What Chrome's Bundled Plugins Actually Do

What Chrome's Bundled Plug-Ins Actually Do

Chrome doesn't rely much on plugins, but it's packed with five of them when you load up Chrome for the first time. How-To Geek explains what the heck they actually do.

If you've ever popped over to your chrome://plugins page, you've probably seen some weird names like "Widevine Content Decryption Module" and wondered what exactly they do (and if you can disable them). So here are the five plugins packed into Chrome and what they do:

  1. Widevine Content Decryption Module: This allows Chrome to play DRM-protected HTML5 video and audio, like you'd find on Netflix.
  2. Native Client: This allows developers to run C or C++ code on a web site. For the most part, this is really only used for some of the more complicated apps and games in the Chrome Web Store.
  3. Adobe Flash: This is Adobe Flash, but tweaked a bit for Google Chrome.
  4. Chrome Remote Desktop Viewer: This is the Chrome Remote Desktop app needed to access your computer remotely. The plug-in doesn't do anything unless you activate it.
  5. Chrome PDF Viewer: This one's pretty self-explanatory: it's the plug-in that lets you read PDF files.

That's it. You can always disable any of these, but you'll lose functionality as expected. As always, if you see anything weird on your plug-ins page, be sure to research it a little more to make sure it's nothing that could cause problems.

Google Chrome Includes 5 Browser Plug-Ins, and Here's What They Do [How-To Geek]


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