Google- Chrome Browser Maintenance

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Problems accessing web pages and general browser maintenance?

A browser is used every day for a multitude of tasks. As more applications are offered via cloud, the browser tends to retain more and more information. Over time the data build-up can cause problems with logging into or bringing up websites. Clearing your cache means that all the temporary files your browser has downloaded are deleted - it gives you a sort of "clean slate", and forces your web browser to re-download fresh versions of all the files from the sites you visit.

Browsers also keep a 'keyring' of saved passwords, while this is convenient you will have issues as ClassLink has this same function but is more secure. When you have saved passwords for both Google Chrome browser and MyApps.BoiseSchools.org there will be a conflict and sites will become inaccessible.

Note: The following information is intended for Boise School District Google CHROME Accounts

Clearing the browser

Shortcut Keys-While in Google Chrome with one tab open, on the keyboard, hold Ctrl+Shift and tap Delete (Chromebook press Backspace Key) -& Skip to step 6. (Click here if using Safari on a MACBook)

  1. Open one Chrome tab or Close all but one tab in Chrome
  2. Select the browser settings then,
  3. On the left of the page Click Privacy and security
  4. Click Clear Browsing Data
    • The next steps are important or the cleaning will not function completely.
  5. Select Advanced
  6. Set Time Range to All time
  7. Check mark ALL eight boxes listed to avoid a conflict of access even clear passwords saved in under District Google account.
  8.  Click Clear data
  9. Close the browser and re-open.

Note: Students can preform clearing browser cached data to reset corrupt Google Meets links and other issues that may occur with browsing.  Students are not able to remove the first two boxes; browsed pages or download history, enter a help ticket for assistance to clear these options for students.

Why clear the browser?

Since cache is a folder stored inside computer, huge collection of data may run you out of disk space and slow down your device. Clearing cache clears significant amount of data from the browser memory.

Your browser shows up older page content and ignores fresh content from stored web sites. So, you may end up reading obsolete content or may not land to what you were looking for.

The information stored in browser cache is sometimes incomplete or corrupt.  Since cache holds downloaded content, clearing would mean that websites would load slower (for the first time) but more complete when you visit the websites again.

As a Side Note:  To check your MyApps saved passwords

In upper right select My Profile On the left select Password Locker For any systems that read completed Click Edit, then edit to your updated password or Delete

Clean Up Extensions

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On your computer, open Chrome. At the top right, you will see a puzzle piece

Click this then click Manage extensions.   A new tab will open showing all of your current extensions.  Remove any extensions that you do not actively use or recognize.  No need to worry if an extension is accidentally removed just Open the Chrome Web Store to reinstall it.  Clicking the details will also indicate if there are updates needed for the extension to function correctly.   

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Extensions with a red icon attached are mandated by District Policy and can not be removed from your BSD Google account.

After the Browser is cleaned up you might want some additional pop-up protection, Further information about protecting your accounts and equipment with a popup blocker in Chrome here.

Protecting your accounts

Some example of scare tactics used while browsing on the internet, You might see something like this, 

Notice the highlighted URL is NOT associated to Microsoft.

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Scareware

While surfing the internet, there may be a warning that there is a virus, malware, or even corrupted files on the computer. Some have even been known to tell you that illegal porn has been detected on your hard drive. The display can even look like a real-time scan of the computer. It might show an actual “scanned” image of your hard drive to seem more legitimate or hijack the logo of Microsoft Security Essentials, this can happen frequently when searching and clicking on Google images.

Most of these pop-ups ask you to call a number to speak to a “technician” in order to clear up the “virus”. If you do call this number you would be asked to install a piece of software for the person on the other end of the line to access your computer to remove this “virus.” Of course, there will be a one-time fee you would have to pay for them to take care of the issue. This software is used to infiltrate the hard drive, steal passwords, credit information and other personal data. Oh, and to ensure that you get “infected” again.

Another fake pop-up will ask you to click a link or button below to speak to a “technician” through a chat window. This scenario actually employs bots – programs to mimic human interaction by responding to key words or phrases in a certain manner. Again, a credit card is required to purchase this one time service.  The only thing legit about this “offer” is the charge to your card.

When faced with one of these pop-ups or scareware scams, it is best to just shut down your browser. Don’t click “No” or “Cancel,” or even the “x” at the top right corner of the screen.  Some scareware is designed so that any of those buttons can activate the program, or automatically contact the call center. Just closing the tab it’s in will only cause it to open again.

While in your browser on the keyboard press Shift + ESC  (or Search + ESC) to see the browser Task Manager, Highlight the browser tab, and click “End Task” or "End Process".  Then Clear the browser history and change your passwords.

Adware

Symptom:  I keep getting pop-up ads that won't go away.
What you are seeing is from a Chrome Extension installed (It' s a very common issue throughout the district). The following steps will solve the problem.
  1. Open Chrome.
  2. Locate the menu button (three dots, upper right corner of the window).
  3. Find "More Tools => Extensions"
  4. Locate any extensions you do not normally use, intentionally install or do not recognize (usually pesky extensions search engines, "PDF Maker (ads)", coupon savers, weather monitors etc), then click "Remove".
It is encouraged to then close all Chrome windows and reopen Chrome again. 

Redirect sites hosting inappropriate content

Occasionally content may be removed, you may see a screen like this,

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No action needs to be taken, this is informational to let you know what happened.

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