The idea of a home page has sort of fallen by the wayside with modern browsers, with their auto-reminder tabs and synchronization between devices. But that does not help that Chrome, arguably the most popular browser on complete desktop operating systems, is not entirely clear on what your home page is exactly. This can be particularly frustrating if your home page changes without your knowledge.
Difference between Home Page and New Tab Page
For some reason, Chrome distinguishes the New Tab page (the address that opens when you launch Chrome, opens a new window or opens a new tab) and the Home page ( the address that appears when you press the Home button in Chrome or on your keyboard). Both have different behaviors by default. If you have not dug into your Settings menu, the default start page for a new window or tab probably looks like this:
If you click on the Home button next to the address bar or on your computer keyboard, you could get another site:
And if you wonder why I chose to use Yahoo as the home page in Chrome, I did not do it. An unscrupulous program that I installed has changed this setting without my permission. This happens often because search engines like to pay developers to hide this sort of thing in the installation process.
How to Manually Edit Home Pages and New Tab Pages
You can manually edit the new tab page and home page in the "Settings" menu of Google Chrome. Click the three-dot button in the upper right corner, and then click the "Settings" option.
In the "Appearance" section, you can see some options under the "Show Home button" header. If you disable the "Show Home Button" button, the Home button disappears from your address bar (even if the Home button on your keyboard still works).
Under this option (when enabled), you can choose whether the Home button opens the New Tab page or open another Home page that you enter manually. I've changed the home page for google.com for this demo.
Now scroll down to the "Startup" section. Here you can choose what happens when Chrome starts. You can have it open your New Tab page, a specific page, or a set of pages (which is fine if you keep some tools like Gmail open all the time), or just open the same tabs you used last time you have run Chrome. For this demonstration, I will configure it to open a single tab howtogeek.com .
We now have a manually defined home page, a new tab page, and a start page. I will close Chrome and show how these settings affect its use. Opening Chrome again gives us the assigned Start Page, How-To Geek:
If we press the Home button on the address bar, we get the Google.com webpage:
And if we press the New Tab button, we get the default New Tab page, with a search bar and my most visited websites.
Note that if you prefer not to think about all of this, you can manually set the three parameters on an assigned web page or on the New Tab page. If you find that one of them changes (as often happens when downloading free programs), just go back to the Settings menu and restore them. Also note that some extensions may support your New Tab page. When this is the case, Chrome will display the extension controlling the page in the Settings menu.