One process per tab

Everybody is talking about that these days, since information on Google Chrome leaked. But the fact is, this is what is going to happen with Google Chrome: stupid people proving that 2 + 2 = 5.

I haven’t tried IE8 nor am I willing to, but one of the rare things I read about IE8 when people were discussing how not innovative Google Chrome was, is that it uses a process per tab.

Now let’s assume IE binary code + libraries fit in 10MB (which is probably a small estimate), and you open 10 tabs. Here you are : 100MB RAM consumed. OH MY GOD!

Except that memory is shared between the processes. That’s 100MB virtual memory.

Reality is that you’ll have a hard time calculating the actual amount of memory used.

Update: It has already started.

2008-09-02 20:48:42+0900


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4 Responses to “One process per tab”

  1. Michael Croes Says:

    I think you’re incorrect in your assumptions and I sincerely hope google will prove you incorrect. Actually, the linux philosophy often is ‘less is more’ and this can very well be applied to google chrome. If they split up in the right parts they end up with single window renderers as seperate applications and more stuff split into small binaries. Something I suspect microsoft is doing is loading instances of plugins for all pages, even if they don’t need them. But google is not microsoft. The way google employees work on open source projects seems way better than anything I’ve ever seen from microsoft, and I suspect that google will again deliver a good product.

    I can imagine google chrome eating more resources than midori, epiphany or firefox (3), but I don’t think it will be the next microsoft product memory usage wise.

  2. mike Says:

    Yes you do, you can know how many memory chrome is using. type about:memory in the address bar and you will get a page with all the information that you could show with ps and especially pmap. Google Chrome will be doing fine with the memory, just like other webkit based browser actually.

  3. Justin Says:

    What causes issues for me with firefox is not how much memory a tab uses, but that closing a tab doesn’t cause the memory use to go down. I have to restart firefox a few times a day otherwise it will slowly eat all the free memory and swap space on my system.

  4. glandium Says:

    Mike, I’m not saying Chrome won’t be doing fine, I’m just saying we’ll see the same kind of clueless people jumping to the wrong conclusions regarding Chrome’s memory usage.

    Update: You can also be sure there will be people commenting on the difference between numbers given in about:memory and in Windows task manager.