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Firefox Browser Usage and Support Forum

I don't like it anymore

 9:37 am on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

I have been using Firefox for almost a year. Very nice browser, I was very fast too. But for the past months I discovered that:

1- New versions are kinda slower
2- Popup windows take 5-10 seconds to open!

Nr 2 is something I cannot live with. I installed Firefox on 4 different PC's - my, my server, wife's pc, mom's pc and I tested for popups. Slow slow slow. Why can't Firefox programmer just open the popup and then start loading content?! Why does it take 10 seconds to open the popup? Can you notice the same too? I hardly believe this is just my case since I tested with 4 machines.

I thought something else might be blocking Firefox to open popups soon but I don't know what cound that be. Other programs I run are: Avast antivirus, MSN messenger, Apache, Yahoo messenger, SKYPE and MS Antispy.



 9:45 am on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

I agree - the newer versions are slower, and I've also experienced a couple of crashes in FF which never used to happen before.

I am being drawn back to IE, which is definitely something that I don't like.



 11:37 am on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

Methinks you have more problems than Firefox and popups. In fact, popups may be your problem. I don't have any such problems with FF. You probably have spyware loaded up on your system.


 11:48 am on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

I've gone back to IE, too. The latest version I downloaded 1.06 seem to be the slowest version yet. It's like they are filling the software with too many extras that may not be needed by everyone. I like the look of FF and will try it again in future upgrades.


 12:28 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

There was a thread on speeding up Firefox, but I cannot seem to locate it. Has anyone tried those hacks on the newer versions?



 1:09 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

Something that might be worth trying is creating a new profile.

Also, the upcoming 1.5 is definitely faster. I run nightlies at home and the speed difference is noticeable.


 1:28 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

The thread on speeding up Firefox [webmasterworld.com] is pretty much about browsing and rendering speed. It looks like you're talking about the speed of the UI. Except for increasing the amount of memory Firefox is allowed to use, I wouldn't know how to improve the UI speed.

I'm guessing that the slowdowns are most likely due to over-installing new versions of Firefox right over old versions. For now, it's always best to install a new version of Firefox in a completely new directory, and create a new profile for it. I think that type of annoyance is scheduled to be fixed in upcoming releases, but until then, it's safer to handle upgrades by never over-installing, and always creating a new profile.


 1:38 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

You can speed up Firefox a lot by turning IPv6 off and sticking with IPv4. It seems much faster without it.

To change it do the following: Try it and see if it helps...

Put about:config into the firefox address bar.

Scroll down the configuration options and find:

Try it on and off and see which is quicker...


 1:57 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

Several things slow Firefox down:

  • "profile rot" - from the installation of different updates, changing and upgrading of extensions, etc.
  • installation cruft - updating over previous copies
  • extensions - some extensions are badly-written, or by their very function interfere with the rendering of pages

    You need to backup your existing profile, then rename it to something like "firefox-old" (so you can copy stuff over later). After that, remove Firefox with the Windows Add/Remove Programs option in the control panel. Then drop into your Program Files directory and look in the "firefox" directory - it should be empty, but if it isn't, delete everything. Then delete the "firefox" directory.

    From there, reinstall the latest version of Firefox from mozilla.org and start it up once to create a new blank profile. Then close the program, open up the new Firefox profile next to the old one in the Windows file explorer, and copy your bookmarks.html file from the old to the new. I would suggest redoing the rest from scratch, although that does mean losing your stored passwords and such.

    Now try Firefox again without any installed extensions. Does it run any faster now? It should do. After that, install only the extensions you really need, one by one, checking after each one to see if performance is affected.

    Still don't like Firefox? Doesn't mean that you have to go back to IE: there are several other options. The first is Opera, which usually runs pretty fast and has a lot of good features. If you want Gecko rendering but don't need the extensions, you can also consider using the old Mozilla suite - the latest (currently 1.7.10) is very good. You can install it as the browser only, and I've heard that it is actually faster than Firefox when used this way.

  • Leosghost

     2:54 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Encyclo? ..how do I go about transferring my extensions installed in FF1.06 on the machine that connects to the internet over to the others which I don't let connect or my toshiba portege which I bought without the modem card ( around 250$ even at discount for the toshiba card here ) ...I'm gonna put a usb modem on ( there is the space in the carry all to toke the thing til the price of PCMCIA cards comes down )

    I need to be able to work away from home with clients sometimes on pages ..and I've tried copying the "extensions files" over via USB key and ecrasing the current "extensions file" ..the file loads complete , everything is there ..
    But on opening it is the Firefox 1.06 interface that took over from IE6...that she had in there ( I left it in cos IE somewhere that can't get to the net can't do more harm than make the system "cludgy"

    It will accept my bookmarks ( plus the bookmarks file could even be hand edited )..but not the extensions ..does one have to be installing extensions live from the net for them to take ...if so can they be downloaded and not opened but just stored for transfer by "key" to anther unconnected machine running the same version of FF ..?

    I know it would be easier just to "network" the two machines but the lady who sold me the portege was not it's original owner and so I do not have the "superviser panel" and am still waiting for toshiba to get back to me with where is the reghack or whatever to take back "supervisor" without the master password ...

    Working without the extensions is like having a hand tied behind my back when showing clients why some layouts can be better than others ..

    Ideas ..?

    BTW ..belated congrats on the modding gig ..always thought you were or should've been ..just undeclared for tax purposes ;)

    JAB Creations

     4:39 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Extensions are *.XPI files.

    Any good advanced computer user should save the original install files for versions of software they enjoy. If you don't you will drive yourself crazy! I have a DVD's worth of various versions of browsers.

    Firefox stashes it's settings in two folders. If you've not unweeded the "documents and settings" and "program files" folders out then here is where those folders are hidden...

    C:\documents and settings\YOURWINDOWSUSERNAME\Local Settings\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles

    You can also manually copy over your install of the Firefox folder from the program files folder...

    Your settings are saved in the docs and settings folder including your extensions though not the original XPI install files.


     4:41 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Same here. I been running .6 as well as trunk builds. They are getting totally unresponsive, crashes, and slow. I just don't want to go to IE yet. :)


     4:47 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    In my experience, there are three things that really slow down Firefox:

    1) A slow hard disk. Firefox does thrash the hard disk quite a lot when it starts or does other cache management tasks. If your hard disk is slow or particularly fragmented, this will have a considerable impact on performance.

    2) Lack of RAM. Firefox does use quite a bit more RAM than IE. If you don't have enough, the OS will start paging, and Firefox will slow right down. You'll particularly notice this when restoring Firefox after it's been minimised for a while, and (again) when starting it.

    3) Badly written extensions. Nifty as extensions are, they're of very variable quality. Many do not uninstall cleanly. It's best to keep to ones you actually use. Consider making a new profile periodically to clear out the cruft.

    How do I go about transferring my extensions installed in FF1.06 on the machine that connects to the internet over to the others which I don't let connect...

    This is quite easy; you need to save the extension XPI file to disk. For example, take ScrapBook (one of the best Firefox Extensions out there, IMO):

    ScrapBook Extension Page [addons.mozilla.org]

    Where you see the "Install Now" prompt, mouse-over the link and you'll see that it's actually an XPI. Right-click and choose "Save Link As..." To install the downloaded extension, you should be able to just drag the file into the Firefox window.

    [edited by: encyclo at 5:09 pm (utc) on Aug. 17, 2005]
    [edit reason] fixed sideways scroll [/edit]


     4:56 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Yeah guys I did see they were all .xpi's ..I just hoped that there was a "hack" that would save me having to go get 'em all again...

    ( must look into how the xpi's install while they are doing it )

    Laziness is my middle name....

    I've got the same "saved stuff on dvd's" all over too ..problem is it takes longer to go thru the index files to find whats where than it does to hope for a quick fix or download them again ...; )....

    In general I tend to agree tho ..since FF one it is kludgier ..But go back to IE ....don't be silly .


     5:11 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Any good advanced computer user should save the original install files for versions of software

    Problem is my real day job is /always was artist/sculptor ... ( .became erhmmm "hacker" sometime "coder/decoder" erhmmm etc and do some legit site fixing now and so on as a result ..when the money is distracting enough to make it interesting ) ..just can't seem to get the organised habits of the "always were geeks" down pat ...

    If it did it wouldn't feel like fun so much ..but that atitude does have it's consequences ..."my desktop thread" (remember .."20kgs of chaos" ) ..mea culpa ;)..

    The level of conversation on these fora is usually so much better than that to be found in the "artworld" too ...


     5:19 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    If you are running Firefox on multiple machines and want to share your profile, the easiest way is to keep the program and your profile on removeable media (a USB memory stick is ideal). Then you just follow the instructions on the Firefox tips page:



     5:54 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I am sorry Firefox guys but I am not going to perform 1000 changes to profile or any other thing to speed up buggy thing... I don't have time.

    I also noticed that FF consumes huge amounts of ram. FF is always nr.1 consumer whenever I check taskman. Terrible :(

    Thank you for suggesting Opera, I installed today and I am playing with it. Hopefully it will run as I expect.


     7:45 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Avast antivirus, MSN messenger, Apache, Yahoo messenger, SKYPE and MS Antispy

    Here is a list of all my run->msconfig->startup items, 1)

    That being said, if your worried about speed of your computer then get rid of the useless software. If antivirus software worked their would be no virus's on the internet, the irony speaks for itself. Get a external firewall and close the open ports and use firefox to surf the web with tools->options->web features->allow websites to install software & enable java off. That and staying away from the warez, filesharing and freeware crap filled with spyware and you will never have a virus or spyware on your computer. I have never used an antivirus program since 1997 and the only time I ever had a problem was with a IE hijacker (and some questionable downloads ;) ), which is why I only use IE for testing purposes now.

    As for giving up firefox, thats insanity, I would be lost without,

    Google Pagerank Status /without the google tool'bar
    Web Deleloper toolbar /how can any webmaster live without this?
    IE View /for testing of course
    ARIN Search /makes checking stats a pleasure
    HTML Validator
    SearchStatus /webmasters best friend, I must use this 5 times a day at least

    to name a few.

    As for FF being slow, get a pentium pro, it will blow away the pentium your using. Seriously though, I have a athlon 1800+ and 512mb of ram, not new but not to old either, and I couldn't tell the difference between firefox and IE or opera. They all run about the same. I don't see any slowdown with FF.


     9:57 pm on Aug 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I have Firefox 1.0.6, pretty much the same system as twist in terms of speed, I can't see this slowdown at all in terms of any surfing behavior, popups etc, it's all completely normal, a bit faster than it used to be.

    Follow encyclo's advice re extensions, or just open firefox in safe mode [On windows, start -> programs -> mozilla firefix -> firefox safemode.

    If your problems with popup speed vanish immediately, you have some extension conflict. If you do see the speed return to normal, just start uninstalling the extensions one by one until you find the culprit. It sounds to me like some type of caching issue, it's hard to say since I haven't ever seen this, but I also create a new profile folder for every major version upgrade, .9, 1.0 etc.

    However, it is correct that Firefox uses a lot of ram, so if you're running say 300-500 megahertz computers with 128 mB of ram, the old stock configuration of machines, you could simply be out of memory.

    If memory is in short supply, try Opera, it uses less, about 1/2 as much from what I can see as Firefox. If you have plenty, 256 mB or more, you have some other issue, it's not firefox itself as far as I can tell.

    I've had problems with various extensions, but the time I save using them far outweighs the time I spend tweaking them into shape. I don't use that many either, and I uninstall the ones I end up not using.


     5:49 am on Aug 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I'm running the Linux version of 1.0.6, and honestly, I think there has been a marked improvement in speed.

    I can't wait for 1.5. I don't really keep up on it too much, does anyone know what will be new? Was the engine upgraded at all?


     5:51 pm on Aug 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

    FF 1.5 will be based on Gecko 1.8; it's very much newer version of the rendering engine, branched only a week or so ago.


     6:05 pm on Aug 19, 2005 (gmt 0)


    Yeah, i'm going to go back to IE because it's .0005% faster.


     12:24 am on Aug 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

    He forgets that IE is part of the OS which is why it has a smaller footprint compared to FF which resides outside the OS. IE is much more buggy than FF. Don't quote me but I think it's 225 to 75 IE vs FF right now.


     11:12 am on Aug 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Don't go back to IE, go to Opera!

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