chrome OS," click Check for Updates.
- If your Chromebook finds a software update, it will start to download automatically.
Tip: To see which version of the Chrome operating system your Chromebook is using, look under "Google Chrome OS."