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Firefox 54, Faster, Less Resources

     
12:12 pm on Jun 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Mozilla is making great claims for Firefox 54, which it says, is faster, and uses less resources. This was surely needed as it lagged behind the other major browsers. Whether it's catchup mode is enough will tell.
The only way to prove it is in the real world and to run it.

Here's the full release notes [mozilla.org...]
For those of you that have built a browser extension, here's the notes on the new Web Platform and WebExtension APIs.
[hacks.mozilla.org...]

With today’s release, Firefox uses up to four processes to run web page content across all open tabs. This means that a heavy, complex web page in one tab has a much lower impact on the responsiveness and speed in other tabs. By separating the tabs into separate processes, we make better use of the hardware on your computer, so Firefox can deliver you more of the web you love, with less waiting. Firefox 54, Faster, Less Resouces [blog.mozilla.org]
8:06 pm on June 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Glad to hear that. Slowness was the reason I switched from Firefox to Chrome. I might give it another go.
9:36 pm on June 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I too had to switch to Chrome for a little while simply due to performance. That came with the loss of all of my system RAM with a lot of tabs open. I found myself having to restart the browser a few times a day when I wanted to use other software.

This new FF is noticeably faster with multiple windows and many tabs open. It still does bog down after a while, but it's a lot better than before.
9:56 pm on June 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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For mobile though, Chrome is the standard. I now only design presentation using Chrome. The extensions have caught-up also. I like the Web Developers tools better in Chrome than I did in Firefox.
10:07 pm on June 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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FF WebDeveloper Tools was updated with this version of FF. I learned to always check for updates for AddOns when I do an update after some were working strangely several updates ago.
11:10 pm on June 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I learned to always check for updates for AddOns when I do an update
Firefox has always automatically checked all extensions & addons when updating. I think there's a setting for that.

Just updated FF to 54.0. It says 32.bit. I have a 64 bit machine... hmmm.

Still no Adsense Publisher extension. I use this constantly when putting together new pages or just maintaining ads on existing pages. Guess I'll stick with Chrome 59.
1:19 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I no longer use Firefox except for testing. It's been buggy for a while, with hanging processes after I close it. Can't re-run it until I manually kill the process. Hopefully this changes things for the better, the more competition the better.
3:47 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I learned to always check for updates for AddOns when I do an update
Firefox has always automatically checked all extensions & addons when updating. I think there's a setting for that.
Yep... Tools > Add-ons > Extensions. Then from the Add-ons Manager, use the hamburger at the top to check "Update Add-ons Automatically"
5:43 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I did something I haven't done in a while on FF; I did a complete Refresh [support.mozilla.org...]

I wanted to get Electrolysis working, and even if I restarted FF with add-ons disabled I was still getting the message in about:support that Multiprocess Windows were disabled by an add-on. So I did the Refresh, and still didn't have Multiprocess Windows. The solution was to download a new copy and install over my existing copy. Success.

Then I went through my add-ons and tried to get only the ones that will be compatible with FF57 that will be coming in November. That's when add-ons will have to be WebExtension compatible. [addons.mozilla.org...]

Then I added a few extensions I couldn't live without that were not WebExtension compatible (and made note of them for later). That didn't break the Electrolysis, so I'm enjoying even better performance. Very impressed.
6:06 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Sorry, but I very seldom automatically install and update things. If you had a connection like mine, you'd disable that too I believe. When it's good, it's good; when it's not, it can cause some problems. Auto-update is great for those with the means, I don't have a problem with my settings. I've long been in the habit of checking for updates and updating at my convenience.
6:15 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@not2easy - It was more of a general info post for those interested. I'm aware your connection is sometimes unreliable or slow.
7:45 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Just updated FF to 54.0. It says 32.bit. I have a 64 bit machine... hmmm.

This is because the first time you installed Firefox on your system, you took the 32bits version. So Firefox has continued to update the 32bits and didn't switch by itself.

Now, if you made a fresh install of Firefox, it's possible that by default Fiefox is installing the 32 bits version, which is less "risky" (some badly coded plugins might be buggy in 64bits, because of the bad handling of "long" and "int" types).

To install the 64bits version, you can do it from this page : [mozilla.org...]
7:55 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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This is because the first time you installed Firefox on your system, you took the 32bits version
Actually I've always had the 64 bit version on this machine, that's why I was surprised. It was a fresh install. I deleted it. Don't use it anyway.
8:18 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The 64bits version of Firefox (as well as other 64bits software) is installed in the folder "C:\Program Files\" whereas 32bits software are installed in "c:\Program Files (x86)". May be the this is not the right software being started.

nb: I was using the 64bits version, and now, after the automatic update, it's still the 64bits version.
11:12 am on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've used FF for some time, and yes, i've found more problems with it with recent updates. I'm hoping some of the bugs get resolved with this version, otherwise i'll need to keep using Vivaldi for certain uses.

I shall test this update next week.
2:56 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Actually I've always had the 64 bit version on this machine, that's why I was surprised. It was a fresh install. I deleted it. Don't use it anyway.


Same here. The laptop I'm using now is only a few months old, and I did a fresh 64-bit install on it. Yesterday's update changed it to 32-bits.
5:30 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I tend to have only a few tabs open and it'll rarely consume over 350MB, using the Linux 64-bit version.

Performance tip: don't have dozens of tabs open. you can only look at one :)
5:39 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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For mobile though, Chrome is the standard.


Unfortunately Chrome is no longer updated for certain Android OS. We have 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich on several Xoom tablets and Chrome no longer works therefore removed.

We're not binning these whilst they still run perfectly.
5:44 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I noticed that FF is now available at the AppStore :)
6:49 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Unfortunately Chrome is no longer updated for certain Android OS. We have 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich
Well that's how things work in the tech world. Why would Google Chrome release updates for OSs that are no longer supported? Yes, the devices may still operate OK, but the security is outdated. This is how viruses propagate.
7:16 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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looks like version 54 is already available as a [portableapps.com...] download.

when I am on a fast-free connection, I will download it and try it.




ack! 10 years post!
7:30 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Updated mine last night. Resources (in Task Manager) went from over 400000k to 127000k. That is significant! Speed wise .... don't see that much difference on a i7 desktop. Haven't updated the laptop yet ....

Was a bit ticked that the upgrade UNDID all my personalization (I run high contrast display because of vision problems). Had to put everything back to where it was before.
7:36 pm on June 15, 2017 (gmt 0)

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ack! 10 years post!
Congrats creeking!
8:45 am on June 16, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Back after further adventures with FF54 .... Took out my original 64bit install and replaced with 32bit.

Downloaded the 64bit and installed.

Big mistake! Don't Do That! The installer is too stupid to know the difference. A bit of research (after really strange behavior) indicates the 32bit needs to be completely (and registry washed, too!) before doing this (64 overwritten by 32 back to 64)

To compound the problem the 32bit can't be uninstalled after 64 and the 64 can't complete install because of left over 32.

There is, however, a "fix".

In program files (and the x86 version, too) delete all Mozilla FF files (avoid the Thunderbird if you are running that!), reboot system. Then install the 64 version.

You "lose" everything .... a new profile is created, but you can recover all that in from the old profile which is in appsdata. A complete PITA I wasn't looking for this evening.

Most times and for most folks 32bit is all you need.... but if you have ginormous ram available you should be running 64bit to take advantage.

Oh well, live and learn.
2:38 pm on June 16, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Performance tip: don't have dozens of tabs open. you can only look at one happy!


My work requires 3 monitors, and at least a dozen tabs open at once.
3:31 pm on June 16, 2017 (gmt 0)

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My regular , mostly work-related browsing requires 20-30 tabs. And 2 browsers. I could probably use 2 monitors but I hate it as it give me headaches.

By the time I have 40 tabs Firefox is dying on me - sloooooooooooooooooooow - or crashing.

I've seen some women do online shopping with 20-30 open tabs, and it makes sense , actually, because of the amount of available variety and how they filter the products out. Sometimes you can't tell from a tiny thumbnail what pattern, size or material, for instance, while in store they can just look at the rack for size / color and then touch to feel material. To have 20-30 tabs is a pretty sane way to quickly filter out what you can't tell due to limited screen space and poor UI.
6:38 pm on June 16, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The nasty shock for me was finding that I have to manually re-install all AdBlock filters--something that, to the best of my knowledge, I have never had to do before. It also, conversely, lost the whitelist settings, so I have to do those all over again too.

I don't use Chrome, just as a matter of principle, because hasn't G### got enough of the internet already? (And that's speaking as someone whose default search engine is, in fact, Google Advanced Search.) And Safari is annoying because updates are linked directly to OS updates. Imagine your mechanic saying they'll no longer work on cars older than five years because for-your-own-good et cetera.

But as long as Firefox continues to have the Silence This Tab option, I'm there.
6:55 pm on June 16, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The nice thing is there are plenty of Chrome open source based browsers to choose from if you want Google to know less about your browsing habits.
7:58 pm on June 16, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I would think that a forum of *web professionals* would include at least a few people who build websites. As such, it would be prudent to see the web as most others do.

Firefox, while popular with nerds, has never been the browser most use to view webpages. Most users just use the browser that was already on the device

With the mobile-first index, that browser would be Chrome or the Android browser which is a version of Chrome.
9:24 pm on June 16, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I mostly use my text editor's HTML preview, which is webkit-based and essentially looks like Safari. On the rare occasions when I've used a feature that I know is Safari-specific (that is, CSS properties like "display: run-in" which for some reason only Safari supports) I check others as well. And then it becomes a bonus to use something that's not webkit-based.
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