Scratchpad FAQ

Scratchpad is a lightweight text editing app developed by Google and included by default on Chrome notebooks. You can also download Scratchpad for Chrome on other platforms from the Chrome Web Store.

How to use Scratchpad

To write notes in Scratchpad, it's simple. Just open Scratchpad from your New Tab page, and start typing.

The first time you open the app, you'll see a welcome screen and a one-time authorization.

Authorize Scratchpad to sync to Google Docs

Chrome notebooks store everything online, and Scratchpad is no different. You can authorize Scratchpad to synchronize all your notes with Google Docs. To do this, click Authorize when prompted the first time you open the app.

If you don't want your notes to be synced with Google Docs, no problem. Click Local only to keep them all under wraps. However, if you use another computer, your notes will not be accessible.

Changed your mind? Click the sync icon in the bottom right of the Scratchpad Note List to authorize.

Your notes are automatically synced every 30 seconds, but you can manually sync by clicking the sync icon (if it is blue).

Find notes on other computers

If you've synced your notes to Google Docs, they appear in the "Scratchpad" folder within Google Docs. You can also install the Scratchpad app on any Chrome browser, for example on your desktop computer, to access the notes in a handy pop-up window.

Tip: You need to sync with the same account across browsers to ensure you see the right notes. Scratchpad does not support multiple account sync at this time.

Work offline

When you're offline, the sync icon will be gray. Don't worry - Scratchpad will still work, and your local notes will be accessible. Changes made will be synced the next time you go online.

Rename notes

You can rename notes from the Note List. Select a note and click the pen icon to rename.

Delete notes

Notes can be deleted from either the note itself (useful if you just need to double-check the contents of similarly-titled notes), or from the note list.

Note (sorry) that when we say "deleted", we really mean "archived". We've pressed delete ourselves once too many times accidentally; if you're synced, all your notes stay in your Google Docs but will disappear locally.

To permanently erase any traces of that gift shopping list or secret mission, delete the notes from within Google Docs.

Give feedback

If you have any feedback or run into any problems with Scratchpad on your Chrome notebook, click the bug icon bug icon on your browser toolbar to let us know.