There are two important things to consider when using browsers to access internet on your computer. One is ease of access that how quickly and easily you can access the websites you want to view. Other is how you can protect your privacy and keep things secure.
Browsers like Google Chrome offers many quick access features like shortcuts, bookmarks, history, auto fill and password management. On other hand, most of these quick access features will directly hit your privacy. In our earlier article, we have explained the problem with the shortcuts or thumbnail images on the new tab pages. Similarly, bookmarks also have privacy concern in Google Chrome.
What is Bookmarks Bar?
You can check out the article on how to manage bookmarks in Google Chrome. The Chrome Bookmarks Bar is an important feature that appears just below the browser omnibox. It displays your saved favorite pages (bookmarks) from where you can navigate to a page in a single click. Though you can use bookmarks to access the webpages quickly, Chrome has problem with the bookmarks bar. You can’t remove the bookmarks bar on new tab pages and home page.
Let’s say you have accessed a private website and bookmarked it for future reference. Whenever you open Chrome it will appear first in the bookmarks bar. You can create a folder and move the bookmark inside the folder. However, this will not solve the problem as bookmarks bar will show all the bookmarks which you can access by clicking on the extended arrow mark.
Option 1: Disable Bookmarks Bar
Google introduced the option to disable bookmarks bar around version 69. So if you are using older versions, it is good update to the latest Chrome to use this option.
Step 1: Open the Chrome browser on your computer. Click the Chrome menu icon (3 vertical dots) at the top-right corner of the screen to access the menu options.
Step 2: Click “Settings” near the bottom of the drop-down menu. The settings window will appear.
Step 3: Click on the settings main menu (3 horizontal lines on the top-left corner of the screen). This will display the settings options.
Step 4: Select “Appearance” from the options.
Step 5: On the “Appearance” screen, turn of the “Show bookmarks bar” switch. The switch will turn to white and hide the bookmarks bar from the screen.
Option 2: Using Bookmarks Menu Option
Step 1: Open the Chrome browser and navigate the settings icon located at the top-left corner to access the menu options.
Step 2: Hover the cursor over “Bookmarks”. This will extend the menu to the left. On the menu list, uncheck the “Show Bookmarks Bar” to hide the bookmarks bar from your browsing screen.
Option 3: Using Keyboard Shortcuts
This is the simplest method to show or hide the bookmarks bar.
Step 1: Open the Chrome on your computer.
Step 2: If you are using Windows press the “Ctrl + Shift + B” shortcut keys on your keyboard, for Mac press “Command + Shift +B” keys. You can press these keys alternatively to toggle the display of the bookmarks bar on the browser screen.
Option 4: Disable from Bookmarks Bar
Step 1: Launch the Chrome on your Computer.
Step 2: Right-click (for Windows) or Control-click (for Mac) on the “Bookmarks Bar”. This will display a panel to customize the bookmarks settings.
Step 3: Uncheck “Show Bookmarks Bar” from the displayed options.
Option 5: Set Blank Startup Page
Step 1: Launch Chrome and go to “chrome://settings” command URL.
Step 2: scroll down and go to “On startup” section.
Step 3: By default the startup option in Chrome is “Open the New Tab page”. Choose “Open specific page or set of pages” option.
Step 4: Click on “Add new page” and add “about:blank” as your startup page. The final settings should look like below:
Whenever you launch Chrome, you will see an empty page without bookmarks bar. Check out our article to learn more about customizing the startup page in Chrome.
Option 6: Set Blank Home Page
There is alternate way to avoid clicking on the + icon to open new tab page. You can enable home button left to the address bar and open a blank page without showing bookmarks bar.
Step 1: Launch Chrome and go to settings page.
Step 2: Scroll down and move to “Appearance” section.
Step 3: Enable “Show home button” slider.
Step 4: Click on the second radio button and enter “about:blank” in the text box. It should look like below:
Now you can use the combination of startup and home page options to always open a blank page.
Option 7: Use the “Earth View” Extension
The above 1 to 4 options will only hide the bookmarks bar when you open a website. On all new tab pages, you will still the bookmarks bar though you have turned off the option. This is the same problem with option 5 and 6, only startup or home page will not show bookmarks bar while all new tab pages will still show.
There are no default ways in Chrome to get rid of the bookmarks bar. The only option here is to go for an extension. You can install the “Earth View” extension to disable bookmarks bar on new tabs.
Step 1: Launch the Chrome browser and click on the three dots button to open settings menu. From the dropdown menu select “More Tools” and then click “Extensions”.
Step 2: Click on the “Extensions” menu and at the bottom of the menu pane click “Open Chrome Web Store”.
Step 3: Type “Earth View” in the search box and hit enter. You will see the list of extensions and click “Add to Chrome” button against “Earth View from Google Earth” extension.
Step 4: Open new tab to confirm that the Bookmarks Bar is disabled.
Whenever you open a new tab page, Earth View extension will show a new image from Google Earth. This not only helps you to hide the bookmarks and other distractions on the page but also helps to see a beautiful picture on the browser screen.