Make Chrome great again: Performance and memory tweaks

By Jos ยท 42 replies
Nov 17, 2016
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  1. Chrome has come a long way since its first beta was released in 2008. Currently sitting at the top of the desktop and mobile market share charts, Google’s browser is flexible, feature packed, and cross-platform. But for all its popularity Chrome is also notorious for its habit of consuming a lot of RAM and draining battery life on laptops.

    The reason for this has to do in part with something called process isolation, which is meant to make Chrome more stable and secure, as well as other unde the hood enhancements to make pages load faster. As long as you have plenty of memory it’s all good, the problem is when Chrome’s RAM usage is limiting the amount of memory available for other apps.

    Google is continually improving in this area, but there are some things you can do to curb RAM usage and keep Chrome from becoming slow and annoying. We'll also share some 'hidden' features you can enable to get the most out of your web browsing experience.

    Read the complete article.

  2. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,384   +172

    Thanks. Firefox user here, but I'll be trying Chrome with OneTab and The Great Suspender. Firefox is expected to move to one process per tab in the future, so there will be one fewer reason for me to keep it.
  3. dadoenkz

    dadoenkz TS Rookie

    I'm firefox user. I try this to my low end notebook
  4. fktech

    fktech TS Addict Posts: 223   +60

    I open 20-25 tabs at a time so Firefox is planning to ruin a good thing....
  5. meric

    meric TS Booster Posts: 110   +53

    Chrome uses it already (process per tab) and that's one of the key reasons I choose chrome over firefox. That's like sandboxing actually, which is good for your own security as far as I know but may be using more resources (not sure of that). Chrome is much faster though and works very responsively for me. One of the bad side of chrome is that I still miss the variety of extensions/add-ons firefox provided back when I was using firefox, chrome doesn't even offer a fully-working download manager add-on that works in browser environment, at least very few choices
  6. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,384   +172

    Just found out about Tabs Outliner. Now that's a Chrome Extension that might get me to switch. Only thing I need now is to force myself to start using Chrome.

    (Posted from Firefox. :)
  7. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,384   +172

    Guys, any way to remove font smoothing in Chrome? I'm trying to use it now and this bothers me.
  8. Cryio

    Cryio TS Addict Posts: 208   +62

    "Make Chrome Run Faster and Keep RAM Usage Under Control"

    Easy. Switch to Opera.
    Athlonite likes this.
  9. vegan garo

    vegan garo TS Rookie

    Its great as always, but wont hurt some tweaks...haha

  10. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,811   +472

    There are some tabs I just don't want reloading. Personally I find when using Chrome for productivity (we have Google Docs/Drive etc for work), tab suspending is pretty irritating and that's just from when the browser auto updates itself.
  11. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    Great article guys! Awesome suggestions.
  12. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,046   +680

    Try: chrome://flags > Direct Write > click Enable to disable
  13. Thrackerzod

    Thrackerzod TS Enthusiast Posts: 40   +30

    Opera is just a reskinned Chrome now.
  14. Athlonite

    Athlonite TS Enthusiast Posts: 97   +20

    That maybe so but Opera is still better than chrome not only do you get to choose from all of the Opera add ons/extensions but you can also use all of the chrome ones aswell it's also less of pig on resources
  15. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,384   +172

    Thanks, that worked. 'Click Enable to disable' is the greatest UI design ever! I'm definitely going to use it the next time I write a user interface. (Luckily in this case I needed to click 'Disable' to disable.)
  16. gregzeng

    gregzeng TS Enthusiast Posts: 48

    Above OP hints also work with Cent browser, "Cent Browser".
    This is my preference now.

    Did try Cyberfox, but same fault as Firefox: slow to load & exit. Crashes easily; I use many add-ons.
    Opera loads, exists fast, but has great trouble saving MHT files. So I reluctantly abandoned this, until they fix that.
  17. Jibberish18

    Jibberish18 TS Evangelist Posts: 646   +89

    Thank you for this. I needed something to keep the RAM usage in Chrome in check.
  18. Ascaris

    Ascaris TS Addict Posts: 113   +72

    If you don't like process per tab, why would you switch to Chrome, which already has it?

    E10s is much needed in Firefox. It will separate it into two processes; one for UI and one for content rendering. The overall jankiness and perceived slowness of FF is a function of having one process. I've tested it, and it is a big improvement. It was not yet ready for prime time, but it is slated for release starting with the next FF version, if I recall.

    One process per tab is still a long way off, if it is even developed at all, and I would imagine it would be something you can switch off.

    25 tabs is not that many. I've had hundreds open...
    failquail likes this.
  19. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,046   +680

    I found this too. It's pretty badass for text.
    Google Chrome extenstion: Font Rendering Enhancer.
  20. axiomatic13

    axiomatic13 TS Addict Posts: 146   +75

    One item of note regarding the Data Saver Extension. You will get strange results from a internet speed test (like from Ookla) when you use the Data Saver Extension. Just FYI. ;-)
  21. Revolution 11

    Revolution 11 TS Enthusiast Posts: 40

    Must be a issue with extensions or Firefox itself. I have been using Pale Moon for a few months (Firefox fork) and I regularly open hundreds of tabs. There is a nifty option to not load tabs until they are selected.

    Never had a hitch with performance. I can't say the same about Chrome or Firefox when dealing with anything more than 30-50 tabs.
  22. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,384   +172

    Thanks. I might move back to Pale Moon. I no longer remember why I left it and went back to FF, but I'm sure I had a reason. Anyway, having just lost 900+ open tabs kind of helps.
  23. Ascaris

    Ascaris TS Addict Posts: 113   +72

    I switched from Pale Moon when they stopped identifying as Firefox for addons, which broke many of the ones I use. It was undoubtedly a necessary step as PM and FF diverge more and more, but at that point, FF was the better choice (IMO). FF was also faster on benchmarks like Peacekeeper, while PM lagged behind a few releases.

    It seems that it may be time to take a second look at PM sometime soon, though; if FF keeps going in this crazy "let's be Chrome" direction, PM may become the de facto alternative for those of us who liked Firefox for being Firefox, not Chrome II. Addons like Classic Theme Restorer have managed to accomplish this so far, but they may break so much of FF that it is no longer possible to fix with addons.
  24. Theinsanegamer

    Theinsanegamer TS Evangelist Posts: 864   +880

    Why do you need 900+ tabs open at once? What purpose does that serve?
  25. Bigtruckseries

    Bigtruckseries TS Evangelist Posts: 583   +318

    I use Torch instead. When I get ready to snatch a video off the net, I just hit download and let it fly!

    Google Chrome and Chromium have been giving me a lot of problems on windows 10.

    I'd use Edge, but it's even worse.

    I'd use I.E. but it's even worser.

    I'd use Safari but it's even worserer.

    thus far torch runs just fine till Sirius XM's 'Shockwave' crashes.

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