How To Stop Chrome From Killing Tabs in Background


Google Chrome is a freeware web browser developed by Google LLC. It was first released in September 2008, for Microsoft Windows, and was later ported to Linux, macOS, iOS and Android. Google Chrome is also the main component of Chrome OS, where it serves as a platform for running web apps. As of 2018, StatCounter estimates that Google Chrome has a 66% worldwide usage share of web browsers as a desktop browser. It also has 56% market share across all platforms combined.

A minimalistic user interface, robust approach, support for extensions, search integration, autofills and developer support from Google are the factors that made Chrome so successful in its game. But it is next to impossible to create something without flaws and same goes the case for Google Chrome. Something that annoys people from across the globe, including me, about Chrome, is the way it handles memory management. Chrome uses up a lot of memory when running it. Things start getting superb annoying when it kills inactive tabs to save memory. It becomes super frustrating when the tab with a half-filled form starts reloading and you need to fill it again from the beginning. If you are someone who is an intense Chrome user and is annoyed with Chrome’s memory management, here is a guide to stop Chrome from killing inactive tabs.

How to Stop Chrome From Killing Tabs in the Background

Note: If you are using a PC with low-end specs, it is recommended not to switch off Chrome’s memory management algorithm. Switching off Chrome’s memory management may hamper your PC’s performance issues.

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1. Disable Tab Discarding

To disable Chrome’s automated killing of inactive tabs in the background, follow these steps:

  • Open Chrome browser.
  • Type chrome://flags in the URL bar and press enter.
  • Type Automatic Tab Discarding in the search bar appearing on the top of the webpage. Do not misunderstand with the Chrome’s standard search bar/ URL bar.
  •  Select Disabled from the drop-down menu next to the flag and click Relaunch Now. Once done, Chrome will restart with its native memory management algorithm switched off.

2. Customize Chrome’s Tab Discarding

Let’s say you are using a low-end PC as your daily driver and you are okay with Chrome killing inactive tabs in the background except for certain web pages. Well, you can direct Chrome to do so as well by just following the steps given below:

  • Open Chrome browser.
  • Type chrome://discards in the URL bar and press enter. Chrome will now open the discard panel displaying the information for each tab about how important Chrome deems a tab to be. Other than this, you can even find other information such as the number of times a particular tab has been discarded and the last time at which certain tab was discarded.
  • From here you can turn on or off the auto discard feature for certain tabs according to your need.
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3. Using Extensions To Control Chrome’s Memory Management

If you want more control over Chrome’s memory management algorithm or if you did find the above methods not apt for your liking, you can try out extensions such as The Great Suspender or The Great Discarder to have greater control over tab discarding.

The Great Suspender chrome extension allows you to automatically suspend tabs after a set number of minutes or hours. This way they won’t eat up memory and add to Chrome’s CPU usage in any way until you go back to them and load the page back up. Moreover, you can select certain tabs which you never want to get killed by Chrome’s memory management. The Great Discarder is built by the same team that developed The Great Suspender and both of these are mostly the same.

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Final Words

I expect Chrome to fix its memory management issues in the upcoming builds but as of now, these are one of the easiest ways to stop Chrome from killing inactive tabs in the background. I hope this article works the way it is intended to beLet us know about your experience trying out the methods mentioned in this article in the comments section down below. In case I missed mentioning anything or if there is some topic which you want me to cover, please let me know in the comments section down below.

1 thought on “How To Stop Chrome From Killing Tabs in Background”

  1. These options aren’t even available. Nothing comes up in a search for “tab discard” or anything related (I tried many different searches). This article appears to no longer be relevant.


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