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Firefox browser severe slowdown; CPU Usage 100%   Free Clinic

Started Nov-22 by sbutk1; 204 views.
In reply toRe: msg 3
sbutk1

From: sbutk1

Nov-27

Thank you both for responding.  I've been a bit hesitant to write back, since I'm still trying to wrap my head around this problem, including a fair and accurate way to describe my symptoms.  A couple days ago, an article on Firefox slowdowns shown to me by a friend contained one bit of advice that seems to have helped a great deal, although I'm not completely willing to accept that I'm totally out of the woods just yet.  

To answer an earlier question, before this recent "tweak", it didn't matter what type of site I browsed to; simply opening the Firefox browser (even before an page had a chance to load) caused the tremendous slowdown and CPU overload I'd referred to.  The only way I was able to use my browser, albeit nowhere near the speed that I'd been able to before - even emails took forever to view, delete, file away into folders, etc. - was to start Firefox in Safe Mode.

Just last night I followed this article's advice and, in about:config, changed a True/False value with regards to "Multiprocesses".  [The "tech novice" in me has absolutely no idea what that means.]  I'm able to surf somewhat feely again using "normal" Firefox, and just tonight became daring enough to re-install a few Add-ons.  [They'd all been automatically removed when the new Firefox Quantam was auto-installed.  And yet, nonetheless, Firefox would still only work in Safe Mode, regardless.]

Like I said, that was then, and this is now.  Things do tentatively - knock on wood - seem to be working normally again, although I realize saying that is somewhat relative.  Memory Usage seems to steadily creep up over long periods of use (to 3+ GB), but that seemed to be a problem all along and - if I've understood correctly - may just be the unavoidable nature of the Firefox beast.

In reply toRe: msg 4
xSomeguyx

From: xSomeguyx

Nov-27

I'll say what I say at work: if it works it's a win, and I'll take a win any way I can get it!

The "multiprocesses" takes the different tabs, and will let them use different processors.  For PCs that have more than one processor (referred to as multi-core or multi-processor PCs, and are the norm for some time now) it's helpful because the browser can use more of the "oomph" that the processor has to go around!

In reply toRe: msg 4
THECOM
Staff

From: THECOM

Nov-29

Firefox is a strange beast. 

On some machines, it works nice, behaves itself, and things are generally both hunky AND dory.

Then, on IDENTICAL machines (identical hardware, identical system images, identical user logons, identical installer, etc), it's a ravening, memory leaking, forever-and-a-day-taking ill-behaved beast.

Wish I could say WHY (if I could, someone would be paying me BANK for the info).

 

In reply toRe: msg 6
sbutk1

From: sbutk1

Nov-30

Indeed.  Thank you both; makes me feel a bit better that *I’m* not the only one being driven crazy by this kind of thing.  Wondering whether there might be any steps you can recommend I take in order to, say, give my computer a “tune-up” to get things running as efficiently as possible.  [I’ve already considered adding more RAM, but someone I asked didn’t think that would make much difference.]  Or, in lieu of that, since it’s something you’ve already alluded to, are there any particular browsers that you would recommend over Firefox?  (- and still keep my Windows OS; I’m admittedly not *that* savvy/serious of a computer user)  Thanks.

In reply toRe: msg 7
sbutk1

From: sbutk1

Dec-2

Hi again.  Update on my situation…

I’ve once again been able to use my Firefox browser, but invariably my habit of browsing to certain sites and keeping those tabs open tend to gobble up my computer’s resources and slow normal operations to a painful crawl, making it necessary to kill Firefox and start over again.  It seems to me that the biggest culprits are those with what I might call “rich” format, or info that updates automatically (such as Streaming, I guess).  I’ve seen this to happen after I open sites such as Yahoo Finance, Facebook, and YouTube.  Since this appears to be a common element, would it be naïve of me to think there might be some hidden process (like a Plugin, perhaps) that needs updating updating and might remedy things for me. 

…As another side note, very often when I go to shut my computer down at the end of the day, it takes its sweet time and eventually displays the popup error alerting me that “Task Host Window” is taking a[n extra] long time to close.

Do these tidbits happen to provide any clues or provoke any new thoughts?  Thanks.

In reply toRe: msg 8
xSomeguyx

From: xSomeguyx

Dec-2

Hmm.. well, at least there's something to point at.  Generally speaking, how many tabs do you have open?  Also, give Google Chrome a try on the same sites.  This would give us an idea whether your PC just can't handle the content for some reason, or if it's the browser.

sbutk1

From: sbutk1

Dec-2

Right now I've got 16 open, but none of them are any of the "dreaded 3" that I mentioned above.

And the computer is still functioning fairly smoothly, I would say, with no noticeable lags or slowdowns.

Yet even now, a quick check of Task Manager reveals:

Firefox memory usage ~ 2.0 GB

Total Memory usage ~ 3.44 GB

Physical Memory ~ 88%

Some time ago - well before the day this latest Firefox Quantam came out - I used to be in the habit of *successfully* keeping a few hundreds of tabs open at the same time.  (Call me the king of "Easily distracted", haha.)  ...Now, granted, this was with the assistance of a browser add-on that automatically unloaded tabs after a period of unuse and probably lulled me into a sense of complacency.  Either way, that add-on looks like it is no longer supported by Quantam.

Might give Chrome a try later; I'll let you know how I make out with that. 

Thanks!

xSomeguyx

From: xSomeguyx

Dec-3

Ah, well that's probably what's going on then.  Every program (or in this case page) you open uses memory, and since you don't have that add-on, you're probably running out, so it's slowing things to a crawl.

I compare this sort of thing to a kitchen.  The chef is the processor (or more than one cook in the instance of a multi-core processor), your counter space is memory, and your hard drive is the panty.  The cook can only "work" on as many things as there is counter-space.  Run out of counter-space?  No problem, move stuff to the pantry temporarily.  But that back and forth is wasted time, and it slows the works down.

sbutk1

From: sbutk1

Dec-3

I'm still going to try again later with an alternate browser.  Probably Microsoft IE, to avoid downloading Chrome just yet.

...In the meantime, considering your analogy example, do you you think it would be fruitful to install more "counter space"?

xSomeguyx

From: xSomeguyx

Dec-4

Possibly.  It certainly wouldn't hurt, and RAM for something like that wouldn't be terribly expensive.  However, as much as I like IE (and I do appreciate it), these days it doesn't run as fast as.. well, pretty much anything else.

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