How to enable Focus follows cursor in Chrome OS

Chrome OS has a hidden function, impressed by the Linux desktop, that may make your work on the Chromebook a bit extra environment friendly.


Picture: CC Picture Labs/Shutterstock

Being a Linux desktop consumer for many years, sure options from that surroundings are so clearly productive, it by no means ceases to amaze me that different desktops do not make use of them. One such function is focus follows mouse. My guess is that lots of people do not know what that is.

For individuals who do not know, let me clarify.

On a typical desktop, if you wish to swap from one window to the subsequent, you progress your mouse to that window and click on it. That motion of clicking the window provides it focus so you can begin working with no matter instrument the window homes. In the event you do not click on that different window, no matter you had been beforehand working in nonetheless has focus. 

SEE: Analysis: Video conferencing instruments and cloud-based options dominate digital workspaces; VPN and VDI much less in style with SMBs (TechRepublic Premium)

This is a greater option to clarify:

  • You are working in Window A, which is a phrase processor.
  • It is advisable to analysis one thing so that you click on on Window B, which is an internet browser.
  • You begin typing and no matter you sort seems in Window B.
  • Had you not clicked on Window B, although you moved your cursor to Window B, Window A nonetheless has focus, so no matter you sort will seem in Window A.

That is focus follows click on (or click on to focus).

Focus follows mouse goes one thing like this:

  • You are working in Window A.
  • It is advisable to work in Window B.
  • You progress your mouse to Window B and begin typing.
  • As a result of your mouse moved to Window B, that window now has focus.

Focus follows mouse requires fewer steps. It is also extra environment friendly. As a substitute of getting to click on on a window, you merely transfer your cursor to the window you needed to work with. Linux desktops took this one step additional and supplied an auto-raise performance. So once you hovered your cursor over a window it not solely gave it focus, it raised it above all different home windows. When you began utilizing that function, it turned clear that each one different desktops weren’t practically as environment friendly.

So to all of you Chromebook customers, seeking to make your UI a bit extra environment friendly, now you can allow an experimental tackle focus follows mouse, referred to as Focus follows cursor. The one caveat to that is that you simply have to be utilizing Chrome OS on both the developer or canary channel (because the steady channel doesn’t embrace the function). Learn the way to change your Chromebook channel in The right way to change channels in your Chromebook.

With that stated, let me present you how you can allow Focus Follows Mouse.

The right way to allow focus follows cursor on a Chromebook

Open Chrome in your Chromebook and kind the next within the handle bar:


Within the ensuing window, choose Enabled from the drop-down related to Focus follows cursor (Determine A).

Determine A


Enabling Focus follows cursor in Chrome 94.0.4601.0.

As soon as you have enabled the function, you may must restart your Chromebook for the change to take impact.

The one factor you may must learn about utilizing Focus follows cursor is that it actually solely works when your home windows aren’t maximized. In the event you work with a number of home windows, you may need to both snap them to the perimeters or shrink them so you possibly can match them in your desktop, in any other case, you possibly can’t hover your cursor over the window you need to have focus. 

Focus follows cursor is a good function to make use of when effectivity is essential to your work. You may click on much less and work sooner. That is to not say Focus follows cursor is for everybody. Some folks discover this function a bit irritating, particularly when you’re a bit clumsy with the trackpad or mouse. However when you run both the Developer or Canary channel in your Chromebook, you must give this function a attempt to see if it does not make it easier to develop into extra environment friendly.

Subscribe to TechRepublic’s How To Make Tech Work on YouTube for all the most recent tech recommendation for enterprise execs from Jack Wallen.

Additionally see

Recent Articles


Related Stories

Leave A Reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Stay on op - Ge the daily news in your inbox