Chrome is telling me to update or remove incompatible applications

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Marie-Ange Demory

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Chrome is telling me to update or remove incompatible applications. Many Windows applications, such as antivirus software, insert code into Chrome to change its behavior. This results in more frequent browser crashes, so Google is taking a stand by blocking these techniques.

On Windows, this technique has been around for a long time. It is used by many different types of applications, from antimalware tools to dangerous malware. This is often called DLL injection on Windows.

In other words, applications inject code into Chrome to change the behavior.

A security program may want to add some additional controls to Chrome's browsing, or a malware may want to better spy on your browsing.

Even if the application uses code injection with good intentions, it can cause problems by interfering with Chrome's code.

Chrome is telling me to update or remove incompatible applications what I need to know

Are these incompatible applications on Chrome really causing problems?

While Chrome warns you of incompatible applications, they don't necessarily cause problems unless your browser crashes.

Chrome merely warns of any software that uses code injection "without making judgments about it."

The software you have installed may work fine and will never cause any problems, but Google doesn't like this technique and is working to block it.

How to check for incompatible applications in Chrome

If Chrome crashes, a notification appears asking you to "Update or remove incompatible applications" o "Update or remove problematic applications". This will display a list of applications that use code injection on the system.

You can also access this list, even before Chrome crashes, by going to Menu> Settings> Advanced, scrolling down to the bottom of the screen and clicking “Update or remove incompatible applications” in Reset and cleaning.

If you don't see this option no application on your system is entering the code in Chrome. You can also type chrome: // settings / IncompatibleApplications in the address bar and press Enter.

If you don't see a list of incompatible applications, you haven't installed any. (Note: this option is only present starting with Chrome 69. Chrome 69 will be released for the stable version on September 4, 2018.)

Chrome will list all applications that use code injection that you have installed. Many antivirus applications appear here, including Avast, AVG, Bitdefender, Emsisoft, Eset, IObit, Norton Security, Malwarebytes, and WinPatrol.

Other applications that have appeared are Acronis True Image, Dropbox and RocketDock.

The list may be long, but any application that uses code injection will appear in the list.

How to remove incompatible applications on Chrome

The "Remove" button next to an application will take you to the Settings or Control Panel window where you can uninstall the application if you wish. If no crashes occur, there is no reason to uninstall the application; in any case, Google will block attempts to enter the code in a few months.


Google is clearly hoping that application developers will update their applications to no longer depend on code injection techniques. After all, developers won't want Chrome to encourage people to uninstall their applications. Either way, this error message won't be around for too long.

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