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Firefox Takes the Performance Crown From Chrome

timothy posted 1 year,20 days | from the war-you-can-win dept.

Firefox 326

diegocg writes "Recent browser benchmarks are showing surprising results: in 'a geometric mean of all four performance-based categories: Wait Times, JavaScript/DOM, HTML5/CSS3, and Hardware Acceleration,' Firefox 22 'pulls off an upset, replacing the long-time performance champion Google Chrome 27 as the new speed king.' (Other browsers benchmarked were IE10, Opera 12, and Opera Next.) With these results, and Firefox developers focusing in fixing the UI sluggishness, can this be the start of a Firefox comeback, after years of slow market share decline?"

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326 comments

Geometric mean? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165101)

Geometric mean? Colour me cynical but that sounds to me like "we lost under the arithmetic mean, so we selected a mean under which we won".

Re:Geometric mean? (5, Insightful)

R.Mo_Robert (737913) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165283)

Geometric mean is useful for comparing when the expected range or units of values is different. For example, startup time is measured in seconds, but BrowsingBench numbers are things like the unitless 6646. The arithmetic mean would fail to "normalize" these values and give disproportionate weight to some over others; the geometric mean is one way of trying to account for this.

Re:Geometric mean? (4, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165521)

To be more specific, the geometric mean has the property that a 5% change in factor A and a 5% change in factor B have the same influence on the result, regardless of their units.

Re:Geometric mean? (2)

Bearhouse (1034238) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165875)

Even more specific, it's the nth root of the product of n numbers, but your example explains better why it's used in this case.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geometric_mean [wikipedia.org]

Of course, the median is another useful indicator of central tendancy, less effected by extreme values...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Median [wikipedia.org]

Re:Geometric mean? (4, Insightful)

artor3 (1344997) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165437)

So what's your theory on why Tom's Hardware would change their ranking system specifically to engineer a Firefox victory?

I know people joke about never reading TFA, but knee-jerk cynicism is no replacement for actual knowledge. If you're going to accuse someone of deceit, you really ought to at least check on who's making them claim in the first place.

Why, is it using webkit too? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165133)

Oh, nvm, just another FF version that broken the render again...

Damned lies and statistics (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165139)

What is the mathematical justification for using the geometric mean?

Re:Damned lies and statistics (-1, Troll)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165157)

It was the only way to get the wanted result?

Re:Damned lies and statistics (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165317)

Probably because it would be difficult to interpret the units on the arithmetic mean. For example, are the units on the JS composite score and the page load composite score the same? If not, how should they be scaled.

In the geometric mean, those units wouldn't matter for comparison purposes. Still, it's pretty much not rigorous at all as far as tests go. The Tom's Hardware browser write-ups aren't exactly a scientific appraisal.

Re:Damned lies and statistics (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165475)

See "How not to lie with statistics: the correct way to summarize benchmark results"

http://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=5673
http://ece.uprm.edu/~nayda/Courses/Icom6115F06/Papers/paper4.pdf

Re:Damned lies and statistics (1)

Chrisq (894406) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165665)

Mod parent up - the linked PDF is extremely informative on why the geometric mean should be used.

LOL (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165143)

timothy: suck my dick like a good little bitch!

Adblock plus (5, Informative)

i kan reed (749298) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165147)

Real adblock that stops unnecessary downloads makes more performance difference at this point, than any sort of rendering engine chances. It has the nice side effect of limiting how much tracking of you goes on too.

Re:Adblock plus (3, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165225)

Real addons period.
Chrome still can't really be customized. A great example is vimperator.

Disagree (1)

brunes69 (86786) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165529)

I find way more useful extensions in the Chrome web store than I do in the Firefox store nowadays. In fact, Chrome's addons are what keep me tied to the browser.

Re:Disagree (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165621)

Is there anything as good as firebug available for chrome yet? Firebug lite can do some of it, but I still find myself in firefox whenever I'm doing development.

Re:Disagree (1)

gnick (1211984) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165795)

...Chrome's addons are what keep me tied to the browser.

Why be tied to anything? At work, I only use 2, depending on what I'm doing. At home, I use 3. I used to be a FF aficionado, but have strayed as its memory hogging has bloated. Now, I typically stick to Chrome except when things don't work. Then I resort to IE or FF. Do we really have to decide whether we want burgers OR tacos for the rest of our lives, or just pick according to floating whims?

Re:Adblock plus (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165305)

Not to mention Ghostery, too! My computers now fly without so much clutter.

Re:Adblock plus (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165389)

Annoying when I have AdBlock installed in Firefox it freezes for several seconds when starting. Remove AdBlock and the freeze goes away. Chrome is fine.

Re:Adblock plus (2)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165493)

Privoxy [privoxy.org]

What's an AdBlock?

Re:Adblock plus (4, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165551)

Another vote for Privoxy. I recently switched to Privoxy from Ghostery, and have found it much faster. The addon-based ad-blockers seem to have some overhead, because they have to traverse the DOM and generally interact with the browser's rendering pipeline. I found my RAM usage in Firefox significantly declined, and the browser got much more responsive, after I removed Ghostery. Privoxy does the same job in some fast C code that runs in its own process, outside the browser.

As a side note, it's the modern descendent of the Internet Junkbuster, so has been around just about as long as internet advertising has been.

Re:Adblock plus (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165591)

Also the bundled webdev tools are some next level Tony Stark type stuff, man. Love em and they've actually proven really useful a few times.

Re:Adblock plus (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165845)

Please don't be one of those standard types who think that the Chrom(e|ium) releases now reflect those of two years ago. For quite some time now extensions can and have (ScriptSafe, ABP) been blocking connections to the servers from which ads are served instead of merely hiding them. Arguments to the contrary are quite frankly bullshit.

is this some kind of joke (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165173)

Firefox 21, at least, is one of the worst browsers I have ever used in terms of performance. It's basically unusable. IE 6 is better than Firefox 21.

Re:is this some kind of joke (3, Funny)

the_cosmocat (1009803) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165499)

Perhaps you could launch IE 6 to refresh your memory. I think you begin to think about IE6 with nostalgia...

Chrome? Why the love? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165175)

I don't get the love for Chrome among geeks. Why would anyone willingly use a browser funded by a search giant who makes money off of scouring your privacy and already has a history of handing things over to the NSA?

Re:Chrome? Why the love? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165215)

Why would anyone willingly use a browser funded by a search giant who makes money off of scouring your privacy and already has a history of handing things over to the NSA?

Yeah, I don't get why people use Firefox either.

Re:Chrome? Why the love? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165231)

The browser you use doesn't matter from the snooping end of things. If you think your safe from the eyes of big brother with any traditional security measure out there then you're a fool. The only thing normal security is going to save you from is third rate credit card frauds.

Re:Chrome? Why the love? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165261)

They like it for the same reason non-geeks do: it is very fast and stable, and it doesn't seem to leak memory like Firefox.

That said, I abandoned it because they got rid of their support for vertical tabs.

Re:Chrome? Why the love? (1)

Virtucon (127420) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165367)

TLS 1.1 support that isn't wrapped up in Internet Explorer for one and the DEV versions now have support for TLS 1.2. Firefox needs to get with the program (Firefox 23 will have TLS 1.1 support)

Re:Chrome? Why the love? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165647)

I've been using Chrome for a couple of years now after being a Firefox user for several years. I may decide to go back to Firefox in the next several months since Firefox has agreed to render properly on high DPI screens on Windows 8.1 while the Chrome dev team has idiotically refused to handle scaling properly on Windows 8.1. So Chrome will look jagged and poor while Firefox and IE 11 will look very nice. Firefox my end up being my go to browser again.

No (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165185)

Personally I like the direction Mozilla takes the product and dislike Google's, but it still won't change the fact that Mozilla managed to turn users away with their constant UI changes, sluggish performance on low end machines, and the memory leaks that were kept unchecked far too long. Nowadays the memory leaks are back to normal thanks to MemShrink, but I think Mozilla lost market share it might not gain back for a long time.

Re:No (1, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165445)

Mozilla is taking the same direction that google is at this point. I used to love Fx, but now I tolerate it. With the asinine version number bumping, the UI tweaks for no particular purpose and them taking their eye off of the ball when it comes to real improvements.

Seems like I should just use Chrome because the Mozilla devs seem to want to turn Fx into Chrome.

In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardware (3, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165189)

Neat test but I think the summary could at least clarify that the test system is Windows 8 64 Bit [tomshardware.com] . It doesn't really mean a whole lot to me when I'm running a 64 bit distribution of GNU/Linux. Also the tests are selected by Tom's Hardware as a suite ... some of these tests are fairly meaningless to me and I feel like something like cold start time should be more heavily weighted than, say, hardware acceleration performance. The wait time on start up affects everyone and is unavoidable where hardware acceleration is nice but also not something I focus on. Also, why is a topic like "security" included in a "performance" test? I think standards compliance and security should be separated out to their own scores.

Is anyone reading this actually using Windows 8?

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (3, Interesting)

Ambassador Kosh (18352) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165309)

On all my systems I start the system when I boot up and it stays running pretty much indefinitely. When I am done with the system for the day I just hibernate the system. I just care how well the browser works over time and that it doesn't go nuts memory wise. Since my laptop has 16GB of ram I worry very little about the browser.

I do like hardware acceleration a lot though. What I find is that it translates to better battery usage and the system runs faster while also running longer.

Overall I care about performance, standard compliance, security, responsiveness, and to some extent memory usage. At this point though it doesn't really matter if you choose Firefox or Chrome.

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165321)

Interestingly, some of their "geometric means" are completely worthless. See http://media.bestofmicro.com/L/A/390862/original/RIAJS.png
It's averaging a combination of millisecond ( lower is better ) and FPS ( higher is better ) tests...

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165483)

That is the ENTIRE POINT of a geometric mean. Before you complain, try having some idea of what you are complaining about.

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165335)

Is anyone reading this actually using Windows 8?

Probably but maybe not. Asking for the opinions of Slashdot users like it's a fair comparison to the internet-at-large is pretty skewed, IMHO. In the wild more people are using Win8 on the desktop than Linux. Nearly as many as use OSX and that will probably fall in the next 6 months or so (I say this as a happy OSX user).

Like it or not Win8.1 will likely become a lion in the market once XP loses support. It may not take off as fast as Win7 did but it'll get enough marketshare that anyone producing Windows software for the masses will have to pay attention. Tell us about what Linux and OSX benchmarks say all you want but they're not going to hold Windows 8 numbers, even combined, in the next year or so.

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (1)

Urkki (668283) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165369)

Start up speed? It seems to be fast enough on any browser with a laptop from 2009, so I don't see it as relevant thing to measure. Or how many times per week do you restart a browser?

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165399)

Start up speed? It seems to be fast enough on any browser with a laptop from 2009, so I don't see it as relevant thing to measure. Or how many times per week do you restart a browser?

You never use a browser on your phone?

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (1)

hedwards (940851) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165485)

The Fx on my system has serious issues with start up time. I'm not sure what the problem is exactly, but it's gotten quite bad lately. I suspect that it has something to do with the large number of bookmarks I have as I don't have very many extensions installed and I'm carrying over bookmarks from years ago because I haven't bothered to go in and clean house.

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165425)

Hardware acceleration gives you nice smooth scrolling. It is also vital for Firefox because they changed the way images are decoded in a misguided attempt to reduce memory consumption. Instead of decoding images are as they are loaded they are now decoded as they are displayed, so unless you have top-notch hardware with full acceleration scrolling judders like mad on pages with medium sizes images.

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (1)

geminidomino (614729) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165719)

How long ago was that change? I'm wondering if that might not be the cause of the clunkiness I've been seeing for a little while.

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165503)

Unless it's using some windows 8 specific hook I don't think the performance is going to be much different than windows 7 64bit. (I don't think It's a "Metro" app)

I think windows 8 may have some improved tuning/fetching/caching/filesystem improvements specific to SSDs, so I guess that may improve performance on certain systems. (Particularly the cold start metric)

I agree, though, that testing on a lot of platforms would be nice. Everything from XP to win8.1 preview, plus a handful of the more popular distros.. Does anyone use anything other than safari on macos?

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165531)

GNU/Linux

lol virgin

Re:In Windows 8 64 Bit As Defined by Tom's Hardwar (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165613)

I use 8, and the only problem I've had with it is hybernation crashes. There's no noticeable difference between firefox and chrome; That said, chrome is a mem hog that simply spawns processes that eat up memory for the sake of a slightly faster execution. I'd take the few milliseconds hit from not having a crazy cache if it meant getting some resources back so that my computer isn't loading things in and out of main memory all of the time.

It's the plug-ins (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165217)

I don't care how "fast" it is. Flash crashes more in Firefox than any other browser (on my PC at least).

And I'll stop using Flash when websites stop requiring it to use them.

Re:It's the plug-ins (1)

Virtucon (127420) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165379)

Get off of XP and onto Linux or Windows 7 or Windows 8 or OS/X for that matter. Stability problems with Flash are played out.

I don't use firefox for its speed. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165219)

I use it because it respects my privacy and freedom, not that i ever complained about firefox being slow, but speed was never the main factor of my decision to use firefox instead of chrome.

Sadly, no ... (-1, Troll)

gstoddart (321705) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165229)

can this be the start of a Firefox comeback, after years of slow market share decline?

Not if it isn't going to give me the ability to disable javascript [slashdot.org] it isn't.

Not even a little. If I can't decide what will and won't run on the browser, I won't be using it.

Re:Sadly, no ... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165301)

god-fucking-dammit how many freaking times do we have to tell you that firefox is not disabling that option, its simply hiding it from the options menu. You can still disable javascript through the about:config menu (javascript.enable) and addons like noscript.

Re:Sadly, no ... (3, Informative)

MightyYar (622222) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165333)

Firefox has addons, several of which will let you disable js if that is your thing. NoScript is a popular one.

Re:Sadly, no ... (4, Informative)

squiggleslash (241428) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165355)

There's nothing stopping you from sticking with Firefox 22. While later versions will have more support for more modern standards, if you're not going to run Javascript then it's not going to matter a whole lot what the new standards are.

In the meantime, understand too that while Firefox 23+ may not provide a UI to disable JS across the browser, it is still a low-level setting for now in about:config, and Firefox continues to be the only browser that supports extensions - meaning that options like YesScript, NoScript, and to a lesser extent Ad-block+ will always be available to provide the functionality you're after.

Re:Sadly, no ... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165517)

and Firefox continues to be the only browser that supports extensions

"Look here! We found one! Help me move the rock away from this caveman's entrance!"

Re:Sadly, no ... (4, Informative)

DragonWriter (970822) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165557)

and Firefox continues to be the only browser that supports extensions

Firefox may support a more robust extension model than other browsers, but it certainly isn't the only browser that supports extensions.

Re:Sadly, no ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165705)

Even Konqueror supports extensions.
There aren't any, but if there were it would support them.

Re:Sadly, no ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165365)

That's what using the config option in the "about:config" is able to do. Or, you know, if you're going to do this properly rather than going and fiddling with the settings each time before you visit a page, using NoScript.

about:config, NoScript, etc, etc, etc (1)

CritterNYC (190163) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165481)

As always, you can disable it yourself within about:config. Or use an extension like NoScript, etc to disable it per-site. You likely knew this and were trolling as most folks who are whining about this setting change are. Mozilla is removing the disable JavaScript box from Options as a browser without JS turned on is pretty useless today. A ton of sites won't work right. Most web developers don't even bother to check for JS being disabled anymore, nor should they as JS exists everywhere and in every modern phone browser, too. And the 2m people running NoScript no enough to enable JS when a website doesn't work.

Re:Sadly, no ... (1)

Freedom Bug (86180) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165501)

How many people used the "disable javascript" option? NoScript is so superior that most people that would use disable javascript have or should have switched to NoScript. An option that nobody uses or nobody should use is the very definition of an option that should be removed.

Add Memory Usage! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165239)

using 5gb of ram just so wait times are short is not acceptable!

Re:Add Memory Usage! (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165337)

They looked at memory efficiency, and Firefox was generally solid. For heaven's sake, RTFA before you complain.

Re:Add Memory Usage! (1)

hedwards (940851) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165507)

I think he's talking about Chrome, because Fx generally has one of the lowest RAM utilizations of GUI based browsers.

Memory hog (3, Interesting)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165249)

I regularly see my Firefox cracking a gig of memory. Then after a few days use it often starts getting weird. Then when I try to quit it the damn thing won't go away so I have to do a "Force Quit". I primarily keep using it because firebug is so good.

Re:Memory hog (4, Interesting)

MightyYar (622222) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165357)

Same here. It can get so large and complicated in memory that it takes 10 minutes to quit. This seems to be mostly limited to the Mac version. I'm a slave to vertical tabs, though, so I haven't used Chrome since they abandoned that feature.

Re:Memory hog (1)

silviuc (676999) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165413)

Go on add-on diet friend. I'm using just lastpass and status-r-evar (stupid name, yes) and I barely see it climb over 600MB. It usually sits around 500MB. Also, I have it set up so that plugins start on-demand.

Re:Memory hog (2)

hedwards (940851) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165519)

Are you sure that it's Fx and not an extension you're running? The only times I see Fx using more than 512mb of RAM is when I'm playing one of those stupid flash games. And most of the time Fx is using less than 300mb or so of RAM.

I suppose you might also have a much larger number of tabs open than I do, but still.

Re:Memory hog (1)

marsu_k (701360) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165549)

I also keep using FF because of Firebug (and AdBlock+) - but in my experience, with many tabs open, Chromium takes much more memory. This is on x64/Linux, YMMV.

Re:Memory hog (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165685)

Agreed. Every time they say they have fixed memory problems, I know within 2-3 days that they haven't. Once it starts getting close to a gig, it gets really sluggish (despite having 12GB of memory in my system and nothing else running). Over a gig and it's intolerable to use.

Oh, and FYI: you don't have to force it closed. If you wait 2-5 minutes, it will usually close itself. If you keep an eye on it's memory usage after you try to close it, you will see that the memory will gradually shrink little by little, and then eventually it will close. It's just taking forever to do all of it's cleanup. That said, I see no advantage to wasting time waiting, so I just force it closed anyway.

Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use just 1 (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165267)

I cut back on Firefox because it froze up on me too many times on sites with Flash - even with Flashblock enabled and all software updated. I do most of my surfing on Chrome now.

However, the reason why I typically run three browsers at a time at work is this: one for my corporate ID (IE), one for web surfing and personal sites (Chrome), and one for my alternate IDs (Firefox). I know Google Chrome is capable of split personalities (i.e. Incognito mode); if there was one feature that would get me to consolidate to a single browser it would be the ability to run multiple instances as different personalities at the same time.

Re:Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use just (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165347)

I cut back on Firefox because it froze up on me too many times on sites with Flash - even with Flashblock enabled and all software updated. I do most of my surfing on Chrome now.

However, the reason why I typically run three browsers at a time at work is this: one for my corporate ID (IE), one for web surfing and personal sites (Chrome), and one for my alternate IDs (Firefox). I know Google Chrome is capable of split personalities (i.e. Incognito mode); if there was one feature that would get me to consolidate to a single browser it would be the ability to run multiple instances as different personalities at the same time.

Chrome supports multiple "users". Each has their own set of cookies, bookmarks, sync settings, etc. I use it all the time to split my browsing between work and home.

Re:Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use just (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165451)

>> Chrome supports multiple "users".

The "switch to different user" isn't quite what I'm looking for. I want something that allows me to be signed on to Gmail and other services as three different users (day job, personal, side business, etc.) at the same time.

Re:Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use just (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165805)

Uh, that's exactly what chromes profiles do. I've got 2 different chrome windows right now, both logged into their own gmail accounts. Now, if you want them in the same window, that's not possible. The only way to do that is with gmail's "switch user" feature, but that's gmail specific, and doesn't isolate all of your data (cookies, history, etc) the way chrome profiles do.

Re:Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use just (1)

bz386 (1424109) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165363)

Chrome supports multiple "users". Each has their own set of cookies, bookmarks, sync settings, etc. I use it all the time to split my browsing between work and home.

Re:Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use just (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165421)

It's not perfect but Multifox [mozdev.org] provides the ability to use seperate environments within Firefox. As an alternative you can manually create launchers for Firefox with the -P flag.

Re:Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use just (1)

NormHome (99305) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165423)

I still use FireFox as my browser but I agree, in the last two or three versions I've seen FireFox crashing and restarting much more than it ever did before and in the last six months it seems to me that FireFox is not as responsive as it once was.

Also I've seen at least once a day (most of the time 3 or more times) "the flash plugin has crashed" or "the flash plugin has stopped responding" and I have to click "Stop plugin" to continue. I'm not saying this is a FireFox problem as it could be a Flash plugin problem or a problem between Flash and the page I've looking at but all in all these problems just add up to an annoying user experience.

Re: Why I cut back on Firefox, why would I use jus (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165447)

You can already create multiple user profiles in Chrome. Each user has their own cookie space. You can run these side by side in different windows. I do the following: one for work credentials, one for personal credentials, and one for test credentials. Here's a link with instructions:

https://support.google.com/chrome/answer/2364824?hl=en

unfortunately, neither work (0)

slashmydots (2189826) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165297)

Did anyone notice that Chrome has never been able to draw webpages correctly or basically use flash at all and the latest version of Firefox has had unusual stalling problems while loading quite a few pages? Like newegg for example. Maybe they should stop making "improvements" that cause it to become massively unstable. I do need to actually see the website I'm going it.

Re:unfortunately, neither work (1)

Skapare (16644) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165459)

The lack of a clear and rock solid standard for how to render the HTML/CSS combination is probably part of the problem of "never been able to draw webpages correctly". Shouldn't I get a pixel perfect identical display from the same web site content, on each different browser? If not, and left up to the interpretation of the browser developers, then expect crap.

Re:unfortunately, neither work (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165463)

Sadly, that stalling problem is neither new nor unusual. It is a result of running the entire browser arrangement (of potentially multiple windows and multiple tabs in each window) as a single thread and using the same stupid "load whole page before accepting user input" model that chrome uses (or at least the chromium I've been using).

Someone with a proper grudge can probably link the bugzilla thread where someone reported this as a bug and Mozilla responded with (paraphrased): No, that would be hard.

Re:unfortunately, neither work (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165581)

Did anyone notice that Chrome has never been able to draw webpages correctly or basically use flash at all

No.

In fact, I've noticed quite the opposite on both of those points.

How about fixing a 7-month old text rendering bug? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165307)

Makes the browser just about unusable on older (but not that old) AMD/ATI hardware. https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=812695 [mozilla.org]

Re:How about fixing a 7-month old text rendering b (2)

CritterNYC (190163) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165539)

Just set gfx.direct2d.disabled=true and the problem is solved. That's what the fix for the bug is anyway (they'll do it automatically with a hardware blacklist). It isn't like Mozilla can force AMD to fix their broken, abandoned drivers.

Nope (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165311)

so firefox willl seize up faster? most people don't choose a browser by performance metrics (though doubtless some weirdos here will pipe up). The reality is that IE has 40% of market share, Chrome 30%, Firefox 20% and falling, Opera 10% and Safari 8%. the rest don't even matter

Re:Nope (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165381)

Damn, that's a 108% market saturation!

Re:Nope (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165477)

>> Damn, that's a 108% market saturation!

Makes sense to me. I always run at least 2 and often 3 different browsers simultaneously - even more if I'm using my phone to surf in front of my computer. (See earlier comment for reasons why.)

Re:Nope (1)

Skapare (16644) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165479)

Damn, that's a 108% market saturation!

Hopefully they will do better in FF 23 when they remove the ability to disable Javascript. Oh wait ...

Better test (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165343)

First have Firefox open up 20 tabs
Then close them
Then run the test. It will bog down like a champ.

Speed != Responsiveness (4, Insightful)

oGMo (379) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165411)

It doesn't matter that much if one is slightly faster in Javascript or rendering when Firefox will halt up for 5-10 seconds rendering a new tab. Maybe it's faster than Chrome, but if I have to wait for it, it doesn't matter. It doesn't matter how much Firefox devs work on "UI sluggishness" if it's a single thing can lock up all input to the browser.

Re:Speed != Responsiveness (1)

sandytaru (1158959) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165763)

There's also the intuitiveness and cleanness of the UI in Chrome. It's fast, and it does things I didn't even know I wanted it to do (like rendering my bookmarks toolbar within the browser window in new tabs when I've hidden it.) I was a big Firefox advocate several years ago, but they're going to have to do a lot more than being slightly faster at loading certain parts of a web page to get me off Chrome now.

Re:Speed != Responsiveness (1)

QuietLagoon (813062) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165773)

when Firefox will halt up for 5-10 seconds rendering a new tab

You've noticed that also.

.
Though I would call it more of a paralysis than a halt. Firefox goes completely unresponsive. Unnerving at best. And hardly what I would expect of a top-rated "performance-crown-winning" browser.

Re:Speed != Responsiveness (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165865)

It doesn't matter how much Firefox devs work on "UI sluggishness" if it's a single thing can lock up all input to the browser.

The Gods have smiled and sent the clue-bat flying through MoFo last month, so Electrolysis [mozilla.org] is back on.

Nope, Firefox still runs like shit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165441)

I have a quad core intel processor, 16 gigs of ram, a 2 gig video card, 50 megabit internet, and I can't even load slashdot without watching the page render before my eyes. Firefox is a piece of shit anymore.

Re:Nope, Firefox still runs like shit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44165757)

Restart Firefox without your addons enabled. Failing that, create a new profile.

Safari ? (0)

psergiu (67614) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165461)

> "Recent BIASED browser benchmarks are showing surprising results"

Why was Safari left out ? This is Slashdot - we don't care about Windows-only tests.

Do the whole tests on all available browsers on Windows, OS X and Linux on the same hardware and only then would a story be slashdot-worthy.

Memory Usage (2)

asavage (548758) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165489)

The test with the biggest difference was memory usage, with Firefox using half the memory of Chrome. This matches comparisons I have done. If you ever have to use an older computer with 2GB of RAM Chrome is pretty much unusable while Firefox works fine. I have an SSD so I turned off virtual memory. With 8GB of RAM I would have to close Chrome if I want to play a game but have no problems with Firefox.

Re:Memory Usage (1)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165563)

The test with the biggest difference was memory usage, with Firefox using half the memory of Chrome. This matches comparisons I have done. If you ever have to use an older computer with 2GB of RAM Chrome is pretty much unusable while Firefox works fine. I have an SSD so I turned off virtual memory. With 8GB of RAM I would have to close Chrome if I want to play a game but have no problems with Firefox.

Firefox has always been slimmer than Chrome.

I just don't see the difference (1)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165639)

With these results, and Firefox developers focusing in fixing the UI sluggishness, can this be the start of a Firefox comeback, after years of slow market share decline?"

I see these sorts of "performance" comparisons all the time. As I type this I have both Chrome and Firefox open and in use and honestly I cannot see any meaningful difference in speed between them. I'm sure some benchmark suite could find a difference but in day to day usage it simply does not matter which I choose. Any difference in speed on my computers is basically insignificant.

I have had problems with Chrome's printing being flakey but it's not a speed issue.

Re:I just don't see the difference (1)

Shados (741919) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165761)

It doesn't matter which you choose, which is the point.

As all browsers get faster, developers can write more complex applications (or...unfortunately, write worse code and no one will notice).

We have a very complex JavaScript app here, and as browsers get faster, we can add more features. We have to gracefully degrade for old versions of IE (not in term of features, but in term of how "pretty" these features are...animations and stuff) but that's it. If Firefox or whatever were not keeping up, we could not put these things in for just one browser, it wouldn't be worth it.

The performance crown was won by... (2)

QuietLagoon (813062) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165747)

... Firefox by a relatively small margin. Indeed, in some areas, Firefox is slow, other areas, such as Javascript, Firefox is, at best, middling.

.
At this point, if you are deciding upon which browser to use, perhaps the browser with the marginally highest performance benchmark numbers may not be the browser for you. Here is a difference that matters more to me: when I change the http proxy settings in Firefox, only Firefox is affected. However, when i change the http proxy settings in Chrome, the proxy settings for Windows are changed, meaning that other applications are affected. For this reason I use Firefox instead of Chrome, even though Firefox is a lot slower on a web page I frequent a lot [comcast.net] .

Then why does Firefox still "feel" slower? (1)

blahbooboo (839709) | 1 year,20 days | (#44165853)

Maybe it's that javascript engines don't matter as much anymore? Chrome loads pages and responds so much faster than Firefox. I would like to use Firefox, but it's a dramatic difference in performance between the two browser. Can anyone explain why?

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