Questions about Safari vs Chrome

in Mac Software edited September 2014

Here's the situation:


I have an IMac I bought in 2007. After I upgraded its OS from Lion to Mountain Lion, it started freezing on a regular basis — about once every week or two. I've continued to upgrade its OS every time a new one is released by Apple, but the freezes have become more regular. Recently, it was freezing almost every other day. (I would love to simply replace it with a new Mac, but I can't afford to do that yet.)


Also, for a year, i've been keeping track of the times of the freezes and what application was being used when the computer froze. 95% of the time, Safari was the application being used, though I always had other apps running.


A few weeks ago, I decided to try an experiment: stop using Safari and switch to Chrome for all my browser needs. I thought maybe that would lower the number of freezes. 


I thought the experiment had worked because my Mac didn't freeze for two weeks. Then it froze once when I tried to wake it from sleep and a few days later it froze when I was using Chrome.


So, right now, I'm trying to decide if I should keep using Chrome or switch back to Safari. I am leaning to switching back to Safari because something happened tonight with Chrome that I'd never seen with Safari:


I am a Netflix user and I was browsing the Netflix home page. On the home page were banner ads, something I'd never seen before on Netflix's site. The home page was constantly waiting for data for the ads, making browsing extremely slow to the point of being unusable.


I thought the ads were a tacky new feature that Netflix had added since I'd last visited their home page (which was only a day or so ago). But I entered a chat with a Netflix support person and she told me it was "adware" that was caused by a "malicious file." The solution, she suggested was F-secure, some software that would protect my computer from such malicious files but costs (when I looked into it) $49/year.


Even though I think Safari was causing my Mac to freeze more than Chrome was, I'd never experienced or worried about a "malicious file" or "adware" compromising my web browsing in the years and years I've used Safari. I've been using Chrome as my main browser for only two weeks and already I've experienced something bad that I didn't even know was possible to experience on a Mac.


I'm now wondering if I'm putting myself at risk by using Chrome, especially on any sites where I'm providing passwords and other sensitive data like credit card information. If Chrome is so easily susceptible to adware then it must, I'm thinking, be suspectible to other problems too.


Anyway, I'm just wondering what people think about this situation: is Chrome dangerous to use? Is Safari much safer?






  • Reply 1 of 3

    Safari and get more RAM. Chrome’s evil.

  • Reply 2 of 3

    Chrome's not evil, but it is Google.  Google finances all it's "free" stuff by ad revenue.  It wasn't malicious software feeding you ads, it was Google feeding you ads.

    If you don't like it, don't use their free "stuff".


    As for the "freezing" issue; it's hard to say.  More important than the fact that Safari was running, (and really, that's not the cause if it was doing it with Chrome as well, even if less often,) we need to know what Safari was DOING when it froze the system.  (I'm going to guess it was trying to lad a Flash element... but that's just a guess.)


    You can run a plug-in called "Click2Flash" which will block all flash contact until you actually request (by clicking on it) that it be loaded.  IF FLASH IS THE PROBLEM, that would isolate it... though the problem could be something else.

  • Reply 3 of 3

    I tried troubleshooting the freezing problem with Apple support years ago and we couldn't figure out the problem. I eventually gave up. I'm thinking the only way to solve the problem is to get a new Mac, hopefully not too long in the future.

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