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Firefox/Opera Shootout


By David Grant - Posted on 01 February 2007

I've been getting really pissed off lately at how much memory Firefox is using up. I decided to give Opera a try. I opened up the exact same tabs in Opera (about 10 of them) and I got about the same memory consumption. I disabled all the Firefox extensions except for the del.icio.us one (because last time I disabled it and re-enabled it, it totally screwed up the bookmarks menu, and I had to create a new profile from scratch to get it back to normal).

  PID USER      PR  NI  VIRT  RES  SHR S %CPU %MEM    TIME+  COMMAND
 9152 david     15   0  214m 105m  19m S  1.7 10.4   0:24.86 opera
 9057 david     15   0  211m 100m  24m R  3.7  9.9   0:32.72 firefox-bin

This is a big improvement for Firefox by the way, after disabling the extensions. One of the extensions much be leaking memory big time because the memory usage usually climbs to 250MB. Looks like I will have to go and buy some more RAM. I only have 1 Gig right now. with tw 512MB modules. Looks like there is a third slot. Maybe a new 1G module then.

You shouldn't need two gigs of ram to run something like firefox. Don't waste money on trying to run bad programming. I would suggest just disabling your extensions one by one until you find the culprit, then get rid of it.

I've tried that but the memory still climbs up over time. I should also note that I run two X servers, one for my wife and one for myself. Each one runs an instance of Firefox.

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