Here are tips to speed up your Chrome browser
Q: I love Google Chrome, but it seems to be getting bogged down a lot lately. No suggestions?
A: Whatever browser you use, things can get bogged down over time, especially if you like to have many websites open at once.
Tabbed browsingThere was a time when you could only have one active session running in a browser and using the “Back” button was how you jumped to something you had previously opened.
That all changed with the adoption of tabbed browsing in the early 2000s, which allowed adding web pages without closing the current page.
This incredibly useful feature has led to what many call a “tab hoarding issue” which can lead to a host of issues including slow browser performance.
Each browser session you open through a new tab takes up additional working memory (RAM) which, taken to extremes, can drain this valuable resource for everything on your computer.
Many web pages have active sections of video as content or as advertisements, which can result in an even larger amount of memory for something you’re not currently viewing.
If you see a lot of open tabs when things slow down, try closing as many as you can to see if that helps the slowdown.
Check memory footprintChrome has a “Task Manager” tool that will allow you to see how much memory each open tab is using and close them if they are memory hungry.
You can open Task Manager using the keyboard shortcut ‘Shift+Esc’ or click on the three dots in the upper right corner of Chrome, then on ‘More tools, then on Task Manager.
To see which tabs are using the most memory, click on the “Memory Footprint” header until you see a black down arrow, which shows memory usage in descending order.
Look for anything that starts with “Tab:” to begin your evaluation of memory hogs so you know which ones to avoid keeping open in the background.
Chrome cleaning toolGoogle includes a basic tool to remove harmful or malicious software that may have entered your browser.
To open the tool, click on the three dots in the upper right corner of your browser window, then on ‘Settings’ and then on the ‘Advanced’ tab.
Look for the “Reset and clean” option to access the “Clean up computer” feature.
Get rid of extensionsA great reason to choose Chrome as your browser is the plethora of add-on tools better known as “extensions” that can dramatically improve functionality.
But, just like with tabs, too many can add unnecessary overhead to Chrome, which can contribute to slow performance issues.
Extensions often look like smartphone apps that seem like something you’ll use often, but only use when you first install them.
Look for an icon that looks like a puzzle piece in the upper right corner of Chrome to access the “Manage extensions” option, which will allow you to disable or remove those you don’t use regularly.
Alternative browsersIf these tips didn’t help, try alternative browsers such as Firefox, Opera, Brave, Safari (macOS) or Edge (Windows).