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As the session recovery feature in Chrome and Firefox does a lot of disk writing which isn't good for an SSD, Firefox has a solution, but I'm not aware of one for Chrome. There are workarounds that involve using a USB/SD card/external hard drive for the Chrome profile folder. You could either use the "c:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe"--user-data-dir=..." command to move the profile folder to the external drive, or create a symbolic link on the local appdata folder that points to a external drive folder. The result of this would be that on the one hand the actual installed program folder would be on the SSD itself so Chrome would presumably run on the SSD's resources, while on the other hand the profile/appdata folder and the cache would be on the external drive, so Chrome wouldn't be writing to the SSD.

Are there any disadvantages to these workarounds (i.e. putting the Chrome profile folder on an external drive)? Which would be the better one? And does anyone have a better workaround or solution to this?

Thank you very much.

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    "a lot of disk writing which isn't good for an SSD", may not be good for performance, but honestly I doubt you are browsing enough to wear out an SSD, i just get tired of hearing about how people are so worried about wearing out their SSD, when realistically the average user will never even come close: zdnet.com/article/… "..have gone on to break the two petabyte barrier, and are still going strong." are you browsing petabytes?
    – Musselman
    Feb 8, 2017 at 1:34
  • also, writing to a USB i would think would drastically slow your browsing experience do to how slow a USB (around 480 MBps) is going to perform compared to your fast SSD (around 712 MB/s).
    – Musselman
    Feb 8, 2017 at 1:38
  • Possible duplicate of Disable Google Chrome session restore functionality
    – Musselman
    Feb 8, 2017 at 1:41
  • So having the profile/appdata folder on a USB will slow down the user browsing experience even though the actual program is installed and located on the SSD itself? (c:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome)
    – semo
    Feb 8, 2017 at 2:16
  • Maybe I am misunderstanding. The way you stated your question, it sounds like you want the computer to do the writing to your USB to save your SSD? If you aren't writing to the USB to save your SSD then why have to involve a (slow) USB at all? It just seems like a lot of trouble, and I personally do not see a benefit to what you are attempting to do. USB's are notorious for just breaking, or getting corrupted too. That is a lot of risk.
    – Musselman
    Feb 8, 2017 at 4:34

2 Answers 2

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I happen to have a lot of RAM available, so have configured /tmp as a RAM-disk, reducing some of the wear and tear on the SSD (it's also faster).

Extending this idea, I symlinked ~/.cache to /tmp/home/[userid]/.cache.

A large amount of Chrome data now ends up there:

$ du -s -m ~/.cache/*  |  sort -n  | tail -3
4   /home/ray/.cache/tracker
416 /home/ray/.cache/google-chrome
529 /home/ray/.cache/thumbnails

That's nearly a gigabyte, all from Chrome, all in fast access ROM.

Yes, when I reboot it will all get lost and Chrome will be a little slower for a while, but for me that might not happen for many months.

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  • I have set up my tmp dir exactly the same with you haha. The problem is Chrome tab sometimes crashes, have you face the same issue?
    – Jared Chu
    May 12, 2021 at 14:40
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This Chrome bug is not fixed in years (and also few related issues):

https://bugs.chromium.org/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=176727

And it does not even have the settings to delay / reduce writing rate (Firefox has). That is really strange.

Disabling Chrome prefetch feature reduces writes a bit: https://www.technipages.com/google-chrome-prefetch

However, there is Opera browser for Linux which is based on the same V8 engine, using the same set of sites (including gmail and youtube), it has about 10 times less writes than Chrome.

So I suggest to try using Opera, especially because the recent versions of it are based on the same engine.

sudo snap install opera

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