The last update of Chrome was pain. It changed many things in UI. I never liked my browser to be filled with themes, Apps and shortcuts. Many users will agree that worst thing happened with update was ‘Most Visited’ shortcuts in New Tab page. To make life more miserable thumbnails started to appear with it. This directly raised privacy concerns. I don’t visit sites that I want to hide but on the same time, I don’t like people peeking to know that where I went. Especially, at the office!
If you are also bugged up with it then this is how you can remove it.
Open Google Chrome browser and type the following in address bar (URL bar);
This will open the advanced settings hidden from a normal user. Don’t get excited as this is no place to play.
Now find “Enable Instant Extended API“. You may press CTRL+F and then type “Extended API” or something like that to find it. Then, click on the drop-down menu and select “Disable”.
A small popup will appear at bottom of screen saying “Relaunch Chrome Now”. Hit it.
As soon as Chrome will restart, you will come back to same “Flags” settings page. Close it and open a ‘New Tab’. You will be happy and also may get little sad to see the result. ‘Most visited’ Thumbnail shortcut will disappear and so the Doodle and Search Bar. However, I think it is fine as many people search directly from Omnibox (which I am using since 2009) and other people has Google as their homepage so, Doodles won’t be missed. As an added benefit your browser will start faster now as there is no Doodle to load and thumbnails to refresh.
Now, the Old look (Old New Tab) of Chrome is restored but Most Visited thumbnails can still be seen. Let’s remove your last visited links so they don’t appear anywhere.
Click on the Most Visited button from bottom of browser. Now, keep your cursor on each thumbnail (hover) for a second. A small ‘X’ will appear in corner, click it to remove that website from memory. Do this for all thumbnails.
What is the difference in doing these steps and just clearing browser? By following this method, Chrome will remember the pages which you don’t want to reappear.
For the users who don’t want to play with these settings can go to Chrome web store and search for ‘most visited’ in extensions. That may help you out.
Remember that this setting may get overridden when the next update happen. If that does then repeat it again.
Comments and questions are welcome, as always.