The Chrome browser can keep a hard drive in almost constant use. Here’s how to take back control.
Plus: Rescuing files from an infected drive, security concerns with the Open Source jv16 PowerTools, and more on recovering unallocated hard-drive space.
Three ways to reduce Chrome’s drive activity
Reader Dave Heymann is concerned about Chrome’s nearly constant use of the hard disk.
- “When I use my Chrome browser and leave it open, it’s constantly accessing the hard drive — even on a static webpage. Online information suggests this is a problem with some versions of Chrome and Opera. There appears to be no explanation and no solution (though one person said the problem was reduced by changing his Google profile).
“Can you tell me why this is happening and what’s the fix? I really like Chrome and would rather not have to switch to Firefox or IE.”
Dave, Chrome makes a steady series of small reads and writes to a hard drive. The volume of data isn’t large, but the ongoing activity causes disk noise, consumes energy, and might prevent the drive — or even the entire PC — from entering sleep mode.
Chrome users can see this background behavior in Windows Task Manager (see Figure 1). Even with just one tab open, Chrome might spawn half a dozen separate tasks (or processes). With several tabs open, the number of tasks gets quite large.