Wednesday, November 23, 2011

How to open multiple Gmail accounts in Chrome...

[Although the title of this post relates specifically to Gmail, this feature / functionality can be used for a wide assortment of online applications.]

I love the Google Web Applications, including Gmail, Calendar and Reader.  I also manage many Gmail accounts for various reasons.  One thing that I find myself doing a lot is switching from one Google Account to another.

Typically, I start my day by logging into my personal Gmail account.  However, there are times when I have to create a new appointment using a different Google Account.  I used to do the following steps:

  1. Log out of my personal account
  2. Log into the account that I want to create the appointment in
  3. Create the appointment
  4. Log out of that account
  5. Log back into my personal account
I always wished there was a way to stay logged into my own personal account, open a tab, log into the other account and do what needs to be done there, but unfortunately that does not work.  If you are already logged into Google, when you open another tab to another Google resource (gmail, calendar...) it keeps you in the same account.

The way around it is to use Chrome's Incognito mode.  If you are logged into a Google account, create a new window in Incognito mode (File -> New Incognito Window).  In that window, you can access another Google Resource under a different account, all the while staying in your original account on the first browser window.

This neat little trick was introduced to me by a co-worker, and it has been a real time saver.  I hope that it is a timesaver for you as well.

Pay it forward.


bohol said...

This is what I've been looking for. Logging in multiple accounts is such a time-consuming routine. But I have a question: where can I find the File menu of Google Chrome? I must be using an older or newer version.

Carlus Henry said...


I am using a Mac, so typically the File menu is always at the same place it is for all of the applications that I use.

I think that you may be using a different operating system, and as such, you may want to look at the wrench icon that is on the right at the same level as the URL bar.

Hope that helps...


Carlus Henry said...

I am not sure what happened, but I did receive the following comment from Janice Pearl

Now, Chrome has an even more convenience way to work around this problem. You don't need to use incognito mode. If you've upgraded to the latest Chrome browser, you'll see the top-most left on the browser has an icon - That's the user icon. So now click it and you get a dropdown where you can create multiple users. Each chrome user can have their own accounts specific to their profile. To open a new user browser, you just have to click the user list and select the user, another window opens up. So you can have multiple user accounts running simultaneously!

Anonymous said...

Thanks! this is what I've been looking for! different windows for different user accounts :-)

Anonymous said...

Truly, the easiest approach (other than be able to run more than one instance of chrome at a time) is to have more than one browser running. Open a different gmail account in each browser. The advantage is that you can have multiple google docs, etc activities going on. Plus it is easier to keep track.

Anonymous said...

Its simple...go to the account you have logged in . Click on the dropdown menu on the righthand side top. Click Add Account and there you go...

Malik said...

thanks for easy approach. it worked.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for sharing this! Exactly what I wanted, hadn't thought that incognito would do the trick!