Thu. Feb 29th, 2024


Key Takeaways

  • Close unnecessary tabs in Chrome’s task manager to free up memory and prevent the “Not enough memory” error.
  • Update Google Chrome to fix any bugs and improve memory efficiency.
  • Enable Memory Saver Mode to release memory occupied by inactive tabs and improve performance.



The “Not enough memory to open this page” error usually appears when trying to open a new page in Chrome. It means the browser has used your computer’s available RAM (physical memory) and can’t open more pages. Luckily, it’s fixable.


Close Unnecessary Tabs

The more tabs you open, the more RAM space Chrome needs. If you notice that Chrome keeps running out of memory when you have a lot of tabs open, close the unnecessary ones.


If you don’t know which tabs are taking up too much memory, check Chrome’s task manager. To access Chrome’s task manager, click the three-dot icon in the top-right corner and select More Tools > Task Manager.


Opening Chrome's task manager.


In the task manager, click the “Memory Footprint” column until it has a down arrow next to it. This means Chrome will arrange the processes in descending order based on what is using the most memory. To close a tab in Chrome’s task manager, select it and click “End Task.”


Ending a task in Chrome's task manager.


Do this for all unnecessary tabs that have high memory usage. Keep in mind that the task manager will list all of Chrome’s processes (not just tabs). To know which ones are tabs, look for the tab label at the beginning.

Update Google Chrome

Before we get to the intensive fixes, you should update Google Chrome to see if that fixes the error. An update can iron out any bugs that are making the browser use memory inefficiently. Chrome usually updates itself automatically, but you can update it manually.


To update Chrome, click the three-dot icon in the top-right corner and select Help > About Google Chrome. Chrome will check for new updates and install any that it finds. When it’s done, click “Relaunch” for it to finish updating.


Relaunching Chrome after an update.


Another benefit to updating Chrome is that it can also introduce performance enhancements and features that can improve Chrome’s memory efficiency.

Enable Memory Saver Mode

Another thing you can do if you like to open a lot of tabs is enable Memory Saver. This feature will release any memory occupied by inactive tabs. This will give your active tabs and other programs on your computer more physical memory to work with.


If you want to enable Memory Saver, click the three-dot icon in the top-right corner and select More Tools > Performance. In the Memory section, click the toggle next to “Memory Saver” to turn on the feature—the toggle will be blue when on.


Enabled Memory Saver feature in Chrome.


When this happens, you will notice that Chrome will reload those inactive tabs when you visit them again.

Clear Chrome’s Cache and Cookies

If Chrome’s cache and cookies have accumulated too much data, the browser can end up using a significant amount of RAM. If you open too many tabs, it makes the problem more likely to occur. Clearing Chrome’s cache and cookies can fix the issue in this instance.


To clear your cache and cookies, click the three-dot icon in the top-right corner and click “Clear Browsing Data.” Select the “Cookies and Other Site Data” and “Cached Images and Files” check boxes. Then, click “Clear Data.”


Clearing cookies and cache in Google Chrome.


Hopefully, the error won’t pop up again and ruin your experience.

Disable Chrome Extensions

If you have too many extensions running at the same time, it can cause Chrome to use a significant amount of memory. To fix this, disable Chrome extensions that you don’t use regularly and see if that helps.


To disable an extension in Chrome, click the three-dot icon in the top-right corner and select Extensions > Manage Extensions. Then, click the toggle in the bottom-right corner of the active extension to disable it. The toggle will turn gray to signify that it’s disabled.


Disabling an extension in Chrome.


Alternatively, you can put Chrome in incognito mode. The browser will run without the extensions, allowing you to see if they are the reason Chrome keeps running out of memory.

Increase Your Computer’s Ram

One way to get rid of the “Not Enough Memory to Open This Page” error is to increase your computer’s virtual memory. That way, your computer will store the temporary data it needs to run efficiently in your drive (secondary storage).


Unfortunately, there’s no way to manually do this on a Mac computer. But if you’re on Windows, you can increase the size of the page file.


A RAM stick on a table.
Hannah Stryker / How-To Geek

 


Alternatively, for both Mac and Windows computers, you can increase the size of the physical memory itself by upgrading your computer’s RAM. This is a good idea if your computer’s RAM is less than 8GB.




Of everything we’ve covered, having too many tabs open is the biggest reason you’d encounter the “Not enough memory to open this page” error. It’s understandable though, since tab opening can get out of hand, especially if you’re researching something. We recommend that you use an extension like OneTab to save tabs for later.


If you can’t help but open a lot of tabs, we recommend increasing the size of your RAM. Don’t rely too much on virtual memory, as it can cause performance problems and decrease the size of your available drive space.



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By John P.

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