JP Vossen on 2 Mar 2009 12:34:03 -0800

[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: [PLUG] Firefox crashes with lots of tabs open

 > Date: Mon, 2 Mar 2009 11:44:41 -0500
 > From: Art Alexion <>

 > On Monday 02 March 2009 11:00:17 Gordon Dexter wrote:
 >> I'm running Kubuntu 8.04 (avoiding KDE4 for now).? I find when I have
 >> a lot of tabs open in Firefox it's very likely to crash.
 > I started having the same, and more severe issues with FF since the
 > release of 3.0.6.  The problem, according to htop, seems more to do
 > with CPU usage than memory leaks, though it seems to get worse the
 > longer firefox is running.  Also, it seems to have more to do with how
 > long it runs and is only accelerated when more tabs are open.

Short answer: yup, you are not alone.

Long answer:
I have kind of a love/hate relationship with FF.  It's one of the 
worst-behaved tools I use RAM & CPU-wise, but I have gotten in to some 
work-flow patterns that I don't think I can do in any other browser 
(mostly tab-mix plus features), so I'm kind of stuck with it.  To be 
fair I am a *very heavy* user, so that may have something to do with it:

1 instance on XP currently with 6 windows and 44+14+11+10+56+11 = 146 
tabs, using 328,204K.
3 instances on Ubuntu 8.04, each with several windows and many tabs as 
$ shff
  8004    4.80   10.90 Feb25 /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.6/firefox -P default 
  8356    1.00   19.50 Feb25 /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.6/firefox -P Secondary 
12847   14.00   16.50 Mar01 /usr/lib/firefox-3.0.6/firefox -P Flickr 

I have certainly noticed that any instance with flash will eventually 
leak RAM and/or CPU to the point that it has to be killed and restarted. 
  This happens enough that I wrote shff [1] so I could easily find and 
kill an instance.  The saved session stuff works well enough that aside 
from the delay while everything reloads this is a NOOP.  But it's still 

Using the fewest possible plugins helps a lot too.  I'm sure core FF is 
much better than I usually perceive it, because the plugins on which I 
depend may not have the same quality workmanship.  Thems the breaks. 
I'd like which ones I used but that would get even more tedious than 
this already is.  AdBlock, FlashBlock, NoScript, TabMixPlus are 
critical, others like ColorfulTabs, InFormEnter are optional.


[1] alias shff="echo ' PID    %CPU    %MEM  START COMMAND'; ps auwx | 
grep '[f]irefox' | perl -alne 'printf (\"%5d %7.2f %7.2f %s %s %s %s %s 
%s\\n\", @F[1,2,3,8,10..@F-1]);'"
JP Vossen, CISSP            |:::======|
My Account, My Opinions     |=========|
"Microsoft Tax" = the additional hardware & yearly fees for the add-on
software required to protect Windows from its own poorly designed and
implemented self, while the overhead incidentally flattens Moore's Law.
Philadelphia Linux Users Group         --
Announcements -
General Discussion  --