When using Google Chrome I've observed that the icon that holds the favicon.ico shows a rolling circle before a page is fully loaded.

It appears as if the circle is rolling counter-clockwise when the browser is in the following states:

  • Resolving hostname
  • Connecting to server
  • Waiting for response (before first byte being sent from server?)

Whereas the circle appears to be rolling clockwise when the browser is in the following states:

  • Loading the page or referenced resources

My questions:

  • Are my observations correct w.r.t. the rolling circles indicating state?
  • Has anyone seen this documented somewhere?

When you load a webpage in a tab, a slow-spinning gray circle on the tab lets you know that Google Chrome is connecting to the website. The circle turns blue and spins faster once loading is in progress. Once the webpage is completely loaded, the icon changes to the website's graphic.


  • 4
    The link you reference no longer has the quoted text. – mkasberg Apr 10 '17 at 19:41

From Gloson Blog:

alt text

When the site is being resolved, Chrome will display this gray line, revolving slowly, counter-clockwise.

alt text

When the site is found and is being loaded, Chrome will show this blue line, revolving quickly, clockwise.

From another blog:

The unique feature that I love in Chrome is that it spins both ways – anti-clockwise means data is being uploaded, or a page is being requested, and clockwise means that the page is being downloaded. I believe the speed of rotation also relates to transfer speed.

  • 1
    I'm looking for Google documents to help you confirm it – Ivo Flipse Aug 12 '09 at 13:29
  • Ok that appears to be quite hard... – Ivo Flipse Aug 12 '09 at 13:39
  • Isn't that the one Daniel had found already? – Isxek Aug 12 '09 at 14:04
  • I was first! But people liked his answer more... I found that Google text thing too, but I can't find the API documentation :-( – Ivo Flipse Aug 12 '09 at 14:33
  • I've also observed, on this low-spec work machine which frequently gets bogged down in swapfile activities, that Chrome doesn't distinguish between actual resolution attempts and 'process commencement' activity -- therefore anything anticlockwise I treat as "not loading yet". To give you an example, I just opened a new tab and went to Google - the spinner span anticlockwise for almost 20 seconds whilst the disk thrashed on the swapfile, and only THEN did it actually show "Waiting for Google.com..." in the lower left corner before finally loading the site. – Chris Woods Dec 2 '11 at 20:24

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