I was trying to create Unity quicklists for Gmail. But if the Gmail was already opened, it will still create another tab and load the web page, rather than switching to the existing. I even tried installing the 'Gmail App' from the app store and nothing happened.

I looked at the various command line switches, I could not find anything. http://peter.sh/experiments/chromium-command-line-switches/

The other clumsy solution was to install an addon called Prevent Duplicate Tabs https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/ljnhndkfkbcfmfdkfaahkfmiiibaldhd It removed the duplicate tabs but it still had to load the page than switching to it. It also doesn't work with forwarding URLs like Google Docs https://docs.google.com/?pli=1#home.

On a side note wasn't this meant to be a feature for web apps, a buzz word today.

  • I hope this gets implemented in Chrome soon. There are quite a lot of use case scenario for this feature. – fedmich Dec 30 '13 at 1:30

The Chrome extension, Clutter Free, does exactly what you asked:

  • switches to already open duplicate tab, when a new one is opened,
  • works on redirects as long as the final redirected url is already open

Disclaimer: I'm the author for this extension. I too was looking for this solution, and ended up making the extension.

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There are two ways to do this: on the client, or on the server.

From the server side, this would be possible, but Google would have to make changes in the code at the Gmail end. That's unlikely to occur because some people desire multiple tabs open at once.

From the client side, this could be done in JavaScript but for the fact that browser vendors deliberately take steps to eliminate cross-site scripting vulnerabilities - browser tabs/windows mustn't know about each other's contents by design.

The most realistic way to achieve this is with a browser extension to handle this situation. If you're thinking of writing it yourself, a good place to start is at StackOverflow with, i.e. "How can I get a list of open URLs from a running instance of chromium-browser/chrome?" But it sounds like you're already pretty close to what you want by using the extension mentioned above.

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