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Plugin-container.exe ate my CPU and my goldfish

  • 67 replies
  • 2271 have this problem
  • Last reply by NedMartin

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After installing Firefox 3.6.4 and version 3.6.6 respectively, there was a process running in the background, called plugin-container.exe. It immediately began to eat my CPU, my RAM and my goldfish. I have a fish tank in my room and after installing the FF update, my goldfish disappeared. Can I get a new goldfish from Mozilla?

This happened

Not sure how often

== after installing v3.6.4 and higher

All Replies (20)

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go to other support page on foxfire webpage. look for Ramona's Netscape, Mozilla Firefox, and SeaMonkey Solutions. it told me how to turn off crash protection so the plugin container won't come up. I tried it and so far it has fixed my problem

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I have stopped using firefox because of this resource hog

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Fix it or die

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Firefox 3.6.8 has just been released. The only change is to fix stability problems with plugins. Maybe this will fix all the problems. I have tested it with a youtube video and plugin-container took less than 10% of CPU.

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FF 3.6.8 is eating up my CPU about 60% help cant watch youtube without this bull**** lag

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David Delgado Firefox user

Firefox 3.6.8 has just been released. The only change is to fix stability problems with plugins. Maybe this will fix all the problems. I have tested it with a youtube video and plugin-container took less than 10% of CPU.

I got the new 3.6.8 and today I got the same problem again with plugin-container.exe Everything stops on my computer and the only thing that works is Ctrl+Alt+Del and to stop the service. When are they going to fix this?? (Hate using IE...!)

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I've had it. I'm switching to Opera. Firefox has gotten too bloated, too resource-heavy,too non-secure, and too unreliable. I don't want a browser that freezes and/or crashes almost every time I try to view any video.

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No I do not want you to interpret my comments as nasty. Please do not...

But I am really surprised at the lack of reactivity from Mozilla. A real big deception.

No official comments have been released on this problem as well as no fixes. Apparently a lot of corrections are made but Firefox continues to be slow. Not only slow but many times, it reports that it is like suspended... without any response. Unthinkable.

The problems continue since 2 or 3 releases. I now have release 3.68.

I tried beta 4 and it is really better. But it lacks many basic modules. The developers did not have time to prepare upgrades. Normal.

In the meantime, everybody following the official releases are penalized.

How come nobody reacts promptly? Not even here in the forum. How come it seems so obvious that not much testing is done when releasing a new release?

True, I am now pessimistic...

I just don't understand how you support your users anymore... And we are millions. It feels so much like some other companies... Support rarely comes in to claim yes there are problems... and we are working on them... A question of transparency. No more at Mozilla...?

You can do better... knowing you have the resources and the finances now.

Still hoping. But not for long.

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Hello everyone.

Issues of this sort are, unfortunately, more common and the we'd like them to be. However, they tend not to be cause by Firefox itself, but rather by software that is running either inside or alongside it, such as add-ons or firewalls. Since these issues have a broad span of possible causes, you need to diagnose your problems before fixing them. Follow these instructions to the line, as they'll probably help you diagnose and fix the problems you're having.

  1. run Firefox in safe-mode to disable all extensions, themes and plugins. If this fixes your problem, be it with RAM or CPU usage, then you know it's a problem with add-ons (plugins, themes or extensions). Proceed to number 2. If safe-mode doesn't fix your problem, then read bellow, after this list;
  2. update all extensions (go into Tools > Add-ons > Extensions > Find Updates), themes and plugins (see this page in your Firefox. If this doesn't solve the issues, proceed to the following number;
  3. disable all extensions, themes and plugins in your Firefox (not running safe-mode). This is temporary and for diagnostic purposes only. Being certain that, as in safe-mode, the problems you're having have gone away, enable one plugin at a time. You should be certain that you actually want that plugin to be enabled. It's best to keep the overall number of enabled plugins as low as possible. When you encounter problems, you know you've found a problematic plugin, so disable it for good. Keep enabling all plugins (except problematic ones) until you've gone through them all. If you need support for a problematic plugin, you need to contact its author for support;
  4. enable one extension at a time. Again, be certain that you actually want that extension to be enabled. As with plguins, it's best to keep the overall number of enabled extensions as low as possible. Also, try the theme you want to have installed so see if that is what's causing the problem. When you encounter problems, you know you've found a problematic extension/theme, so disable it for good. Keep enabling all your extensions (except problematic ones) until you've gone through them all. Just the same as with plugins, if you need support for a problematic extension/plugin, you need to contact its author;
  5. if you've followed my instructions above, you're done! You've fixed your problems with problematic add-ons. If you want to keep using those problematic add-ons, please contant their authors for support.

Ok, now... If disabling all extensions and plugins through safe-mode didn't work to fix your problems (or, in other words, if you've just read number 1 on the list above and come straight here), then you have different issue. The most likely scenario is that you have a third party software running on your computer that is messing with Firefox. Detecting which program it is may be tricky, but the following list should help you. Make sure you follow it carefully. Don't forget to answer the question on the last point, if nothing else helps.

  1. try reinstalling Firefox. No data will be lost. You can get the latest version (for free, as always) at Make sure you uninstall Firefox prior to reinstalling it. For help installing Firefox, see this support article. If that doesn't fix the problem, proceed;
  2. do a virus/malware check on your computer. See this support article for help on this point. This is a very important step, so please pay attention to it. If your problem is not due to viruses/malware, proceed;
  3. disable all software running in the background that you don't want to have running in the background (in Windows operating systems, this is done by pressing WINDOWS+R in your keyboard, typing msconfig and pressing Enter; now, under the Startup tab, you can uncheck the software you don't want, and reboot your system for changes to take effect; if you're unsure of what software you want running, ask someone with more experience). If this doesn't fix your issues with Firefox, proceed;
  4. check if your firewall/antivirus/security suite is conflicting in any way with Firefox's normal behavior. Check for enabled functions/features that you don't want and/or may be causing problems with Firefox. You'll find that these features are most likely tied to Internet Security features, such as link scanners or URL checkers and the like. If you're not sure they are conflicting with Firefox, simply try to disable them temporarily to see whether or not that's true. If this doesn't solve the issues, proceed to the following number;
  5. check your operating system security options, mainly advanced options that are not configured by default. While it's very unlikely that this may be the cause of the problem, it's remotely possible. If this doesn't work, proceed to the following point;
  6. update your modem/router software. There have been some reports that some modem/router software may cause Firefox and other browsers to loose performance and/or stability. If updating doesn't fix your issue, try other versions of the software, if possible. If you need support with this, contact your modem/router manufacturer. If this doesn't help, proceed;
  7. if you are using a Windows operating system, clean up your OS registry using appropriate software. There have been reports that badly maintained Windows Registries may case problems with Firefox. If this doesn't help, see the following point;
  8. please try creating a new temporary Firefox profile (managing profiles) and see if the issues persist. Please report the results, so we can help you further.
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Well, we know it's not American, because it would have gone on a shooting spree. Also, same problem as OP. 100% CPU usage while on Vimeo, for example. XP SP3.

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Very sad when amateurs are allowed to release code into production. At least someone at Mozilla had the foresight to allow this garbage program to be disabled. But, I suppose you get what you pay for. Chrome is starting to look like an attractive alternative. Hint Mozilla - unless you don't care about losing browser share.

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Having the same issue all of a sudden starting today. Rebooted machine and restarted FF but no love. What the heck is wrong with this thing?

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My computer and Firefox were working perfectly prior to this most recent update for Firefox. Right as soon as I updated, Firefox started freezing, crashing and going agonizingly slow. I checked my task manager, and there wasn't one, but two plugin-container processes running, totaling over 120,000 K on their own, not including the other 150,000+ K for firefox itself, and upwards of 24 of my CPU.

I know for a fact that this is a Firefox problem because these issues did not exist until this most recent update. Now Firefox is almost entirely useless as it constantly crashes, freezes and just eats up way too many resources.


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I know more about fish than computers.

I wonder if your goldfish jumped out of the tank;

or perhaps you have a case of cat-fish-gold-fish  O:-) .

Do you have a cat?

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What I did was lowered the priority of Plugin-container.exe so that it doesn't interfere with anything else but still does its job. I also noticed that when I closed a page with a lot of video content, the CPU usage dropped off significantly

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I use FF 3.6.17 on Windows XP Pro SP3. My concern is when I'm playing a small game that downloads 2MB to play, and Firefox jumps to over 250MB of Ram consumption, but the Plugin-Container.exe climbs to an average of 1,729,284 KB, over 1.8GB. Heck, even my Planetside or World of Tanks doesn't even consume that much memory. 1 to 3 cores chugging at 40%, other non-vitals Processes shutdown.

System is - Intel i7 2600K @ 4.6GHz (4 Core + 4 HT), 4 GB System RAM(DDR3-2000) (3.6GB available to system from Gigabyte Board, GTX-570, 4 x 150GB Raptors RAID0, 2 x 1TB WD RE RAID1,950 Watt PC&Cooling)

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Yeah, you PC cooling has nothing to do with this. Try flash. Uninstall it and reinstall it. Make sure it's up to date too.

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and i think they should get her a new fish.

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upgraded to firefox 5 just earlier and i looked at my processes running in the background to find multiple plugin-container.exe running. i did have firefox 3. i NEVER saw this problem with firefox 3. and no i didnt just simply overlook it in the past. firefox 4 version sucked so i didnt upgrade to it. so i figured firefox 5 must be them fixing their screwups. well, i was wrong. i tried updating what addons i could but its still there. where can i go download firefox 3 again? really dont like the new look of firefox 5 and with so many processes running in the background eating up my ram. i dont want this version even more now...

Modified by Thaurane

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If you want support, please Ask a new question, instead of pulling up a thread that was started 11 months ago.

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