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There are keyboard shortcuts for the back/forward/refresh buttons, so I hardly use those three buttons.

Can I hide them to give space to the address bar?

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I'm pretty sure they can't be removed. – Nils Magne Lunde Jan 4 '12 at 16:26
When Chrome 13 came out, they had a compact navigation option; but looks like it was removed, due to some bugs they couldn't fix. At the moment, I cannot find anything else that would allow it to be removed. FF can, however, but doesn't look like chrome, at the moment can. – zackrspv Jan 5 '12 at 18:05
up vote 0 down vote accepted

It's not possible. Unlike other browsers, Google Chrome is inflexible for this kind of UI change. Only thing you can remove is home icon from options

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