There is no doubt that Google Chrome is the most popular and utilized web browser in the world. Google Chrome has every possible positive you can think of in a browser and much more. However, it has its negatives, and all PCs out there, even the ones that are not Macintosh, are a slave to how much RAM Chrome uses. If you use Chrome yourself, then you must know how much RAM it eats away and how slow it makes the computer.
You can further learn this by going to the task manager if you are using Microsoft Windows. Google Chrome uses several processes to run itself, and you will have no idea what each of them does. However, if you even close on of these processes, the entire browser will shut down. Due to bad RAM management, you will see frequent freezing and slowdowns if your PC is slow, or if you are using MAC.
Here, you will learn how to disable the multiple processes from Chrome that slow down your Mac due to high CPU usage. Unlike the processes in Windows, you will see that the process named "Google Chrome Helper" uses the maximum amount of CPU. The process is like a parasite that feeds on Mac memory. You can see this when you open the MacBook activity monitor.
Upon closer inspection, you will see that this process feeds on your CPU cycle. Other than from the activity monitor, you can also learn of its existence from other symptoms – noisy laptop fans and high system memory.
This is a big problem since there are not many solutions on the web for it. If you Google the process alone, it will take you to multiple Google forums where they will explain what the Google Chrome helper do, and what it actually is. There are also people there who complain about the process without much avail. Also, the Chrome FAQ portal has no solutions that can help you fix the problem yourself! Quite frustrating, right?
What is Google Chrome Helper?
If you have been annoyed by this process for a long time, then it is most likely you are dying to know what the helper actually does to take up so much CPU cycle. Just like any "web-helper" processes out there, the chrome helper also opens up when you open up the chrome browser. However, it does no bear its fangs until multiple chrome processes start to run at once. Also, you can make the helper go mad when you download a chrome extension that is a malware or is not protected from malware.
Moreover, you can also see the helper run amok when "chrome's settings are configured to run everything by default." This is the result of downloading multiple chrome plugins that are readily available on the internet. The fact that it helps you run Adobe Flash contents is troublesome for the browser. You can see that from a popup on the browser tells you to install the Adobe Flash Player from their website.
While it is mandatory to have the flash player on multiple sites like Facebook, YouTube, and most children gaming sites, there are sites out there that harm your PC when running flash contents. It is during this time that you will see the "Not Responding" message on the activity monitor, and this is when your CPU will be pushed to the limit.
So, what actually is the Google Chrome Helper? Is it a tool that helps you understand things when you do not know what to do? No, you can say that it is an embedded content that helps the browser runs things from outside the browser. The helper is important because there are plugins out there that are sometimes not rendered by HTML codes, and therefore, the contents of the site you are in needs to be pulled from somewhere else.
Now, let us see how to stop it!
Disabling the annoying helper is not much of a hassle at all because it is easy to do so. While killing the helper process will significantly improve your CPU usage, there comes another trouble. Each time you run a flash content after the kill, you will need to allow permission to view “content.vtdecoderxpcservice.”
You can easily stop the process from inside Google Chrome settings. First, go to the activity monitor to monitor the process, then follow these steps –
- Without closing the program, close all your active chrome tabs.
- When you go to settings, you will see the “Preference” tab at the bottom of the menu; go there.
- Go to the advanced settings tab by clicking on the "Show advanced settings." You need to go to the privacy settings that are at the top.
- After that, go to the "Content settings," and you will see that the "plugin entry" is set to "Run Automatically."
- You need to set this option to “Click to Play.”
While these settings will need you to allow permission each time you view flash content, it will, however, keep you from installing any ad-blockers. This is because the site will need permission each time it wants to run ads in the form of flash content. Quite handy if I say so myself!
Some useful ways to fix the high CPU usage on Macintosh
If you have high CPU usage, there is a 90% chance that it is because of malware. Not only are unauthorized extensions are prone to malware attacks themselves, but it also opens up paths to other malware in entering your MacBook. These are the malware that you must remove from your laptop first, even before thinking about the extensions.
To remove the malware from your laptop, use a premium anti-virus to do so. You must follow this step before you try to fix the Mac problems. There are multiple ways you can fix the high CPU usage problem, and they are listed below –
- Like the Mac activity monitor, and Windows task manager, Chrome also has its task manager. You need to access this manager to close down all the chrome processes.
- First, open up Google Chrome.
- Go to the settings by clicking on the three vertical black dots on the upper right side of the screen.
- Open “More Tools” and select Task Manager.
- There you will see which processes are feeding on the CPU the most.
- After you identify the processes, all you have to do is close them down.
- Like the first method, this is also quite easy. All you need to do is delete the unauthorized extensions that are hogging your browser. Follow these steps to do so –
- Open up your browser and go to the settings as you do in the first method.
- Open up "More tools"; however, this time goes to "Extensions."
- All you need to do is remove the suspicious extensions using the remove button.
- If you do not want to do either of the first two methods, then the third method will guarantee a solution. However, this method will completely reset your browser to its default state. Follow these steps if you want a complete reset –
- Open the browser and go the setting by clicking on the three vertical dots.
- Go to the advanced settings at the button of the screen.
- Find the reset button and click on it.
These three methods will guarantee you a clean browser. While the third method is inconvenient, it does guarantee the best possible solutions. However, it is advised that you at least try the first two methods before trying the third one. That way, you fix your browser, and you get to keep all the saved caches and history intact.
What are all these Chrome Processes?
One question must have arisen in your mind that even though you have at most one or tab tabs in the browser, you have multiple chrome processes in the activity monitor. The obvious answer should be the Trojan virus or some other virus that no one knows of. While that can be true in some cases, these processes stand for something.
The main reason for this case is that Google runs its plugins and apps in different processes than its own to enhance the user experience, as well as making the use very fast. This also means that the browser will not crash each time the web page crashes. Also, since all these processes run in parallel to each other, the browser will not crash each time a particular web app or plugin stops to respond.
The chrome helper does not have a fault in itself; it is the external factors that harm your laptop. Like said before, the first thing you need to do to prevent most of these headaches is to set plugin permissions to "Click to Allow" and not "Run automatically." All in all, this is what the Google Chrome helper actually is and how you should deal with it should the problem ever arise.
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