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How to Enable and Use Commander in Google Chrome

Google is testing a new feature to help users quickly access Chrome commands using a search interface accessed through a keyboard shortcut. First spotted by Techdows, the feature is currently hidden behind a Chrome flag in the latest Canary build of Google Chrome. In this article, we’ll be going hands-on with the feature so that you can know what to expect when the software giant eventually rolls out the feature to the stable channel.

Use Commander in Google Chrome

Chrome’s upcoming Commander feature offers a search interface to utilize Chrome commands, somewhat like how Chrome actions work. This can also be considered as an equivalent to universal search available in operating systems. With that said, here are the steps involved to enable the feature in your machine running Chrome Canary 90 and newer.

Enable Chrome Commander

1. Open Chrome Canary and visit chrome://flags. In the search box of Chrome flags, type ‘Commander’. You can alternatively paste the below URL to your browser:

chrome://flags/#commander
enable chrome commander

2. Choose ‘Enabled’ from the dropdown list present next to the flag and restart the browser. The feature will be available to use after you restart it.

Chrome Commander Usage

After enabling the feature, use the keyboard shortcut ‘Ctrl+Space’ to activate Commander. You’ll now get a search box within Chrome, as you can see in the image below:

chrome commander search UI

You can now type keywords to view all related commands. For instance, if you type ‘new’, you’ll see the options to quickly open Google Sheet, Meet, Form, Docs, and Slides. You can also open new tabs or windows from here. This should be convenient if you’re someone who’s not accustomed to different Chrome keyboard shortcuts.

chrome commander ui

One aspect of the feature worth mentioning is that the search box won’t disappear when you click out of it or switch to another tab, at least in its current state. You’ll have to manually press the keyboard shortcut (Ctrl+Space) again to close the search box.