Today, two of my Windows machines (one on 7 and one on 8.1) using the development branch of Chrome upgraded themselves to 44.0.2398.0 dev-m. When I launched the browser for the first time after the update, all of my non-store extensions on were automatically disabled, and I could not re-enable them (and this happened on both machines).

Unsupported extensions disabled

To make Chrome safer, we disabled some extensions that aren't listed in the Chrome Web Store and may have been added without your knowledge.

Learn more

So I figured maybe I could uninstall and reinstall all my userscripts. This works for one session, but when you close Chrome and relaunch it, the non-store extensions get auto-disabled again (and packed .crx files also suffer the same fate). Installing via Tampermonkey does not appear to help.

Is there any solution to this that does not involve switching to another OS (not feasible) or publishing my userscripts privately on the Chrome store (costs money)? Loading unpacked extensions still works, thankfully, but it's going to be quite a bit of effort for me to port all my userscripts over to proper extensions...

I'm reasonably sure that this is not a duplicate of Re-enable extensions not coming from Chrome Web Store on Chrome v35+ (with enhanced security), because I've been on the development branch of Chrome ever since they pulled this crap back in version 35 or so, and this is the first time I've had any problems since then. This is, as best as I can tell, a new issue.

  • I am pretty sure you don't. Google pretty much has indicated if its not signed it won't work.
    – Ramhound
    May 15, 2015 at 0:24

2 Answers 2


From Continuing to protect Chrome users from malicious extensions :

We’re always working to improve Chrome extensions while keeping our users as safe as possible. In May 2014 we announced a new policy to protect Windows users by enforcing that extensions be hosted on the Chrome Web Store. The results were encouraging: we saw a 75% drop in customer support help requests for uninstalling unwanted extensions. Consequently, we will expand the reach of this protection to all Windows and Mac users in the coming months.

We originally did not enforce this policy on the Windows developer channel in order to allow developers to opt out. Unfortunately, we’ve since observed malicious software forcing users into the developer channel in order to install unwanted off-store extensions. Affected users are left with malicious extensions running on a Chrome channel they did not choose. As such, starting today we will begin enforcing this policy on all Windows channels. Mac will soon follow, with enforcement for all channels beginning in July 2015.

However, as described at installs via Enterprise policy you have several options you can still use to sideload.

The easiest of which seems to be to use the ExtensionInstallForcelist policy.

  • 1
    Christ, this is infuriating. Thank you for the pointers, though. Do you happen to know if Canary is affected? (I'm not sure whether that counts as a "channel".)
    – senshin
    May 15, 2015 at 1:19
  • 1
    Oh, important caveat about ExtensionInstallForceList: "For Windows instances that are not joined to an Active Directory domain, forced installation is limited to extensions listed in the Chrome Web Store." And obviously my personal machines aren't on Active Directory, and I don't have administrative control over my work machine's Active Directory setup, so this is a no-go too. :\
    – senshin
    May 15, 2015 at 1:24

If you just wanna try your extension on chrome you can install it in latest chrome 42 (not sure about dev version) by going to chrome://extensions and do drag drop

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