Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024


Key Takeaways

  • To boost the speed of Microsoft Edge, close unused applications, terminate unnecessary processes, clear the browser cache, and ensure your browser is up-to-date.
  • If issues persist, enable hardware acceleration, disable efficiency mode, activate startup boost, revert to the default theme, and remove extra browser extensions.
  • If none of the previous solutions worked, try clearing the DNS cache and reseting the browser.


Does Microsoft Edge take ages to launch, navigating its menus feel like a chore, and browsing as a whole seem cumbersome? All of these are signs of a slow browser. From a lack of system resources to not updating the browser on time, several factors can slow Microsoft Edge down. Fortunately, you can speed it up with a few simple steps.


1. Preliminary Checks

If Microsoft Edge ran smoothly before but has suddenly slowed down, perform the following preliminary checks:

  • Close any programs you have recently launched on your device, after which the browser has slowed down.
  • Monitor overall system resource consumption using Windows Task Manager or Activity Monitor (on macOS) and terminate resource-intensive processes.
  • Close any web apps, streaming platforms, and other browser processes that aren’t in use.
  • Close all tabs after saving progress, and restart the browser.
  • Clear your browser’s cache and cookies.

If none of the above preliminary checks help, apply the remaining fixes.

2. Close Resource-Intensive Browser Processes

To begin with, check that the processes actively running in your browser aren’t slowing it down. To confirm this, click the “three horizontal dots” in the top-right corner and navigate to More Tools > Browser Task Manager. This will open Microsoft Edge’s task manager, which lets you monitor the resource consumption of processes.

Opening the task manager in Microsoft Edge

Click the “Memory” column header to sort tasks by memory usage. Find the non-essential processes taking up most of your system’s resources. Then, select each one individually and hit the “End Process” button to terminate it.

Ending a resource-intensive process from task manager in Microsoft Edge

If closing down some processes improves browser performance, note them and avoid running them simultaneously. If closing them doesn’t make any difference, go to the next step.

3. Disable the Efficiency Mode

Microsoft Edge’s efficiency mode reduces power consumption while browsing and limits resource usage. If your browser has this mode enabled, you will likely experience performance issues.

To check if it’s enabled, click the three horizontal dots in the top-right corner, then click “Settings.” Then, go to the “System and Performance” tab on the left and turn off the toggle next to “Efficiency Mode.”

Disabling the efficiency mode in Microsoft Edge

Disabling efficiency mode will surely improve browser performance, but the power consumption will also increase. So, if you’re on a laptop, its battery might not last as long as it used to.

4. Ensure the Browser Is Fully Updated

Not updating the browser for a long time can also affect its performance. While it usually updates automatically, you may have to update Edge manually if you use a metered connection, such as a cellular hotspot.

If you use a metered connection, click three horizontal dots in the top-right corner and navigate to Help and Feedback > About Microsoft Edge.

Opening the help and feedback settings in Microsoft Edge

Then, click on “Download and Install.” Wait for the download to complete and restart your browser to install it.

Then, return to the same page and turn on the toggle next to “Download Updates Over Metered Connections.” This allows Edge to download updates even when you are on a metered connection and update itself automatically.

Browser showing that Microsoft Edge is fully up to date

If you don’t see the option to download the update or see a message saying, “Microsoft Edge is up to date,” the browser is already updated.

5. Enable Hardware Acceleration

Hardware acceleration refers to the process by which your browser offloads resource-intensive tasks from the CPU onto specialized hardware on your device that can handle the tasks more efficiently. This improves the performance of the browser as a whole.

To enable this feature, go to Settings > System and Performance and turn on the toggle next to “Use Hardware Acceleration When Available.”

Enabling hardware acceleration in Microsoft Edge

6. Enable Startup Boost

If a slow browser startup bothers you the most, enable the startup boost feature to speed up the process. This feature keeps the browser running in the background, allowing it to launch faster. However, the browser may consume slightly more resources when this feature is enabled, which may affect the performance of other apps.

If you don’t mind that, go to Settings > System and Performance and turn on the toggle next to “Startup Boost.”

Enabling startup boost in Microsoft Edge

7. Switch to the Default Theme

Using a third-party theme to make your browser look elegant can drain more resources, which can slow it down.

If you use such a theme, click three horizontal dots in the top-right corner and go to “Settings.” Then, select the “Appearance” tab on the left. Here, select the “Default” theme from the available options.

Switching to default theme in Microsoft Edge

8. Modify Your Preferences to Limit Tracking

As you browse the web, websites collect data about your browsing activities, which they use to serve ads. Although sometimes helpful, such trackers add additional processing load that can adversely affect your browser performance. Thankfully, you can customize the tracking preferences in Microsoft Edge.

Open “Settings” and go to the “Privacy, search, and services” tab on the left. Choose “Balanced” as its most recommended option. If you want to block more trackers and limit websites from collecting your data, select the “Strict” tracking preference.

Changing the tracking prevention settings in Microsoft Edge

With “Strict” tracking prevention selected, you may occasionally encounter issues when visiting websites. If that happens, switch back to “Balanced.”

9. Declutter Your Installed Extensions

If too many extensions are installed on your browser, their combined resource consumption can also slow it down. If you haven’t decluttered them in a while, it’s time you do so. So, click the three horizontal dots in the top-right corner and click “Extensions.” Then, click on “Manage Extensions.”

Opening the extensions page to disable or remove them in Microsoft Edge

Here, find those you don’t use frequently and disable or remove your Edge extensions. To disable an extension, turn off the toggle next to it. To remove an extension, click “Remove” under the extension and click “Remove” again in the confirmation box.

Disabling and removing an extension from Microsoft Edge

10. Clean the DNS Cache in Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge records all requests made to a DNS server from your browser to speed up website loading on subsequent launches. Though useful, not clearing this cache can sometimes slow down the browser.

If you haven’t cleared it lately, open a new browser tab and paste the following URL into the address bar:

 edge: 

Then, click on “Clear Host Cache.”

Clearing the DNS host cache in Microsoft Edge

11. Reset Microsoft Edge

If you don’t see a significant improvement in browser speed after taking the above steps, you should reset the browser. This will revert its settings to default, ensuring that misconfigured settings aren’t causing it to slow down.

To reset a browser, navigate to Settings > Reset Settings. Click “Restore Settings To Their Default Values” and then “Reset” again in the confirmation box.

Resetting Microsoft Edge settings


That’s how you can speed up Microsoft Edge. If browser performance remains sluggish after performing all the steps above, you may want to try a different browser entirely, like Chrome or Firefox.



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By John P.

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