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The New Firefox and Ridiculous Numbers of Tabs


Batu69

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Tabs!

 

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I've got a Firefox profile with 1691 tabs.

I started trying to write down why, but gave up for now. It was becoming an overly long exploration of product design and the future of the web.

 

As you would expect, Firefox handled this profile quite poorly for a long time. I got used to multi-minute startup time, waiting 15-30 seconds for tabs from external apps to show up, and all manner of non-responsive behavio(u)r.

 

And then, quite recently, everything changed.

Quantum Flow

Right now, more effort is being put into making Firefox fast than I've seen since... well, since I've been working on Firefox. And I've been at Mozilla for more than a decade.

 

Part of this effort is a project called Quantum Flow - a bunch of engineers making changes that directly impact Firefox responsiveness. To learn more and follow along with these efforts, read Ehsan Akhgari's weekly posts.

 

A lot of the improvement in this particular scenario is from Kevin Jones' work on bringing the overall cost of unloaded tabs as close to zero as possible. While the major work has landed, the work continues in Bug 906076. Huge amounts of thanks for the recent wins for us pathological tab hoarders go to Kevin, Dão Gottwald, Mike de Boer, Tim Taubert, David Teller, Mike Conley, and Gijs Kruitbosch.

Test Scenario

I took my 1691 tab browser profile, and did a wall-clock measurement of start-up time and memory use for Firefox versions 20, 30, 40, and 50 through 56.

These are my personal results. You might not get the same results. If you test 1691 (or even 1692) tabs and find something totally different, I'd love to hear about it.

 

Notes:

  • I shut down most things on my Macbook (yeah the little one that's more like a glorified iPad).

  • I turned off wifi. This is a measurement of Firefox, not the network, nor web page rendering.

  • I measured by eyeball, using "time cat" on the command line. This might seem weird, but c'mon - I'm measuring minutes. Microsecond precision is not required.

  • I measured startup time five times, dropping highs and lows. Even that wasn't really necessary - the times were startingly consistent. With almost 1700 tabs and >5 minute startup, the standard deviation was negligible.

  • For measuring startup time, I killed the timer when the "server not found" page finished being rendered in the active tab. After lots of testing, I consistently found this to be the point at which the application as a whole became responsive and usable.

  • For memory, I waited for one minute after the startup measurement point and then grabbed the total value from the bottom of about:memory. I waited one minute, because I observed a consistent spike in memory after startup which went away within the first minute and then stabilized for a long period after. It's all kinds of initialization that doesn't need to block the app from starting, but needs to happen once you get to browsing.

  • I tested Firefox versions 20, 30, 40, and 50 through 56. I tried testing Firefox 10 but it permahung while loading the profile.

Start-up Time

Graph of startup time with 1691 tabs across Firefox versions 20, 30, 40 and 50 - 56. The Y axis is minutes. Yes, Firefox 51 took almost 8 MINUTES to start up. However, as of Firefox 55 it only takes 15 seconds. For 1691 tabs. Really. I no longer fear restarts. Lately, I just restart Firefox for fun sometimes.

 

Startup time

 

It's interesting that Firefox startup time got consistently worse over time until Firefox 51. It'd be interesting to do this test with varying numbers of tabs and find out at what point these types of regressions become noticeable.

Memory Usage

Graph of memory use one minute after startup with 1691 tabs across Firefox versions 20, 30, 40 and 50 - 56. While consistently using around two gigs of memory, we've now reduced to less than half a gig. Yes, this is without actual web pages loaded, but look at this, haters: I've now got 1.5 gigs of memory to load web pages into that I didn't have before.

 

Memory use

 

The efforts that the Firefox and Gecko and Servo teams are putting into making a SUPERFUCKINGFAST browser are having a real impact, and that's exciting to see.

 

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I've got a Firefox profile with 1691 tabs.

stoped here... u're either retarded or 2-6 years old... get da f**k outta here!

 

my next job for u is to count up to infinity... u have all your life to do it and i'll occasionally check if u're doing your task!

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1 hour ago, jbleck said:

stoped here... u're either retarded or 2-6 years old... get da f**k outta here!

 

my next job for u is to count op to infinity... u have all your life to do it and i'll occasionally check if u're doing your task!

Hell0 bruh!

I quoted the article source. Why you quoted me that words? If don't like to read, just leave/ignore my post, don't start your smartass on here.

I'm on here never called people retard, stupid or fuckingmotherfukerfucktard or something rude. if you have problem with my post or something you not comfortable with my action / acting on here, please report to admins. I'm glad if you doing so.

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1 hour ago, jbleck said:
Just now, Batu69 said:

Hell0 bruh!

I quoted the article source. Why you quoted me that words? If don't like to read, just leave/ignore my post, don't start your smartass on here.

I'm on here never called people retard, stupid or fuckingmotherfukerfucktard or something rude. if you have problem with my post or something you not comfortable with my action / acting on here, please report to admins. I'm glad if you doing so.

stoped here... u're either retarded or 2-6 years old... get da f**k outta here!

 

my next job for u is to count op to infinity... u have all your life to do it and i'll occasionally check if u're doing your task!

I don't think jbleck is referring to you — also, not everybody finds it convenient to replace Batu69 with Dietrich Ayala from the quote or for that matter edit the quote tags to delete the posters name (and, I know that it's possible for everyone to select snippets of text and quote just the requisite — I do it most of the times, but many do not.)  ;)

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That's what happens when people quote the 1st post people think there talking too them ..I just put them on ignore if it happened a lot.. but i think this is just a one time case ? Him being a mod i don't think hes allowed too put members on ignore ether. But too many trolls on here that done ran this site into the ground for me too be bothered with starting new topics any more.

1 hour ago, Batu69 said:

Hell0 bruh!

you need to chill out bro he was not talking to you, he was quoting something from you're post  and was not talking to you .

 

3 hours ago, jbleck said:

stoped here... u're either retarded or 2-6 years old... get da f**k outta here!

I agree kind of reminds me of some on this site  but thing is this is the internet ans people can act like they are something they are not and really be kids . the legal age too most forums is just 13 years old and sometimes on the internet were just dealing with kids . This is why we need too be careful  what we say to people on the internet.  You ever seen the realty TV show  catfish?  It's not just kids that try too deceive people by making like they are someone there not.. many times adults do this too. Don't believe people  who brag about things  unless they have actual proof of who they are and what they have and most people are not going doxx themselves too prove it no way ..so it's silly to brag  when no one knows them from atom. Only the gullible would buy it.     And you don't need to quote the op it's rude and it disturbs the poster and you were not even talking too them.. people can see you're post without it.  It's OK to quote someone as long as you're actually talking too them. But if you're not they may take it the wrong way like you're are  talking too them +1 it's annoying  .

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edited my previous post...

 

@Batu69: Sorry if i offended u but at least now i know u care. Please try to filter the news when u post them as i for one read nsane articles for it's quality content usually. Every once in a while i step out of line if i feel that someone has lost it's way (usually is so that i can bring him back)... if not i get "slaped" and i'll know i went too far.

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Putting aside the fact the original author tested Firefox with 1691 tabs... While I don't think standard user will EVER reach 100 or even 50...

The speed difference, if it will actually exist from FF55, is surprising, to say the least. Also, RAM usage looks impressive - if it actually uses up to 4 times less RAM (keywords: up to 4 times), I'm okay with that - at least it will be interesting to see if Chrome can come back with something similar, because let's be honest - nowadays (and especially Chromium-based) browsers like to use A LOT of RAM.

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I hope the misunderstanding is sorted here. I will prefer if both of you forgive each other if not done already.

 

As for the article, while it's posted like an advertising man, coming from a Mozilla developer himself, but I do not think anything is wrong with it. It actually highlights an important issue about why Firefox was using RAM when tabs were not loaded, atleast from what I can understand. I wish they would implement this on Firefox on Android too.

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Firefox's Quantum Flow will drastically increase responsiveness

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With the inclusion of Quantum Flow in Firefox 55, Ayala saw his start up time slashed to a mere 15 seconds – 30 times quicker than what Firefox 51 could achieve. On the flip side, Firefox 20 opened the tabs in just over a minute and gradually right up to Firefox 51 the opening time became worse and worse. Quantum Flow will get rid of all of these regressions that have built up since April 2nd, 2013 when Firefox 20 was released.

 

Memory utilisation has also been drastically improved with Quantum Flow. With 1691 open tabs (with web pages unloaded, see lazy tabs) Firefox 55 uses just under 500MB of RAM. This is down from previous versions of Firefox going back to Firefox 30 which generally used about 2GB of RAM.

 

All of these improvements are putting Firefox on par with Google Chrome, on a technical level. One of the common criticisms levelled against Chrome is that it is a resource hog; Quantum Flow will only serve to drastically improve the situation for Mozilla.

 

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Firefox’s unloaded tab handling got a whole lot better

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Starting with Firefox 55, scheduled for an August 8th, 2017 release, unloaded tab handling in the Firefox web browser got a whole lot better.

This should have a positive impact on all Firefox users who restore the last browsing session on start of the browser. It improves the time it takes to load the browser and also the memory consumption.

 

To hammer home the point, Mozilla employee Dietrich Ayala ran a test with a Firefox profile with 1691 open tabs in the browsing session.

 

Note: Startup time depends on a number of factors. All Firefox users who load the previous browsing tab on start should see an improvement in startup time and memory use. As a rule of thumb, the more tabs get loaded, the better the improvement.

 

He tested startup time and memory performance of Firefox 20, 30, 40, and 50 to 56 using that profile. He could not test the profile in Firefox 10 as it would hang and not load the profile at all.

 

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Firefox’s blazing speed with huge numbers of tabs leaves Chrome in the dust

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New beta of Mozilla’s browser is a power user’s dream

As Mozilla developer Dietrich Ayala explains, he did some testing with Firefox having 1,691 tabs open – yes, 1,691 – and found that while the current version of the browser (54) was very sluggish to start up and used a lot of system memory (unsurprisingly), Firefox 55 (currently in beta testing) and 56 make massive strides on both these fronts.

 

According to Ayala’s benchmarking, Firefox 54 took over four minutes to start up with this massive-multi-tab configuration open in the browser, but with Firefox 55 that time has been reduced to just 15 seconds.

 

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bleh...they said about the same about e10s.... "new surf feeling" blahhhhh.... i could hardly tell a difference on my daily surfing experience.

i turned it e10s off again, not all my extensions are e10s ready (some will never be i'm afraid).

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