How to Restore the Google Chrome Browser New Tab Page to the Previous Appearance


Here is a quick tip for users of the Google Chrome browser. In the latest version of the browser, Google changed the appearance of the page you get when you want to create a new tab. Now you get a lot of white space, a great big Google logo, and an unnecessary search bar. (See the graphic below.)  A lot of people (including me) don’t like it. Fortunately, there is a quick way to bring back the way the new tab page previously looked.

New Chrome tab pahe

  1. Enter "chrome://flags" (without quotes) in the address bar (or “omnibox” as Google terms it). 
  2. In the page that opens, scroll down until you locate the entry "Enable Instant Extended API Mac, Windows, Chrome OS". (It’s a long list. You might want to use Ctrl+F and the Find box).
  3. In the little drop-down dialog at the bottom-left of the entry, click “Disabled”
  4. At the bottom-left of your window, there should be a button “Relaunch Now”. Click it. Otherwise, just close and restart the browser.
  5. If you want the new style back, click "Enabled" in step 3 above and restart the browser.

And there you have it – the new tab page the way it used to look.

This tip was suggested by a thread in the Freeware Forum started by editor J_L.

Update 21 February, 2014 - Google now seems to have made the change in the new tab page permanent. See this link.

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This tips section is maintained by Vic Laurie. Vic runs several websites with Windows how-to's, guides, and tutorials, including a site for learning about Windows and the Internet and another with Windows 7 tips.

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this command also works with the new Opera browser


Thank you,

problem now sorted

Thanks for letting us know.

Oh, YES! I did not like the 'new' window! I had no idea that, 1) it could be changed, and, 2) how on earth to change it - I wouldn't have even known what to look up!
I, too, like to use the 'Recently Closed' feature. I'll see something just as I click the 'X' to close the tab. Without that feature, I was lost! LOL

Thank you so very much!


Sweet! Thanks!

Or just use the Chrome plugin "New Tab Redirect!"

Sets a custom, user-specified, URL to load in new tabs. Choose from chrome's about pages, *NewTab, Extensions, Downloads, History*, a few popular URLs, or provide your own. Your custom tab can also be a local file, allowing you to create your own new tab page. Saving blank text will cause your new tab to be about:blank.

I have just completed the above, now when I open Chrome it starts with the last page opened. I have looked at Settings there it is ticked, "Open the new tab page"

Please, any ideas where I have gone wrong?

There is the obvious suggestion that maybe you accidentally clicked the wrong thing.Take a look at your flags again. If anybody has any other possible ideas, let us know.

As you pointed out, may be an accidental checking of the wrong item...possibly while scrolling through the long, extensive list.
At the very top of the page, there is a "Reset All To Default" button. Doing so and then starting over with this "chrome://flags" tip may help.

Appreciate this helpful find, I have missed the " Open Recent " tab on the New Page.
Agree the Search Box is redundantand a waste of space.

It works well. I had a workaround and had it open "chrome://apps/" at sartup

Thank you!
I really disliked the new Tab page. In addition it was very hard to access my preferred applications that were in hidden window at the left of the Tab. Everything of fine now. Thanks again!