In Google Chrome on Windows and Mac, you can very easily click a button and open up a guest window. And in that guest window, you won’t be signed into any of your accounts, none of your Chrome extensions will be installed, and it won’t save any of your browsing history. Perfect for guests, (hence the name).
However, if you have a Chromebook, you’ve probably noticed that Chromebooks don’t have a button like this in Google Chrome. But don’t worry, Chrome OS actually has a feature that allows you to switch the entire operating system into guest mode. Then, in addition to being able to browse as a guest, none of your apps will be there, and none of your files will show up in the Files app.
This is great if you want to let your friend borrow your Chromebook and browse as a guest for a bit, or maybe if you just want to do something without any of your regular accounts or Chrome extensions getting in the way. So today, that’s what I’m going to show you how to do.
Prefer to watch a video about how to browse as a guest on a Chromebook? Click here.
How To Browse As A Guest On A Chromebook
To switch your Chromebook into guest mode and begin browsing as a guest, you’ll first need to sign out of your Chromebook if you’re currently signed in. To do that, just click on the time in the bottom right hand corner…
And then, in the menu that appears, click sign out.
Now, you’ll be at the sign in screen of your Chromebook as though you just turned it on. (The screen where you normally enter your password to log in).
But, to switch into guest mode, you don’t want to log in, instead, you’ll just need to click the “Browse as Guest” button in the bottom left hand corner.
And now, you’ll be in Guest mode!
As you’ll notice, the wallpaper will now be a rather grey boring picture and almost all the apps will have disappeared from the bar across the bottom of the screen. And, a guest mode window of Google Chrome will appear just like if you opened a guest window in Chrome on Windows or Mac OS.
So now, you can browse the web without being logged in to any of your accounts, and without any of your Chrome extensions. So if you go to a website that you’d normally be logged in to (like google.com), you will not be logged in.
And, if you click on the circle in the bottom right hand corner to open the app draw…
None of your apps will be there. Just Chrome, the Files app, the Camera App, Settings, and the “Explore” app which just gives you tips on how to use the Chromebook.
And if you open the files app, you’ll see there are no files in any of the folders.
Don’t worry, all your files are actually still safely stored on your Chromebook, they’re just hidden while you’re in guest mode so that your guests can’s access them.
And that’s all there is to it! Now you or your guest can browse in guest mode with no accounts, apps, extensions, or files getting in the way.
You can even download files and you’ll be able to access those files in the files app while in guest mode. Just remember to upload them to Google Drive or store them on a flash drive or something like that before you exit guest mode because once you exit guest mode, any files you downloaded while in guest mode will be deleted along with your browsing history and cache and cookies.
How To Switch Out Of Guest Mode
Once you’re done with browsing as a guest and you want to log back into your regular account, all you need to do is click on the time in the bottom right hand corner…
And then, in the menu that appears, click “Exit guest”. (Just make sure you have safely saved any files you may have downloaded in a different location before you do this).
Now, you will be out of guest mode and back at the sign in screen.
And from here, you can just sign in with your normal password and everything will be back to normal. You’ll have all your files, apps, and Chrome extensions just the way you left them. And you’ll be signed in to all your online accounts.
And that’s all there is to it! That’s how you can browse as a guest on a Chromebook.