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Firefox hangs repeatedly in Mac OS Catalina

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Almost since the day I first updated to Catalina I have had an intermittent problem with Firefox. The browser hangs, seemingly at random, multiple times per day, with the page either freezing or appearing to be trying to open a page. When this happens, sometimes the page can be closed, and sometimes not, but in all cases the menu bar is inoperable and moving the cursor to it causes a spinning color wheel to be displayed. Firefox can then be closed only by using Force Quit. Subsequently, attempting to reopen Firefox cause the icon on the dock to bounce but the program never finishes opening. The only way to interrupt this process is to again use Force Quit. After Firefox has hung, all other programs continue to work normally, but the only way to reopen the browser is to restart the computer. When Restart is chosen after a hang, the computer takes much longer to shut down than under normal circumstances, and when it restarts it generates an error message that the computer was shut down due to a problem.

The problem occurs in cycles, with the program hanging several to many times each day for several days to as long as two weeks, then it appears to resolve itself and doesn't occur for a week to as long as six weeks before it returns. The problem has continued through several updates of Firefox and of Catalina. During times when it was occurring, I have tried everything suggested for fixing hangs, including disabling extensions, deleting Session Restore files, creating a new Places database, a clean install of Firefox, and reloading Catalina. Nothing has helped.

Surely I am not the only one experiencing this problem, but I can find no reference to it. I would be very grateful if someone could offer any insight.


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