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Image: Google You probably use your web browser of choice for a variety of tasks: using the internet, obviously, but also watching videos, collaborating in docs, building spreadsheets, and more. That means your browser can very quickly start taking up a significant amount of your system’s resources, especially if your open tabs start to stack up in double (or triple) digits.
There are ways to counteract this though, no matter which browser you’re using. With some careful management, you can make sure it’s using the minimum possible amount of RAM—the Random Access Memory that’s like thinking space for your computer. Free up some RAM, and you’ll be left with a more responsive and faster experience on a Mac or PC. The Browser Settings You Need to Know First thing’s first: The fewer browser tabs you have open the better—at least when it comes to memory management. While it’s tempting to keep everything open all of the time, showing some discipline and closing down tabs you’ve finished with (at least for now) makes a big difference. Remember that tabs you’ve closed can be reopened with just a couple of clicks through your browsing history. Let them go.
If you’re not able to keep the number of open tabs down to just a handful, you’ve still got other options. First, keep your browser software updated to the latest version. These updates will often include optimizations and tweaks that lighten the load on the RAM (and CPU time) that your browser is using up. Your browser should apply the upgrades automatically, but it’s worth double-checking. Your browser’s task manager will reveal where the RAM is going. Screenshot: Google Chrome A dive into your browser’s task manager can show you which sites and open tabs are most resource-hungry. In Chrome, Firefox, and Edge you’ll find the task manager under the More tools entry on the browser menu. This isn’t an option if you use Safari on macOS, because there’s no task manager.
Browser extensions are another area where you can claw back some much-needed RAM. Any add-on that you’re not actively using is just taking up system resources that can be deployed elsewhere. Open up the extension list for whichever browser you’re using and see if there’s anything that you can live without. Extensions can be uninstalled with just a couple of clicks, and can be reinstalled later if needed. Microsoft Edge comes with built-in tab management features. Screenshot: Microsoft Edge There are variou