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I just upgraded my RAM to double what it used to have and for a couple of weeks everything was running great, but now Chrome is eating all of it, I hit 90% use with only one window and <50 tabs open.

When I close Chrome memory use goes down to 15% or less, is like this app is using RAM for the hell of it, since it used to be a little more frugal before.

What could be causing this?

  • 2
    "<50 tabs open". What happens with just one tab open? That would rule out the number of tabs. Also, the RAM consumed per tab would be dependent on the content of each tab. – user25656 Feb 6 '13 at 2:50
  • I agree with @vasa1. I notice the same thing sometimes in Firefox, and it's often a memory leak in a single tab. – Sparhawk Feb 6 '13 at 2:56
  • No harm in sharing the exact figure instead of "I just upgraded my RAM to double what it used to have". You could also provide an image of what you see in Chrome menu > Tools > Task Manager or just press Shift+Escape to get that screen. – user25656 Feb 6 '13 at 4:27
  • I have 16GB of RAM and typically run 3 Chrome browsers with about 20 tabs each. After rebooting Chrome initially takes 4 GB of RAM which is a lot, but I can live with it. A day later, its taking 9-10GB. The increase is spread across many tabs. Its a real problem. – HDave Feb 6 '14 at 14:07
  • This is intentional. Unused RAM is wasted RAM - philosophy is if available then use it - this is in interest of speed and usability. Its not specific to chrome - this approach to free memory is the accepted design approach. OS swap is not necessarily bad if overall snappiness is enhanced along the way. – Scott Stensland Oct 13 '15 at 19:08
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Press Shift+ESC in Chrome. This should show per-tab (and per-process) information. Is there a single tab that's using an unusual amount of resources?

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This might not be Ubuntu that is doing this. It might be because of certain pages you are looking at AND Extensions you are using. I know for a fact Adblocker and Ghostery take quite a bit of RAM, so maybe post a pic what extensions you are using? It also might be beneficial if you uninstall these extensions because you will notice alot of RAM being freed up.

Firefox or Opera is also a nice alternative ;)

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Use the tab suspender extension.

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