Sporadic Freezing of Brave Desktop Browser on Certain Web Sites


I am experiencing an annoying, sporadic series of instances when the Brave Browser will freeze on the browser session’s first visit to specific web sites (details of one consistent example site presented below), rejecting all of my attempts at user input for varying periods of between 30 and 90 seconds. The duration might be even longer if I didn’t shut down the browser and pop open a different one when I don’t wait for the browser to recover. During the freeze, I will typically get 2 or 3 browser prompts that the page is unresponsive (see below) - I usually choose “Wait” and eventually the browser returns to normal operation and the site seems to operate properly for some irregular amount of time after. At some point, usually within the next day or two, the issue will recur on the same sites it had occurred previously. The issue has never occurred, under similar browser settings and conditions, using either the Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox browser. To explore this issue while encountering the least complexity, I’ve turned off essentially all the protective features of the browser, all the extensions I normally use, and reproduced the problem in a “Private” window in order to run the browser in a minimalist fashion.

Possibly pertinent? Something I’ve noticed while attempting to diagnose Brave’s odd behavior is that, at the point where Brave would have stopped responding, the other browsers display a flyout prompt from the web site to choose a local store - something Brave seems to supress (even with Shields off) - it feels like the unresponsive site is waiting for an acknowledgement that Brave doesn’t send, before the site proceeds with further sending of data.

This issue may be related to a closed (but not resolved?) issue: Carousel element appears to cause eBay main page to freeze. Not on Chrome

How can this issue be reproduced?

  1. Clear all walmart.com site settings in Brave
  2. Open a New Private window
  3. Type “walmart.com” into the Omnibox and hit “Enter”
  4. Click in Walmart site’s search box and quickly begin typing some text… a few characters appear and observe that the display of subsequently inputted characters stops updating
  5. Observe the browser’s page interaction stop responding to input via keyboard, mouse, scrollbars for between 20 and 60 seconds. Observe status bar at bottom of browser stick on various “Waiting” messages for varying amounts of time:
  6. While frozen, respond to browser’s “Page Unresponsive” prompts (possibly several) using the “Wait” button (if you wait for a sufficiently long time, the prompt will eventually be dismissed when the browser begins responding)
  7. After a significant period waiting for the browser to “unfreeze,” observe that the web site’s search box rapidly displays any text that may have been buffered when browser response was interrupted in step 4 and begins to respond again normally.
  8. Observe that subsequent visits to the page in the same browser session, after experiencing the “freeze-up,” no longer experience the same freezing issue
  9. If all cookies for the Walmart site are cleared, and the page refreshed, the issue will occur a (roughly) 4 or 5 second freeze, as the site apparently rebuilds its slate of cookies

Actual Result

Descriptions of results and screen clips illustrating them are interspersed within the How can this issue be reproduced section, for context.

Expected result:

Web page opens normally, and responds to input without a significant lag time.

Brave Version( check About Brave):

Brave Version 1.44.108 Chromium: 106.0.5249.103 (Official Build) (64-bit)

Additional Information:
• Brave Browser is in “Private Window” mode (not TOR) to eliminate possible effects from extensions.
• All extensions’ “Allow in Private” toggles are “DISABLED” via the “Manage extensions” interface.
• “Brave Shields” are TURNED OFF for site https://www.walmart.com/.
• “Use hardware acceleration when available” setting toggle is set to “DISABLED”.
• No custom filters have been created to the web site(s) involved.
• Windows Version 21H2 (OS Build 19044.2006)

1 Like

Try testing in Ads/Trackers = Aggressive.

Should that make a difference when “Shields are Down” for the site? I don’t think it’s even an option unless “Shields are Up.”

The same freeze-up happens on Ebay’s home page… about 45 seconds, this time. So, the page opens, and there is no response from the browser to typing, scrolling, or other UI operation (except for closing the tab)… but no freeze occurs on Chrome or Firefox.

Like walmart, does aggressive mode help?

Aggressive mode isn’t normally an option for me on some sites, as Shields are down in my normal use of these particular sites (to avoid some quirky issues on those sites when shields are up - see my comment below regarding losing input focus).

To try to answer your question, though, I’ve experimented - when Shields are activated, aggressive mode does seem to prevent the freezing… but I find when I begin typing into a selected search box immediately after entering the site, something will occasionally grab the input focus, forcing me to re-click inside the input box to resume typing. I can’t say whether the two sets of circumstances are related, but I believe that Brave in “Shields Down” mode is definitely experiencing a reproducible freezing issue on some sites.

1 Like

I can’t speak for @fanboynz but I think the suggestion is to enable Shields, as counter-intuitive as that may seem.

I tried Walmart on a Linux system here, granted it’s not a 1:1 test, but I can reproduce your issue on that site with Shields off and likewise with no extensions. But with Shields ON, in my case I can complete the search with Ads/Trackers in either Standard or Aggressive mode.

On a Windows system, I have a ‘shopping’ profile with (too many) extensions enabled, and the behavior is the same as above.

As I believe fanboy is the maintainer of the Brave Ad blocking engine I think it would be useful to verify if you see the same behavior, and if so, perhaps a fix can be implemented because clearly something is broken someplace – in my view, and you’d probably agree, this sort of thing shouldn’t happen regardless of Shields settings.

Also, while you’re at it, please make sure you’re at the current release of 1.45.123 at this point – probably already the case, but just making sure.

Hello JimB1,

Thanks for the suggestion… I reported the issue because I discovered it after turning shields off, for some misbehaving site features that I needed to use (I’ve only done this infrequently, and for only a few specific sites). The freezing issue is, I think, something that definitely indicates “something broken someplace”. My report is made in the interest of promoting a “more perfect browser” - for which I believe Brave is currently the leading contender.

1 Like

I have had the same exact problem for months. It happens on Walmart, Ebay, Best Buy, and Target. Shields up, down, aggressive - none of it matters.

I’ve had to load up firefox just to use these websites.

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Can you enable Easylist Cookie @knicks707 See if that helps?

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Yeah, this is becoming a big problem. I don’t visit Target or Walmart, but Best Buy is nearly unusable for me in Brave. I’ve used all the suggestions here. If I have to use multiple browsers again, then I will just cut Brave out of the picture because it is not worth the time to have to remember which sites I can use in which browsers. How about some help here Brave?

I’m having the same problem. Especially on fidelity.com. Aggressive mode solves this, but then I have to do 2 step verification every time I login. The only way to prevent 2 step verification is to turn off blocking of trackers and ads, but then every time I go to the Fidelity login page it’s unresponsive for 30s. I’m considering switching back to Edge or Chrome because this is becoming a big problem.

Same issue. I’ve had it for months and I’ve been using Brave only starting this year. I have shields disabled by default in settings. Major sites are affected. Makes Brave unusable. Needs fix ASAP, it’s driving me away from Brave.

Windows 10 21H2. Intel+Nvidia.

We have a fix incoming

  • Shields up should fix it
  • Also test with Easylist Cookie in brave://adblock enabled

@fanboynz Thank you! Very excited about this fix, was planning to switch off Brave today unless I could find a solution. Do you have a rough ETA?

Still being worked on @elliotdickison is there any specific sites causing issues?

1 Like

Shields UP
Under Block Trackers and Ads choose “Agressive”
Under Advanced Controls choose Filters List
Under Filters List choose Show More Filters
Check off all lists that have the name “Fanboy”
Check off EasyList Cookie List
Check off UBlock Annoyances List
Exit Brave then Open and try your website with shields up.

PS: I am using Ubuntu Linux OS 22.10 Brave is perfect on all of the sites i use.

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Doesn’t help, randomly freezes still, sometimes for what feels an eternity, making it totally useless.

Can’t even put my finger on which web site is causing it. Facebook, try to post something and wham, freeze, I always have these tabs open: google photos, Youtube, weather.com, WhatsApp, google messages, Google sheets, Yahoo mail - all have shields up. I’ve disabled hardware acceleration, enabled Easylist Cookie. Still randomly freezes.

How on earth did you release something so broken. Can’t recommend Brave to friends anymore. Has become an utter pain to use.

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