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Unlike most apps, the Android browser doesn't seem to exit when you hit the Back key to exit to the home screen. This happens even when I have no web pages open. There doesn't seem to be an Exit option when I press the Menu button in the browser, either.

For whatever reason, Android rarely kills it like it does with other apps. It takes up quite a bit of memory and even CPU time when in the background. Either way, all my other apps exit nicely and I'd prefer that the browser did too.

Is there any way I can get the browser to exit? One could use a task killer but it's a bit of a hassle and it seems to leak memory when I kill it with TouchWiz's built-in task manager, besides the fact that task killers suck.

I have a Galaxy S Vibrant running Android 2.2 with TouchWiz.

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Weird, I have the exact opposite behavior on my 2.2 DInc (running the default verizon 2.2 ROM). The browser is frequently killed by the system on my phone, closing all of my open windows. –  devnul3 Aug 28 '11 at 17:08
    
This is one of the reasons I changed to Opera mini and mobile. –  Diego Sep 21 '11 at 19:24
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2 Answers

If you want to free the memory used by the Browser, just close all open tabs/windows: Menu > Windows > Press the X buttons.

It would be nice if Browser has the ability to save and restore tabs/windows, like every modern desktop browsers have; however currently there is no such thing, therefore killing the Browser means losing whatever you're doing in the Browser.

When you have no open window, the Browser should no longer use up active memory (although it will stay on memory until another application requires it). Keeping inactive applications in the background do not consume any extra CPU cycle.

Free memory is wasted memory. For best performance, all memory should be used for something and free memory should be as close to 0% as possible. If Android does not kill application when you close the application, then the task manager is working as designed. The task manager should only start killing apps if you start another app that isn't already in the memory or some currently running app have a sudden memory increase.

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Unfortunately the browser is sometimes the CPU when there are no open windows (I am wondering if it's related to Flash), and it seems like other more-recently-used apps are getting killed before the browser is when the system needs memory. –  Matthew Read Sep 26 '11 at 0:22
    
@MatthewRead This is because the tasks running in background are closed by android BASED ON PRIORITIES when resources needed elsewhere. STOCK BROWSER has higher priority than others. –  sam Feb 1 '12 at 13:10
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There is no such thing as "closing the application" or "auto exiting the app" in the android application model. Please see here for more info: http://code.google.com/android/intro/appmodel.html In particular, our model is that for the user all applications are always running all of the time, and we very explicitly do NOT want the user to ever have to deal with things like closing applications to free up resources. The system will take care of killing application processes when their resources are needed elsewhere, and you work with the system to ensure that when the user returns to your app it is restored to its last seen state.

Android browser is also an app. It follows the same application model.

http://groups.google.com/group/android-developers/browse_thread/thread/4c1b8955ebfd5799?pli=1

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I'm aware of the model Google has halfheartedly tried to encourage for Android apps. All of the other apps I use regularly (including Google apps like Gmail) can be exited, and as my question says the system isn't taking care of killing the process when needed. –  Matthew Read Sep 25 '11 at 6:50
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