PC Doctor April 21, 2017

Have your computer questions answered here! Search the PC Doctor archive or submit a question of your own at info@athollibrary.org

Dear PC Doctor:

My daughter’s school has issued each student a chromebook; we’re headed out on vacation and I realize that the family member we’re staying with may not have wifi.  Will my daughter be able to complete her assignments without being connected?  Doesn’t she need internet for everything on the chromebook?  Please help!  I don’t want to have to loiter in coffee shops all vacation so she can finish her work.


   Worried Mom


Dear Worried Mom:

I’m glad you asked this question, because I wondered, too!  To answer it, I visited the Google chromebook help website.  According to that site, these are the things you can do on a chromebook without an internet connection:

You can check email, if you have followed these steps while connected:  Open the Gmail Offline page in the Chrome Web Store.  Click Add to Chrome and then Add app.  Click the Launcher and then All Apps.  Click the Gmail Offline app Gmail Offline.  Select Allow Offline Mail and then Continue. Your messages will start syncing. If you close Chrome while your messages are syncing, they won’t all be saved.  Any messages you write, archive, label, or delete while you’re offline will be sent or moved when you connect to the internet.

You can listen to music or watch videos, as long as they were downloaded when you had an internet connection.  You can also play games if you checked the box labeled Runs Offline.

You can check your schedule, if you followed a set of steps similar to when you set up for offline email:  Click the Launcher and then All Apps.  Click the Google Calendar app.  On the top right, click Settings and then Offline.  In the window that appears, click Enable. You’ll see a message showing that your calendar is syncing.  Click Settings. When you see a green check mark, your calendar can be viewed offline.  To see your calendar when you’re not connected to the internet, open the Google Calendar app.

You can take notes offline using Google Keep. First, if you’ve already taken notes, you’ll need to save them so you can read and edit offline.  To do this, make sure your chromebook is connected to the Internet.  Click the Launcher and then All Apps.  Open the Google Keep app.  Wait for a few minutes. Your chromebook will automatically save your notes so you can see them offline.  After your chromebook saves your notes, you can edit them or write new notes offline. Any changes you make will show up in Google Keep the next time you’re online.

You can also view, create, and edit documents, spreadsheets, or slides using the Google Drive app, view and edit photos with the built-in photo editor, read web pages, if you saved them ahead of time: Right-click the page, select Save as, then save the page as an HTML file. You can also use an app from the Chrome Web Store, like Pocket.

To find more apps that work offline: Open the Chrome Web Store, click Apps, then check the box for Runs Offline.

Your student will not be able to browse the internet or log into any school assignment posting sites.  Make sure she downloads everything she needs while you still have internet access.

I hope this helps!
Until next time,
Happy Computing!

   PC Doctor