Manage Chrome devices

Chromebook icon updated Dec 2013

Chrome device management allows administrators to manage their organization's Chrome devices from a single place. With Chrome device management, organizations can configure Chrome features for their users, set up Chrome device access to VPNs and WiFi networks, force install Chrome apps and extensions, and more.

Administrators can apply each setting to an organizational unit or the entire organization. Most settings provide the option of enforcing a particular configuration or letting the user choose. For example, administrators can specify a standard home page for their users or allow users to set their own home pages.

How do I set up Chrome device management?

  • Chrome device management is available for official Chrome devices and can be purchased from Google or an authorized reseller. If you purchased Chrome devices without management, you can contact the Chrome devices for Work or Education sales teams to purchase management licenses.
  • A Chrome device can be accessed with a Google account or Google Apps account for users in your organization. If allowed, devices can also be used in public session, kiosk, or guest mode.
  • The Admin console lets administrators manage device policies for Chrome devices they enroll in their domain. User policies apply to a managed user's Chrome session on any platform, including Chrome devices.

To configure Chrome settings:

  1. Sign in to the Google Admin console.
  2. Select Device management > Chrome management.
  3. Select the settings on the left hand side that you want to edit.
  4. Select the organizational unit for which you want the settings to apply.
    • By default, an organizational unit inherits the settings of its parent in the organizational tree. However, you can override the inherited setting by explicitly changing the setting for the child organizational unit. The new setting applies to users in that organizational unit, and any children of that organizational unit inherit the new setting.
  5. Click Save changes at the bottom of the screen. Settings typically take effect within minutes but might take up to an hour to propagate through your organization.

You can configure the following Chrome settings in the Admin console:

  • User settings - Configure policies for Chrome device users within an organizational unit. These policies do not apply to users in Guest mode or to users signed in with Google accounts outside of your company or organization. For most settings, you have the option to enforce a particular setting or leave the choice to the user. For example, you can specify a standard home page for all users or you can allow users to set their own home pages. See Set Chrome policies for users.

    Additionally, from the User Settings page, you can allow or block apps and extensions, as well as force install apps and extensions for users' Chrome devices in your domain. You can create a private collection of Chrome apps for your users in the Chrome Web Store, and choose which users in your domain you want to allow to publish private Chrome web apps. And from this page teachers and school administrators can purchase Google Play for Education in bulk for their students. See Create a private Chrome app collection.

    Further, from the User Settings page, Admins can configure SAML Single Sign-On for Chrome Devices.    

  • Public session settings - Set up public sessions for your Chrome devices. Public Sessions allow multiple users to share the same Chrome device without requiring a user to sign in with his or her Google credentials. Popular uses for public sessions include loaner devices in a library, cyber cafe, or business center, and also for student exams and retail store kiosks. See Manage Public Sessions on Chrome devices.
  • Device settings - Configure policies for enrolled Chrome devices within your organization. The policy applies to anyone who uses the device, even if the user is in Guest mode or signs in with a Google account outside of your organization. See Manage device settings.
  • Devices - You can view your Chrome device details on this page. See View Chrome device information.
  • App management - Configure policies and settings for Chrome apps one app at a time (as compared to User settings where you manage Chrome apps within an organizational unit). All of the app polices that you can set in User settings (such as block, allow, force install, and recommend apps in the Chrome Web Store to your users) are available in App management.

    Additionally, App management lets you view a consolidated list of your configured apps from all of the organizational units in your domain.  You can also configure settings for customizing apps and deploying an app as a kiosk app. See Manage Chrome Apps one at a time.     

  • Reports - You can view reports about your Chrome devices on this page.
  • Shipments (Appears only for customers who purchased devices directly from Google) - You can view your device shipment details on this page. See Track Chrome device orders.
    • Devices will only show up on the Shipments page if your order was fulfilled from Google inventory. Devices ordered from vendors, resellers, or third-party sites will not appear on this page. As of late 2013, Google stopped fulfilling orders from its warehouse, so administrators will not see any information related to recent hardware orders made through authorized resellers on this page. Please contact your reseller for shipment details.

It can take up to 24 hours for changes to propagate through Google's systems, although you will most likely see them sooner.

  • Set up Google Cloud Print to print from your Chrome devices in your organization.
  • In the Admin console, click Device management > Devices (to the right of Chrome management) to see information about all of the Chrome devices in your domain. On this page, you can also create organizational units to group devices that share the same configuration.
  • Configure most of your Chrome devices to use the Stable release channel, but also have a few devices on the Beta and Development release channels. This helps your organization test upcoming Chrome features, detect incompatibilities between Chrome and your environment, and more. To configure a subset of devices to use a different channel, create an organizational unit to group those devices, then set the Release Channel device setting for that unit.
  • To learn more about deploying Chrome devices in your organization, see the Chrome Device Deployment Guide.
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