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How to Enable, Find and Install Userscripts on Chrome

by Stamga on April 15, 2009

Userscripts, also known as Greasemonkey scripts, are small JavaScript files that give you the ability to change how web pages look and behave while browsing. In example, you could get a script that blocks ads or that allows you to download shared online videos..

Where to find Userscripts

You can find lots of useful userscripts at www.userscripts.org.

Here are a couple of userscripts I find useful:

  • AdSweep (Hides advertising from all web pages and removes the space that it took)
  • LinkYouTube (Adds a link beside every YouTube video to download it)
  • Google Fx (Adds lots and lots of functions to Google search)
  • Google Image Search Advanced (Adds lots of functions to Google image search)

Enabling Userscripts

  1. Make sure you have Chrome on the Dev channel (Read more here)
  2. Right-click your Google Chrome shortcut (wherever it is) and click Properties
  3. Make sure your in the Shortcut tab
  4. In the Target box, add “ –enable-user-scripts” after the target. After doing this step, it should look a little like this: “C:\Users\User\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe –enable-user-scripts”

Note: Make sure there is a space between “chrome.exe” and “–enable-user-scripts”

Note 2: If you are using XP, make sur that –enable-user-scripts is outside the directory’s quotes.

Installing Userscripts

    • If you are using Windows XP, go to C:\Documents and Settings\*USER*\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default
    • If you are using Windows Vista or 7, go to C:\Users\*USER*\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default

    Note: Replace *USER* by your username.

  1. Create a new folder in this directory named “User Scripts”, if it isn’t already there
  2. Grab any userscript (.user.js) file and place it in this folder

If you have any trouble installing, enabling or finding userscripts, just leave a comment here. Not all userscripts work on Google Chrome, but alot of them do. Have fun!

{ 2 trackbacks }

Google Chrome Browser Portal» Chrome Browser Tech » Google Chrome Plugin Sammlung
04.16.09 at 4:48 am
PBtweet powers up your Twitter web experience on Google Chrome | Anthonyrobinson.info
08.31.09 at 10:21 am

{ 46 comments }

1 BritSwedeGuy 04.16.09 at 5:46 am

Setting up the shortcut in XP:
The name specified in the Target box is not valid

2 BritSwedeGuy 04.16.09 at 5:49 am

The option string has to be OUTSIDE the end quote, e.g.
…chrome.exe” –enable-user-scripts

3 Stamga 04.16.09 at 3:55 pm

Thanks, I added the note onto the page.

4 Guyster 04.19.09 at 2:01 pm

I have followed all the steps,
But when I click the shortcut it says the link has been broken,
It says “http://xn--enable-user-scripts-475k/” in the address bar,
can anyone help?

5 Stamga 04.19.09 at 6:15 pm

Make sure the target looks like this: chrome.exe –enable-user-scripts

If it doesn’t, it will start in a weired url, like you explained.

6 Mini0n 04.21.09 at 3:36 am

Hi there.
I’ve made every step on that list and I have both Google scripts on my User Scripts folder, but I go to Google or Google Images and see nothing new. According to the images @ userscripts.org it was supposed to add some features… =/

What have I done wrong?

I’ve noticed that the first “-” on the expression “-enable-user-scripts” is different than the rest (it’s bigger), but if I use that, my homepage will be “http://xn--enable-user-scripts-475k/”.

One other thing, I’ve successfully managed to change themes, so I believe I’m on the Dev channel.

Thank you for your help. =)

7 Stamga 04.21.09 at 4:12 pm

Verify if you are on the Dev version:
1(Wrench Menu) > About Google Chrome
2 Make sure the version you have is “2.0.174.0″
3 If it isn’t, use the Chrome Channel Changer: http://chromium.googlecode.com/files/chromechannel-2.0.exe to change your channel to Dev
4 Update Chrome by going to (Wrench Menu) > About Google Chrome and clicking “Update now”

8 Lars Bargmann 04.22.09 at 10:36 am

Ok, I must be stupid or something…
I am on the Dev-channel, running 2.0.174.0 and User-Scripts seems to work (I am succesfully running AdSweep) but I cannot get thet Google FX script to work??????
Am I doing something terribly wrong???
Should I enable something in the js-file or something?

9 Stamga 04.22.09 at 4:29 pm

It seems that some userscripts like Google FX or Google Image search advanced don’t work on version 2.0.174.0. (but they did on the previous versions) Try some other ones on Userscripts.org, they should work…

10 Okbah 04.24.09 at 6:54 pm

How can I use Gtranslate plugin from userscript. I am still on same problem (http://xn--enable-user-scripts-475k/ ) after complete all steps above :(

11 Stamga 04.25.09 at 8:37 am

Are you sure that you are on the Dev channel (Version 2.0.174.0)? Follow above steps to change your channel.
Also make sure that –enable-user-scripts is out of the ” that are around the target path.
If none of these solutions work, try to put only one – in front of enable-user-scripts.
Also, to test if it works, try installing the YouTube Downloader by Blackcoil here: http://www.chromeplugins.org/google/chrome-plugins/new-youtube-download-helper-extension-4-7551.html#post8693

12 buzgun 04.26.09 at 12:46 pm

I can’t believe how difficult this process has been made. It’s bad enough that you’re asking us to, personally, stuff every user script in a seven-directory deep location (on top of Chrome constantly resetting the download folder to someplace nobody ever wants to download to), but on top of that there’s really no clear way to tell if /anything/ is working like it’s supposed to. For example – I still don’t even know if I have Greasemonkey running! It doesn’t do me a lot of good trying to troubleshoot when I’m eliciting no response whatsoever from the program at any step along the way. I don’t know where what is breaking. So I’m going to go ahead and bang this with a, “I don’t give a damn if this is in the development stages, because if this is the way you develop, you’re doing it wrong in the first place anyway.” Thank you for having ruined my beautiful, sunny day before I even got out of the house.

13 Stamga 04.29.09 at 4:50 pm

A note for people trying to install userscripts:

Make sure you don’t COPY the –enable-user-scripts, you must retype it.
(WordPress makes it that when you type two -, it makes a single big one)

14 Ben 04.30.09 at 8:15 am

I cant get the youtube one to work either….
my target
“C:\Documents and Settings\beabrams\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe” -enable-user-scripts

and the script is called youtube.user.js located in the
C:\Documents and Settings\beabrams\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\User Scripts

any other ideas… and I typed it out on the target and didnt copy and paste

15 Chris Hall 04.30.09 at 1:42 pm

Hello, I’m stuck on the “enable-user-scripts” part. I get the following message: Problem with Shortcut. The name “C:blahalaalha” specified in the target box is not valid. make sure the path and the file name are correct. I am running Windows XP and I typed (not cut and pasted) the ‘enable-user-scripts part in. Help please!

BTW. Why would Google make this so hard? In Firefox, you click Install, hit reboot and VOILA. Please don’t tell me that the folks at Mozilla can even come close the the brain power of Google.

16 Dexter 04.30.09 at 3:13 pm

I solved the problem of “http://xn--enable-user-scripts-475k/” by just adding one more “- ” before “–enable-user-scripts”.
I am sure that I am on Dev channel. I am succesfully running AdSweep. However, other user scripts, such as Google FX, seems do not work.
I am not using version 2.0.174.0.
I am using Chromium 2.0.167.0 (10336). I mean it’s a previous versions, isn’t it?

17 Stamga 05.01.09 at 9:24 am

Its complicated to install because Chrome’s extensions and userscripts are still in the testing levels where only advanced developers are supposed to be testing them before they officially come out on Chrome.

Once they are, I am sure that there will be an extension manager where you can just click a button to Install or Uninstall an extension

@Ben & Chris Hall: As Dexter said, you must use two ‘-’s in front of ‘enable-user-scripts’

18 pAntZ 05.11.09 at 9:24 pm

I am still struggling to get this to work.

I am on Windows XP and I have:
1. Updated to the latest Dev release of chrome in the About box after using the channel changer to identify that I wanted the Dev version.
2. Stored the script ‘youtube.user.js’ in ‘C:\Documents and Settings\ppianta\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\User Scripts’ which is a folder that I created.
3. Edited my Chrome shortcut on my desktop so the ‘Target’ field now contains “C:\Documents and Settings\ppianta\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe” –enable-user-scripts (note there are two dashes before the word ‘enable’)
4. Restarted Chrome and went to youtube.com and loaded up a video – I don’t see links to download the video.

Any ideas what I am missing?

19 pAntZ 05.12.09 at 12:28 pm

It’s cool – the youtube script is actually working.
It was ‘A bit better RTM’ script that I was trying at the same time that is not working.

The 4 steps I outlined above should work for everybody.

20 Leif 05.12.09 at 5:50 pm

Just to recap.
If you are getting the “http://xn--enable-user-scripts-475k/” error when you start chrome; you need to type two dashes before the word enable in your shortcut, and make sure that you don’t put it inside the quotes if you are on XP.
If you are having trouble with GoogleFX or AdvancedImageSearch, these don’t work very well for Chrome. Try some other plugins.

21 Dave 05.13.09 at 6:55 pm

Yay! I finally got it to work!!!
I used:
C:\Users\*user*\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe –enable-user-scripts
^^two dashes
At the install, I clicked on it and it showed the page with the scripting. On the page, I right clicked and pressed “save as” and renamed it to “youtube.user.js” and placed it in the folder. It works great now!
Thank you!

22 3D SownZ 05.20.09 at 1:33 am

Sweet, Got the youtube plugin to work.. Can’t seem to get the one for the google image advanced search to work right. What do I save the script as…

23 3D SownZ 05.20.09 at 2:46 am

I have the same problem with the Google Fx, Don’t know what to save it as…

______.user.js

The adsweep I was able to get working…

24 Benny 05.26.09 at 12:46 am

It works. However, the following scripts cannot.

http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/28129

Anyone can help?

25 Ryan 06.09.09 at 3:01 am

I can’t seem to find where the ‘C:\Documents and Settings\*USER*\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default’ file is! I’ve found ‘Documents and Setting’ but no Local Settings! Am I doing something wrong? And I think I’m on the dev channel with version 3.0.183.1 but not sure. Please help!

26 Stamga 06.09.09 at 3:57 pm

Yes, you are on the Dev channel. Make sure that you have ‘Show hidden folders’ enabled from the folder options.

27 Ryan 06.10.09 at 4:48 am

Found it! Thanks.

28 New York Computer Repair 06.15.09 at 11:44 am

Excellent post! I just started using Chrome the other day because I needed a third browser and IE 8 has set a new bar for FAIL. Looking forward to trying out the other scripts you mention…Google Image Search Advanced has been awesome.

29 Lin 08.22.09 at 1:02 pm

I can’t find local settings anywhere, ran a search and nothing. My files are NOT hidden and I AM on Dev’s channel. I have Windows XP. Now what?

30 Lin 08.22.09 at 1:33 pm

Found it! YAY! Now, if only …

31 Stamga 08.22.09 at 7:12 pm

Glad you found it ;)

… if only what?

32 Amnon 08.24.09 at 10:44 am

hi guys,

thanks for all the great info here!

im running 4.0.202.0 on dev mode and trying to use:
better_gmail__for_chrome-folders4gmail.user

few questions:
1. do i need to change :better_gmail__for_chrome-folders4gmail.user to : better_gmail__for_chrome-folders4gmail.user_NAME ? so it will be the same user name that uses the app?
2. how do i know if it is running scripts or not? im running vista and the shortcut looks like: “C:\Program Files\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe” –enable-user-scripts
this is the only one i got to work…

why doesn’t the script work?

33 Stamga 08.26.09 at 5:37 pm

I don’t know how to view the userscripts that are running but you have to change it to EXTENSIONNAME.user.js , not username.

34 Patrick 09.09.09 at 1:36 am

Here’s how:

1. Uninstall Chrome

2. Wait until they make this ghost option for userscripts a reality

3. In the meantime, install FireFox and Greasemonkey and have a blast changing the web to suit yourself with javascript.

35 Lisa 04.30.10 at 4:03 am

Got it to accept the –enable-user-scripts in XP had to have it outside the quotation mark and a space after that and type it in not copy and paste as I was trying to do and it wouldn’t take it that way now to see if I can get pbtweets to work.

36 Lisa 04.30.10 at 5:23 am

I didn’t need this to get pbtweet to work there’s a new one called pbtweet+ and it’s a chrome extension sweet. https://chrome.google.com/extensions/detail/bgilpachmloimelohcimoljjgengbgop

37 mangoose 07.01.10 at 2:42 pm

This article is out of date.
Chrome at least 4.0 version have a new user-js mechanism.

38 Pointer Men's Basketball 10.30.10 at 2:17 am

Maybe you should edit the post name How to Enable, Find and Install Userscripts on Chrome – Chrome Plugins to more suited for your content you create. I liked the the writing nevertheless.

39 adam 12.11.10 at 8:13 pm

im surprised that chrome is giving me so much trouble when firefox has it all done….
i’ve been trying to switch over to chrome since firefox… but the scripts i used b4 on firefox don’t work on it. :(
chrome needs a standard place to download scripts… i can’t find any.

40 larfightem 12.14.10 at 4:55 pm

“Looking forward to trying out the other scripts you mention…Google Image Search Advanced has been awesome.”
Where I have been able to read about it?

41 Steve Ruiz 10.04.11 at 6:45 pm

fix the encoding of the dashes on this page so that it doesn’t copy and paste wrong.

42 Kapil 11.02.11 at 8:24 am

I have tried installing scripts using script managers tampermonkey and black canvas….. but they both fail in installing the same userscript

http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/90615

please help…..

43 blaeh 04.27.12 at 5:52 pm

When I try to go to the directory specified, in the Google folder there isn’t a chrome folder. I’m using windows XP professional, and using regular explorer to find it.

Thanks in advance. – some random guy that won’t just get firefox and greasemonkey

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