Chrome bug prevents some extensions from running


An "experiment" in Chrome 72 causes a bug that breaks certain extensions, including ad blockers, extensions that integrate with Gmail, and some VPNs. Fortunately, it's easy to repair and bring back your extensions to work as expected.

The Chrome bug, via Techdows, allows some web requests to completely bypass your extensions. The bug does not affect everyone because it is related to an "experience" in Chrome that Google has enabled for a certain percentage of users.

The experiment, titled "Enable Network Service," tells Chrome to initiate a separate process for "service agents" or background tasks for web pages. Some bugs in the service operators, combined with the network service experience, inadvertently bypass the Chrome extensions. Google has already identified and fixed one of the bugs in time for Chrome 73, but at least one other is still pending.

The most common type of Chrome extension affected by the bug is the ad blocker, which is currently unable to deal some things, such as Google Analytics queries from Gmail, can be handled without hindrance. Business extensions that include Gmail, such as Groove, HubSpot, Mailtrack, and Yesware, as well as some VPN extensions such as WindStream, also seem to be affected.

Google is able to control the number of users of different experiences, such as network service, remote. However, despite the number of extensions (each with millions of users) affected by the bug, Google does not intend to temporarily cancel the experience, because of the long-term importance of network service.

At this point, if it is the only break in the experience, we can not go back. The reason is that as a relative percentage of Chrome users, it remains low (for example, less than 0.1%). When launching multi-year projects that affect a large part of the code base, it is impossible to avoid regressions. We need to find a balance between making progress and avoiding other regressions that allow us to solve some problems. The best way to avoid this is to use the dev / beta channels.

Although Google may not want to cancel the experiment, it is fortunately possible to disable it from chrome: // flags by defining the flag specifically. # network-service "Off". Once you have finished and restarted Chrome, all of your extensions should return to normal.

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