Solved: Google Reader slowdown/freezes


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If you’re a regular user of the Google Reader RSS tool, you may have noticed that the most recent revamp hasn’t just attracted the usual complaints when any user interface is changed but, for some people, has caused serious performance problems.

In my case I found that at one point (when I was scrolling through a list of 100+ articles, having been away for a couple of days) the tab with Google Reader open was eating up a staggering 1GB of RAM. Fortunately I have a multi-core processor which, along with Chrome’s sandboxing, avoided a complete meltdown, but even then I was still getting significant slowdowns and freezes on the Reader.

It turns out the most likely cause of the specific memory problems is related to Google adding a Google+ button for every article. There’s some sort of issue with the link, which is being multiplied by the number of articles in your message pane to create the slowdown.

One workaround for this, which seems to be working in my place, is to tweak any ad-blocking utilities you are running to block the button. You can do this by adding the following address to your list of blocked ad locations:

plusone.google.com/u/0/_/+1/fastbutton

Incidentally, if you are running blanket ad-blocking tools and enjoy reading Geeks Are Sexy, we’d very much appreciate it if you were able to add our site to your list of exceptions — doing so will help our bottom line and make it easier for us to keep bringing you sexy, geeky content. Believe it or not, this place costs the price of a medium-sized Sedan to run every year.

And if you think our ads are still too annoying, you can always help us by donating a small amount (or a big one!) to the blog or by “Flattering” us.





12 Responses to Solved: Google Reader slowdown/freezes

  1. Oh wow! THANK YOU!
    I can now download my cycling club's entire Flickr Album (Have the task of copying them to Google+).

    +1 Button: I used to "like" pages as it was easy to just hit [L] as I was scrolling through. There's no shortcut to +1 :(
    Adblockers: Don't use one, don't see the point.

  2. OH HELLS YA! You made my day with this one. I been trying to figure out how to get the dam thing blocked for the past 2 days..

    IMHO Google+ as whole is super slooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow

    the longest load time site I visit on a daily basis is the G+ home page, you'd figure that G+ wouldn't have any kind of speed issue considering how big a priority speed is with the other 99.999999999% of Google products/services.

  3. Thanks much. I had to refresh every 50 or so articles to keep it so it would move along quickly. It was getting annoying.

    How did you discover the issue and the workaround?

    • It was in a comment on an article about newsreaders in general. Unfortunately between reading it and thinking "Hey, that would be a useful post on GaS" I forgot where it was, otherwise I'd have linked to it.

  4. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  5. thank you!! have been wondering why it was stuttering on scrolling, I have added your site to my exclusions!

  6. Disabled Adblock on GeeksAreSexy. Thank you for providing me with interesting articles and videos pertaining to my interests. And you are welcome for me reading them.

  7. THANKS!! ! ! ! My reader was running incredibly slow. I really miss being able to see how many likes a post has at the top of the article.