A reader has a question about using your Google and Chrome settings on multiple devices. It’s a really handy feature, but it can be confusing. She writes:
“Here is what I understand about being signed into Chrome.: Right now my name is at the top right corner. Yay! I’m signed in. But here is where it’s confusing. I’m signed in because I have Gmail, of course. So if I were to sign out of my email I would also be signed out of my Chrome account. I think that would mean my settings go with it? Also the prized shortcuts at the top of the page. First, do you have a Chrome sign in and Gmail sign in? Like scenario of being signed out of Gmail, but still have Chrome open with all personal settings. Now to pick up on going to a different computer. I go to my husband’s computer. He has g\gmail. I fumbled through to get to mine the time I had to use his computer. But when I left all my shortcuts remained, so, that means I didn’t officially sign out of my Gmail/chrome account. Chrome can be complicated!”
It’s not really too complicated when you think this way. If you sign into your Google account, your settings like bookmarks reside in the cloud. You can open up Chrome on any computer or mobile device and have access to them as long as you sign in. Sign out and your settings go with you.
Your Gmail address is your Google ID. You get a Gmail account with it, but you don’t have to use it as your email address unless you want it. This is also your ID if you have an Android Phone or Tablet.
Multiple sites are part of the Google (therefore Chrome) family. Google, Gmail, Google Drive, YouTube, and the Chrome Web Store.
Go to Google.com or open Chrome to the Google homepage and you’ll see the option to sign in.
Once you click, you’ll see all of the available user accounts. You can see if that person is signed out on this particular device. If you want to add yourself or someone else, just click Use another account and put in the username and password.
You’ll then enter your password.
Chrome will ask if you want to remember the password. If you’re on someone else’s PC, I’d choose not to.
Click the square of squares at the top and you’ll have access to Gmail, Google Drive, Google Photos, Google Maps, and more. Plus, if you’re using the Chrome browser, all of your bookmarks, preferences, and browsing history are available to you. Remember, you can get Gmail, Google Drive, and all the other Google stuff from any browser, but your browser settings like bookmarks only follow you if you’re using the Chrome Browser. Go to YouTube or Gmail and you’ll see that you are already logged in with your settings. For example, your inbox will come up or your YouTube Playlist will be available.
When you’re finished using the other PC, click your account icon on any Google page like GoogleDrive, YouTube, or the Google homepage and choose to sign out. If you’ve added a video to a playlist, worked on a document, started an email, looked up directions, or added a bookmark, all of these things will be saved when you log out.
If we go back to that Google home page, we can see that I’ve signed out.
To make sure that you are completely signed out, just click the Sign in button again and make sure it says signed out under your account.
I hope that makes it easier to understand.