I really had high hopes for the latest version of Firefox, so much so that I sat and dealt with the same problems from the previous version waiting for an update to fix it. Firefox has come a long way since it debuted, but sometimes that road ahead can actually lead you backwards. With the slurry of new features present in Firefox 4, and even 3 for that matter, the project has failed to address one of the most problematic issues, memory usage.
It has become more apparent that I am not the only one experiencing a lagging system when running Firefox; I typically run with anywhere from 1 to 20 tabs open at any given time and this really creates an issue with Firefox. It seems that many of the “features” packed into Firefox over the last few iterations have really become a drain on the browser.
Granted, the quality and quantity of the various addons for Firefox makes it a very powerful contender for the champion browser, I just can’t seem to get past half of my system memory being used by my browser (typically I have multiple Windows open and multiple tabs in each when researching – Firefox memory usage in the GB’s). Believe me, if it came down to not having the web developer toolbar or a responsive system, um… I choose to ditch the toolbar and run a different browser.
Note: Thanks Chris for releasing a chrome extension of the greatest addon for Firefox: Web Developer Toolbar
This is where companies start going wrong, and where my issues with Firefox are starting. My personal opinion is that a piece of software that tries to do everything, is neglecting what it is supposed to be doing exceptionally. The Firefox Dev team should start focusing on the things that caused many of us to switch to it in the first place, the browser. Start focusing on being the best browser again and less on all the crap you can pack into a download and you may win me over again.
So, in my final farewell… Goodbye Firefox and hello Chromium.
UPDATE: Because of the overwhelming response on this article, I decided to show you how I came to this conclusion.
- Gigabyte 880GA-UD3H
- AMD Phenom II X4 965
- 2x4GB Patriot Sector 5 PC3-12800
- Seagate 500GB ST3500630AS
- BitFenix Colossus (click to read our review)
- BFG LS-450
- Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
The test methodology: I opened each of the browsers (IE9, Firefox 4, Chrome) and loaded 6 tabs in the first window and 3 tabs in the second. I used the same sites for each test in each browser. I then waiting for all disk activity to cease then recored the memory usage of the browser. I then rebooted and started the same process with the next browser until I could calculate the results. I ran the each test 10 times and discarded the highest and lowest scores then averaged them for the results.
Update 2: Firefox is naked (no addons) Website List:
Browser Window #1:
Browser Window #2:
- Admin page for Computing on demand…