Recently while working on projects I noticed that my MacBook Pro was running a bit unusual. The fan kept hovering for lengthy periods of time and it was aggravating the crap out of me. At times it would hover for about 15 minutes non-stop causing the bottom to heat up. Something seemed out of whack so I started to investigate further. The universal search option is great and something that I absolutely love to use when searching for apps or really just about anything on my MacBook Pro.
So, I searched for Activity Monitor. It’s an application that monitors processes, CPU, memory, disk, and network activity. Naturally in my scenario it was a matter of CPU usage simply because it seemed like to me that perhaps a certain process was deteriorating performance. If you have not used Activity Monitor on your Mac before I would strongly recommend it. It’s a rather handy application especially for the swift digital marketing professional, programmer, or developer.
Issues with Google Chrome’s Helper
Naturally like everyone else you have probably used Google’s popular Chrome browser at some point or another. According to Google it is intended to provide end users with a seamless and interactive user experience without sacrificing performance. Unfortunately, what they don’t tell you though is the fact that it has a tendency of running extremely hot. Chrome gets hot and so does Google’s flagship browser. Scorching hot! In fact many end users have expressed frustration on how bloated Google Chrome really is these days.
What is Google Chrome Helper?
Great question! I had no explanation for this one so ended up taking my resourceful self to Google and perused around for an answer. Ask and you shall receive. Interestingly enough I wasn’t the only one apparently seeking an answer to ‘What is Google Chrome Helper?‘. The simplified explanation is that it’s a process running simultaneously with Google Chrome browser. Not necessarily true though. There is a bit more than that from what I discovered.
Google Chrome Helper is not only a process that runs when the browser is in operation. After some deeper investigating I came to the conclusion that each Google Chrome Helper process instance represents a tab within the browser. So, the amount of tabs in your Google Chrome browser are equivalent to the number of processes in the Activity Monitor section. If there is too many of them then it starts to hog up CPU forcing the inside of your Mac to have a spaz attack.
Solution for the Google Chrome Helper Process Dilemma
Since my CPU was being hogged up by the multiple Google Chrome tabs and causing the inside of my Mac to flip out I had to find a solution. Now keep in mind this is merely based on my experience and the discoveries I found. Results may vary for you. Consider the above my informal disclaimer.
Once you’ve opened the Activity Monitor application ensure that the CPU tab is selected. If not then simply left-click on it and select it. Clicking on the CPU column will help you sort each process in ascending or descending order. Sorting in descending order will help display the processes that are currently hogging up the most amount of CPU. In my scenario it was the Google Chrome Helper which appears at the top of screenshot (image above).
Next, figuring out how to quit the Google Chrome Helper process that was hogging up my CPU. Luckily on a Mac things are quite simple and one of the things that I really enjoy about OS X in general. Double-click with left mouse on the process and you will see the pop-up box as shown in screenshot above. Simply click on ‘Next’ to quit that particular process.
It was quite refreshing to see my Mac shift into hibernation mode once again and eliminating the annoying hovering noise. Back into action once again!
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