Thursday, August 2, 2012

Lifesaver: Using Multiple Accounts within Chrome

Guest Post by David W. Malone
Twitter: @dwmalone

Tech Coordinator, K-8 Tech Teacher, EB CUE Board, MS Education: EdTech Leadership, Google Apps Evangelist, iOS Guru, Cloud Obsessed, Father of two girls (3 & 5)

If you're like me, you have multiple Google Apps accounts. This is a good thing. However, having to go back-and-forth between accounts to check e-mail or open a shared Google Doc can sometimes be a burden.

I have seen users open Firefox, Safari and Chrome all at the same time in an attempt to use multiple Google Apps accounts simultaneously. If you're still doing this, that's about to change. Chrome built-in a feature allowing multiple users to use the same Chrome browser at the same time.

Jeff Utecht (of Google Apps Ninja Program fame) showed me this at the GAFE Summit in Santa Clara. It's a feature within Chrome Canary (the beta/developer version of Chrome). I went to download Canary and toy with the feature myself, but found the same ability built into standard Chrome already. No Canary required.

This feature has changed my life and eliminated tons of frustration. If you're not already using this feature and you have more than one Google App account, you need to check out this screencast:

Note: As with most things in technology, especially with Google, there are multiple ways to achieve the same results. One doesn't have to add users via the wrench and "Settings". Going to "Preferences" or clicking on "New user" from the avatar menu will give one the option to add
more users as well.
Add a New User to Google Chrome
From Amy: David is SO RIGHT. My friend Jessica Johnston, @edtechchic, showed me how she runs three Chrome accounts at a time, each for different purposes. Each of them has different bookmarks, themes, etc. She finds this organizational technique helps her keep her work life/home life, etc. separate and organized. 

Another important point, remember to disconnect your Google account if you're using a shared computer before you walk away from that browser. You also might want to add a new user and close your own account.

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