3 Google Chrome Extensions That Make Up For A Hidden Taskbar

Jessica Cam Wong 01-02-2011

google chrome add ons and extensionsI have never understood the need for thick docks with big icons dominating the lower portion of the screen, especially on a laptop. Since most laptops and monitors are widescreen, it just doesn’t make sense for me that I’d need more chunky docks occupying precious screen real estate. Thus, I’ve always docked my taskbar vertically, so that I can easily see the entire system tray information, complete with dates, the way Ubuntu has by default.


Nowadays, after using the extensions that I will outline in this article, I have had no need for the taskbar to remain visible, which means I can enjoy reading anything on my laptop better, and have a full-screen setting for minimalism and a distraction-free environment. I’m pretty sure that’s the reason why Chromium developers made it so that the browser’s title bar also contains the window control buttons, and the whole browser avoids displaying one extra, unnecessary toolbar.

Let’s see what Chrome extensions can make your online reading experience a bit better, and save some screen real estate at the same time.

google chrome add ons and extensions

Clock for Google Chrome Replaces Your Taskbar’s Clock Applet

google chrome extensionsClock for Google Chrome is a good candidate to take the place of your taskbar clock, with the only difference that it serves up an analog clock instead of a digital one. Aside from that, Clock for Google Chrome only offers another color setting for the clock hands, a few more European languages, and nothing else.

google chrome extensions


If you’re looking for a more fully-featured clock, Chrome Clock is an excellent choice as it supports digital and analog models, and even alarms! Digital Clock is another extension that promises to use less memory in Chrome, which some extensions seem to do.

There are a few more clock extensions in the Extensions gallery so if you have a robust alternative not listed here, please share them in the comments!

Badge Date Puts The Date On Your Chrome Bar

google chrome extensionsOne thing that sometimes irks me is how the Windows Taskbar, at least in Vista and XP, will not show additional date information, other than the time in the system tray, unless you doubled the size of the taskbar. Ubuntu displays the date and time together effortlessly so I didn’t understand why Windows doesn’t. Even the Windows 7 Superbar is praised for its features and does display full date and time information, it’s double the size of the WinVista taskbar, which for me, just doesn’t make sense when most laptop screens are already short in height.

Badge Date solves this minor annoyance as it displays the month and day of the current date in the corner of Chrome, where it doesn’t occupy another horizontal bar space. Even though right now, it’s got a small glitch with the “/” sign, it’s still a good, informative extension.


X-Notifier Takes The Place Of Outllook/Windows Mail’s System Tray Notifications

google chrome add ons and extensions

The author of Webmail Notifier, a wonderful plugin for Firefox, created an app for Chrome and the high quality nature of the apps makes this optional extension totally worth the download. It displays visual and audio notifications set to your choices of duration. This extremely well-made extension supports all major webmail sites, including Gmail, AOL, Hotmail and….drum roll…..even Yahoo with no Pro subscription!

The point of having these extensions is that you won’t need the taskbar so you can autohide it or keep it hidden, as you probably don’t really use it for anything other than to see the time. If you actually use the taskbar to monitor how many programs you have launched, you’d only have to switch between windows using Alt + Tab, which gives you a glance of the programs you have open. Windows key + Tab would even give you a better preview of the windows. Saving screen real estate may understandably be the concern of many users, in particular our netbook-using readers.

Do you prefer to keep the taskbar visible or hidden? Share with us your desktop organization tips in the comments as well!


Related topics: Google Chrome, Windows Taskbar.

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  1. Below
    February 26, 2011 at 6:30 am

    I don't see why not just have the taskbar auto hide in windows. then when you need to see it just mouse over it or something. granted it can get confused and pop up if you move the mouse too far or something, but then that way there's the full screen (like F11) but without using that button. just seems dumb to use extensions and bloat a browser or machine when simpler solutions exist. Much like all the bloatware being advertised on Tekzilla's tek tips clips. Some of those things already exist in the OS the person is more than likely using in some form or another.

    • Jessica Cam W.
      February 26, 2011 at 10:12 pm

      These extensions could be handy for netbook users with Windows 7, for example, where the taskbar takes a good chunk of vertical space.

  2. Zina Dain
    February 2, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    In my opinion the additional browser load that would result from using three more addons would be more inconvenient than keeping the taskbar visible.

    • Jessica Cam W.
      February 4, 2011 at 8:41 am

      But Chrome is already so speedy! :)

  3. Durable And Non Durable Goods
    February 2, 2011 at 9:58 am

    I use X-Notifier.Its really a great extension.

  4. rajkalyan
    February 1, 2011 at 7:58 pm

    I actually use the Digital Clock for chrome. Its a bit easier so read, without those tiny little lines.