I would like to open the page chrome://newtab (a.k.a. the "New Tab" page) in an existing chromium window using the command-line.

this opens a new window with an empty tab:

chromium-browser chrome://newtab

this opens a new tab with the entered URL:

chromium-browser www.google.com

It seems that the first terminal command doesn't recognize newtab as a URL like it does in the second one. Can the call be modified somehow to open a new tab?

2 Answers 2


A couple of options to consider...

1) Find an existing instance of Chromium, activate the window, and send Ctrl+t to open a new tab:

xdotool search --onlyvisible --name 'Chromium' windowactivate --sync key --clearmodifiers --window 0 ctrl+t

2) Open the about:blank page in a new tab:

chromium-browser 'about:blank'

#1 does exactly what you want.
#2 is cheesy.

  • In Gnome 3, when I create a Custom Shortcut (Super+T) to execute above shell command, the "Super" modifier "sticks". Any idea how I could fix this? Sep 29, 2017 at 9:31
  • 1
    @AndreasHacker, try removing the --clearmodifiers flag from your command line. Documentation here: semicomplete.com/projects/xdotool/xdotool.xhtml#clearmodifiers If that doesn't work, please post a new question specific to xdotool on Gnome 3. Note that there are known issues with xdotool with Walyland with Gnome 3. Sep 30, 2017 at 11:57
  • to further clarify this: #2 is "cheesy" because it does not focus chromium by default
    – phil294
    Oct 13, 2018 at 19:51

Open a New Tab and look at the Developer Tools - Sources tab. URL for New Tab is:


This will open a new tab in existing Chromium instance:

chromium chrome-search://local-ntp/local-ntp.html
  • This works better than the originally accepted solution, especially concerning that weird xdotool behavior. Sep 25, 2019 at 15:49

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