There are times when a situation might arise when the developers wish to communicate with localhost via HTTPS to run a local web server for web development or other services that offer a web interface. The best way of doing so will be by generating a self-signed certificate. Subsequently, a web server can be easily set up and the created certificate can get imported manually. This is a tedious process though and it has led many people to rely on the allow-insecure-localhost flag that you can easily enable on Chrome.
Google Chrome 88 Enterprise has done away with allow-insecure-localhost
When it has been turned on, the requests to localhost get allowed over secure HTTPS even when invalid certificates get presented. One you can say that the flag gets used by developers for the convenience that it offers. For the uninitiated, the flag can be easily accessed by inputting “chrome://flags/#allow-insecure-localhost” into Chrome’s address bar. It could have been used at least until the newest version of Chrome Enterprise showed up. This is the case as the flag has been done away with the Google Chrome 88 Enterprise. Going by the reaction and complaints, this has been a huge dealbreaker.
A flag removal on Chrome also affects other browsers like Edge and Opera as they’re all branches of the Chromium base. If you’re one of the users who is facing this issue, you’ll be pleased to know that the removal is rather temporary and will get added back with Google Chrome version 89.
Use the Beta branch of Chrome 89 to enable the allow-insecure-localhost flag
You’ll want to jump over to the beta branch of your Google Chrome 89. However, it isn’t always necessary as there’s another way of enabling the allow-insecure-localhost flag on Chrome. Here’s how you can enable it –
- Launch chrome://flags/#temproary-unexpire-flags-m87 from address bar
- Set it to enabled and restart Chrome
- Launch chrome://flags/#allow-insecure-locahost
- It’ll be visible so you should enable it
- Restart Google Chrome again
If you’re wondering what is the purpose of the temporary-unexpire-flags-m87 flag servers, it’ll help unexpired flags that are hidden and set for a permanent deletion with a future Chrome update.