Google Chrome is arguably one of the most popular browsers owing to its high performance. It also has numerous features such as password manager and extensions that enable users to do much more than just viewing web pages. However, this convenience comes at a high cost as working with Chrome heavily consumes CPU and RAM. Therefore, affecting the performance of other applications and overall system performance. This can lead to freezing, crashing and increase battery drainage of your computer. Fortunately, Google introduced a performance features for Chrome and there are also other quick fixes you can try to resolve the issue. This article discusses various ways to reduce memory and CPU usage of Google Chrome.
Reduce Chrome Memory and CPU Usage
The idea is to reduce the consumption of memory and CPU and release that resource for other processes running in your system. In this manner, you can speed up both Chrome as well other apps running in your computer.
1. Keep Your Chrome Browser Up-to-date
Google periodically updates Chrome browser to fix bugs and add new features that improve user experience. In order to enjoy the best Chrome performance levels, it is important to update your browser to the latest version. Chrome browser will auto update when you connect to internet. However, if you have problem in updating then you can manually update.
- Go to the Chrome customization menu at the upper-right corner of the browser window and click on the “Help” option available at the bottom of the menu list.
- Choose “About Google Chrome” to check for updates.
- Chrome will automatically search for new updates and install them.
2. Enable Chrome Memory and Energy Saver
Google introduced a new “Performance” section in Chrome settings (chrome://settings/) page. This section has two parts – Memory Saver and Battery Saver. By enabling these options, you can get a noticeable performance boost to Chrome. Google claims, the feature will save up to 40% of memory usage compared to earlier versions. You can learn more on how these features work in our separate article.
3. Maintain Fewer Open Tabs
So, consider closing some of the tabs that are not currently in use. It can potentially minimize the CPU and memory load.
- To close a particular tab, click the “X” on the tab or use the “Control + W” or “Command + W” keyboard shortcut.
- On Windows, you can also close multiple tabs at the same time by right clicking on a tab, then select either the option to close all other tabs or tabs on the left of the selected tabs. Unfortunately this option is not available on Chrome Mac version.
4. Disable Unwanted Apps and Extensions
One of the many advantages of the Chrome browser is that it offers wide range of extensions and web apps. These extensions and apps help you to get things done much faster. However, some of these apps and extensions can be resource extensive and can eventually compromise your browsing experience.
- To remove a web app from Chrome, type “chrome://apps/” in the address bar and hit the enter key.
- Right-click on the app you want to remove, click “Remove from Chrome” and on the resulting prompt click “Remove”.
- For the extensions use the URL, “chrome://extensions/” to see all the installed extensions. Toggle the blue switch to turn-off an extension (the switch will turn grey in color).
- Click the “Remove” button to get rid of the unnecessary extensions and then confirm the action by clicking “Remove” again on the pop-up prompt.
5. Using Chrome Task Manager to Control CPU/ Memory Usage
The high CPU and memory usage of Chrome could be due to some tabs or processes running in the background. Similar to Windows task manager, Google Chrome also has a separate built-in task manager. You can use this to check and stop resource extensive processes.
- Go to the Chrome menu, and click on “More Tools” option.
- Select “Task Manager” on the expanded menu.
- Here you can see the amount of memory and CPU usage for each tab, app or any other Chrome processes.
- In order to stop a process, select it and click the “End Process” button at the bottom of the task manager window.
6. Use Chrome Clean Up Tool to Check and Remove Malware
Sometimes malware and extensions can affect the browser and result in CPU / memory overuse. Google offers a special Chrome Clean up tool only on Windows version of the browser. It helps to scan and remove any suspicious software including extensions and adware.
- Open the Chrome settings using the URL, “chrome://settings/”.
- Scroll down and click “Advanced” option to open the advanced settings.
- At the bottom of the advanced settings page, select “Clean up computer” option.
- Click the “Find” button to search your computer.
- Chrome will search for harmful software and then you can click “Remove” to uninstall them from your PC.
On Mac, you may need to use third-party tools to clean up the malware.
7. Stop Background Apps
Chrome allows you to run background apps even after you close the browser.
- Scroll down the Chrome “Advanced” settings page.
- On the “System” section, toggle off the “Continue running background apps when Google Chrome is closed” option.
Now, check whether the memory and CPU usages are fine.
8. Enable Hardware Acceleration
Chrome is built for speed. It has a built-in setting to accelerate the hardware when viewing high definition videos and playing games. However, when you playing around the settings you might have disabled the option named “Use hardware acceleration when available” under “System” settings.
Ensure to enable this option back in settings especially you feel slow computer when watching HD videos on YouTube.
9. Restore Chrome Default Settings
There are thousands of guides available on the internet to optimize Google Chrome. If you are always following some guides to modify the settings and flags, it will badly affect the performance of the browser. Good part is, you can simply reset the browser to factory settings to check it helps to resolve your resource usage issue.
- Under “Advanced” settings section, scroll down to the bottom go to “Reset and clean up” segment
- Click on the option “Restore settings to their original defaults”.
- A pop-up will appear warning you about the impacts of reset action; click the “Reset settings” button to confirm the action.
Don’t worry about resetting your browser; it will NOT delete the passwords.
Google Chrome remains the favorite browser for most computer users. However, it heavily depends on the CPU and RAM to deliver this goodness. This can lead to other problems such as crashing, freezing and general PC slugging. With the above suggestions, you can reduce Chrome CPU and memory usage to maintain the browser performance.