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[Outdated] Google Chrome Portable

The MAZZTer's picture
(Homepage) - September 26, 2008 - 12:17pm

First I will start out with a list of reasons why you would want to use my launcher instead of the other launchers out there:

1) The installer will automatically copy your local Google Chrome over to your portable drive (with a caveat that I can hopefully remove in future versions... see below).
2) The installer will optionally copy your Google Chrome profile over, sans Cache.
3) The installer will use the original Google Chrome installation files if they exist, allowing a clean Google Chrome install on your portable drive.
4) The installer will automatically compress Google Chrome with upx.exe, skipping files that compressing causes problems.
5) You can choose to strip out extra languages you don't need, as well as the DOM Inspector if you don't use it.
6) When it's done, you have a fully-functional Google Chrome without the need to manually move files around or compress files or do any additional steps. Only way this could be improved is with a from-scratch Chromium compile (which might be better if John does this... Chromium doesn't include Google's tracking stuff dll) which could be included in an installer. Of course for now there is that aforementioned caveat (see below).

The cons, at the moment:

1) You have to have Google Chrome installed on your local computer so it can be copied to the portable device.
2) You have to have version specifically for this release (caveat detailed below). [Edit: Fixed a bit, should work with earlier versions but will omit Google Gears... see below]

I've been waiting for a response from John about what he thinks of my launcher, and during that time two new versions of Google Chrome have come out so I figure it's about time.


I'm fairly certain it should work fine, but if the installer does anything kooky (it shouldn't do anything destructive) let me know and I'll fix it.

Here is that caveat I mentioned:

[Edit: Now it can copy any version, however in the file structure and install procedure for Chrome was changed slightly, so if you copy an older version with this installer, the Google Gears plugin will not be copied and so will not be usable. You can copy it by hand if you want, and upx compress it.]

You can check your Google Chrome version from the wrench menu under "About". If you don't have it, this particular version of Google Chrome is not available from the official site (it's a developer beta) but you can get it here: http://fileforum.betanews.com/detail/Google_Chrome/1220379960/1

The download bar is a bit wonky in this version of Google Chrome but other than that it's fine. I think it's a bit more stable too.

(Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Google. Google cannot and is not obligated to offer support for Google Chrome when used in this Portable configuration. They also, obviously, cannot offer support for my installer or launcher. No Google Chrome files are included in this download. All files included are either made by me, are licensed for free redistribution, or I have permission from the original authors to distribute. See the license information inside the Google Chrome Portable installer for more disclaimer stuff.)

( categories: )

Installation Problem

I installed the specified version of Chrome locally, then ran the PAF installer. Chrome ran fine using the PAF launcher while the local Chrome installation was still in place. Once I removed the local version, the Portable version of Chrome would no longer start.

Using task Manager, I watched the Google Chrome process start and then abruptly terminate. Did I do something wrong or misunderstand the process in some way?


It should work fine, I

It should work fine, I haven't actually tested it on a computer without Google Chrome installed but I can't think of any reason why it wouldn't run. It doesn't make any registry entries.

Side note: A new version of Google Chrome has been released, I will update the installer to support it, but it sounds like a couple small things have changed in file layout so it may need a little tweaking,

[Edit: had a problem with compressing the default.dll and Locales DLLs. If you are getting a blank dialog box with a warning sign and OK and cancel buttons on launch, I have just fixed that and will upload the new version shortly.]

[Edit: I doubt the new version will fix your problem but you can try it anyway. If you can give more details on your problem it would be helpful. If you know how to use the command prompt, I would appreciate a text file dump of the directory tree (navigate to the GoogleChromePortable\App\Chrome folder and do a "dir /s/b > somefile.txt"). Also any other details would be helpful... you're running it through GoogleChromePortable.exe, right, and not through chrome.exe? What OS are you running, and 32 or 64 bit?]

[Edit: New version up which fixed your problem. Enjoy! :)]

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Yea it doesn't work :((

Yea it doesn't work Sad(

(offtopic)LoadFoo? as in the

(offtopic)LoadFoo? as in the awsome looking LoadFoov2 template on oswd.org?(/offtopic)
Also, isn't there already 2 other Chrome(ium) launchers in the forums already?

But there’s no sense crying over every mistake,
You just keep on trying till you run out of cake.

Hence my "reasons you should

Hence my "reasons you should use my launcher instead of theirs" list. Smiling

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Thank's :) and are u using

Thank's Smiling and are u using the template ?

Yeah see it would be nice if

Yeah see it would be nice if I had some details...

I'll try and see if I can replicate this in a VM, but without knowing wtf is going on there's no guarantee I'll be able to reproduce the problem.

[Edit: I reproduced the problem and traced it. Apparently Google Chrome checks it's version number in HKCU\Software\Google\Update\Clients\pv\{8A69D345-D564-463c-AFF1-A69D9E530F96} and uses that directory to load it's files. It will need to be made portable.]

[Edit: Bug fixed. New version has been uploaded. It will now run on computers without Google Chrome or with a different version of Google Chrome installed (don't run different versions of Google Chrome at the same time).]

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That did it!


That did the trick. I just downloaded and ran the new version of your installer and it worked like a charm. Good work isolating and correcting the problem so quickly. This is a nice addition to my Portable Drive.



Chrome is closed source. Probably would be better to use Chromium because it's open source or even Iron (which mine currently uses) because it's slimmed down a little more and removes Google's I'm watching you features.

...3) The installer will use the original Google Chrome installation files if they exist, allowing a clean Google Chrome install on your portable drive...What if they don't exist? If they do, and you've used Chrome, it wouldn't be clean

...6) When it's done, you have a fully-functional Google Chrome without the need to manually move files around or compress files or do any additional steps. Only way this could be improved is with a from-scratch Chromium compile... http://build.chromium.org/buildbot/snapshots/chromium-rel-xp/ go to the latest version and download the zip

...The cons, at the moment:

...1) You have to have Google Chrome installed on your local computer so it can be copied to the portable device. (Not in mine)
2) You have to have version specifically for this release (Not in mine)

If your launcher is copying files and compressing them stripping stuff out, Why can't it automatically install Chrome?

You are more than welcome to

You are more than welcome to use Iron or Chromium instead of Google Chrome. As long as they accept the --user-data-dir command line argument everything should work. I suppose in future releases I could consider packaging Chromium in my installer itself. Would simplify things a lot.

3) Yes they would, because Google Chrome caches the original installer archive it downloads. It's a fresh install waiting to be dearchived into a new folder. If those files are missing than it will copy your current install, which shouldn't be much different since user files are stored separately.

5) I am referring to a from-source compile with code tweaks specifically to make Chrome more portable. The source code is 1.4gb and I couldn't get it to compile on VC++ Express 2008. Maybe some other time.

!) I meant at install time, if you wanted to take advantage of the automatic copying stuff I coded in.
2) Well read the rest of that sentence. I fixed it (sorta).

I suppose I could automatically download and install Chrome. Might be an idea for a future release. Hell, maybe I can get past the Chrome installer and just get right at the installer archive my installer uses anyway. Then no local copy would be needed at all.

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Holy crap, 1.4 GB?! How many lines of code is that? Chrome doesn't do enough to warrant that huge a codebase...

Don't let the 400mb download

Don't let the 400mb download deceive you, text compresses very well. Smiling

And I don't know.

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This one is better than the other one as long as it uses Iron

Iron is much slower than Chrome, so I am sticking to this one until the other one goes back to regular old Chromium.

Yay! :D Iron uses the same

Yay! Laughing out loud

Iron uses the same codebase, not sure why it would be slower, except if they used a different compiler or less optimization options...

I should note that every version of Google Chrome since the release of this tool has worked with my installer... haven't tested the latest version but that should work fine too since it has the same directory structure.

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Iron runs at the same speed

Iron runs at the same speed as Chromium. It IS Chromium just without the Googleness. You can get Iron Portable directly from the SRWare website. That's what I use and it works just fine. It also has an adblock now that works very well and doesn't affect speed.


I choose to use Chromium because of the catchier name. "Iron" is a stupid name and looks even stupider displayed in an app menu (ASuite in my case).

other people have noticed the

other people have noticed the performance hit too. http://www.srware.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=73

I figured it out. Its the

ignore this post.

Where would i install

Where would i install NPSWF32.dll (flash player) i couldn't a "plugins" folder.

Create a

Create a GoogleChromePortable\App\Chrome\Plugins folder and put it in there. That should work (haven't tested it but that's where QT stuck it's files on my local Google Chrome when I installed it).

Also I think Google Chrome will automatically load a local Firefox's plugins... at least that's what it appears to do on my system.

NEXT VERSION PREVIEW: If I ever get around to making a new version of my installer I'll make it download Chrome for you so you don't need a local copy. This will simplify things greatly (and I already know 7-zip can extract the installer).

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What is the different than google chrome and iron portable

"It's just an online installer. It's not going to mug you.", JTH
"The shell is the key to unlock Linux's greatest advantages."


Iron is for paranoid or otherwise privacy-minded people. It's a fork of Chromium that removes all the Google stuff and doesn't phone home for search suggestions.

I also have this tiny

I also have this tiny problem: Its not major but on your next chrome beta browser, can you make the icon less fuzzy. On my launchpad it makes the image bigger and the icon looks like a ton of blue and gray pixels.


This is by far the best Chrome launcher I've tried. The Chromium builds are getting buggier and buggier (now it crashes when I close a tab and often middle-clicking a link won't open it--I have to drag it up to the tab bar) so I figured I'd try the real thing. No complaints so far, except for one.

The only thing I have to suggest is the ability to have the launcher copy the profile to a temporary location while Chrome is running and copy it back (sans cache) on close. To my knowledge, all the other Chromium/Iron launchers do this, and it helps a lot, because as the cache grows Chrome writes to the drive more, and starts to lag in a way similar to FFP. Unlike FFP, however, eventually it gets to the point where it never stops writing to the drive (even when idle!), making it unusable.

Good idea, I'll probably try

Good idea, I'll probably try that in my next version.

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UPDATE: There was a bug in the launcher that would copy the portable profile a second time if you opened another instance. This has been fixed. If you already downloaded my launcher, download it again.

I went ahead and implemented it myself. Here's the source for the modified launcher:

And here's an updated launcher for anyone who's interested:

I would have made a new installer, but you have NSIS looking for 7za.exe and upx.exe in a hardcoded path, so I couldn't compile it. You should probably include those tools in the source directory. Everyone should be able to compile the installer without changing the source...

Extract my installer with

Extract my installer with 7zip and the tools should spill out along with everything else. I dunno if other extracting tools can handle NSIS or not...

Anyways you can get both tools easily enough:


[Edit: I uploaded a new version of my installer which copies the profile locally. I made my own implementation (well actually I just modified John's existing one) just for fun.]

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It still puts registry entries in. When I want to open a html "open with" has google chrome in it. Is there a work around to this?

May the Shwartz be with you

Did some testing... here's

Did some testing... here's what happens:

The following keys are created, or overwritten if they already exist:


I will need to modify my launcher to back up the first key (which is the only one with path data, the other two point at the first) and restore it when Chrome is closed.

As for a workaround, you can delete those keys to remove Chrome from the Open With menu (the Applications key also, IIRC lets you start apps from Run without typing the full path).

[Edit: New version uploaded which includes this fix!]

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Why don't you have ANY info

Why don't you have ANY info on your website?

I've browsed half your site (mzzt.net) and couldn't find anything about your portable google chrome..

anyway, really great job, I still feel unsure of saving my passwords sometimes because I think they will be saved in the computer itself.. do they?


They are temporarily saved on

They are temporarily saved on the computer since my launcher copies the Chrome profile over to speed things up, but once you close Chrome the profile is copied back and deleted from the local computer. That said it is possible to recover deleted files, so if you're concerned you can force the profile to only read and write from your portable device... check my more recent Google Chrome thread (it might have slipped to page 2 of the forums) for an INI file to do this, just note that you may have poor performance in Chrome itself.

As for info on my site, I'm too lazy to update it regularly Sticking out tongue I will probably do it eventually if only to pad my resume.

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