Microsoft is improving Chromium to save CPU and improve memory usage

Recent code submitted by Microsoft to Chromium shows that Chromium-based web browsers (such as Google Chrome, Brave, Vivaldi, Opera, and Chromium Microsoft Edge) will have faster startup speeds and use less memory. An important change after Microsoft turned to the Chromium camp was to get more engineers to optimize and improve for Chromium. The code for Microsoft’s recently submitted indicates that Chrome’s startup speed and memory usage will vary greatly.

Microsoft Edge

On modern devices and systems, Chrome can start up quickly, but if you try to run Chrome on a slightly older computer, we may notice a delay in startup.

Because Chromium-based browsers need to load chrome.dll and chrome_child.dll at startup. “On a slow laptop (Windows 8.1, 2-cores, HDD), it takes ~0.48 seconds to pre-read chrome.dll and **~1.13** seconds to pre-read chrome_child.dll. These operations are on the critical path of the startup.”

In terms of memory usage, Microsoft engineer Joe Laughlin suggested making changes to the in-process prefetcher, which would benefit the browser’s CPU usage and memory usage.

“Change the in-proc prefetcher to load the code into Image pages and not MapFile pages
to save CPU and improve memory usage, and do nothing on OS builds that enable OS
PreFetch of larger files. Note this require the PreFetchVirtualMemory API, so we’ll
still read the file as data/MapFile on Win7.”

Of course, the submitted code still needs to be tested in order to be merged into Chromium, but we hope that this feature will come soon.