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Tom's Hardware Pits Newest Firefox, Opera and Chrome Against Each Other

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the do-the-windows-numbers-hold-for-linux? dept.

Chrome 272

An anonymous reader writes "Firefox 7 was released a couple days ago, and now the latest Web browser performance numbers are in. This article is the same series that ran benchmarks on Mac OS X Lion last month. This time around the new Mozilla release is going against Chrome 14 and Opera 11.51 in 40+ different tests on Windows 7. Testing comes from every category of Web browsing performance I can think of: startup time, page load time, JS, CSS, DOM, HTML5, Flash, hardware acceleration, WebGL, Java, Silverlight, reliable page loads, memory usage/management, and standards conformance. The article also has a little feature on the Futuremark Peacekeeper browser benchmark. An open beta of the next revision has just been made public. This new version adds HTML5, video codecs, and WebGL tests to the benchmark. It's also designed to run on any browser/OS/device combination — e.g. Windows desktop, iPad, Droid 2, MacBook, Linux flavors, etc. Another great read, a must for Web browser fanatics!"

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Don't read this... it is a curse... (-1, Offtopic)

pewwyness (2475358) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586112)

In 2008, a little boy named Erin was relaxing on the beach in the middle of the day. Whilst doing so, he spotted a small lizard beanie baby about 6 meters away, stood up, and then called out to it. After the lizard asked him what he wanted, Erin said in a confident manner, "I betcha can't lick my buttcheeks!" The lizard replied, "I bet I can!" and stuck out its tongue a few inches. Confident of the lizard's impending failure, Erin laughed. However, he discovered that his confidence was misplaced right as he heard the sound of the lizard's invisible tongue slapping his buttcheek!

Angry, Erin yelled, "I betcha can't lick my buttcrack!" The lizard replied the same way, and then once again stuck out its tongue a few inches. And, once again... Erin heard the sound of an invisible tongue slapping against something, but this time it violated his buttcrack. Furious, he screamed, "I betcha can't lick my butthole!" The lizard replied the same way, stuck out its tongue a few inches, and the exact same thing happened.

For Erin, that was the last straw. He was so furious that he ran up to the lizard beanie baby and tried to stomp on it. However, it somehow managed to crawl up his left pant leg and appeared to be crawling towards his bootyass! In his desperation, he attempted to stop it by blocking it with his hand. He quickly realized that that would not be effective when the lizard merely crawled under his hand. The lump in his pant leg continued onward towards his bootyass. After trying and failing to take off his pants, Erin gave up all hope and began screaming for help. Once the lizard reached Erin's precious bootyasscheekcrackhole, it began crawling on top of it in a square pattern, stopping and continuing every few seconds. Whenever the lizard moved, the sound of a snake was heard many times in a short amount of time. This inflicted tremendous amounts of tickle on Erin's bootyass!

Now that you have read this (even a single word of it), the lizard will crawl on your bootyasscheekcrackhole in a square pattern, inflicting extreme amounts of tickle upon it! To prevent this from happening, post this curse as a comment three times.

Re:Don't read this... it is a curse... (-1, Offtopic)

IAmTheHewwy (2475384) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586140)

Don't read this... it is a curse...

In 2007, a little boy named Timothy was standing in the hallway inside of his house. He then turned towards the place where the hallway connects with his mom's bedroom and spotted a box of graham crackers. This made him realize that there was a new rule in his house: anyone who walks past the box of graham crackers must allow the large black man standing near it to screw their bootyass! Then, for some reason, he tried to run past the box of graham crackers and was grabbed by the large black man. The large black man looked at his bootyass naked bootyass and screamed, "There is no hole!" Timothy then escaped and ran into his mom's closet, and the black man followed. The black man then bumped into the cabbage patch kid in the closet and angered it. Timothy managed to escape outside while the black man's bootyass was turned into a rumblehouse. Then, Timothy noticed that a close friend of his had his car parked in front of his house and was signaling him to get inside. Timothy did so, and the car took off down the road while Timothy explained his situation to his friend.

While Timothy was celebrating the fact that he escaped, the car began slowing down; his friend then said, "Now, now, now's the time right now!"

Timothy asked him what he was doing. His friend grinned evilly and replied, "What slowness can I offer you? I'm copyright owner Madow!" and turned into an old man wearing a butler's outfit.

The car continued to slow down, and the cabbage patch kid was catching up to them. Timothy then got out of the car (since he could run faster than it was moving) and began running. However, what seemed to be an invisible entity lifted him into the air and thrusted him ass-first around the world at a speed greater than the speed of light! Eventually, Timothy's bootyass naked bootyass crashed directly into the very same cabbage patch kid he was trying to escape from! The cabbage patch kid was then sucked into Timothy's bootyasscheekcrackhole as if his bootyass was a spaghetti noodle (just like grandma)! At that point, his bootyass became a bouncehouse for the cabbage patch kid, and major amounts of tickle was inflicted upon it!

Now that you have read this (even a single word of it), the very same cabbage patch kid will get sucked right up your bootyass as if your bootyass is a spaghetti noodle, and major amounts of tickle will be inflicted upon it! To prevent this from happening, post this curse as a comment three times.

Is performance really an issue? (5, Insightful)

Kenja (541830) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586114)

I've not worried about browser performance for a long while, lets face it, they're all fast enough. What matters to me is how they behave, their interface and site compatibility.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (3, Insightful)

mgiuca (1040724) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586240)

In the mobile versions it's very important, especially JavaScript performance.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (1, Interesting)

timeOday (582209) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586276)

It all depends on the hardware - I just got an old P4 for my kids to use, and the web suddenly seems surprisingly bloated and slow.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586376)

don't be so fucking cheap with your kids, just buy a new computer.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (2)

cyfer2000 (548592) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586418)

or play a fun father (or maybe mother) and kids game called upgrade.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (4, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586782)

I promised myself I wouldn't become an old fart but when the suggestion is to upgrade a P4 in order to surf the net, I cringe. It's a fscking gigahertz processor, for crying out loud. It's amazing what kind of computing power you can waste just drawing up a web page, even with javascript and flash to kill performance.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (2)

abhi_beckert (785219) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586316)

I would argue it doesn't even depend on site compatibility anymore. They are all plenty good enough in that regard.

So that leaves the interface, and how they behave. For me, that puts Safari squarely at the top on Mac OS X, and Chrome on windows.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (1)

travbrad (622986) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586518)

On an old/slow PC yes, it is an issue. I have an old P4-based laptop that I use for email/browsing/reading/etc, and Firefox was extremely slow on that system, while Chrome is almost as smooth as it is on my desktop (Core2-based).

I certainly agree on a modern system they are all fast enough though. It really comes down to personal preference more than anything. They all have their little quirks.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (3, Insightful)

Psx29 (538840) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586560)

On OS X 10.7 Firefox is significantly slower than Safari and Chrome. Chrome and Safari are both pretty similar in performance but Safari is hands down the fastest browser on OS X because it is the only one that has complete GPU acceleration (likely due to Apple using hidden API calls). Using Windows on the same machine both Firefox and Chrome seem to run so much faster than their OS X counterparts it is mind boggling.

Re:Is performance really an issue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586710)

Even still, the JavaScript performance of Firefox Nightly is top-notch. Jaegarmonkey with type inference is about twice as fast as Chrome dev channel on many of the CPU-bound microbenchmarks. It falls down on some scheme-like ones where you're defining new types all the time, but in general it at least matches V8. And they've got a bunch of improvements on it in design for the IonMonkey engine.

For instance in http://bellard.org/jslinux [bellard.org] the shell responds much quicker in Chrome, but in Firefox any CPU-bound task like "gzip < /bin/zcat > /dev/null" is twice as fast (you have to use a stopwatch since the system time is in emulated hz).

Re:Is performance really an issue? (1)

obarthelemy (160321) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586818)

Indeed. I would add reliability (it seems every browser releases a shitty version from time to time, last culprit was firefox before they started turbo-numbering), bfore that I had issues with Opera 10.x or a long time. All fixed now, I guess it's Chrome's turn ?

Re:Is performance really an issue? (0)

perryizgr8 (1370173) | more than 2 years ago | (#37587146)

i switched to chrome because firefox was too slow. many of my friends did the same. but i guess performance is just a useless metric that nobody cares about anyway, right?

A+++++ WOULD BUY AGAIN... (5, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586116)

"Another great read, a must for Web browser fanatics!"

Seriously? Could you sound any more astroturfy if you tried?

Re:A+++++ WOULD BUY AGAIN... (1)

jhoegl (638955) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586214)

What does that even mean?

Re:A+++++ WOULD BUY AGAIN... (1)

mgiuca (1040724) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586262)

Astroturfing [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:A+++++ WOULD BUY AGAIN... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586338)

Well, give him a touch of credit, he didn't offer up a blow job to Adam Overa publicly.

a must for Web browser fanatics (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586552)

I was a little put off by this too. The advances in web browsers were exciting when IE 4, 5 were pushing out major changes like Active Desktop and file manager integration, and then later when they sandboxed them off from the rest of the operating system. Online bookmark syncing is a pretty neat feature, but for the most part browsers are pretty homogenized and well... boring. Unless you work in online advertising, I think most geeks' interest in browser tech has waned quite a bit now that the playing field is relatively level "against"* Microsoft these days.
 
*I cringe a little saying that; bet way I could word it.

Re:a must for Web browser fanatics (2)

aztracker1 (702135) | more than 2 years ago | (#37587072)

As someone working in business eLearning, which has been dominated by flash for the past decade, I am very interested. I've also been interested in some of the better scaling backend systems as well. We're almost to a point where we can nuke flash player. Still need a broad implementation for compressed audio and video streams from the client.... Also, in need of a few other tweaks, such as better offline support. Most of all, what's needed is better tooling. So far Adobe, Microsoft and Sencha seem to be at the forefront. Though Adobe seems a little relaxed, and MS is pushing a lot of stuff for IE10 that nobody else has even thought of implementing. IE10's DB model is interesting, and the grid and multicolumn stuff is cool, still need other web browsers to cross adopt a bit more to make it really useful... Webkit is the major player for smart phones and tablet browsing, and IE only has about 40-50% of the desktop, at varying versions.

Written on the 30th? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586130)

This review is old news. Firefox should be v10 or v11 by now.

Re:Written on the 30th? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586386)

All joking aside, the sad reality is that Firefox 10 builds actually are available from the Firefox Nightly channel [mozilla.org] at this very moment.

I'm curious to see what benchmarks like this will look like in a year from now. Based on how so many users seem to be getting upset with Firefox recently, and moving to other browsers, maybe it's market share will be so minimal that it won't even be worth considering.

Who the hell is a web browser fanatic? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586142)

I mean, really.

Signed,
    Someone with a life

Don't read this... it is a curse... (-1, Offtopic)

UgherHewwy (2475388) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586146)

In 2005, a little boy named Tim was playing in his front yard. After a few minutes of playing, Tim noticed that a large toy clown had appeared and was floating in the middle of the front yard. It had white skin, a striped shirt with many colors present on it, large, goofy looking hands with white gloves on them, huge feet with large brown shoes, a big, red round nose, and poofy red hair.

The clown was grinning evilly at Tim, who was very noticeably frightened at this strange occurrence. Tim somehow managed to shake off his fear, slowly got up, and tried to run down the sidewalk to get away from the toy clown. However, Tim's effort proved to be futile when the clown spread out the palms of both of his hands, placed them in front of his body with one hand behind the other, and then began shooting giant legos out of his hands. The legos homed in on Tim's bootyass, went right through his pants and underwear, and finally reached his bootyasscheekcrackhole! Afterwards, they began spinning around on Tim's bootyasscheekcrackhole, inflicting tremendous amounts of tickle upon his bootyass!

The legos then vanished, giving Tim a few moments of relief (however, after experiencing such a terrifying thing, he is still only a shell of what he once was). However, the clown was not finished yet! After a few moments, the clown said, in an evil voice, "I wanna go... you know where!" and seemingly vanished. Tim, however, knew exactly where the clown was: between his bootyasscheek johnson ultimatum supremacies! The clown, facing Tim's bootyasscheekcrackhole, put both of his hands together (with his fingers between one another), and whammed Tim's bootyasscheekcrackhole three whole times! The previous tickle paled in comparison to this tickle!

Now that you have read this (even a single word of it), the toy clown will shoot large amounts of his legos out of his hand and they will spin around on your bootyasscheekcrackhole, and major amounts of tickle will be inflicted upon it! To prevent this from happening, post this curse as a comment three times.

Outdated (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586150)

No point - by the time you finish reading it, FF8 will be out and the benchmarks will be obsolete.

Something's missing... (2)

trogdor8667 (817114) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586188)

Why doesn't the summary have the fact that they say Firefox 7 as the winner? Seems like a big glaring omission from this summary...

Re:Something's missing... (1)

cmv1087 (2426970) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586218)

The highlight isn't the overall winner, really, which seems to be chosen a bit arbitrarily. It's the tests themselves and the results of those tests.

Re:Something's missing... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586748)

And I bet there's about one test per page. Followed by the results of that test on a separate page.

Or did Tom's Hardware change their site design since the last benchmark of theirs that I read?

No, I didn't RTFA. And now, thanks to GP, I won't have to.

Re:Something's missing... (1)

cmv1087 (2426970) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586824)

After three pages that few people care enough to read, they get to the tests. Each page talks about one test or two or something. I dunno. I skimmed through most of it and basically saw just the horizontal blue bar graphs with a few paragraphs of text per page.

Re:Something's missing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586298)

Because it's a blatant attempt to get clicks and providing the results in the summary would negate the need for you to visit the site.

Re:Something's missing... (2)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586528)

From what I saw, Firefox was one of the bigger losers. Surprisingly, Safari was one of the best. It seems they've switched places since I last tested them head-to-head in my own machine years ago.

Re:Something's missing... (0)

perryizgr8 (1370173) | more than 2 years ago | (#37587158)

thanks! now i don't need to read the article. because it is obviously fucking wrong. there's no way ff can win any damn benchmark. i guess zdnet have received some gifts from mozilla?

Results (1, Troll)

mattver2 (1896634) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586204)

Here are the results which TFS failed to mention: 1) Firefox 7 2) Chrome 14 3) IE 9 4) Opera 5) Safari

Re:Results (5, Informative)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586480)

Umm, actually, no. It's 1) Firefox 7 2) Chrome 14 3 )Opera 4) IE 9 5) Safari. Might look like IE>Opera if you only glance at the results. Read closer.

However, as far as I can tell they don't seem to be weighting categories (page and browser load times, IMHO, are much more important than WebGL, for instance, which they seem to have counted as 0 for those which don't support it.) Silverlight, especially, should deserve practically no weight in the final results at all. That said, the main browser problem isn't benchmarks or tests, its how well the browser behaves on sites that are poorly coded and therefore far more resource intensive than they should be. In my experience, those are the only times I notice a browser actually slowing down on anything like a fairly recent machine. Well, that and interface/ addon support.

Disclaimer: I use and love Opera.

Re:Results (1)

mattver2 (1896634) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586588)

Umm, actually, no. It's 1) Firefox 7 2) Chrome 14 3 )Opera 4) IE 9 5) Safari. Might look like IE>Opera if you only glance at the results. Read closer.

You got me. Thanks for correcting my sloppy reading.

Re:Results (1)

bhcompy (1877290) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586950)

Doesn't specify whether they used 64bit IE9 or 32bit. Makes a difference, I'd say

Windows only benchmarks? (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586208)

You have Opera, Chrome and Firefox for most current desktop platforms, could be interesting to see how much of this keeps being valid in most of them. Also to see how this holds under Mac OS X in the Safari front.

Re:Windows only benchmarks? (2)

lexman098 (1983842) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586266)

TFA (conclusion): "If Web Browser Grand Prix VI: Firefox 6, Chrome 13, Mac OS X Lion taught us anything, it's that the rules of physics, common sense, and everything else you hold dear don't apply on Apple's own OS X platform. Over there, Safari is still king."

Re:Windows only benchmarks? (1)

anlag (1917070) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586272)

The final page of TFA notes somewhat off hand that on OS X "[Safari] is still king". But yes, I would also be more interested in reading a similar benchmark, or be given an option of several ones, taking into account different platforms. Linux, and on the mobile front Android, would be most relevant for me personally. That said it's still a fairly interesting article, even if I contented myself with the summaries of the final two pages.

Re:Windows only benchmarks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586792)

nevermind OSX, what about Linux? pit Chrome, Firefox and Opera against each other there

Kraken de zit cream (0)

epine (68316) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586234)

Chrome 14 improves the score of Chrome 13, although strangely, the Google-modified test gives Chrome a worse score than the original Mozilla version.

Strangely? A confident authorial tone accompanied by a chicken-shit aversion to spraining any trusted cliches. Who ordered that?

A confident archer might very well substitute a different target discipline in advance of perfecting his new bow, knowing that he'll soon knock it out of the park. Indeed, starting out with the right target discipline might very well accelerate future results, adding effective use of time to his profile of dominance.

Chrome is not the freckled kid in this story desperate to gain his or her first friend. Isn't there another player in this story that was once desperate to gain its first friend, and then after amassing 100 million friends on its tithing roster, still continued to behave like the unloved child?

If we were reviewing zit creams instead of browsers, I would concur with the author's careless sentiment.

Re:Kraken de zit cream (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586662)

I feel as though you have strong opinions, but your inability to speak without metaphor has clouded what they might actually be.

Re:Kraken de zit cream (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586672)

Are you high?

Possible Categories (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586252)

Summary Tip: I don't really care about the categories you can think of. That doesn't need to be in the summary. Better to say the testing covers XXX number of categories.

What about usability? Which browsers are more user friendly in terms of actually doing things with them? That's really the only metric I care about and faster Javascript processing does not mean improved usability.

Re:Possible Categories (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586288)

Problem is, how do you compare usability? Minor preferences aside, all of the browsers function basically the same way.

Re:Possible Categories (2)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586574)

Who has tabs? Mouse gestures? Text to speech? Who has a flash capture built-in so that no extra programs or plug-ins need to be loaded to save YouTube and other videos for later off-line viewing? Who has the easiest tools for blocking unwanted content? Who has the best (most useful and least intrusive) warnings about poor security (cross-site scripting, cookie issues, certificate errors, etc.)? There are a lot of usability issues that are mostly minor, but taken in whole point to a more usable browser than others, but when nobody is comparing those features, and people like you essentially state that there's no difference in usability, so there's no reason to even try to compare usability.

Now if only they could measure user experience... (5, Insightful)

bl4nk (607569) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586256)

The constant barrage of updates for Firefox is frustrating to say the least. Having to go through the installer every month and have your extensions checked for compatibility and consistently get disabled... it's just not worth it. I switched to Chrome and have progressed through 8 whole versions without ever noticing and without ever having my extensions break. It's divine, and how all software upgrades should be done (in a perfect world).

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (1)

gregfortune (313889) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586318)

"The constant barrage of updates for Firefox"....
"I switched to Chrome and have progressed through 8 whole versions"

Really? Is the release cycle really the problem for you or something vague about extensions? I find the release cycle of Firefox rather awkward but I'd never switch to Chrome if that was really my problem.

Further, it doesn't really need to measure user experience as that is going to vary based on the audience. You can take this benchmark and then compare that with your own user experience to decide if the wins for Firefox are worth the user experience.

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (5, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586750)

Really? Is the release cycle really the problem for you or something vague about extensions?

People have a problem with the rapid release cycle because of extensions, the point has been made many times now with all the subtlety of a sledge hammer. If you can't wrap your head around that concept, you must be a Firefox developer.

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586324)

If it's not the Adblock that will never work 100%, nor the fact that addons in Chrome will never be as good due to the lack of extensibility, it will be the fact that Google will do something stupid that will bring you back.

And yes they did address your issues already about add-ons breaking. Automatic version bumping on addons.mozilla.org and the compatibility reporter for starters. I'm sorry that add-ons that people made in their spare time break, but that's what happens sometimes.

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (4, Insightful)

zullnero (833754) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586364)

It's not that difficult. I'd rather have more updates...including security updates...than fewer and far between. People who complain about updates are like people who complain about having to have bumpers on their car or safety belts on a plane. Besides, the updates install themselves now automatically. Good for you, switching to Chrome for that reason...it only does the exact same thing Firefox does now.

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (1)

broken_chaos (1188549) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586964)

Or they're someone managing releases for something larger than themselves. Distribution packages and those working in medium to large businesses are all having a little bit of hell with the fast release schedules... Either you give your users admin rights so the software can update itself (BAD IDEA), or you use something else, unless there's a 'long term support' version. Which neither Chrome nor Firefox have.

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (1)

Cito (1725214) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586544)

no idea what you're talking about there isn't a barrage of updates and noone's extentions should break I use screenshot plugin, adblock, noscript, downloadhelper, firftp and greasemonkey and from firefox 3 to firefox 7 none have ever broke or not worked. They have all worked and kept updated and I have never had one not work on me even right after an update

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (1)

ShnowDoggie (858806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586578)

Yeah that bugs me too. As a developer I have been using a lot of tools that are now starting to break with the upgrades. Firefox has started to have some pain with it, and Chrome has become a pretty good browser. Just out of convenience I end up using Chrome more than Firefox now. I do not hate Firefox, but I am starting to like Chrome more.

Re:Now if only they could measure user experience. (1)

Isaac Remuant (1891806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586926)

I'm sorry but you're telling me that you were forced to update and break the tools and you moved to chrome because you found more suitable tools there?

What addons do you use for developing?

Also, don't you test on all major browsers? How is it that you end up using one more out of convenience when in the end, you have to try them all when working and can use whichever you want for personal use?

Will this finally shut the trolls up? (2)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586258)

Seems like just about every article that comes out about Firefox there's a dozen or so folks that keep complaining about how slow Firefox is and how much memory it leaks. Perhaps this will point out to them that it's really not that bad, it's actually quite good over all in that respect.

Or, they'll just keep posting it over and over again like a meme because it hasn't been about actual performance in a long time.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (1)

pbhj (607776) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586310)

>"it hasn't been about actual performance in a long time" //

Well I noticed a considerable increase in performance with FF7 on one of my computers that was running FF4. It appears to use less processor time and less memory ... but you say any improvements are just a myth??

The other much faster system running Nightly 6 didn't appear much changed, FWIW.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586372)

Did you even look at the benchmark?

For Firefox memory usage:
Initial single page 43.2MB (Extremely good)
40 pages: 475.3MB (Still the lowest)
After closing 39 of them:
            Imediately: 438.2
            After 5 minutes: 161.23

NOTICE that memory usage is 4 TIMES the amount it originally used even after it's garbage collection. Compare to that, Chrome and IE is about 1.1-1.4 times original memory usage. This means that in terms of de-allocation, it does a much worst job.

Keep in mind that this is an immediate test and not a long term test done over a period of time. Firefox may be dealing with memory deallocation better these days but there are still plenty of room and this test hardly quiets those who still have complaints as there is no long term benchmark (and if trend continues, firefox memory usage will bloat).

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586436)

The problem with Firefox's memory usage can't be seen in quick, short term tests like that. Where I have traditionally seen Firefox fail is after leaving it running for a week or two non-stop. Not only does it start using ridiculous amounts of memory, but it also starts to cause CPU spikes every 20-30 seconds.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (2)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586498)

The problem isn't how well a browser behaves with properly coded sites and no addons. It's how it behaves with all the other sites, the ones that have crappy JS and Flash animations while the user has 15 addons loaded. You know, the real world? This test is interesting and gives some general idea about how a browser should behave... but should rarely equals does.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586524)

Or maybe there really is something wrong with Firefox (or any other web browser) on their computer. Different people have different circumstances (computers, operating systems, etc).

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (5, Insightful)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586586)

Seems like just about every article that comes out about Firefox there's a dozen or so folks that keep complaining about how slow Firefox is and how much memory it leaks.

... And this is the problem with Firefox. The horrible memory leak problems have been traditionally dismissed by the Firefox team as only seen by "trolls". I gave on Firefox because it constantly sucked more and more and more memory, and I had to constantly restart the damn thing when it got over 2 gigabytes with a handful of tabs open.

Now, maybe the Firefox team (FINALLY) fixed it, and maybe they didn't. But we can't tell from this test, because they didn't do a memory leak test. What they need to do is open 41 sites, close 40 sites, open 40 sites, close 40 sites, on and on and see what happens. I know what will happen with Chrome -- since it uses a process per tab, all that memory will intrinsically get given back to the O/S. Firefox -- who knows?

But what I do know is that it's too little, too late for me. I love Chrome, and Firefox has no compelling features to make me come back.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586864)

Actually, upon upgrade, I found Firefox 7 uses half as much memory than 6, on Ubuntu 10.0.4 64bit using only about 350/400MB of my 6GB of RAM.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (2)

slimjim8094 (941042) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586888)

For what it's worth, I have 14 tabs open right now, all with big demanding webpages, and my browser's been running for at least 5 days. I'm using less than a GB, which I don't mind because it gives me instant back.

I should note that I have more than 2GB free on my machine at the moment, and that's after Windows 7's aggressive caching. When I become RAM-starved, Firefox drops down by about half.

I haven't ever had memory leak issues with Firefox, at least not in the last 5 years, so I'm inclined to believe the devs when they say it's shitty extensions that are causing the problems...

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (1, Troll)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586914)

I haven't ever had memory leak issues with Firefox, at least not in the last 5 years...

Sheesh. If you say you don't experience the problem, why are you commenting on the issue at all? I don't use extensions. And I don't give a crap what the devs think, all they have to do is look through their own bug tracking for literally hundreds upon hundreds upon hundreds of bug reports on this issue. And ultimately, there is only one bug report that matters to me: my own. IT SUCKS FOR ME. No extension, and the memory grows and grows. And obviously others experience the problem as well.

Why doesn't it happen to you and some other people? Who the hell knows? But that doesn't mean it's not a huge problem for a lot of other people.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586944)

I gave on Firefox because it constantly sucked more and more and more memory, and I had to constantly restart the damn thing when it got over 2 gigabytes with a handful of tabs open.

They haven't. Worse, you're clearly supposed to restart Firefox constant because it won't bother to inform you about security updates and the like until you do. (Unlike Chrome, which has a toolbar icon to tell you that an update is available and will eventually open a dialog if you ignore that for over a day or so.)

But in any case, I've got well under 40 tabs open, and Firefox 7 is using 900MB of RAM. Which is OK for me, whatever, I've got the RAM.

No, what gets to me with Firefox is the CPU leaks. Firefox currently is using around 15% CPU to do NOTHING but sit there. No, really. Go minimize all your Firefox windows and watch the CPU time - stay around 15% for no reason. Why? Who knows.

Probably about time to stop playing around with Firefox, though. They haven't fixed a damn thing since Firefox 1.5, and have only succeeded in making the browser interface much, much worse.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (4, Interesting)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586626)

The problem is that people compare performance of add-on-free Firefox against the others, then compare features as if every possible add-on were installed and working perfectly with no decrease in performance. That's why I like Opera. It's like Firefox with the add-ons I like, but I can leave the add-ons on and not take a performance hit. Given the performance/features of Opera, they beat Firefox for every test that isn't contrived by Firefox fanatics where they are similarly featured.

Re:Will this finally shut the trolls up? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586808)

No its not & you're quite wrong. just try using FF on lower spec'd machines with a dozen+ tabs open & you'll see what the 'F' stands for. been using Chrome for just a few days now & will never go back.

Browser wars (5, Insightful)

mgiuca (1040724) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586280)

Although it's only been one month since Web Browser Grand Prix VI: Firefox 6, Chrome 13, And Mac OS X Lion, the browser wars show no signs of subsiding.

Browser wars? It's competition, baby, not war. We're not waiting for a war to end so we can announce a winner and all switch to that browser. We're enjoying every glorious moment of a many-browser ecosystem. The "browser wars" were a time of nasty piling on of proprietary features in an attempt to gain an advantage. This is a glorious golden age of competition and (mostly) an emphasis on standards compliance.

Re:Browser wars (-1)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 2 years ago | (#37587148)

http://xkcd.com/198/ [xkcd.com]

Obligatory XKCD.

This is one of the worse bench compil ever (1)

kangsterizer (1698322) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586282)

So many different results all over the place with zero comprehension of the results, such a shame.
There's so many "wrong" that I don't want to start listing. This is a purely sensationalistic thing with nearly no value.
Oh and they'll make sure NOT to report errors they found while loading sites so that they can use their test again and again. Fixing bugs? Nah!

Re:This is one of the worse bench compil ever (1, Interesting)

abhi_beckert (785219) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586382)

I'll mention two "wrong" items I spotted:

Light memory usage (1 tab):
firefox: 438MB
chrome: 134MB
conclusion page: "strong" for firefox and "acceptable" for chrome

memory management (after closing 40 tabs):
  * firefox: 438MB immediately after, 161MB five minutes later
  * chrome: 134MB immediately after, 94MB five minutes later
conclusion page: "winner" for firefox, and "strong" for chrome.

WTF?!

Re:This is one of the worse bench compil ever (5, Interesting)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586538)

Where are you getting 438MB for Firefox 1 tab? The value listed is 42.3MB, and 475.3MB for 40 pages. I agree about the memory management thing (kinda). Firefox probably caches the pages to reload in case you open them immediately, though, so the fact it unloads that memory later but not immediately might be counting for it... IDK.

Re:This is one of the worse bench compil ever (2)

jlebar (1904578) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586632)

Lots of memory in Firefox gets released on a timer -- in particular, the Javascript GC runs on a timer when the browser is idle, and the GC is responsible for collecting whole windows in Firefox -- whereas in Chrome, memory gets released as soon as you close a tab, since that kills a process. So it's not at all surprising that Firefox takes some time to release memory.

Re:This is one of the worse bench compil ever (0)

travbrad (622986) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586566)

It's Tom's Hardware. That's all that needs to be said really.

The sympathetic winner (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586284)

Chrome won 5 categories.
Firefox 7 won 3 categories.. 1 of which was actually a Chrome win (memory management). Thus, it should actually be 6: 2.

Firefox 7 is declared winner. This is Firefox first 'win'.

Re:The sympathetic winner (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586328)

Sorry, it's another 1 win for both. It was 6:4.
But Firefox does *NOT* deserve any memory management wins. It was clear that Chrome had the best memory management from the benchmark. Thus, it is 7:3.

Anyone who has used Firefox knows that memory management is terrible. It never releases memory. Huge memory leaks.

Re:The sympathetic winner (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586590)

Have a benchmark to back up that assertion? After 5 minutes Firefox had released nearly 300mb of RAM. The benchmark really should have had another data point out at 10 minutes to show how much of that RAM was ultimately released.

What you're also failing to take note of is that it's not just how quickly you release unneeded RAM, it's how efficiently you allocate it in the first place. Chrome had the advantage of being able to quickly release the RAM because it was wasting a lot of it in the first place. Each tab was it's own process, including RAM that was holding identical information for each tab. It would be terribly broken if that memory wasn't released pretty much immediately after the process is terminated. Unfortunately, that also means increased allocation in the first place.

But, nice trolling. I'd hate to think that anybody would think about this stuff critically.

Just get rid of legacy browsers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586306)

All modern browsers IE9, Safari 5.1, Firefox 7, Chrome 14, Opera 11 and up are good browsers. People still using IE 6,7 and 8 plus Firefox 3.6 and below are holding back the web. You have no excuse now for not installing a proper browser at work because you can bring along a smartphone or tablet or even non-admin chrome frame.

Abusive companies that force old browser usage need to be boycotted.

Re:Just get rid of legacy browsers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586484)

LOL

Re:Just get rid of legacy browsers (1, Offtopic)

lahvak (69490) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586492)

Are you offering to buy me a smartphone or a tablet? Gee, thanks, that's really nice of you.

Firefox is the winner? REALLY? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586352)

As someone who just switched from Firefox to Chrome, I can only guess that since Firefox was declared the winner, there were no points deducted for websites that just don't work right with that browser.

Re:Firefox is the winner? REALLY? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586486)

Can you provide some examples? I have yet to find a single website that works in Chrome and not Firefox. Firefox still has higher market share than Chrome, so I would expect Firefox compatibility would be a higher priority than Chrome compatibility for most webmasters. The only problems I have had have been some add-ons conflicting with some websites, but then again, add-ons are one of the main reasons I use Firefox.

I guess if you don't use add-ons you don't appreciate what makes Firefox better than Chrome. Also, you can't be too into tabbed browsing as Chrome's tab interface doesn't work well with a lot of tabs open at once.

Re:Firefox is the winner? REALLY? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586602)

Doubtful, the GP is probably a troll. I haven't yet encountered a website with Firefox that won't render due to the browser itself. I have found a few that won't work correctly due to an extension, but that's hardly Firefox' fault.

Re:Firefox is the winner? REALLY? (1)

bluegreen997 (2096462) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586884)

As someone who just switched from Firefox to Chrome, I can only guess that since Firefox was declared the winner, there were no points deducted for websites that just don't work right with that browser.

I have seen more websites that ask that I have Netscape v3.0 or higher than I've seen websites that did not work with Firefox. And that is with NoScript and ABP installed!

Firefox 7 STILL (1)

n6kuy (172098) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586354)

,,, locks up the whole damn browser when negotiating certain downloads.

Why can't that be fixed??

Re:Firefox 7 STILL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586488)

What's the bug number you filed and I'll gladly paste all the developer comments on why it isn't fixed yet here for you.

Re:Firefox 7 STILL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586624)

Not easilly,

http://news.softpedia.com/news/Multi-Processes-in-Browsers-Chrome-Internet-Explorer-Firefox-and-WebKit-140535.shtml

A bit old but still relevant. The ability to multi-process tabs is a must imho.

Re:Firefox 7 STILL (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586658)

Amen! Lately it's been pissing me off enough that I may finally switch over to Chrome. I held off on Chrome because it didn't have AdBlock Plus at first, but that's been taken care of.

During that connection freeze, Firefox is COMPLETELY unresponsive. It doesn't paint. It doesn't respond to user events. It just locks up, hard.

This was NOT a problem with earlier versions of Firefox.

Re:Firefox 7 STILL (2)

BZ (40346) | more than 2 years ago | (#37587004)

I'd love to fix this. Reproducing would be a good start. Please point me to a url that shows the problem?

Re:Firefox 7 STILL (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#37587130)

Any URL that takes a noticeable time to negotiate an HTTP or HTTPS connection causes the problem. For whatever reason, this blocking IO hasn't been spun to a seperate thread, causing Firefox to block.

measuring browsers by speed alone is retarded (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586470)

Performance only matters on old or slow hardware (eg P4's and Cell Phones). On any PC made in the last 4 years there should be no noticeable difference between IE/Firefox/Chrome or Safari, eg 671 milliseconds vs 800 milliseconds page load times in the benchmarks will not be noticeable by a human.

Lets look at compatibility, when browsing the web you will quickly discover that some websites do want to even load on the less popular browsers. MLS for realtors is a famous example of a page that wants to be IE only, where a lot of others are IE/Firefox/Safari only. Using something rare like Opera or sometimes even Chrome you will run into the "your browser is not compatible or tested" messages on quite a few sites.

Also Firefox has many great addons like greasemonkey and custom addon scripts for popular sites like Reddit/4chan and many other forums, while Chrome now supports many of these addons, the list is not nearly as large as Firefox. While both contain Adblock addons, Chrome actually takes the time to load the advertisements and then AFTER it has loaded the page it hides them. Firefox's addon functionality allows it to not even load them in the first place, saving load time, bandwidth and possibly avoiding malware/spyware too as some famous malware viruses have been hidden in ads in the past. IE 9 now has adblock addon functionality as well that appears to work rather well.

Quite a few options are missing from the Chrome browser, such as the ability to start searching as soon as you type, for someone who does Google searches a lot this comes in very handy, there are many other advanced options you will find missing from Chrome as well, as the benchmarks show Chrome is also the slowest browser to open up.

Re:measuring browsers by speed alone is retarded (1)

anlag (1917070) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586606)

You didn't even read the summary, let alone TFA, did you?

Re:measuring browsers by speed alone is retarded (1)

travbrad (622986) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586656)

[quote]671 milliseconds vs 800 milliseconds page load times in the benchmarks will not be noticeable by a human.[/quote]

It won't be noticeable loading the 2 back to back, but it can create a perceived difference using it over time. 100ms differences CAN be noticed by humans. Just ask an online gamer if they'd rather have 100ms ping or 200ms. Racing drivers can tell when they are just 1-2 tenths (100-200ms) of a second faster in a sector (about a 30second time period) too, and I've experienced this myself in racing simulators like LFS/iRacing.

I'm NOT saying it's a big difference, or one that is easily noticeable, or one that we should make a huge fuss over. Your assertion that we can't perceive a 129ms difference is still false though. If that were the case we wouldn't need 30/60FPS videos (a 30FPS frame lasts 33ms) for it to seem smooth.

Doesn't say which one tracks your usage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586494)

and "phones it home"

Betcha that would be Chrome with IE not far behind

Stability Tests (4, Interesting)

ohnocitizen (1951674) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586604)

I'd love to see a multi-platform (where possible) stability benchmark across the major browsers:

Opening the same site in 10 tabs. in 100. At what point does the browser crash? What is the memory usage?
Now open the same youtube video in 10 tabs. In 100. Repeat the above.
Do the same with trailers.apple.com.

Next, open a youtube video in 10 tabs for each browser, and log how long that pid remains active. Is it still there after a day? After a week? Or does it crash with no user interaction?

I wonder where Firefox would stand in the ranks after tests like the above.

Re:Stability Tests (1, Informative)

DJRumpy (1345787) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586762)

Although the curious side in me might want to see the results of such tests, the likelihood that someone would find such results useful in real world work is highly unlikely. In short, what's the point? At this point browsers have gotten to be fast enough that gains go largely unnoticed. I'm more interested in compatibility, recoverability, and feature set.

Opening the same site in 10 tabs. in 100. At what point does the browser crash? What is the memory usage?
Now open the same youtube video in 10 tabs. In 100. Repeat the above.
Do the same with trailers.apple.com.

Next, open a youtube video in 10 tabs for each browser, and log how long that pid remains active. Is it still there after a day? After a week? Or does it crash with no user interaction?

Re:Stability Tests (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586870)

Bullshit. Browser memory leaks are still common place, and its not unusual for a browser to be eating gigabytes of memory after hours of moderate use. This is certainly unacceptable, and this attitude is what has lead us to 8GB desktops constantly out of memory.

Re:Stability Tests (1)

metamatic (202216) | more than 2 years ago | (#37586910)

Although the curious side in me might want to see the results of such tests, the likelihood that someone would find such results useful in real world work is highly unlikely.

You say that, but it was the constant crashes that finally drove me away from Firefox.

Re:Stability Tests (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37586966)

Although the curious side in me might want to see the results of such tests, the likelihood that someone would find such results useful in real world work is highly unlikely. In short, what's the point? At this point browsers have gotten to be fast enough that gains go largely unnoticed. I'm more interested in compatibility, recoverability, and feature set.

When I used to open a bunch of tabs with videos (to let them buffer for watching later) in Firefox, it would often lock up and be unresponsive. It would be nice to know what the threshold is. Two videos? Five? If you watch any TV shows online, and you don't use P2P stuff, you will likely buffer the next episode or two while watching the first one. So, that is a pretty common use case.

Usually, when I am browsing, I don't usually open 40 tabs at once. More likely, I will open and close a lot of tabs. So, the browser not quickly releasing the memory back to the OS is kind of a big deal. A typical use case is reading a news site. You open each news story you want to read in a new tab, skim it, and then close it. After a few minutes, in Chrome, you are using the memory for a single tab. In Firefox, you are using the memory for having a dozen tabs open or whatever. That is, assuming the entire browser didn't lock up on you, and so you killed the process and started over, which is a more typical scenario...

   

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