'Private' windows lost in crash, but not 'Private TOR' window

I’ve occasionaly (rarely) noted crashes in which Private windows – and only Private windows – suddenly vanish.

If I’m in one at the time, it disappears right before my eyes. If I’m not, I can see that those windows are no longer in the Window dropdown.

What I don’t think has ever happened before is the loss of only the standard Private windows, but not a Private TOR window. Still alive and kicking.

Mac OS 10.15.7 (Catalina)
Brave v. 1.67.90 Chromium: 125.0.6422.60 (Official Build) beta (x86_64)

When the browser crashes, all Private and Private w/Tor windows will not reappear. This is the same as if you were to simply “Quit” the application process, or restart your computer. Private and Private w/Tor windows are intentionally (and rightfully) cleared out when the browser is closed for obvious privacy reasons.

> When the browser crashes, all Private and Private w/Tor windows will not reappear.

Hi @mattches, I’m aware that that’s the expected behavior.

However, although two Private windows were lost, the Private TOR window was fully intact after the crash.

Perhaps those Private TOR windows have enhanced durability that wasn’t even known previously.

Or, it could have been a fluke.

This, btw, wasn’t a full-blown crash. Brave didn’t quit and there was no system restart, either triggered by the system or executed by me.

Immediately prior to the crash, Brave hung and the OS reported it as ‘not responding’.
I walked away for a few minutes. When I came back everything looked normal. Then I noticed that the Private windows were gone. But the Private TOR window was still there.

Could have been something to do with the way the windows and/or profiles were set up and what the nature of the issue that occurred was since, as stated before, if the browser had actually crashed all Private windows would have disappeared when the browser closed/crashed.

@mattches I hadn’t been doing anything unusual or made any changes to my user profile. I do tend to acquire a lot of open windows and tabs. In that case, when a crash occurs, I always assume some kind of overload of system resources triggered it.

I’ve reported those kinds of crashes (or whatever they should be called) – i.e., the disappearance of Private windows – in the past in that kind of situation (many open windows and tabs). The browser remains usable, but the Private windows were lost.

What was different this time was that the TOR window for some reason wasn’t affected.

@mattches It appears that Brave doesn’t view what I reported as a ‘crash’, despite the loss of data.

The last crash report (and the only one currently displayed) is from a week ago, so yesterday’s event wasn’t ‘seen’ as a crash.

From May 23rd:

If the issue occurs again, let me know but for now there’s not a ton we can do about it. Maybe the issue causing the Private window(s) to close was specific to the sites that were being viewed in those windows, rather than the browser itself.

@mattches An entire window disappearing because of the content in the tabs? And not just one window, but two of them simultaneously? Not to mention that the tabs in those windows would have consisted of webpages from multiples websites.

Seems unlikely. But then again, what do I know?, I’m just a novice.

But if it does happen again I think I’ll apply for a patent.

Is what constitutes a ‘crash’ in Brave able to be expanded so that preternatural events like mine get recorded in brave://crashes and can thereby be reviewable by the developers?

I’m honestly just guessing at what the cause could have been.

Yes, a true “crash” will typically close all browser windows/processes that are open and will also show up on the brave://crashes page.

@mattches Thanks. What I meant in the text you quoted was to inquire whether events of the type I’ve experienced, which currently aren’t seen as crashes by Brave, could be included as such in future versions of Brave.

Especially since I’ve reported it happening before (though not recently until now) I think that the disappearance of two Private windows for no known reason should be able to be reviewed by the devs. As far as I’m aware that can only happen if such events are seen as crashes so that they are documented in crash reports.

Really, any event that results in unrecoverable data loss – such as Private windows closing by themselves for no known reason – ought to be considered a ‘crash’, shouldn’t it?

Sure but that’s not how software development works. We can’t just “label” something as a crash and suddenly it becomes one. A crash (for any software) is typically a specific event wherein the process running fails entirely (the cause of which could be any number of reasons) which triggers a series of built-in components and processes that capture data about the browser state as it crashes, among other things.

You can read about Chromium crashes here:

@Mattches Thanks, the info the “Crash Reports” doc is beyond my technical understanding, but didn’t appear to state why what seem to be ‘crash events’ aren’t considered as such.

Over the weekend I experienced a sudden black screen that lasted for several minutes. (I just sat and waited to see what would happen next, including whether the computer had for some reason completely shut down.)

After several minutes a screen appeared with information that an event had occurred that will require a system restart (but apparently this is not a ‘crash’ – ?) The text was small, only in the very center of the screen and disappeared before I could read all of it.

After the computer auto-restarted I didn’t see any difference except the loss of the Private windows I had open before the event. Everything else seemed as it had been previously.

This didn’t show up as a ‘crash’ in Brave, so there is no information about what caused the event. If there was I might know how to avoid it in the future.

Without such events generating crash reports, the only ‘solution’ I can think of is to use regular (i.e., non-TOR) Private windows much less than I have done, since the risk of losing all the data in those windows is greater than the benefit the Private windows offer (which can be duplicated manually if desired anyway).