Fix: Backspace Shortcut Not Working in Google Chrome

Don’t you just hate it when you get accustomed to using a certain keyboard shortcut in an application only to find it removed by the developer? This is precisely what happened with the Backspace key in Google Chrome with the 52 update. Before this change, pressing the backspace key while on surfing the internet will Chrome allowed the users to go back a page. Some users found this feature to be extremely useful and were severely disappointed by this change.

With the Chrome 52 update, the Backspace shortcut was replaced with Alt key + left key. You can also use Alt key + right key to go forward. If you’re using a MacOS, use the Command button instead of Alt.

According to Google, the change was implemented in order to prevent careless users from losing their data by accidentally hitting the Backspace button. Apparently, the decision was made after a lot of developers complained that their users accidentally hit the backspace button assuming that a text field was selected.

I can get behind Google’s idea, but maybe it would have been better if they’d still leave a built-in method of bringing back the old behavior back for those of us that really wanted it.

Luckily, Google eventually made it better by releasing an extension for Chrome that reverts the browser to the old behavior where users can go back a page by pressing the Backspace key. If you were looking for a way to revert to the old Google Chrome behavior, follow the guide below where we’ll show you how to get the old shortcut back.

How to Restore the backspace shortcut to Google Chrome

Follow the steps down below to install the Go back with Backspace extension in order to get the old shortcut back:

  1. Visit this link (here) to navigate to the download page of the Go back with Backspace extension.
  2. Click the Add to Chrome button at the top to download and install the extension.
    Adding the Go Back with Backspace Extension to Chrome
    Adding the Go Back with Backspace Extension to Chrome
  3. Click on Add extension to confirm the installation.
    Confirm the installation of Go back with Backspace
    Confirm the installation of Go back with Backspace
  4. Once you see the Go Back With Backspace icon appearing in the top-right corner of the Chrome window, it’s ready to use. If, for some reason, you want to disable it a particular page, navigate to that page, click on the extension icon and choose Disable for this page.
    Disable the extension for a particular page
    Disable the extension for a particular page
  5. If you ever get tired of this extension and decide to revert back to the new behavior, open the action menu and go to More Tools > Extensions.
    go to More Tools > Extensions
    Go to More Tools > Extensions
  6. Then, navigate through the list o extension to locate Go Back with Backspace. Once you see it, either disable the toggle associated with it to stop it from functioning or click Remove to uninstall it completely.

Kevin Arrows


Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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Fix: Backspace Shortcut Not Working in Google Chrome

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