Chrome is by far the most-used browser on the web today. While it’s packed with features for developers, and can be augmented with extensions and themes, it’s also designed to be simple to install and use. The standard Chrome installation process is fast and easy across operating systems and devices.
However, it doesn’t fit everyone’s needs, and it doesn’t always work perfectly either.
Luckily, there’s another option.
The Chrome offline installer lets you install Chrome without an internet connection, or to multiple devices. It’s a full-size standalone file that you can copy across devices.
Let’s first review what normal installation looks like.
Installing and updating Chrome: The basics
Installing Chrome is simple, though the full instructions for installation vary slightly across operating systems. To check whether you’re using the most up-to-date version of Chrome, check your version against the latest release.
To find your version, open Chrome, then click the menu icon (three vertical dots) in the top right of your Chrome window, then click Help > About Google Chrome.
You’ll see your version number here:
Above the version number, you’ll see Chrome automatically checking for updates. When it’s done, you’ll see either an Update button or a message stating that Chrome is up to date.
Updating Chrome is even faster and simpler than installing it to begin with: you can do it in just two steps.
And there’s also the question of installing Chrome on additional devices.
When you go to the Chrome website and click the download button, what actually gets downloaded is a very small file.
That file then downloads the full set of Chrome installation files as and when it needs them. It’s called a “stub installer” or “net installer,” and it’s designed to be efficient—which it is, most of the time.
What’s wrong with the normal installer?
Chrome’s normal installer works fine for most individual users, most of the time. However, it’s not always the best choice. Here’s why.
It requires an internet connection
When you download an installer, it contains a program that “assembles” the application you want, together with the files it needs to do so. A full, standalone installer contains the installer program, plus all the installation files. When it needs a file, it gets it from your computer.
The stub installer works differently. Instead of downloading all the required files, then reaching for them on your computer when it needs them, the stub installer downloads files from Google over the internet when it needs them.
That means you need a working internet connection for the duration of the installation process—not great for people with patchy connections, with metered data, or who are out of reach of the internet when they want to install.
It installs to just one device
If you’re installing Chrome on multiple devices simultaneously, the standard download is also problematic: each instance of Chrome will be simultaneously downloading the same files.
That’s bad for your home broadband if you’re installing Chrome on a couple of devices, and equally bad for your business connection if you’re adding Chrome to a new suite of tablets, laptops, or desktops.
It can glitch or fail on your device
There are also occasions when the standard download method doesn’t work for some reason. Having your computer clock set to the wrong time or having Smart Screen enabled on Windows 10 machines, for example, can interfere with the standard download procedure.
In that case, you might find yourself watching “waiting to download” or “downloading” for a long time. But sometimes it’s quicker and easier to simply use the standalone installer than to troubleshoot a glitchy install.
That, friends, is why the Chrome offline installer exists.
The offline installer is a full-size standalone installer
The Chrome offline installer downloads all the installation files you need to put Chrome on your device. When you run it, it gets the installation files from your computer rather than from the web, so it’s a much bigger initial download than the stub installer. Once it’s downloaded, you don’t need an internet connection and you can use it on multiple devices simultaneously.
Here’s where to get it. But first, a quick word about where not to get it.
Third-party offline installer links
There are a lot of sites offering Chrome offline installer links. They’re never a good idea. Some links lead to sites that demand you accept push notifications to prove you’re not a robot, while others download malware instead of or alongside the offline installer. At best, they’re just the regular Google links.
Get it from Chrome directly using the links below. The direct download links here are safe and come directly from Google’s own dl.google.com service, which offers binary direct downloads of Google apps like Chrome and Earth.
Downloading the Chrome offline installer for Windows
Chrome offline installer is available from the Chrome website, but it’s not easy to find. Note that when you do find it, it looks a lot like the regular Chrome download page. Click “Download Chrome anyway” and you’ll see different dialogs and a different file size to download. These downloads will work for Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and 10.
This is the Chrome web page for standalone downloads.
If you want to download the offline installer for a single user on a Windows machine, this is the link for you.
This will match your operating system architecture the way the standard Chrome download page does, so it’s good for both 32-bit and 64-bit Windows machines.
However, it doesn’t work for everyone. If you specifically want to download Chrome 32-bit, here’s the page you need.
If you prefer:
- This is the 32-bit Chrome offline installer direct download link.
- For 64-bit Windows machines, this is the specific web page link.
- This is the 64-bit direct download link.
What about if you want to download Chrome’s offline installer for use on multiple machines? That’s one of the main reasons people want the offline installer, after all.
If you’re downloading the Chrome offline installer from one of the web pages, rather than directly, here’s how to do it.
Click to download, then click “Accept and Install” to agree to the terms and download the installer. The file is 57MB, significantly larger than the stub installer.
Once you’ve downloaded the file, you’ll be prompted by system dialogs. You might have to save the file and then run it manually, depending on your specific Windows version and how you have it set up. You will not need an internet connection to install Chrome once this file has been downloaded.
Once the installer has downloaded, you can copy it onto a USB and use it to install Chrome on multiple computers without needing an internet connection.
It’s worth noting that Chrome offline installations don’t automatically update. If you don’t want to update automatically, and you’re installing on multiple devices, consider the Windows MSI Chrome installer.
Downloading the Chrome offline installer on Mac
Apple dropped support for the 32-bit version of Chrome, so there’s only a 64-bit option.
Here’s the web page link to download it. The file is about 80MB.
Once it’s downloaded, open the file googlechrome.dmg and drag Chrome to the Applications folder. You don’t need an internet connection to do this.
Downloading the Chrome offline installer on Linux
There’s a Chrome offline installer for the most popular Linux builds: Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, and openSUSE.
Here’s the link. The file is about 59MB.
For all other Linux distros, you’ll need to download the Chromium package.
Once the file is downloaded, click “OK” to open the package and then click “Install Package.” You can do this any time without an internet connection.
Note that there’s no Chrome offline installer for Chrome OS, iOS, or Android.