Manage Chrome updates (CBCM)

Applies to Windows computers that are managed using Chrome Browser Cloud Management (CBCM).

As an administrator, you can manage Chrome Browser updates for users in your organization. Chrome releases a full browser update about every 6 weeks. Minor updates, such as security fixes and software updates, happen every 2–3 weeks.

To keep Chrome Browser secure and up to date, we recommend using automatic updates instead of manual updates. If your organization deploys Chrome Browser to thousands of devices or if you have bandwidth restrictions, you might need to customize how updates are deployed.

Configure auto-updates

Turn on auto-updates (recommended)

By default, Chrome Browser updates to the latest version of Chrome when it’s available. We recommend that you keep the default auto-update settings. That way, your users' devices will automatically update to new versions of Chrome Browser as they’re released on the Stable channel. Your users will get critical security fixes and new features as they become available.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Chrome browser updates, select Always allow updates.
  7. Click Save.
Turn off updates

If you need to stop Chrome Browser updates, you can turn off automatic updates and prevent users from manually updating the browser themselves.

Caution: We do not recommend turning off browser updates. Doing so prevents software fixes and security patches from being applied to Chrome Browser. You are also at risk of crashes and security vulnerabilities. If you must turn off updates, make sure you have a process to ensure timely updates throughout your network. Better yet, include a plan to re-enable updates as soon as possible.
  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Chrome browser updates, select Updates disabled.
  7. Click Save.
Turn off Chrome Browser component updates (Optional)

Even if you turn off updates for Chrome Browser, browser components, such as Widevine DRM, won’t automatically stop updating.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Component updates, select Disable updates for components.
  7. Click Save.

Note: This policy does not apply to all components. For a full list of exempted components, see ComponentUpdatesEnabled.

Customize updates

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Schedule auto-updates outside of work hours

You can prevent auto-updates from occurring during certain time periods, such as during your organization’s peak working hours.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Suppress auto-update check, enter the start time, in 24-hour format (hh:mm), that you want to begin suppressing checks for browser updates each day.
  7. Enter the length of time, in minutes, that you want to suppress browser update checks for.
  8. Click Save.
Prevent Chrome Browser from updating beyond a specific version

Pinning Chrome Browser to a major version, such as 86, allows computers to continue to receive security updates for as long as 86 is the major version on the Stable channel. Or, you can pin the browser to a specific version, such as 86.0.3945.88, so that computers only update to that version.

Google gradually updates computers on the Stable channel to new versions of Chrome Browser over a few weeks. Sometimes, updates might take longer. If you pin browser updates, computers in your organization only update after the version is fully released to the Stable channel.

Caution: You should only pin Chrome Browser updates temporarily, such as while testing a new version of Chrome Browser. Don't forget to unpin users' computers or they can fall behind on critical security updates. Users will also miss new features.
  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Chrome browser updates, select Always allow updates.
  7. For Target version prefix, enter the version number of the Chrome Browser version that you want computers to update to. You can use version numbers with up to 4 parts, such as 86.0.3987.162. Unless you specify the exact version, include a period (.) after the version number to pin updates to the highest available version. For example,
    • Specify the major version, such as 86., to let computers update to the highest available version of 86.
    • Specify the major and minor version, such as 86.2., to let computers update to the highest available version of 86.2.
    • Specify the exact version, such as 86.0.3987.16$, that you want computers to update to. Include $ after the version number to pin updates to that exact version.
  8. Click Save.
Roll back Chrome Browser to a previous version

To make sure that users are protected by the latest security updates, we recommend that they use the latest version of Chrome Browser. By running earlier versions of Chrome Browser, you will expose your users to known security issues. If you roll back, each user’s browsing data is automatically deleted unless you do one of the following:

Starting in Chrome version 83, Chrome Browser stores a snapshot of user information locally on devices after each major version update. The three most recent snapshots are retained. When you roll back to Chrome version 83 or newer, user data such as bookmarks and autofill data are restored from the snapshot.

  • Data saved in snapshots includes bookmarks, browsing history, session restore data, passwords, autofill, cookies, and browser sign-in state.
  • Users who don’t use Chrome Sync lose data that they stored locally on devices during the time between the latest version update and rollback. 
  • Each snapshot is approximately 10 MB but might be larger if the user has a large number of history entries or bookmarks.

If you’re rolling back to a version that’s earlier than 83, each user’s browsing data is automatically deleted unless you do one of the following:

  • Turn on Chrome sync—You can turn on Chrome sync for all users or advise them to turn it on themselves. For details, see Force users to sign in to Chrome Browser. After you roll back, users need to sign in again to Chrome Browser to see their synced information.
  • Turn on roaming user profiles—If you turn on the roaming profile policy in Chrome Browser, users who sign in to a Windows computer in your organization will automatically see their synced information when they open Chrome Browser. For details, see Use Chrome Browser with Roaming User Profiles.

Note: You can only use this policy to roll back to the 3 latest major releases of Chrome Browser. For information about how to downgrade to earlier Chrome Browser versions, see Downgrade your Chrome version.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. For Target version prefix, enter the version number of the Chrome Browser version that you want computers to roll back to. You can use version numbers with up to 4 parts, such as 85.0.3987.162.
    • Specify the major version, such as 85., to let computers roll back to a version of 85.
    • Specify the major and minor version, such as 85.2., to let computers roll back to a version of 85.2.
    • Specify the exact version, such as 85.0.3987.162, that you want computers to roll back to.
  7. Under the target version prefix that you specified, select Rollback to target version.
  8. Click Save.
Stagger update checks to reduce bandwidth

You can delay checks for auto-updates to help reduce peak bandwidth use within a network.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Auto-update check period, enter the number of minutes between automatic update checks.
    Enter 0 to disable all auto-update checks (not recommended).
  7. Click Save.
Speed up updates

After a Chrome Browser update gets applied to a computer, users need to restart Chrome Browser for it to take effect. You can display a notification prompting users to restart, but they might not restart the browser for some time.

If you want users to restart their browser sooner, you can force Chrome Browser to automatically relaunch after a certain time.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Relaunch notification, select an option:
    • Force relaunch after a period—Users see a recurring message that Chrome Browser will automatically relaunch after a certain time. Users can dismiss the notification and continue to use Chrome Browser until the end of the relaunch period, at which point it will automatically relaunch.
    • No relaunch notification—Chrome Browser indicates to the user that a relaunch is needed via subtle changes to its menu. No notifications are shown.
    • Show notification recommending relaunch—Users see a recurring message that they should relaunch Chrome Browser. Users can dismiss the notification and keep using the old version of Chrome Browser until they choose to relaunch Chrome Browser.
  7. (Optional) Set the notification period, in hours.
    If you selected Force relaunch after a period, Chrome Browser automatically relaunches after the specified time period elapses.
  8. Click Save.
Provide cache-friendly download URLs

You can configure settings so that the Google Update server attempts to provide cache-friendly URLs for update payloads in its responses. This helps to reduce bandwidth and improve response times by caching and reusing frequently requested webpages.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome.
  3. Click Settingsand thenUsers & browsers.
  4. To apply the setting to all enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  5. Go to Chrome updates.
  6. Next to Download URL class override, select Attempt to provide cache-friendly download URLs.
  7. Click Save.

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