Brave all of a sudden started using excessive amounts of CPU

All of a sudden yesterday, Brave started using large amounts of CPU, causing my computer to heat up, with no reason I can think of that for why it’s happening. I didn’t install any new add-ons or do anything specific that I can think of to cause this. I tried turning off hardware acceleration, but it didn’t help.

It primarily seems to happen when I load a new page on any website, where if I leave a page without doing anything, it seems to come down to normal levels. But the moment I do anything on a webpage, suddenly the CPU usage shoots up to around 98%.

When my computer begins to heat up and I check my Activity Monitor, it says “Brave Browser Helper” is what’s using up all the CPU. My Task Manager says that it’s Utility: Bat Ads Service that’s primarily using most of my CPU within the browser. I can post screenshots if needed.

I do have around two dozen tabs in the browser, however, they’re all closed with the Marvellous Suspender add-on. Again though, this only started happening yesterday and Brave never had an issue with this many closed tabs before.

Brave version is 1.29.81

Mac OSX Big Sur Version 11.2.1

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@Fargo622,
Thank you for reaching out to us.

I actually think this particular extension may be the issue at hand. However, to rule out all extensions, can you please try creating a temp. fresh browser profile and test to see if you get the same behavior when using the new profile? Ensure that you close your original profile window when performing this test, such that the only Brave window open is the new profile.

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I just tested it and it’s still occurring.

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@Fargo622,
To confirm, with only one Brave Window open (with a newly created profile, without any data/extensions in it) is using excessive resources, is that correct?

Additionally, in this new profile, can you ensure that Rewards is not enabled, then open the browser task manager (Menu --> More tools --> Task manger) and see what component is causing hogging the resources?

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Yes, I tested it again just to be sure. New profile, no extensions, rewards not enabled, and it still is using around 98% of the CPU.

When I opened up Task Manager in the new profile it said it was Bat Ads Services that was using up so much. Again, I made sure rewards were not on.

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Hi, Dear.

I believe your problem is not obvious at all. I also believe that your problem is not only caused by the browser. I am not an expert on computer technology, and I am not a programmer. That being said, I have programmed and built computers.

You are using a Mac. Macs, in general, tend to be highly efficient in resource utilization globally within the entire structure of the computer. I myself have used mostly computers I built myself recently which are not Mac based or utilize OS X. Nonetheless, I recognize Apple’s successes and their merits since I have studied it and used their products extensively.

Again, with that being said, it is highly bizarre that a web browser or any of its subroutines would result in 98% CPU utilization especially considering the structure of Unix operating systems such as OS X. I assume you have also observed the trend line of the CPU usage. You appear to understand what you are conveying and are confused by what you see; I was also.

Assuming the trend line of CPU usage is not following the standard spiked sinusoidal or whatever trig curve function, (basically waves with spikes based on opening and closing programs that utilize significant portions of the hardware) there would be numerous potential issues. Here are some to explore, in order of my own issues on computers:

  1. Heating.
  2. CPU workload capacity (Intel CPU vs M1 CPU, primarily: Intel CPUs, the prior Apple standard of silicone which was through a contractual agreement for Apple to buy chips OEM directly from Intel, are by every metric I can imagine inferior in efficiency to the newer and more successful M1 chips created by Apple’s own engineers. If your Mac has an M1 chip, I would be concerned the chip is suffering from the heating issue or something different that is causing it to malfunction. Otherwise, it is likely age that is causing degradation of the Intel chip which was motivated by, possibly, wear and tear or simply a less productive instance of Intel’s standard for silicone in the CPUs)
  3. OS X malfunction (an error integral to the current operating system which can arise if you use beta or dev channels of any OS, and can also arise randomly. Note that this would likely be independent of Brave almost entirely.)
  4. Data skew (your task manager is misreporting data (this is extremely rare))
  5. Motherboard issues (also unlikely, but related since the CPU literally functions due to the motherboard’s consistent instruction)
  6. There are numerous other possibilities. Could you expand on what you’ve said?

Thanks,
Lxcy.

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I closed down Brave and separately tested both Firefox and Chrome to see if they were using large amounts of CPU, but they were both using normal amounts that weren’t forcing my computer fans on, like Brave is.

It only seems to be Brave that is doing this.

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Unfortunately, I’m not sure where to proceed. It is quite possible that it is Brave seeing as you answered all my inquiries and Firefox and Chrome are both not causing a similar issue. Hardware would be consistently faulty across all three if it were related to hardware, I would think. Good thing you’ve most likely ruled that out now.

Can a dev for Brave speak on this matter further? I am more curious now! :slight_smile: :hugs:

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@Fargo622,
Are you using an M1 mac?

No, I’m using a 2017 iMac.

4.2 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
40 GB 2400 MHz DDR4
Radeon Pro 580 8 GB

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same on windows 10, CPU is 80% on youtube especially in 4k videos… firefox is low. this should be fixed as soon as possible!

A quick update. I tried disabling all my add-ons and restarting Brave, which didn’t do anything. But I did attempt the new profile thing again today, with rewards not enabled and unlike yesterday, Brave was not eating up all my CPU, even when loading up a bunch of random tabs. However, the moment I went back to my main profile, Brave again went back to using 98% CPU, even when loading a new empty tab.

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@Fargo622,
Can you try toggling Brave Rewards (ads, specifically) on your main profile and test to see if usage goes down? Note that doing this should not affect any Rewards/Ads data.

I just tested it by turning off ads in my main profile, and while it’s off, it no longer uses massive amounts of CPU, but the moment I turn ads back on, it quickly goes back to around the 98% mark. I’m not sure why it’s different from yesterday, the only thing I did today was update Brave to version 1.30.86

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@Fargo622,
Appreciate this information. I’m going to discuss with the Rewards team and see if we can figure out why this might be happening. Appreciate your patience – will reply here when I have more information.

I have the same thing happen occassionaly. On Windows - a high end system with 64 GB RAM, so likely a resources allocation issue. It seems related to video playback - perhaps multiple tabs with videos open, but I can’t take the time to try and solve the problem. I just close all instances of Brave and start over.

I’ve encountered this in Chrome also (which is how I found Brave).

Hi @Fargo622 I work on the ads team here at Brave, would you be willing to jump on a screen-share so we can investigate the issue? Thanks

Sure, let me know what time would work to set it up.

Hi. I am available now if that is good for you. If so, please email me at tmancey@brave.com and I will send an invite. Thank you, Terry

During a call with @Fargo622 we have identified an issue and I am working on a fix. Please let me know if any other users would like a screen-share to confirm if the same issue? Thanks

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