CLIENT CLEANUP: Chromium Embedded Framework (CEF) Upgrade Coming Soon

Our new CEF version will hit PBE next month.

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We've made a commitment to share recurring updates on the work we're doing to improve the performance and reliability of the League Client.

Today's update is the eighth blog in the series. (See the first, the second, the third, the fourth, the fifth, the sixth, and the seventh here)

No TL;DR this time; our post is short because we're just updating you on how the big priority from last time is going.

Updating Chromium Embedded Framework (CEF)

Our top priority right now is updating the client's version of Chromium Embedded Framework (CEF)—the web browser at the heart of the League Client's architecture. The last time we updated CEF was November 2019 (version 74); at the time of writing, the latest current version is CEF 91. Updating CEF to version 91 will reap a host of benefits, from reduced crashes to increased compatibility to better responsiveness and more. It is the single most impactful individual change we can make to improve the client.

Since we last talked in April, we've been upgrading our existing web components (think website tech for video embeds, popup notifications, and whatnot) to versions that are compatible with new CEF versions, to ensure upgrading CEF itself won't break anything. We use web components in nearly every part of the client code base, so this took a couple patches longer than planned. The good news is that we're done with the web components work, so we can move on to the CEF upgrade itself.

We're now testing the new version of CEF internally, and we are already seeing improvements in memory usage, and CPU utilization for our front end. We expect a host of other benefits that will ultimately provide a better player experience when we launch, but we also don't want to create risk by rushing things. We have a big opportunity to do right for you all, and we want to make sure the upgraded client is stable before we release it live.

We feel confident about getting our CEF update into PBE by early August and hope to launch a few patches afterward. When the update goes live, we will announce it in the patch notes! 

Other Updates

  • Revisiting End Of Game (EOG). We are still in the process of identifying what improvements we can make to End Of Game (EOG), which is an area we will jump back into once CEF has been upgraded. EOG is frequently reported as a client pain point so we are going to continue investigation and prioritize this work for the remainder of this year, and will work with other teams to see what improvements we can make.
  • Client stability during long sessions. One of our emergent focuses at the end of last year was addressing memory leaks, which cause the client to take up increasingly more memory as players play multiple games or leave their client idling for long stretches of time. (Good news here is that the CEF upgrade will help stability.) Digging deeper into client bug reports, we noticed many players only experience issues if they have left their client open and/or resume using the client after coming out of PC sleep. We are working on a feature that will automatically close the client while in game if it takes up too much memory, to provide a refreshed client experience when the client relaunches into the post-game screen.

That's all for this update! We will check back in with you after our CEF upgrade to share results and our plans moving forward.


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