• Chromebook FAQs

  • Turning On and Off

    Where is the power button?

    There is a soft power button on the right side of the Chromebook, forward of a soft volume button.

    How do I charge my Chromebook?

    The charging port is on the left side of the Chromebook, toward the back.

    How long does the battery last?

    You can expect your battery to last for around 7 hours with continuous use.

    How do I connect to a wifi network?

    Your device will connect to the PISDStudent network at your school automatically.

    For other networks, such as your home or Starbucks, click your profile picture in the lower right corner of the screen. Click Network and browse to the desired wifi.  Enter the password if required.

    Can I use my Chromebook without Internet access?

    You can use Google docs even when offline. When you reconnect to the Internet, any changes you made in your docs will sync.

  • Logging In

    How do I log in? How do my students log in?

    Click the blue Next button, then the PISD Network Login button. Use your regular PISD username and password.

    You and your students can also log in using the QR code feature. QR codes can be printed from Webdesk.

    Do I need to log out every day?

    It is not necessary to log out every day.  However, periodically signing out will allow for updates to be pushed to the operating system.

    Do I need to turn the power off after I log out?

    No. Simply plug the Chromebook in to charge it.

  • Ports and Buttons

    What are the little ports around the edges of the Chromebook?

    There are two USB ports, an HDMI port, an SD card reader, and a charging port on the left side of the Chromebook, and a headphone port on the right side of the Chromebook.

    Can I use a flash drive on my Chromebook?

    Yes, you can access saved files from a flash drive that has been inserted into the USB port. You can also save files from your Chromebook to a flash drive.

    When would I use the HDMI port?

    The HDMI port allows your Chromebook to be connected to your projector. Ask your CTA or principal about acquiring one - it’s called an HDMI to VGA connector.

    Mirror Chromebook with Projector

    Go to Settings (click your profile picture in the lower right corner of the window, then the gear). In the search field on the screen that pops up, type the word mirror and turn on mirror.

  • Care and Maintenance (Updates)

    How do updates happen?

    The Chromebook will notify you when an update is needed by displaying an arrow in the lower right corner of your screen. Click the icon, then click Restart to update. But you can also manually check to see if updates are available (see next section below).

    press arrow then restart to update

    (Image credit Dysart.org)

    How do I manually update my Chromebook?

    1. Click the time button on the bottom right of the Chromebook screen.
    2. Select the Settings gear. 
    3. Scroll to select About Chrome OS on the left.
    5. Restart the Chromebook


    Disinfecting Technology in PISD - Help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The cleaning techniques described in this doc can be used to generally clean and disinfect devices like shared Chromebooks, printers, keyboards, copy machines, telephones and the like. 

    disinfecting technology

  • Keyboard

    Where is the caps lock key?

    There is no caps lock key on a Chromebook. However, you can activate CAPS LOCK.

    1. Press the Magnifying Glass (Search) key simultaneously with the Alt key.
    2. Or, permanently change the Magnifying Glass (Search) key to a Caps Lock by accessing Settings > Device > Keyboard. Next to Search, select Caps Lock.
      caps lock menu

    Where is the delete key?

    There is no Delete key, but you can press the Alt key and then press the Backspace key to delete. Otherwise, just go to the end of the word or line and use the Backspace key.

    Where are the function keys?

    There are no function keys on a Chromebook.

    What does the lock key do?

    If you need to walk away from your Chromebook, press and hold the lock key (at the top right of the keyboard) to lock the screen without logging out of the Chromebook. Simply enter your password for access.

    International Keyboard

    Choose keyboard language & special characters

    What do those funky little keys across the top of the keyboard do?

    Unique Keys on your Chromebook keyboard

    image showing the chromebook keyboard buttons

    How can I view two windows side by side?

    Press the alt key and bracket key at the same time. The [ key docks the window on the left side of the screen and the ] key docks the window on the right. Click or tap the □ at the top right to maximize the window when you’re done.

    What are some keyboard shortcuts/hot keys?

    Favorite keyboard shortcuts (posters)

    Google's list of all shortcut keys

    To view the on-screen keyboard shortcuts, press Ctrl + Alt + ?  

  • Enable Scrollbar

    Enable the Scrollbar on your Chromebook

    On Chromebooks (and other devices running Chrome OS), the default setting is to enable Overlay Scrollbars which means the scrollbars do not appear until you move your mouse pointer over the right edge of the Chrome browser window. This setting should be disabled so that scroll bars will always appear. These are the steps for disabling the Overlay Scrollbars setting in Chrome OS.

    1. In Chrome, type “chrome://flags/#overlay-scrollbars” in the address bar, then press Enter.

    2. Select “Disabled” from the list of options for this feature.

      Overlay scrollbars graphic  

    3. Restart Chrome in order for this change to take effect.

  • Printing

    Chromebooks on the PISDStudent wifi network can use Google Cloud Print printers.

    1. Press Ctrl+P to access printer settings.

    2. Next to Destination, click Change, then select the appropriate printer from the Google Cloud Print list:
      list of google cloud printers

    Keep in mind that Chromebooks are designed to contribute to a paperless classroom. It’s likely that you will print far fewer pages when using Chromebooks because you can access documents electronically.

  • Chrome/Chromebook Environment

    How do I scroll?

    Use two fingers simultaneously and lightly drag them forward or back on the touchpad.

    Can I change the direction of the scrolling?

    Yes! Go to Settings (click your profile picture in the lower right corner of the window, then the gear). In the search field on the screen that pops up, type touchpad. Click on touchpad and select the type of scrolling: Traditional (swipe up to move page down) or Australian (swipe up to move page up).

    How do I right click?

    Press and hold on the touchscreen on the area you want to right-click OR lightly tap two fingers simultaneously on the touchpad.

    How do I click and drag?

    Click and hold down the touchpad with one finger. Use a different finger on the touchpad to move the object on the screen.

    The display on my monitor looks weird. What’s up?

    If your Chromebook is displaying in odd colors, it’s likely that an accessibility feature called “High Contrast mode” has been enabled. This is a setting that is very helpful for some vision-impaired users. To turn it off, click your profile picture at the bottom left of the screen, then the gear to launch the Settings menu. Type accessibility in the search field, then Manage accessibility features. Turn off any unnecessary features.

    What are apps and extensions? What’s the difference?

    Apps are essentially shortcuts to websites. Extensions are the small icons to the right of the Omnibox (URL field) and extend the functionality of the browser. Visit our Chrome Apps & Extensions Hotspot page for more information about apps and extensions.

    What is the app launcher?

    The app launcher is the little white circle at the bottom left of your screen. You can also access the app launcher by clicking the magnifying glass (search) key. Or swipe your screen from the bottom up to reveal the apps.

    When and why would I use the app launcher?

    Use the app launcher to quickly locate new apps and extensions from the Chrome Web Store, or to locate apps you have previously installed.

  • Switching to a New Chromebook - transferring files?

    Q: I'm getting a new Chromebook. Are there any files on my Chromebook that I need to remove/transfer to the new Chromebook?

    A: Although local storage on Chromebooks is rarely used, you'll want to check to see if photos or videos are saved locally before you swap your Chromebook for a new one.

    Here's how:

    When you download an image or file or take a screenshot on a Chromebook, it saves to the local "Files" app 

    You can find those files by opening the Files app on the Chromebook. 

    Delete: If you don't want to keep the files, they will be erased when the Chromebook is power washed (reset to factory settings). 

    Keep: To move that file/image to your Google Drive you can either:

    • With the Files app open, you can drag and drop the file/image into a Google Drive folder on the left pane.
    • Open the file/image, right-click the image and choose "Save image to Google Drive". Alternatively, click the three vertical dots on the top right of the open file/image, select "Save As", and select a folder in your Google Drive. 

    See detailed instructions on the Google Support page: https://support.google.com/chromebook/answer/1700055?hl=en#zippy=

  • Troubleshooting

    Update the Chromebook

    • Click on the time on the bottom right of your screen.
    • Select the Settings gear. 
    • At the top left of the window, click the 3 lines and select About Chrome OS.

    Clear the cache

    • Click on the three vertical dots on the top right of your browser to open the Chrome menu 
    • Click on More tools
    • Clear Browsing Data
    • Check the boxes next to "Cookies and other site data" and "Cached images and files"
    • Click on Clear browsing data. The Chromebook cache and cookies are now deleted. 

    Update the LDAP (Password Verification)

    1. Click on your profile at the top right and choose Settings.

    webdesk settings

    2. Select the Sign-In menu at the top. 

    3. Under "LDAP/Active Directory", click on the blue icon at the bottom of the box. 

    Verify password image

    4. In the pop-up window, "Active Directory Credentials," Type in your current password twice to verify.  Click Save and you are done!

    Credentials screen


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