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What might cause Firefox to use too much bandwidth?


I use HughesNet, so I can measure how much bandwidth is used via their site. Recently, this browser began to pull down almost a megabyte a second, for no apparent reason. The only tabs I had open was a google search, and two full-text pages. I've had far more content on far more tabs before, and that never used up that much of the Fair Access Policy. I'm thinking it may have something to do with ZoneAlarm, since it happened not long after I installed it, but does anyone have any other suggestions of what it might be?

This happened

Not sure how often

Additional System Details

Installed Plug-ins

  • -Shockwave Flash 10.0 r45
  • IE Tab Plug-in for Mozilla/Firefox
  • Default Plug-in
  • RealPlayer(tm) LiveConnect-Enabled Plug-In
  • Adobe PDF Plug-In For Firefox and Netscape
  • BitTorrent Plugin 1
  • Yahoo! activeX Plug-in Bridge
  • Mozilla ActiveX control and plugin module
  • Google Update
  • Adobe Shockwave for Director Netscape plug-in, version 11.5
  • Delivery Network Acceleration by BitTorrentâ„¢
  • GameTap Browser Helper Tool
  • Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) plug-in for Mozilla browsers
  • Rhapsody Player Engine Plugin
  • Java Plug-in 1.6.0_05 for Netscape Navigator (DLL Helper)
  • Shockwave Flash 10.0 r32


  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.0; en-US; rv: Gecko/20100315 Firefox/3.5.9 (.NET CLR 3.5.30729)

More Information

Amazon Wishlist
Better Gmail 2
Bookmark Previews
Digsby Donates
Download Helper
Favicon Picker 3
FoxSaver (currently disabled due to other issues)
Gmail Manager
Good Deeds
Google Icon
Grab Pro
Handy Xtra Stuff
Hilarious Webcomic Manager
IE Tab
Inferknow Client
MR Tech Toolkit
OneClick YouTube Downloader
Reminder Fox
Save Session
Session Manager
SmoothWheel (AMO)
Tab Mix Plus
Toolbar Buttons
Update Notifier
Video Games Spy
ZoneAlarm Toolbar

Question owner

The most likely cause of this problem is the BitTorrent addons that have been added to your copy of FireFox. BitTorrent allows you to download files from other users on the Internet, but also uploads files to users, which will consume a large amount of bandwidth. I would recommend you upload to the latest version of Firefox from the Mozilla Firefox website, then go to the Tools menu, click on Add-ons, click on the Plugins tab, select the BitTorrent add-ons and click the Disable button. If you didn't add these plugins to Firefox, you may wish to have a discussion with other users of your computer about the limits of your satellite Internet connection and how important it is not to add unnecessary software to your computer.

I also notice that you are using several outdated web plugins, such as old versions of Adobe Flash and Sun Java, that place you at significant risk of a virus infection while browsing the web. After upgrading Firefox to the current version, I suggest visiting the Mozilla Plugin Check website to identify which plugins may be out of date and update them.

Another useful site for helping keep your computer safe online is the Secunia Online Security Inspector, which will check your computer for dangerous software that could allow you to be infected with malicious software. You can run this check online without needing to download or install anything.