How To: Package your Google Chrome Extensions and Install


How to on packaging custom Google Chrome Extensions and installation.

So you have just finished learning how to create your own personal Google Chrome Extensions.  Feeling like a developer you would love nothing more than to share you latest Web Extension with your friends. There are only a few steps in the process and before long all your friends will be enjoying your work.

Step #1- Package That Extension

In creating the extension I showed you how to “load unpacked extensions” and install your extension within your Chrome Browser. However, this time we are going to “Pack extension” for delivery to you friends. Click the wrench in your Google Chrome browser and scroll down to Tools, then click on Extensions.

How To Create Google Chrome Web Extensions 1 BooyaGadget
load unpacked exetensions

A new tab will open up and you will see a list of all the extensions you have installed. Click on “Pack extension” and a dialogue box will pop-up on the screen.  Browse for an “Extension Root Directory,” which is the folder that your extension is located in.  Select that folder and click OK to continue. You can set a “Private Key” for you extension, which is basically a password. This is an optional step, but if you do choose to set a password make sure you don’t forget it. Once you are ready click OK and the extension will be packaged. Chrome will create a .CRX file, this is your extension is a nicely wrapped package.

How To Create Google Chrome Web Extensions 2 BooyaGadget
Pack Extension

Step #2- Install That Extension

In our last tutorial, How To Create an Extension for Google Chrome,I had you do the install Unpacked. This time, and for the sake of your non-technical friends we are going to install the extension packaged. I am trying to drag this out for effect, but the reality is that installing an extension in Chrome is a simple as dragging the .CRX file into the browser where you have all of your Apps. Chrome will ask you if you are sure the file is safe, click OK and the extension will install.

How To Create Google Chrome Web Extensions 3 BooyaGadget
install the extension packaged

There you have it. And just for reading I will share some of our Booya created Extensions, that really work like Web Apps. If you are interested download our ESPN3 and Hulu Plus Apps.

How To Create Google Chrome Web Extensions 4 BooyaGadget
Hulu Plus
How To Create Google Chrome Web Extensions 5 BooyaGadget
ESPN Watch Icon

Each of these Apps will install under your Apps area within Google Chrome. If you are having any trouble downloading the Apps, right click “Save As” and save the App to your computer so that you can manually drag it into your App area. Otherwise Chrome will attempt to install the extension automatically and you may get an error message. Enjoy!