I don’t really understand why Windows makes it so hard to have spell check throughout the system but I have noticed that Google Chrome has its own spell check. Perfect! How can I add some common words to the dictionary so that they aren’t flagged as misspellings each time?
You’re right that for reasons I’ve never really understood, Microsoft hasn’t added spell check and auto spell correct throughout Windows 10. The feature’s now there in the latest releases but it doesn’t seem to actually work, particularly in the useful, but ignored WordPad program. The standard Microsoft answer is probably “Office has a great spell check system” but that doesn’t help you in other programs. Fortunately if you prefer Google Chrome to Microsoft Edge as your Web browser, you’ll pick up a sophisticated spell check system as part of the package.
Not only that, but you can add multiple languages if you’re polylingual, and you can opt for the more sophisticated advanced spelling system that has a richer dictionary at the price of a little bit of privacy. Then again, if we’re talking about Google, you’ve probably already opted in to giving up a bit of privacy in return for features and capabilities. So let me show you how it works in Chrome for Windows…
To start, here’s a convenient place to demonstrate spell check: The Gmail compose window:
You can see that three words have been flagged as misspelled: worldy, scatcat and scattercatter.
As a first step, let’s enable what Google calls its enhanced spell check. Move to an empty space and right click, then choose “Spell check”:
Choose “Use enhanced spell check” from this menu and you’ll be prompted that your words are now going to be sent to Google for its online spell check system:
Click the “Turn on” button and the result is really interesting:
Can you see what’s no longer flagged? Enhanced Google spell check has ascertained that “scatcat” is in fact not a misspelling.
But it turns out that I use “scattercatter” all the time as a funny word and don’t want it to be flagged as a misspelled word in any site or program I use within Google Chrome. It’s actually pretty easy: right click within the word that’s identified as misspelled and a contextual menu pops up:
See the highlighted entry “Add to dictionary“? Yup, that’s the one. Click on it.
Now you will never see scattercatter (or whatever word you choose) flagged as misspelled. Unless you suddenly realize that it is actually misspelled: it should be hyphenated as scatter-catter. So how do you remove it from the spelling dictionary?
To do that, you’ll need to go into your Google Chrome settings…
Within Settings you want to go to Advanced options:
Choose Language from this point and you’ll get to the entire spelling setup area:
Here’s where you can see that I have English and Spanish enabled. To add more languages, click on the current language at the top of this window (where it says Language / English). But to get rid of that incorrectly flagged word? Choose “Customize spell check“:
To add another word – like a company name – simply type it in and click “Add word“. To remove a word in the dictionary click on the “X” adjacent to the word. Done. Easy, really. Now, when is Microsoft’s built-in spell check going to become this easy to work with?
And now you know how to work with spell check in Google Chrome and use that for text from any app on your Windows system (open a window and use copy/paste to fix spelling, then copy it back into the other program!)
Pro Tip: I’ve been writing about Windows from the early days. While you’re here I encourage you to check out the rest of my Windows help tutorials on the site!