How to make Google Chrome open .torrent files with µTorrent

Unfortunately Google Chrome doesn’t currently support opening files without downloading them, which is a pain when dealing with .torrent files which must be manually opened after downloading. I’ve been doing things this way for a while, but today stumbled across a handy feature in µTorrent which solves this minor annoyance: monitoring a directory for .torrent files.

Under Options ? Preferences ? Directories, tick the bottom two boxes (Automatically load .torrents from and Delete loaded .torrents), then type or browse to the path where Chrome downloads your files. For me, it’s D:\Downloads.

You can keep Delete loaded .torrents unticked if you like, but for me this option is a godsend as it saves me having to manually clear old .torrent files from my download directory.

To make the process as seamless as possible, make sure that Chrome’s Ask where to save each file before downloading option is unticked:

Tesco Bank rejecting some non-IE browsers for “security reasons”

When attempting to log into my Tesco Bank savings account recently, I was greeted with a message stating that my browser – the latest stable build of Google Chrome – is unsupported:

Tesco’s security concerns seem unfounded given that Google Chrome – which, incidentally, is based on same the WebKit rendering engine as Safari - was recently proven to be one of the most secure browsers.

Also, despite the site’s recommendation of a “modern version of Firefox”, I found that I was also prevented from logging in using the latest version of Firefox 3.6. Trusty (or should that be rusty?) old Internet Explorer 6 seems to work fine, and that’s not a particularly secure browser by any stretch of the imagination!

Strangely, I’m able to log into my Tesco Bank credit card account just fine with Chrome; it’s just the savings area that locks me out.

Fortunately the only reason I logged in was to withdraw my full balance ready to add to my 2010/11 ISA, but if I were looking to continue saving with Tesco, their short-sighted approach to browser support would certainly have me thinking twice.

Standalone installer for Google Chrome 4

Google offer a standalone installer for the Windows build of Google Chrome, as opposed to the standard download which is actually just a small stub application that connects to Google’s servers to download and install the actual browser.

The offline installer is handy if you have a number of machines on which to install or update Chrome, but unfortunately Google haven’t updated it recently, so you end up with version 3.0.195.38 rather than the latest all-singing, all-dancing, extension-supporting version 4.0.249.89.

You can of course update to 4.0.249.89 from the About screen, but this defeats the purpose of using the standalone installer in the first place, and you may be unlucky enough to be on a corporate network which breaks the in-browser upgrade functionality.

By using Fiddler2 to monitor the activity of the stub installer, I was able to establish that it connects to the following google.com URL to download the latest build:

http://cache.pack.google.com/edgedl/chrome/install/249.89/chrome_installer.exe

This is your standalone/offline installer, which can be used to install new instances of Chrome or upgrade existing ones (in which case the installer will upgrade your browser silently).

Google release new builds fairly frequently, so keep an eye on the Google Chrome Releases blog and substitute 249.89 with the build number of the latest stable (or development, if you’re feeling brave) build, e.g. http://cache.pack.google.com/edgedl/chrome/install/322.2/chrome_installer.exe for version 5.0.322.2.

Google Chrome now supports extensions

The beta version of Google Chrome has supported extensions for many months, but Google today released a stable Windows version of Chrome 4.0 which supports extensions together with a handful of other features and improvements. Both The Official Google Blog and the Google Chrome blog have full details.

To get the update, click the About Google Chrome menu option (viathe spanner icon) and click Check for Updates.

I’ll keep this post short and sweet as I’m now off to the extensions gallery to pick up some new enhancements for my favourite browser!

How to fix “Google Update installation failed with error 0x8004071c”

I just tried to install Google Chrome on my Windows 7 machine and was faced with this obscure error message.

I found the answer on the Chrome support site – it’s caused by the following registry key:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\
CurrentVersion\Setup\State\ImageState

Mine was set to IMAGE_STATE_UNDEPLOYABLE. Removing this value enabled the Google Chrome installer to proceed as normal.

Silverlight 4 beta works on Google Chrome

I’m currently testing out Google Chrome to see if it can replace Firefox as my main day-to-day browser, and have so far been quite impressed. However I hit a stumbling block when I tried to watch some tutorial videos on Microsoft’s site and was prompted to install Silverlight 3, which is unfortunately not supported on Chrome.

The easy thing to do at this point would have been to drop into Firefox or IE and install Silverlight from there, but where’s the fun in that?

Luckily the Silverlight 4 Beta seems to work fine in Chrome – all you need is the Windows Runtime component.