How a proxy works
A proxy it is basically an intermediary between our connection and the destination server. For example, if we try to enter a web page from the browser, we are showing our IP address, location, etc. A proxy acts as an intermediary and we would exit the connection with your data.
We can use different types of proxy. They are widely used to access pages that may be geographically restricted, for example. This happens if we are traveling and we want to enter a website that is not available in that country. We can connect through a proxy and fix this problem.
But also for what we mentioned about privacy. They are useful for hide real IP address with which we are going to enter a web. However, it must be borne in mind that these types of tools will generally slow down the connection. We can use it at any given time, but on many occasions we could have limitations.
Plugins to turn the browser into a proxy
Beyond configuring the operating system to work through a proxy or installing applications, we can simply convert our browser Chrome in a proxy. There are different accessories for this. We can download them from the official browser store, something we recommend to avoid problems.
Oxylabs Proxy Manager
An example is Oxylabs Proxy Manager. It has the necessary functions to turn Chrome into a proxy. The interface is simple and allows us to add all the proxies that we need from any provider and manage them from the browser itself.
In a few steps we can install and configure a proxy. Once we add the extension, the icon will automatically appear in the top bar. If we click, we can see a button to add a new proxy.
There we will have to add the corresponding data, such as the name, the port, etc. We can add as many as we want and we simply have to click on Save changes, so that the changes are stored correctly.
Metrow Proxy Manager
Yet another option to turn Chrome into a proxy is the extension Metrow Proxy Manager. It allows us to create and navigate through different proxy profiles. It is an intuitive and easy-to-use tool. One of the most interesting points is that we can select the country from which we want to connect. This is very useful to bypass geo-blocking and enter a website that may be limited.
Simply by means of a click we will be able to connect and disconnect when we are interested. We can download it from the Google Chrome store. We just have to click Add and it will appear in the browser bar. You have to click and hit Add.
Later you have to fill in the data, as we can see in the image above. Put the name, location, etc. It is all very intuitive and we just have to accept the changes and that’s it. From that moment on we will have it ready to work in Chrome.
A third extension that we can install in Google Chrome to turn the browser into a proxy is SwitchyOmega. Once again, we found it in the official Chrome store. We will see that it has more than a million downloads, since it is a popular tool.
We will can manage different proxies and switch from one to the other easily. We will not have to go to the browser settings and manage everything there, but simply through this add-on. We can even configure it to use a specific proxy when accessing a specific web page. Very useful if we are going to enter a website from another country and right at that moment we are interested in connecting through a proxy.
A similar plugin is Proxy Switcher. The objective is the same: switch from one proxy to another easily from Google Chrome. Once we add the extension, we will find different categories, among which is choosing when to change from one to another.
These categories will allow us to automate the use of the proxy, for example, as well as configure it manually as we are interested. We can manage all this from the icon that will appear in the browser bar when we install it. There it will show us a dialog box with the settings. We can download it from the browser store.
Conclusions to use these extensions
In short, as we have seen we can have different extensions to turn Google Chrome into a proxy. They are free add-ons, with a similar operation, and that allow you to configure them more or less, depending on the option we choose.
From our point of view, a very interesting one is Proxy SwitchyOmega. Its ease of use and the ability to easily choose which country we are going to connect to, makes it really useful for most users. After all, using a proxy in the browser is usually to be able to enter a page that is blocked and we know which country it belongs to.
Now, can these add-ons replace a VPN? Although sometimes they may seem the same, the truth is that they are different tools. Each one has its function and a VPN is much more complete. We will be able to encrypt the entire connection of the equipment and not only through the browser. Therefore, if we really want to improve privacy and security when browsing, to be able to enter a public Wi-Fi network and not have problems, the ideal is to install a good VPN, such as ExpressVPN, NordVPN, ProtonVPN or something similar.
However, for something specific, for something that does not require extraordinary results, these extensions for Chrome that we have seen can be very interesting to navigate through a proxy in a simple way.