Google pushed a silent update to Chrome breaking business tools for thousands before Google can fix it

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Google is known for regularly tweaking Chrome with some new features to improve the user experience. While most of the changes to Chrome are pushed by Google without any issue, a few of them create some problems for the user accessing Chrome and some of its features. Something similar to this has happened recently.

Recently, Google has shipped an experiment feature to the stable version of Chrome that crashed the browser for thousands of businesses machine without any warning. Actually, Google was testing the experimental WebContents Occlusion flag on the Beta version of Chrome for nearly half of 2019. After testing on the beta version, Google decided to silently push this feature on the stable version of Chrome resulting in crashing the whole browser.

Google targetted this update to reduce the RAM usage of Chrome. But instead of reducing RAM usage, the enabled flag made it impossible for employees to access virtual machine environments, like Citrix, rendering Chrome unresponsive in these instances. While opening the Chrome browser, it only shows a white screen and lets the application unresponsive. This situation left IT staff at countless businesses scrambling to solve a problem they didn’t roll out to their employees.

This was quite surprising for IT admins as Google never publishes coherent Chrome changelogs for non-developers. This makes it harder for users to identify what makes these sorts of errors on Chrome. After taking thousands of complaints, Google finally revealed the cause of that failure and rolled it back. Now, Chrome is in normal condition as it was before and is now accessible.

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