I created a minimal extension for Chromium browsers to auto unload tabs after a set number of minutes.

I created it because I wanted an extension to reduce my browser RAM usage. I didn't want to install an extension that would auto-update and bring all sorts of shenanigans (spam, monitoring, ads, etc.). So, I created this extension and decided to share it in case someone is looking for something similar.

@brunomiguel Shouldn't be hard to convert but would need to look into that and not much time on my end. Feel free to play around with the code and ask any questions you might have :)

@hugo I'll look around and see if I can understand it and, if I'm very, very lucky, port it to Firefox :)

@brunomiguel @hugo What about this? It is open source as well, maintained for years, and supports most of the big browsers.

rNeomy/auto-tab-discard: Use native tab discarding method to automatically reduce memory usage of inactive tabs

@loikein @brunomiguel That one looks pretty great.

I looked into it before starting to develop mine but I wanted something that I could easily understand everything that was going on in the background and that one has a lot of code to look into :) I am paranoid with the code that I install on my end.

@hugo Just curious, why would you need that? Doesn’t that result in more CPU usage and power consumption when you eventually access the tab again?

@notaleman @lx In my situation I was getting memory swapping that made everything slower and over 50% of my RAM was used by the browser.

About the CPU and power consumption, I don't know how significant it would be but it really depends. If you have a loaded tab in the background with content that auto updates, then you can probably even save CPU and power. But didn't test that as my main concern was reducing RAM usage and I am using it on a desktop where power and CPU is not a factor.

@notaleman @hugo Oh wow, I would have thought that the browser handles its memory usage better to avoid that 😯

@hugo I've also been recommended the great suspender, I think it's called, from a friend.

I'm not the type to have a tab problem though. My browser gets closed every time I walk away from the computer and I do not reload the last session.

@greypilgrim Yep, that's exactly what I should do but I don't. I keep my browser open for weeks :) so I can continue where I left. It's not ideal but it's a hard habit to break.

About The Great Suspender, it was one of the most used extensions that was sold by the developer and then started including tracking/malware:

That is another one of the reasons I am so paranoid with extensions and prefer to develop my own.

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