Google Chrome: Disable Prefetch

The Prefetch feature in Chrome takes up resources by caching pages you may never go to. I like to disable it using these steps:

1. Click the Menu button in the upper-right corner, then select Settings.

Google Chrome Menu Settions option¬†3. Choose the Show advanced settings… option.

Google Chrome Show Advanced Settings option

4. Scroll down to the Privacy section, then uncheck the Predict network actions to improve page load performance option.

Chrome Predict network actions option

Now Google Chrome will no longer use resources to try to load data from pages it thinks you may visit.


  1. Steve says

    Seems the geniuses at Google caught on to your rebellion young Padawan…

    They changed the wording in newer versions, *I think*, as the prefetch option is now gone; and it is now listed as:

    “Use a prediction service…” as the option…
    Either that or they took out the option and gave us some other option totally unrelated to this.

    But yeah…

    “RAGE” over how this thing is behaving, considering how well the browser itself functions on all other levels…

  2. Sean says

    …bonkers to *not* turn it off, perhaps that other commentor meant?

    Whatever they may have intended, and whatever actually came out of it, in the real world, it’s clear that Chrome’s DNS prefetch behaviors were making FaceBook page loads almost impossible, at times, over a smartphone link. It’s hard for me to find any reason to not disable it, whereas I’m already running my own HTTP caching proxy, on this link.

    Here’s to looking past all the bright, noble, self-advertising oversimplifications.

  3. Ken says

    Maybe you’d be bonkers if the implementation actually worked. I’ve had websites that had no problems before suddenly fail to resolve because prefething was enabled. Once it was turned off everything worked fine.

  4. michael depetrillo says

    Good article. I thought pre-fetching was a good idea until it started screwing up business websites I use. It is also difficult to use with games.

  5. Matthew says

    DNS pre-fetching only pre-emptively resolves domain names to IPs to speed up page loading. It does not, as you suggest in the article, pre-fetch HTML pages or resources. The information pre-fetched should amount to a few kilobytes. It’s truly negligible in size and resources.

    Essentially you’d be bonkers to turn it off under any sort of normal conditions.

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