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Opera Browser Usage and Support Forum

    
Opera is terribly slow for me
What should I do?
WeirdoPL




msg:1585154
 7:41 pm on Mar 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

My problem is, that Opera 7.23 runs very slow on my CPU. When typing in a textarea i wait about 0.2 sec longer (compared to IE) for the text I'm typing in to appear. But that's nothing. When typing in the addres bar I wait from 1 sec. to 7 sec. for the text to appear. It drives me nuts!

My CPU is:
Pentium 90 MHz
64 Mb RAM
Windows 98 SE

Why does Opera run so slow?

PS. This is a fun topic, so if You'd feel bad about laughing out on this one, then don't. Feel free to post any laughs. And another thing: all the information above (including the problem itself) IS TRUE! :):)

Sometimes even a serious webmaster needs a bit of laugh ;) . And besides: I would still like to know if there's a solution to my problem. :)

 

jdancing




msg:1585155
 7:55 pm on Mar 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hey those P-90s aren't cheap. I paid $2,700 for mine in 1996.

The bottom line is Old School and New School just don't mix. You need to go completely "Old School" Give up on the Opera and find an original copy of Netscape.

asquithea




msg:1585156
 8:11 pm on Mar 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm pretty sure that Firefox would be dire on a platform like that, too. But how well does K-Meleon run?

K-Meleon isn't as customizable as some of the newer browsers, but it does use native widgets, so performance ought to be acceptable.

When did you aquire the P90? The last computer I had that was slower than 100MHz was obtained second-hand well over a decade ago.

WeirdoPL




msg:1585157
 9:37 pm on Mar 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

I was thinking of customizing Opera or Windows settings rather than switching to a diffrent browser. If it would be only about that, then I'd probably reformat, install "the pinguin OS" and become a happy Lynx user :).

Also: tried Netscape a few years ago (I still had win95 back then) and it annoyed me even more than Opera is now (can't remember why, though).

The P90 was bought somewhere back in 95-96 in Poland (where I live - as if someone wouldn't notice ;) ). Can't remember the price. I was in my early teens in those times. A bit of history...

It was bought without warranty (just parts to put together) as a P133. It DID work as a P133 (overclocked) until early 2002 under win95 and a lousy working fan :). It survived. (the fan didn't survive :):) ) Win95 didn't really bother about the processor being constantly overheated. Win98 bluescreened constantly (poor thing - couldn't cope with the heat). That's how we discovered that it was overclocked. And that the fan needs replacing. From that time It's running as a P90 on win98...

How did You like it?

encyclo




msg:1585158
 9:43 pm on Mar 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

If you're running Linux or another Unix-style OS, you should really try Dillo - it is the fastest graphical browser out there - on my system, it outperforms Lynx!

grahamstewart




msg:1585159
 5:17 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Basically you don't have enough memory.

Go to File->Preferences->Cache and History and turn the Memory Cache right the way down.

digitalv




msg:1585160
 5:19 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

You can probably upgrade your system for less than what a copy of Opera costs :)

Hester




msg:1585161
 1:42 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'd suggest using Opera 6. Many people have found Opera 7 to be too much on older systems.

I wonder if the delay in the address bar is also down to a lot of auto-complete entries? Try turning the feature off.

R1chard




msg:1585162
 4:05 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'd suggest Netscape 3.0 or Opera 3.6. Although Opera used to have the selling point that it was better for low-end systems, so it sounds like it could be a combination of both CPU and memory issues (I've used a W98/64Mb/400MHz machine with Opera 5 and Mozilla, and it works fine with both). Try changing your configuration.

Or if you want to go oddball, then try the OffByOne [offbyone.com] browser... Maybe even Arachne [arachne.browser.org]...

WeirdoPL




msg:1585163
 8:42 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

After turning off the memory cache...

Typing in a textarea has almost no delay. The same goes for the addres bar when only Opera (and nothing else) is on. The delay when typing in the addres bar delay decreased 2x (it's now from 0.5 sec. to 4 sec. in average conditions). And these are NOT disk-write delays (which usually take up about 3-5 sec.)

Switching to another browser is out of the question (especially NN)!

Switching to an older version of Opera... I don't want to mess up the fact, that all this is still running. And I don't want to set it up all over again. Besides: I have no warranty that it would make things go faster...

So we're running faster but that's still not the performance I would like to see. Any other suggestions?

PS: Don't know where to turn off Auto-Complete... I think I turned it off straight afret install but I'm not 100% sure...

asquithea




msg:1585164
 9:09 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

Sorry, but it ain't gonna happen. No really, believe it. You need a leaner browser. I can sympathize with your desire not to go back to a really old browser like NN, so you have two choices:

1) Give up and use the box for something less CPU intensive (firewall?)

2) Choose a modern but lean browser, like K-Meleon.

You simply aren't going to be able to wring that much performance from such an old PC. Personally, I'd junk it.

WeirdoPL




msg:1585165
 10:14 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

The problem is: I AM NOT A WEBMASTER - I AM A STUDENT! So:
1. I cannot find any other use for this box. (I am firewalled by an upper instance - namely: my provider)
2. I cannot junk it - it's the only thing I've got.
3. With a monthly income of ~50$ (3/4 of it goes for my smoking habit)... for how long do You think I would have to save money to buy a new one?

I got used to Opera after switching from IE just a few months ago. I really wouldn't like to change browsers again. And that would also produce more trash in my registry and less space on my system disk (which is 2.1 Gb not divided).

That's why I need ideas of optimizing Opera's performance - not switching to something diffrent.

Birdman




msg:1585166
 11:23 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

I know you don't want to switch but on my old system, Opera 6 is waaay faster than 7.

Have you checked to see if there are any processes running that you don't need? I had Elkern(virus) once and it slowed to a crawl it seemed.

encyclo




msg:1585167
 11:57 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

I just find it rather sad that modern browsers have become so bloated. We talk a lot about accessibility, yet the financial barrier to access the web remains significant. I can't understand why it is necessary to have a powerful computer to download and parse small text files with a few tags in them. A 90Mhz Pentium should be largely sufficient if not excessive for the task.

As for the particular problem, I believe there is a "98 lite" version or Windows 98 out there, which strips out much of the unnecessary clutter, including IE. You may not want to go down that route completely, but you will need to be ruthless about your system's memory comsumption - down to things like disabling screensavers, disabling any unnecessary services, finding lighter equivalents for those services you need. Do you have any budget for some extra RAM? Are there second-hand shops or recycled-computer centres where you can get a cheap hard disk or the extra RAM? An extra 64Mb would help - or even 32Mb would get you somewhere.

vkaryl




msg:1585168
 1:46 am on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

Should be able to pick up some compatible RAM for just the cost of a couple of packs of cigs a week over the course of a month - and probably you could tweak the swap file so that Windows thinks it has more actual RAM than it really does.

If yours happened to be a Compaq of some sort, I have a stick of 32meg DRAM which might work. I think it's 32 - might be 64 - haven't looked at it lately.... wonder if it's still there? Anyway, being a webmaster isn't the situation here, it's tweaking your hardware/software mix to gain the most usability from a functional antique.

Try Goodwill etc. They often have complete usable boxes for $30 or so where I live (so. utah) - no monitor, but yours should work okay. Ditto mouse/keyboard. As well, take to heart the suggestion of WinLite.... back up your important data to disk; reformat your drive (ummmm - how big IS your hdd, btw?); then reinstall Windows with the "custom" option, unchecking ANYTHING you don't need.

AND FOR GODDESS'S SAKE, DELETE 90% OF THE FONTS ON YOUR DRIVE!

I might be able to come up with some other tweaks if I think about it some more: I've been "extending" ancient tech since 1984.... I managed to play BG1 on a P120 with 96 megs RAM and a 40 meg hdd - and a vid card with NO memory....

WeirdoPL




msg:1585169
 8:50 am on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

Have you checked to see if there are any processes running that you don't need?

Besides Opera the only thing is running is a polish hybrid of ICQ (based on IE.. *sigh* :( ) and a few windows thingies (turning off which doesn't do anything to speed me up).

An extra 64Mb would help - or even 32Mb would get you somewhere.

I don't have the budget for that (i'm in "savings mode" and if I have a day without spending anything, I'm very happy about it..). Besides: Opera SHOULD work properly even in those nasty conditions, that I have.

Try Goodwill etc. They often have complete usable boxes for $30 or so where I live (so. utah)

Getting to Utah (or any place in the US) would cost me more than buying a Pentium 1.7 GHz (with all the accesorries) at the spot (remember: I LIVE IN POLAND!)

reformat your drive (ummmm - how big IS your hdd, btw?); then reinstall Windows with the "custom" option, unchecking ANYTHING you don't need.

My drive is 2.1 Gb. It's not a partition. It's the physical capacity of the whole drive. And also: when installing windows I DID turn off anything that wasn't nesecary (for HD space saving).

I managed to play BG1 on a P120 with 96 megs RAM and a 40 meg hdd - and a vid card with NO memory....

Are You sure You wrote the correct data? A 40 meg drive? Even my 386 has a 120 Mb drive and my 286 has a 112 Meg one :). And also.. a vid card which has NO memory? The only thing of that type I have seen was a vid card integrated with the mainboard (it used part of the main RAM for it's purposes). Oh.. did I mention that my Pentium has a 512 Kb RAM VGA vid card? ;););)

Still looking for suggestions of improvement...

Hester




msg:1585170
 9:20 am on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

We had an old Pentium 1 machine at work with a 8Gb drive and only 48Mb RAM, running Windows 98. Then we had a machine with 2.5Gb drive and 64Mb RAM (though I upped it to 128Mb). Both ran reasonably well. The extra memory I added made that machine run much better. The 48Mb RAM in the other machine made it run very slowly, but it was still OK. We had no problems with the internet, running IE6 and NS6 on the first machine, and a variety of browsers, including Opera 7, on the other machine. None of them suffered from text field problems.

I'd advise giving up smoking to buy a second hand PC! :-) OK, that's not likely. See if any Polish users on the Opera forum have any spare equipment?

vkaryl




msg:1585171
 11:50 pm on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

Are You sure You wrote the correct data? A 40 meg drive? Even my 386 has a 120 Mb drive and my 286 has a 112 Meg one :). And also.. a vid card which has NO memory? The only thing of that type I have seen was a vid card integrated with the mainboard (it used part of the main RAM for it's purposes). Oh.. did I mention that my Pentium has a 512 Kb RAM VGA vid card? ;););)

Ewww. I was tired. Actually it was 420 meg. Anyway.... I didn't realize you were in Poland, sorry! Obviously no help at all - though if I do find the RAM stick and it's something you can use, I'll see if I can send it to you if you want it....

WeirdoPL




msg:1585172
 9:32 pm on Apr 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

Go to prefs > history & cache and reduce typed in addresses and visited addresses to make the address bar a bit better.
Try setting memory cache to 4MB (although AUTO works better for some people).
Turn OFF multimedia > draw images instantly and make windows > loading 2 seconds or more (if you are dialup, or 1 second if on broadband).
Turn OFF windows > smooth scrolling.
Use a native skin and turn OFF special effects. Turn OFF java unless you need it for a specific page.

This is the reply I got on the Opera Community forum.
Did all that, but no major improvement occured...

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