Google Chrome Causing Freezing and Crashing on New Mac Notebooks

Over the past several days, Gizmodo has been highlighting freezing and crashing issues on several of its staff's new MacBook Air models, linking the problems to Google Chrome. Switching to Apple's Safari browser eliminated all of the issues, and thus the site recommended that owners of the new machines avoid Chrome for the time being.


Google has now issued a statement to Gizmodo acknowledging that Chrome is the culprit and discussing the steps it is taking to address the issue. While Google has disabled some of Chrome's GPU acceleration on an emergency basis as it seeks to deploy a permanent solution, the company has also filed a bug report with Apple as such issues should not be able to cause an entire system to freeze or crash.

"We have identified a leak of graphics resources in the Chrome browser related to the drawing of plugins on Mac OS X. Work is proceeding to find and fix the root cause of the leak.

The resource leak is causing a kernel panic on Mac hardware containing the Intel HD 4000 graphics chip (e.g. the new Macbook Airs). Radar bug number 11762608 has been filed with Apple regarding the kernel panics, since it should not be possible for an application to trigger such behavior.

While the root cause of the leak is being fixed, we are temporarily disabling some of Chrome's GPU acceleration features on the affected hardware via an auto-updated release that went out this afternoon (Thursday June 28). We anticipate further fixes in the coming days which will re-enable many or all of these features on this hardware."

With the issue affecting all systems using Intel HD 4000 graphics, all of Apple's notebook models released earlier this month are susceptible and owners of the new MacBook Pro models are indeed also reporting the issue.

First launched in September 2008, Chrome has steadily gained in overall popularity among desktop Internet browsers and is currently running neck-and-neck with Firefox for the second position behind Microsoft's Internet Explorer.

Related Roundups: MacBook Pro, MacBook Air
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Air (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

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109 months ago

...the company has also filed a bug report with Apple as such issues should not be able to cause an entire system to freeze or crash.


This really is the key part of the article. There's no way that this should be happening in the first place.
Score: 58 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

Listen Apple, you gotta make it available to set chrome as a default browser in ios because I ain't comin' back to safari what so ever.


What does this comment have to do with mac notebooks?
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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109 months ago
All your kernel are belong to Google!
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

Macs don't crash when they run anything else.
They crash when they run Chrome.

I think the source of the problem is quite clear.

Yep, it is very clear. Problem is in OSX. Applications can crash as often as they want. However when application crashes whole OS that clearly indicates problem with OS. It is simply not acceptable that application is able to crash OS.


Allow me to sue Microsoft when my computer crashes due to me running a poorly-coded trivial app. Because you know, such a trivial app shouldn't cause the operating system to crash.

Please give me an example of poorly coded application, which crashes Windows. Not Windows 98, but Windows 7.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

So when Chrome freezes and crashes Macs, Google blames it on Apple.
Seriously?
Just wow.

I switched from IE6-7-8 to Chrome to Firefox to IE9 to Safari. I like Safari the best, Firefox second, IE9 third and Chrome last. The way it renders things and the UI for some reason doesn't sit well with me... :/


Because an operating system shouldn't be allowed to crash simply from running a browser. It's bad security if anything. Duh.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago
Haha!

No joke, the ad featured right under this article has the Google chrome logo (at almost directly in line with the icon in article pic) and says to download Chrome today...

Awesome.



I love it.. Google Adwords FAIL!
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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