Posted on 30th November 2017 by Darren Wallace

Block Google Chrome Extensions with a Profile

Hi All. You guessed it, it’s another customer request blog 😛

I had another education customer request us to block the installation of Google Chrome Extensions for their student devices. The little darlings Students had been installing VPN extensions in order to try to by-pass the local proxy filtering. These didn’t actually work still (mini fist pump), but did stop Chrome from working with that user account.

Profile to the rescue!

After a little bit of digging, I managed to build a profile that will:

a) Disable any currently installed Chrome extensions

b) Prevent the installation of additional extensions

The profile can be found on our Amsys profile GitHub Repo and has been tested on 10.12.x and 10.13.x but make sure to test in your environment!

More Details

So I found the key after digging and searching through Google’s Chromium policy list. The key I was looking for was ‘ExtensionInstallBlacklist’ which would typically be used to black-list specific Extensions. However, the Chromium developers also allow wildcards, so by using the asterisk (*) in the key, we could block all extensions

<key>ExtensionInstallBlacklist</key>	
<array>
	<string>*</string>
</array>

 

How’s it look?

So if you’ve already got extensions installed (in this example I have 1Password and Google Docs Offline) they will be disabled and will not respond to attempts to reenable them:

Profile Installed

Profile Removed

And if they have toolbar items, these are automatically removed

 

And finally, if they try to install any other extensions:

 

Summary

And there we go, I’ve provided some details and a profile on blocking Google Chrome extensions on macOS. Hopefully that’ll help some of you out! As always, if you have any questions, queries or comments, let us know below (or @daz_wallace on Mac Admins Slack) and I’ll try to respond to and delve into as many as I can.

The usual Disclaimer:

While the author has taken care to provide our readers with accurate information, please use your discretion before acting upon information based on the blog post. Amsys will not compensate you in any way whatsoever if you ever happen to suffer a loss/inconvenience/damage because of/while making use of information in this blog.