Google Chrome has been supporting multiple profiles for some time now, allowing each user on a machine to have its own set of extensions, bookmarks and preferences, or for a single user to maintain profiles for personal and professional use, for example. If you use this feature, we have good news: Google is implementing a change that promises to reduce the memory consumption of the browser.
The change is how Chrome manages the memory allocated to each profile. Imagine that you are browsing a profile A, and switch to B. Despite not being in use, profile A continues to consume system memory and resources, even if all session tabs are closed.
This is because Chrome only “destroys”, that is, completely discards the memory used by a profile, when the entire browser closes. The new feature causes Chrome to discard that memory when the last tab or profile window is closed.
For now the feature is only available in Chrome 88 Canary, the development version of the browser (the stable one, used by most users, at 86). To activate it the user needs to type chrome: // flags in the address bar, and activate the option “Destroy profile on browser close”.
The struggle to reduce the memory consumption of old Chrome. The development team recently implemented support for a Windows feature called SegmentHeap that, according to Microsoft engineers working on rival Edge, can reduce memory usage by up to 27% in some cases. The change is currently only available in Chrome Canary.
Browsers Chrome google chrome microsoft edge