Contrary to popular belief, Chromebook is much more than “just a web browser.” Chrome can now run many applications that were previously only found on a desktop computer.

We’ve picked out some of the best Chrome apps that  make the life of a Network Administrator a little easier, and a few that will save time stress when a teacher want to do Python coding at the last minute.

Secure Shell

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Secure shell is a terminal client that runs in the Chrome browser. The application uses Native-Client to connect to SSH servers directly from the browser. Most recently I’ve used Secure Shell to manage a Linux web server and a number of wireless access points. As a quick and simple SSH client it’s an excellent tool to have available.

Session data is synchronised across browsers, so if you move from a Chromebook to a desktop Chrome install all your connection settings move with you.

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Chrome RDP

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Need a real Remote Desktop client for your Chromebook? Look no further than Chrome RDP.

Chrome RDP claims to be the only true Microsoft Remote Desktop app for the Chrome browser, and I haven’t seen anything to argue otherwise. The app can be trialled for free for seven days after which a license can be purchased for $9.99.

Chrome RDP is my most used Chromebook app. If you’re without a desktop, Chrome RDP allows you to quickly remote in manage servers without waiting for Windows to boot.

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Google Apps Scripts

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Google Apps Scripts allows you to tie together functions of the various Google Apps using standard JavaScript. Use it to automate processes, share data between apps, or create your own user interfaces.

Google Apps Scripts is complex, but if you’re a Google Apps for Education user, and have the time to invest, it’s possible to create some very powerful tools for your school.

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MIT App Inventor Launcher

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Many schools, particularly in the UK, are using the MIT App Inventor to create Android applications in the browser. This Chrome App creates an simple shortcut to the App Inventor website.

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Python Fiddle

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The unfortunately named “Python Fiddle” allows students to create and run Python code in the browser. With Python becoming more popular in schools and with ICT Teachers, this is a simple way to give students access to a coding environment without putting your desktops or network at risk.

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HTML Editey

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HTML Editey allows you to create HTML code in the browser and save it to Google Drive . The resulting web pages can then be shared with Google Drive acting as a web host. To find out more information about hosting webpages in Google Drive check out our article.

Also available is CSS Editey, the same idea but for CSS files.

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Check out the latest Chromebooks on Amazon

Are there any Chrome apps you’re using that you think people should know about? Let us know in the comments!

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About Author

Profile photo of Karl Rivers

Karl is an award winning Director of IT for the Royal Grammar School Guildford, based near London, England. He has been working in education for more than ten years and founded ClassThink in 2013 to share technology best practice with other schools. In 2014 he won the NAACE Impact Award for support services in schools, and writes edtech articles for Education Executive Magazine.

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