11 Best Lightweight Browsers for PC [Tested for RAM Usage]

A lightweight browser can keep you PC resources under control

by Ivan Jenic
Ivan Jenic
Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
Passionate about all elements related to Windows and combined with his innate curiosity, Ivan has delved deep into understanding this operating system, with a specialization in drivers and... read more
Reviewed by Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Windows Server & Networking Expert
After moving away from the corporate work-style, Alex has found rewards in a lifestyle of constant analysis, team coordination and pestering his colleagues. Holding an MCSA Windows Server... read more
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  • An ideal lightweight browser should be able to use little resources regarding RAM and CPU power.
  • There are many, lesser-known browser that are pretty light on your resources.
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There are many great web browsers on the market, but what if you need a lightweight browser? We’re happy to inform you that there’s a wide array of alternative browsers for Windows that you can use.

Due to their low resource, these are great browsers for older PCs. Sounds good already? Let’s get started and see what alternative browsers are available on the market.

In this article

What is the best lightweight browser for Windows PCs?

Opera One – New AI browser tool

Opera One is one of the best light browsers for Windows, offering an unprecedented number of features and customization tools. Make sure to download the latest browser version or install the latest updates to enjoy the best features available.

Opera One uses very few computer resources allowing you to free up more RAM. The browser does not hog your CPU or RAM, and this will make your computer visibly faster.

Even if you install plenty of extensions, Opera One won’t tax your computer as much as other popular browsers out there.

This browsing solution has a few aces up its sleeve that allows it to speed up web browsing without draining your PC’s resources. For example, the turbo mode compresses website data for faster loading.

The built-in ad blocker and tracker blocker remove the ad and tracking scripts off web pages which results in faster loading times.

It offers advanced, privacy protection features such as a built-in VPN to keep prying eyes away. Download this excellent search engine by clicking the link below and enjoy all the benefits.

Moreover, Opera One has a redesigned interface with tab islands to ease the users’ multitasking situations.

Other best features:

  • Redesigned interface
  • Tab islands
  • Built-in VPN and ad blocker
  • AI-integrated browser

Opera One

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UR Browser – Safe & private browsing

UR Browser is one lightweight browser you can install on your device, even though it is not the most lite browser for Windows. It’s fast, doesn’t load unnecessary ad and tracking scripts and also protects your data privacy.

UR Browser doesn’t put a strain on your computer resources. This makes it the perfect choice for limited hardware configuration systems and old computers.

This Chromium-based browser is an all-in-one browser. It comes equipped with a built-in VPN and integrated virus scanner, as well as a privacy-focused search engine.

It is worth mentioning that you can download files four times faster with UR Browser.

The files you want to download on your computer are split up into smaller chunks and then downloaded simultaneously.

Other great features:

  • Lightweight
  • Focused on user privacy
  • Built on Chromium engine
  • Built-in VPN

UR Browser

Surf the web and benefit from the great speed and advanced security features with an excellent browser!

K-Meleon – Simplest interface

If you need a lightweight browser for Windows, then K-Melon might be a perfect choice. The software is open-source, and it’s designed for the Windows operating system.

Regarding the engine, K-Melon uses the Goanna engine which is based on Mozilla’s Gecko engine. Being lightweight, the browser is perfect for older computers that can’t handle modern browsers.

As for the functionality, this is a pretty basic web browser, and it comes with customizable toolbars and context menus.

Other than that, you can create macros to automate certain tasks and save valuable time. Advanced search is also available, allowing you to search for bookmarks or perform a Google search easily.

Overall, this is a perfect browser for older computers, since it requires only 100MB of memory and 20MB of RAM to run, but unfortunately, it lacks many features that modern browsers have.

Other great features:

  • Popup blocking
  • Mouse gestures
  • Multiple bookmarking systems
  • Extremely lightweight

Get K-Meleon

Torch – Versatile and easy to use

If you mainly use the internet to listen to music and watch videos, Torch is probably the browser you’ve dreamt of, making it a viable lightweight browser for Windows 10.

This customized browser is based on the Chrome rendering engine and has many features that will make managing and playing various media sources easy.

Torch has a built-in YouTube-based streaming service called Torch Music. This page allows you to easily access your favorite songs on YouTube, and have them all in one place.

Besides YouTube videos, the browser also gives you access to more multimedia content, from other sites.

What some users will like the most are Torch’s built-in download options. Namely, this browser has a built-in button for downloading YouTube videos, as well as its own torrent downloader.

So, if you want to download your favorite music video or some file from a torrent, you basically don’t need to install any additional tool.

We must warn you to be careful when downloading online content because you can easily get into legal trouble, so it is advisable only to download legal stuff.

Regarding the user interface, you shouldn’t have any problems using this browser. Besides the main zone, where website content is displayed, Torch’s UI also has two drop zones on the right and left.

The left drop zone is used for sharing content and allows you to basically share anything you select to social media and other channels (videos, text, images, etc).

The right zone is where the search bar is, along with some additional browsing options.

Other great features:

  • Simple to use
  • Ability to download online media
  • Torrent download
  • Customizable interface

Get Torch

Lunascape Orion – Basic features & low resource consumption

Can’t decide between Firefox, Chrome, IE, or Safari? Well, what if we tell you that you can have all four within one program with this lightweight browser for PC.

That’s exactly what Lunascape Orion is all about – having  Trident (Internet Explorer), Gecko (Firefox), or WebKit (Safari and formerly Chrome) all bundled into a single browser.

You can set one engine to be used every time you open Lunascape Orion, but you can also switch engines any time, simply by pressing a button.

This could be extremely useful if a certain web page is not supported in one browser, so you can always switch to another engine, and access the page.

It can be very practical, but some say that its performance can suffer because of that.

The browser appears to have a very poor performance on some computers, and that’s basically its biggest problem.

Besides the ability to switch between three different engines, Lunascape Orion has all features of a standard browser. You can save bookmarks, look for URLs, and it even supports the RSS feed.

Other great features:

  • Up to 25% more than other browsers
  • Available for Windows and Mac
  • Built-in ad blocker
  • Privacy-oriented

Get Lunascape Orion

Maxthon – Built-in ad blocker and screen capture tool

Maxthon Browser is another highly versatile lightweight browser that contains some features that you can’t even find in the major competitors.

It features a built-in ad blocker, a screen-capture tool, Night mode, Reader mode, RSS feed reader, a notepad, and several more features. It even comes with its own multi-account password manager, called Magic Fill.

Another great thing about Maxthon is that it uses its own cloud services to sync users’ data between devices.

While this isn’t an unusual sight with the major browsers, not many ‘smaller players can brag about this feature.

To make Maxthon sync your data on all devices, you need to create an account on its cloud-based service, Passport, login, and you’re good to go.

Maxthon also sports an unusual user interface for the majority of browsers. It features a toolbar placed on the left side of its window with buttons for Favorites, Downloads, RSS feeds, and notes.

Just like Lunascape, Maxthon is also a multi-engine browser, as it can use both Internet Explorer’s Trident, and Google Chrome’s Webkit engine.

Other great features:

  • Built-in note-taker
  • Password manager
  • Ability to easily take screenshots
  • Split screen view for tabs

Get Maxthon Cloud Browser

SeaMonkey – Open-source browser

SeaMonkey is an open-source web browser, that has been around for more than 10 years.

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This is probably one of the most versatile browsers you can find on the market because it offers much more than just regular web browsing.

SeaMonkey features its own built-in email client, and a built-in chat, and even allows you to develop some simple web pages with its built-in editor.

This might come in handy if you want to keep all your services in one place, run fewer tabs in your browser, and therefore save more resources.

Besides providing some basic features you would normally get in any web browser, SeaMonkey also has some additional abilities.

It provides a password manager, voice interaction, customizable toolbars, and the ability to restore sessions.

Since this is an open-source browser, basically anyone with some knowledge of coding and the will to work on the browser can do so.

Because of that, SeaMonkey doesn’t seem to be the most stable and reliable browser out there, as users might notice occasional performance issues.

But if you want to save some time by having everything you use daily in the same place, and at the same time consume less energy and memory, you should give SeaMonkey a try.

Other great features:

  • Open source
  • Available on all major desktop platforms
  • Popup blocker
  • Incredibly simple to use

Get SeaMonkey

Midori – Doesn’t collect user data

Midori is an open-source browser, that should satisfy not-so-demanding users.

This browser has solid pack features, but also consumes fewer resources than some of the mainstream browsers, which can seal the deal for some people.

Some of the most important features of Midori are HTML5 support, bookmarks, RSS support, a spell checker, anonymous browsing, etc.

Speaking of HTML5, here is a list of the best editors on the market. You’ll become an expert on the matter!

It also ships with some additional options, like tabbed browsing, the ability to change privacy settings, font/display settings, and startup settings.

Speaking of privacy settings, Midori uses DuckDuckGo (a search engine that doesn’t collect or share user info)as its default search engine.

Of course, you can change this later, if you want to switch to a mainstream search engine.

Perhaps the most appealing thing about Midori is its simple user interface, which will delight all lovers of the minimalist approach.

The browser is very light, so it should be very easy for you to get accustomed to it. Its user interface consists of the search bar, and the bookmarks bar, while content takes up most space.

So, we can call this browser Firefox’s younger brother, even though the two browsers are not related.

Other great features:

  • Available on all desktop platforms and Android
  • Great privacy control
  • Built-in ad blocker
  • Productivity features

Get Midori

Falkon – Great on Linux

Another lightweight browser that deserves your attention is Falkon. The browser is built on QTWebEngine.

The browser has been present since late 2010, and it was called QupZilla, but it was rewritten in C++ using the Qt Framework, and it has since changed its name.

The browser is a part of the KDE project, so it already comes preinstalled with many Linux distributions. Of course, the software is available on multiple platforms, and you can find it on almost any platform, including Windows.

As for the features, you can find all the basic features available such as bookmarks, history, and tabs. The browser comes with an AdBlock plugin preinstalled, so you won’t have to deal with ads ever again.

Overall, this is a great browser for users who need minimalistic and lightweight software to surf the web. Since Falkon uses its browsing engine, the number of available extensions is limited, which might be a problem for some users.

Other great features:

  • Minimalistic
  • Available on multiple platforms
  • Has only the most essential features
  • Built-in adblocker

Get Falkon

Firefox – Resource efficient & very versatile

Firefox was first developed as a quicker, safer substitute for the widely used browsers of the late 1990s, such as Microsoft Internet Explorer.

It seemed to have slipped down the food chain over time, but it has since evolved and is now highly regarded for its privacy and performance.

Regarding resource efficiency, Firefox is clearly superior to Chrome since it uses less memory and is less taxing on your computer’s operating system. Additionally, very little information about you is gathered on the browser.

You can perform address bar searches, access bookmarks, collect smart search recommendations and history, and do lots more using Firefox.

Additionally, you may customize the settings of the search bar to have greater control over your surfing process and automatically suggest URLs.Lastly, Firefox syncs all your devices, is accessible in over 90 languages, and works with Google applications like Gmail and Docs.

Other great features:

  • Privacy-oriented
  • Customizable interface
  • Available on all desktop and mobile platforms
  • Built by non-profit organization

Get Firefox

Microsoft Edge – The default option on Windows

If you’re using Windows 10 or 11, then you’re probably familiar with Microsoft Edge. The browser uses Chromium engine, so it’s relatively lightweight.

Since it’s built on Chromium, Edge can also support all Chrome extensions out of the box. In addition, the browser has a startup boost that will help it start faster.

There’s even a sleeping tabs feature that will put tabs that aren’t currently used to sleep in order to preserve your resources.

The browser also has useful security features, including integration with Windows Defender integration, Password Monitor, Kids Mode, and more.

Overall, if you need a reliable browser, and don’t feel like downloading a new one, give Microsoft Edge a try.

Other great features:

  • Built on Chromium
  • Works with Chrome extensions
  • Startup boost feature for faster launching
  • Tab sleeping for inactive tabs

Get Microsoft Edge

Other useful browser options

Because we decided to include all the available browser options on the market, some didn’t make the cut for the Top 10 list when measuring the rapport between the RAM usage and the actual utilization of the software, but you can see them below:

  • Vivaldi – a good browser with a nice UI, but heavy on RAM usage
  • AVG Secure Browser – Light usage compared to other browsers
  • Brave – compact UI with good security options
  • Pale Moon – very low impact on system resources, but quite useless for everyday tasks
  • Mypal – very simple interface and easy to use
  • Vivaldi – looks amazing, but considering the features in holds, its RAM consumption is too big
  • WaterFox – impressionable UI with loads of good features

How do these browsers compare when it comes to RAM usage?

As you will see, the table below includes the entire list of browser recommendations from this list and also the browsers contained in the Other useful browser options section.

This will ensure that you will be able to compare and choose a browser that will fit your needs on all counts, including the amount of RAM, CPU, engine build, and user-friendliness.

BrowserRAM usageCPU usageEngineUtilityUI friendliness
Opera602 - 610 MB0.7 - 2.0 %Chromium5/55/5
UR Browser657 - 651 MB0.8 - 2.0 %Blink; V84/55/5
K-Meleon160 - 170 MB1.4 - 2.5 %Goanna 3/53/5
Torch234 MB1.0 %Chromium 3/52/5
Lunascape Orion259 MB2.2 %Gecko 3/53/5
Maxthon290 - 336 MB2.2 - 3.1 %Trident4/54/5
Comodo IceDragon304 MB1.1 %Quantum3/53/5
SeaMonkey336 - 353 MB2.2 - 3.1 % Gecko3/52/5
Midori355 MB2.4 - 3 %Webkit 4/54/5
Falkon387 MB2.3 - 3.1 %Blink2/52/5
Firefox415 - 478 MB1.4 - 2.3 %Quantum 5/54/5
Brave530 MB1.5 - 3.8 % Blink; ‎V84/53/5
Pale Moon539 MB1.5 - 2.9 %Goanna2/51/5
Mypal569 MB2.6 - 3.1 %Goanna 3/53/5
Vivaldi590 MB0.8 - 2.2 %Chromium5/55/5
Waterfox610 MB1.4 - 1.7 %Gecko, SpiderMonkey3/54/5
Edge638MB1.0 - 1.4 %Chromium 5/54/5

Even if Opera One doesn’t consume less RAM than other browsers, when considering the number of features, options, and integrations this software has, it is by far the best option.

Close behind, we have UR Browser, which fits into the same category as Opera One, offering too many good features not to be included in the list, even though the RAM utilization score is a bit bigger than in the case of other browsers.

How can I reduce memory and CPU usage on Chrome?

Many reported that Chrome has problems with resource usage. This can be a problem, and interfere with your browsing experience.

We covered Chrome memory issues in a separate guide, so check it out. If you’re having issues with high CPU, then our guide on Chrome high CPU usage is a must-read.

This concludes our list of the best lightweight browsers for Windows. As you can see, each one of these programs has something unique to offer and is definitely worth your attention.

We know you probably continue using your current web browser even after reading this article, but you can at least consider giving some of these tools a try.

A lightweight browser is recommended if you’re using an older computer because it can save you precious megabytes of memory. Alternatively, you can use RAM memory optimizer software and achieve similar results.

What do you think about our picks? Do you have something to add? Tell us in the comments below.

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