The Black Screen of Death and Google Chrome: A Fix

One of the most frustrating bugs in Google Chrome is the "Google Chrome black screen issue," in which the browser's interface suddenly goes black. Reasons for this issue range from incompatible add-ons to undetected bugs in the system.

Thankfully, a black screen in Chrome can usually be fixed by using standard troubleshooting techniques. Simple solutions, such as resizing your browser window, can often alleviate the issue for a short time. To permanently resolve this issue, however, please carry out the procedures outlined below.

Why Does Google Chrome Show a Blank Page

If Chrome suddenly goes black, it's likely due to an unusual graphics display error. The Chrome browser's user interface isn't displaying correctly for some reason. The result is that you may lose control of your browser or have some or all of your windows turn black.

However, as a graphical display error, a black screen in Chrome usually indicates that something is interfering with Chrome's ability to "draw" its interface on your screen. It could be a problem with your PC's hardware accelerator, a corrupted extension, or an incorrect setting in Chrome.

This error may occur for no apparent reason, or it may be triggered by a specific action, such as switching to a new tab or installing an extension in Chrome. Diagnosing the cause of your browser's black window can be difficult because there is no error code or log to consult.

The good news is that the steps below should fix a black screen in Chrome. If problems persist, you could try installing a different web browser, like Firefox, Microsoft Edge, or even a less popular one, like Brave.

Stretch Your Web Browser Out

If you're experiencing a black screen in Chrome, resizing the window can help. In the event of graphical malfunctions (such as a black screen), this will cause your operating system to "redraw" or recreate the interface.

  1. Maximize and minimize buttons are located in the upper left (on Mac) or right (on Windows) corner of your browser window, respectively, and allow you to resize the window. That will force a resetting of the user interface.
  1. If your browser isn't maximized, you can resize it by putting the mouse pointer in the window's left, right, top, or bottom corners. You can adjust the window's size by dragging it with your mouse.

This resolves the issue for the vast majority of cases. Chrome can be restarted to accomplish the same thing, as doing so will regenerate the user interface and remove any black screen errors.

However, this is only a stopgap measure. If the Chrome black screen persists after trying the above solutions, continue on to the more in-depth troubleshooting steps.

Slow Down Your Computer by Turning Off Hardware Assisted Graphics

Some software packages include a feature called hardware acceleration, which causes certain operations to be given higher priority by the computer's hardware (like the CPU or graphics card) in order to complete them more quickly.  

If your computer has a dedicated graphics processor or an integrated graphics chipset, it can offload some of the graphics processing from the central processing unit. While effective, graphical errors (such as a Chrome black screen) may occur if the feature isn't optimized properly or if your GPU is overworked.

The only way to get around this is to turn off hardware acceleration in Chrome.

  1. To turn off hardware acceleration in Chrome, click the menu button (three dots) in the top left, then click Settings.
  1. Choose Advanced > System from the drop-down menu inside the Settings tab.
  1. Switch the slider for Use hardware acceleration when possible from the blue "on" position to the neutral "off" position.  
  1. If you want your browser to automatically restart after disabling hardware acceleration, click the Relaunch button that appears to the left of the slider.
  1. Chrome's built-in GPU report menu can tell you whether or not hardware acceleration is being used after you've disabled it. To access this menu, type chrome://gpu into the address bar.

Turn off Add-ons in Chrome

Although Chrome add-ons can be useful, they can also create issues if they are flawed or not set up correctly. Chrome's black screen could be caused by an extension you just installed or started using.

  1. To manage your Chrome add-ons, click the ellipses (three dots) button in the browser's upper-right corner. Choose "Extensions" under "More Tools" in the menu bar.
  1. To turn off an extension, go to the Settings > Extensions menu and use the on/off slider next to the relevant extension. Turn off any add-ons you're not sure about just in case.
  1. If the issue persists after disabling Chrome extensions one by one, try closing and reopening the browser.

Put Chrome's Flags to Sleep

There are a number of hidden features and configurations in Google Chrome. You can alter Chrome's behavior by activating or deactivating various settings (called "flags").

However, as these features are in beta, they are prone to bugs and could be the cause of Chrome's black screen. If that's the case, you should turn these off.

  1. To access Chrome's flags menu, enter chrome://flags/ in the address bar.
  1. If you're looking for flags that pertain to your graphics processing unit or your rendering capabilities, you can find them by using the search bar In order to rasterize (draw) certain images more quickly, for instance, graphics processing unit rasterization is employed; however, this is not without its drawbacks. To turn off a flag in the settings, click the corresponding "Disabled" button.
  1. Once you've finished disabling the flags, you should restart your browser. If the adjustment was successful, the flag should remain lowered. If that fails, you can always re-enable the flag as described above and try again.

Please reinstall Chrome or use a different web browser.

Sometimes, fixing a Chrome black screen isn't possible. If this problem persists, try resetting, updating, or reinstalling Chrome, or switching to a different browser.

When reinstalling Chrome, you might want to try out a newer version than the one that has been considered stable up until now. Even though it may be too unstable for regular use, Chrome Canary allows you to try out an alpha release version of Chrome with the newest bug fixes and features.

Also, you can switch to a different browser, like Microsoft Edge, if you like. However, browsers like Edge use the same browser engine as Chrome, so the same black screen error may appear in those browsers as well.

In that case, try a different browser, such as Firefox, which uses a different browser engine. In this way, you won't have to worry about losing any of your work when switching from Chrome to Firefox and vice versa.  

Utilizing the Chrome Web Browser

You can start making good use of Chrome again after you have resolved a black screen issue. If you use Chrome and are concerned about your privacy online, you can use the browser's integrated password manager to create strong passwords and store them securely.

The Chrome browser sync feature makes it easy to keep your bookmarks and settings in sync across multiple devices.

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