Skip to Content
© Fizkes | Dreamstime.com
Tech tips

Easy way to keep Chrome from slowing down your computer

There’s almost nothing more annoying than dealing with a slow computer. The only thing that makes slow load times and lags worse is being on a tight work deadline.

Even with regular upkeep, computers can slow down due to glitchy programs or tools, causing your programs’ issues. There are tricks you can try to speed up slow browsers, but these tricks won’t speed up slow CPUs.

That’s something Google Chrome users have learned the hard way recently. The Software Reporter Tool, a built-in scanning tool that comes with Chrome, has been throwing a wrench in load times and making slow computers even slower. If you’ve been dealing with similar issues, you need to know why it’s happening and what you can do to fix it.

The problem with Google Chrome’s Software Reporter Tool

The issue with Google Chrome’s Software Reporter Tool has been evident for a while. Complaints from Chrome users about slow computers and lagging applications have been rampant for the last year or two, but most people aren’t aware of what’s causing it. In fact, most people are not even aware that the Software Reporter Tool exists — but that little tool causes major problems.

Software Reporter Scan runs an automatic scan once a week in the background and reports results to Chrome. This tool is looking for unnecessary software applications that might interfere with Chrome’s browsing experience. Anything that interferes with Chrome may be removed by the tool — making your browsing experience faster and more streamlined.

It also reports advertising issues and site crashes to Google when they happen. It will prompt you to run the Chrome Cleanup tool during the scanning process if it discovers any issues after a crash.

In general, the Software Reporter Tool is a handy stand-alone process that doesn’t interfere with the browser. When it goes awry, though, it can wreak havoc on your browsing experience.

One of the main issues is that it can cause a high system load when scanning your system. This can take up 30% or more of your CPU while it’s running. That can cause major slowdowns on your machine. And, since it’s not uncommon for the tool to run for 20 minutes or more, it can cause extended interferences that you don’t need.

Another issue is that the tool tells Google what the scan results were. This obviously doesn’t affect your machine’s speed, but it does cause some privacy concerns for some users.

It’s important to note that this tool won’t relay any private information to Google. But if you’re worried about data being relayed to Google or the high CPU usage, you may want to disable this tool.

Related: Tap or click here to see the kind of internet speeds you’ll be seeing in the next few years

How to disable Software Reporter Tool

If you want to disable the Software Reporter Tool, you can remove, uninstall or delete the entire folder’s contents or rename the executable to do so. However, that’s only a temporary fix. When you update your web browser, Google will reinstall the Software Reporter Tool, starting the problems back up.

If you want to get rid of the Software Reporter Tool for good, you need to remove the permissions so that no user has access to the folder.

To disable the Software Reporter Tool:

  1. Find your username by typing users into the Windows search box and clicking on the Users folder.
  2. Next, paste the following into your Windows search box, but replace USERNAME with your own: C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\SwReporter.
  3. Right-click on the folder that appears under SwReporter and select Properties from the menu.
    • If you haven’t found the SwReporter folder, you may find it under another name: CrashReports. Right-click on it and follow the same steps below.
  4. Locate the Security tab and select Advanced.
  5. Click Change permissions.
  6. Click the Disable inheritance option.
  7. Click the option to Remove all inherited permissions from this object in the pop-up window. Then, all inherited permissions will be removed.
  8. At last, select Apply and hit the OK button.

Note: If you are using Windows 7, the disabling process could be a little different.

To disable the tool in Windows 7:

  1. After clicking on Advanced button under the Security tab, you will see the Change Permissions… button instead of the Disable inheritance option. Click on it.
  2. A new window will pull up.
  3. In that window, uncheck the Include inheritable permissions from this object’s parent option, and choose Remove on the dialog that pops up.
  4. The Software Reporter Tool will be disabled on Windows 7.
Komando Community background

Join the Komando Community!

Get even more digital know-how and entertainment within the Komando Community! Watch or listen to The Kim Komando Show on your schedule, read Kim's eBooks for free, and get answers in the Tech Forum.

Join Now