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three (Multi-) processes, one window/tab redux

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read a similar post from 2/18. one year later, Quantum 65.0.2 consumes three processes--

2.124GB virtual, 266MB private, 1.264M page faults! per Proc Explorer.!!!! with one subtask up to 7.7GB virtual....cripes.

I sussed the 'why three' before I read the tech answer. usage is many multiples of EXPLORER.

perhaps Firefox should be it's -own- opsys....I bet it'd run a heckuva lot faster than Win7 (anyone have suggestions on paring 7 down to something much slimmer?)

problems occur when FF appears to let tabs run? doing whoknowswhat, which bumps physical ram usage up; once it hits 80% (I have 3GB on my Lenovo ThinkPad) it ceases responding. Paging issues? READY BOOST...are you kidding? Not helpful. Doing a 'normal restart' clears the (what?) for each process, taking RAM down to the original, sane, percentage. What on earth's going ON in them there processes?

Methinks a return to pre- Multi-process FF might be a grrrREAT idea. Filehippo prolly has previous versions.

And wasn't XP nice 'n stable? Things that make you go HMMMMMM.

Is there a handy-dandy realtime diagnostic GRAPHICAL tool that shows
what FF (or other, even) components are doing? Anyone savvy YOURDON
charts?  GAZINTAs & GOZOUTAs, I mean. Rather than 'about:memory'... text

is not not helpful. I want something like telecommunications companies use to monitor their networks...VISUAL data.

All Replies (6)

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This isn't really an answer to your question, but if you want to limit Firefox to using only 1 process (like it was before the multi-process days), you can do so.

Firefox tries to adjust the technical settings for ideal performance on your specific system, but sometimes it's not perfect. If you go to the Firefox settings, select the General tab on the side. Then scroll down until you see the Performance section.

From this section, you can uncheck the Use recommended performance settings option and some more advanced options will become available. One of these options should be the Set content process limit option, which you can set as low as 1.

NOTE: You will need to restart Firefox to see any changes.

It's important to note that Firefox may still use more than one process to keep the websites that you load separate from the actual Firefox program.

Hope this helps.

If not, you may want to take a look at the following documents, which outlines some helpful tips to help reduce the resources required by Firefox on your computer:

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Wesley, thanks.

Unchecked rec perf option; process limit is 1; no h/w acceleraton.

No observable improvement.

I still want to know why o why the sub-processes glom on to more and more memory over time......and why one apparently cannot restart a tab. oh, wait. close the tab and re-click...well...one shoont haveta do that IMHO.

Let loose with that graphic diagnostics tool, eh? Erm...I prezoom you guys have such?


edit: removed spaces before each sentence causing horizontal scroll bars and made it harder to read.

Modified by James

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Firefox does come with a memory analysis tool, although it's not graphical at all and is usually too technical for most users.

If you type about:memory in your Firefox address bar, you will get a screen with some buttons. If you press Measure, that will check what memory is being used.

You'll get a big wall of text with memory values. On the right side, you will see the the Process Index section. The Main Process is what runs Firefox and usually your extensions that you have installed on Firefox. The web content processes are what displays the websites.

If you look at the values in the web content processes, you can kind of get an idea of what websites are using your memory. Some websites (especially ones that endlessly load content) will use more memory than others.

For example, I've included a screenshot of what my memory results look like right now. My email website is using about 100MB of my memory at the moment. But when I close it, that memory is freed up.

So the behavior of closing tabs and freeing up memory is already what Firefox does. But the memory tool could give you a pretty good idea of what's using up your memory.


It's also important to note that (sometimes) extensions like uBlock Origin can cause Firefox to use more memory.

Your best option at the moment is probably to try running Firefox in safe mode and see if you have better performance in that mode.

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Wesley, [pardon my rant]

Thanksbut if there's no graphical representation of activity that's a system design flaw IMNSHO (as an ex- IT guy). I'm rather surprised you dont have that facility.

"About:memory" is not helpful, from my standpoint...too much minutiae there.

Perhaps there's a Firefox LITE version?

And your statement re closing tabs == freeing up memory I find to be at least somewhat inaccurate, necessitating use of the 'restart normally' in About:profiles. (that button should have not been eliminated, ahem). At least there is that.

Perhaps you'd have a suggestion re disabling arbitrary memory consumption on a per-tab basis; it's really a GOOGLE et al issue... maybe a tighter connection is needed between FF and UBlock?

Otherwise, as previous stated, I'd recommend FF become an OS; I think that's where things are headed, no thanks to Microsoft.

Thanks for your input.


edit: removed spaces before each sentence causing horizontal scroll bars.

Modified by James

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Inneresting, Cor-el. Thanks. Will check it out.