Review of The Great Suspender for Chrome
If you work in the browser, you know how easy it is for tabs to pile up and your device to slow down. Sure, you can use fewer tabs. But a lot of us need tabs open as we dig deep into projects. That's where tab suspenders come in.
Historically, the Great Suspender has been a popular Chrome extension for lowering memory usage.
If you want to read up on the security concerns that led to The Great Suspender being disabled, our review covers that, as well as overall pros and cons of the extension.
Our verdict: The Great Suspender will help Chrome use less memory. But if you’re concerned about The Great Suspender’s security — or you just want a tab suspender that works on Firefox as well as Chrome — we recommend Workona as an alternative.
What is a tab suspender?
Browser tabs can take up significant memory on your device. For example, 15 tabs in Google Chrome can use 1 – 2 GB of memory, depending on the content. So if webpages are loading at a painfully slow rate, tabs could be the cause. This is especially true if you:
- Keep 100+ tabs open
- Open tabs with streaming video/audio
- Use a device with low memory capacity or existing performance issues
Tab suspenders pause these memory-hogging tabs. They’re still there, but they won’t take up any memory. To use a suspended tab, simply refresh it.
How The Great Suspender works
The Great Suspender automatically suspends tabs while you browse. You can choose to automatically or manually suspend tabs, and even decide how long a tab must be inactive until it's suspended. Here's what you'll see when you click a suspended tab:
What options does The Great Suspender give me?
There are some circumstances in which you wouldn't want a tab to be suspended. For example, if you’re in a Zoom meeting, over-aggressive suspension settings could kick you out of the meeting. Same goes for tabs playing audio or video. Luckily, you can adjust settings to avoid this.
The Great Suspender lets you choose whether to suspend active, pinned, or offline tabs. You can also choose:
- Which URLS to never suspend
- When a tab auto-suspends
- To sync settings with your Chrome profile
- To suspend tabs based on your power settings (ideal if you're suspending tabs to conserve power)
- To screenshot the tab before it's suspended (note: this is an experimental feature that may increase memory usage)
Review of The Great Suspender
Overall, The Great Suspender works well for tab suspension on Google Chrome. Adjustable settings ensure that your work won’t be disrupted by the extension.
- Reduces memory usage
- Easy to customize
Limited scope - You might expect The Great Suspender to manage tabs, but it doesn't. In contrast, Workona lets you save, organize, and suspend tabs.
For Chrome users only - If you use any other browser, you’ll need to find an alternative.
Potential security vulnerabilities [UPDATE: The Great Suspender was disabled by Google and Microsoft extension stores due to malware]
The extension has recently changed ownership, which raised concerns about the extension's safety. These were the main issues:
- Some users believe that the buyer plans to inject malware into The Great Suspender, which is not uncommon when browser extensions change hands.
- Changes were made to The Great Suspender that were not disclosed, including overly broad permissions and the extension connecting to third-party servers and executing code from them.
- After buying The Great Suspender, the new owner has not responded to users' concerns.
For these reasons, we recommend removing The Great Suspender — here's how.
The Great Suspender alternative: Workona
There are several reasons to use an alternative to The Great Suspender:
- You’re concerned about security vulnerabilities with The Great Suspender.
- You need a tab suspender extension for Firefox or Edge, which The Great Suspender doesn't support.
- You want to organize your tabs, not just suspend them.
Workona is a good choice across the board. Available on Chrome, Firefox, and Edge, it offers full tab suspension capabilities. You choose how many tabs to keep in memory and how you'd like your tabs restored. If you like Workona's organizing features but want to continue using The Great Suspender for tab suspension, that option is supported.
Because Workona offers enterprise-level security, you don’t have to worry about unauthorized access to your data. See Workona's commitment to user privacy.