How to Use the Google Chrome Task Manager

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Viewing CPU, Memory and Network Details

chrome task manager
Scott Orgera

One of the useful aspects of Google Chrome lies in its multiprocess architecture, which allows tabs to run as separate processes. These processes are independent of the main thread, which means that a crashed or hung web page doesn't result in your entire browser shutting down. When Chrome lags or act strangely and you don't know which tab is the culprit, the browser's integrated Task Manager comes in handy.

Opening Chrome's Task Manager

Chrome's Task Manager not only shows the CPU, memory and network usage of each open tab and plug-in, it also permits you to kill individual processes with a click of the mouse. Here's how to use Chrome's Task Manager to your advantage. First, open your Chrome browser.

In Chrome OS and Windows, click on the Chrome menu button, located in the upper right corner of your browser window and represented by three dots. When the drop-down menu appears, hover your pointer over the More tools option. When the sub-menu appears, click on the option labeled Task Manager.

In Mac OS X, click on Window in the Chrome menu bar at the top of the screen. When the drop-down menu appears, select the option labeled Task Manager. You can also locate the Task Manager in the More tools sub-menu of the Chrome menu.

Note: You can also use keyboard shortcuts to bring up the Task Manager:  Shift + Esc in Windows or  Search + Esc in Chrome OS.

Using the Task Manager

Chrome's Task Manager should now be displayed, overlaying your browser window. The key statistics of memory, CPU and network are displayed for each open tab as well as for plug-ins that are currently running in the browser. To end any open process, click on its name and then click the End Process button.

Extended Statistics

In some operating systems, Task Manager also provides a link to even more in-depth statistics about your browser and its processes. To access these stats, click on the Stats for nerds link. Chrome's About Memory interface should now be displayed in a new browser tab. This screen contains detailed statistics about your browser's open processes, including Process ID numbers as well as actual and virtual memory. This interface can also be accessed by entering chrome://memory in Chrome's address bar.

This tutorial is intended for users running the Google Chrome Web browser on Chrome OS, Mac OS X or Windows operating systems.