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Microsoft just made scrolling less janky on Edge Dev and Canary

Smooth Scroll Testing Edge Canary
Smooth Scroll Testing Edge Canary (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • The latest versions of Edge Dev and Canary have a new setting that smooths scrolling with the scrollbar.
  • The setting moves scrolling to the compositor thread rather than the main thread.
  • This change makes dragging the scrollbar feel better, especially while a page is busy.

Microsoft just released a new feature for Microsoft Edge Dev and Canary that improves scrolling. The feature moves pointer-based scrolling of the scrollbar to the compositor thread rather than the main thread. As a result of this move, dragging the scrollbar with your mouse feels less janky, especially when a site is busy. Techdows first spotted the change.

The feature is enabled by default in the Dev and Canary versions of the new Microsoft Edge, but you can also change its setting through about:flags.

You can test the feature out yourself using this demo site. On that site, you can enable an animation and induce main thread jank. This jank crowds the main thread and normally would make scrolling feel uneven and awkward. By moving over to a different thread, the scrolling feels much better. You can see how the feature affects scrolling in the video below, which the Microsoft Edge Dev team shared on Twitter.

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This is another little improvement that Microsoft is making to scrolling within a Chromium-based browser. The Microsoft Edge Dev team said on Twitter that "More scrolling improvements [are] coming soon."

Sean Endicott is the news writer for Windows Central. If it runs Windows, is made by Microsoft, or has anything to do with either, he's on it. Sean's been with Windows Central since 2017 and is also our resident app expert. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com.

1 Comment
  • I'm resigned of doing any heavy research in Opera. I have both Edge Dev and Beta and I can't stand the scroll!!!! It is so damn small/slim it makes scrolling horrendous. Same as in regular Edge. WTF!