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My Firefox 14 freezes continuously. It's becoming so unstable I can hardly use it. I'm thinking about witching to Google Chrome. Tired olf this!

Posted

Firefox has been slower than molasses for some time now, and then recently it's been freezing and hanging continuously. I've really enjoyed this browser and all my add-ons, but I'm really getting sick and tired of the way it's messing everything up.

Additional System Details

This happened

Every time Firefox opened

This started when...

slowness for awhile, freezing recently.

Installed Plug-ins

  • Next Generation Java Plug-in 10.6.2 for Mozilla browsers
  • NPRuntime Script Plug-in Library for Java(TM) Deploy
  • Shockwave Flash 11.4 r402
  • Adobe Shockwave for Director Netscape plug-in, version 11.6.6.636
  • Google Update
  • VLC media player Web Plugin 2.0.2
  • Foxit Reader Plug-In For Firefox and Netscape
  • SiteAdvisor
  • Unity Player 3.4.2f3
  • IE Tab 2 Plug-in for Mozilla/Firefox
  • Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) plug-in for Mozilla browsers

Application

  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.0; rv:14.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/14.0.1

More Information

Chris Ilias
  • Moderator
115 solutions 1064 answers

This article should help:

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/firefox-hangs-or-not-responding

Helpful Reply

I did try to read through some of the stuff in your link, but to be honest, I'm no computer guru and don't care to have to read volumes and then try to figure out what it means in order to use a program. If Firefox is reaching that point, I'm really sad, but I guess it's time for me to move on to another browser. My opinion is that it is up to the developers of this browser to make it work and not up to me to have to go back to school in order to use it.

I have been experimenting with Google Chrome and I could open and close that five times in the time it takes Firefox to open once.

Chris Ilias
  • Moderator
115 solutions 1064 answers

If you need help, we (volunteers) will walk you through it. :)

You mentioned a long startup time, so we can jump to the section "Firefox hangs while loading the first window".

If you want a quick and simple solution, try resetting Firefox: https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/reset-preferences-fix-problems

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2348 solutions 20818 answers

Here's an experiment, and I'll keep it brief: Do a Reset and then turn off hardware graphics acceleration.

(1) The Reset feature duplicates certain key data from your active settings folder into a new one, bypassing some add-ons and custom settings. Your plugins will still be active, but could be disabled manually if you like.

More information in this article: Reset Firefox – easily fix most problems.

(2) Disabling graphics hardware acceleration avoids some issues that can be caused by graphics card driver updates, and poor Flash performance on some systems.

You usually need to restart Firefox in order for it to take effect, so save all work first (e.g., mail you are composing, online documents you're editing, etc.).

orange Firefox button or classic Tools menu > Options > Advanced

On the "General" mini-tab, uncheck the box for "Use hardware acceleration when available"

Then restart. Any improvement?


A Reset is nondestructive; you can switch back to your old settings folder if you like. To do this, you use Firefox's Profile Manager, as described in the following article. I do not recommend removing any profiles until you are 110% certain that you will never need any of that profile's data in the future. Use the Profile Manager to create and remove Firefox profiles

Question owner

You are very kind to offer your help like this, but it looks like if I use this resetting option I lose all my themes and extensions and that's no small thing. I sure don't want to have to start all over on all that stuff. I'll have to think about this.

The reason I love Firefox is because of all the extensions I am able to use. If I have to get rid of them to make the browser work, then for all practical purposes I've lost the browser I have loved.

Modified by Nikilet

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2348 solutions 20818 answers

Hi Nikilet, you probably love some of your extensions more than others. You could review your currently installed extensions and disable everything that isn't essential to your use of Firefox, restart, and see whether that helps.

orange Firefox button or classic Tools menu > Add-ons > Extensions category

Chris Ilias
  • Moderator
115 solutions 1064 answers

If you close Firefox, then start Firefox in Safe Mode, does the problem still occur? To start in Safe Mode, go to Help > Restart with Add-ons Disabled.

If the problem does not occur in Safe Mode, then you can disable your extensions one-by-one until you find out which one is causing the problem. See Troubleshoot extensions, themes and hardware acceleration issues to solve common Firefox problems.

Question owner

This is to both of you. Actually, I don't feel I have loaded myself down with a bunch of unnecessary extensions. The ones I have are ones I use and I wouldn't want to be without any of them.

I will try the Safe Mode option. If the problem does not occur I will check into the troubleshooting option and will let you know what happens.

I sincerely do appreciate your offer and willingness to help, both of you.

Question owner

When I started in Safe Mode it was fast as greased lightning. I did discover that I already have hardware acceleration turned off. Now I am going to go forward to check out the other extensions.

Chris Ilias
  • Moderator
115 solutions 1064 answers

Here's a tip for troubleshooting a long list of extensions.
Instead of disabling them one-by-one until you find the problematic extension, disable half of your extensions. If the problem still occurs, you'll know the problematic extension is among the half you didn't disable. Out of those, disable half, and so on.

The name for that technique is "binary search".

Question owner

Hello, you two. I don't know for usre what changed it, but my Firefox is back to working slowly but surely. I don't want to be without my add-ons. I don't mind it being a little slow, but when it times out and freezes and has my whole computer frozen, that's the part that was getting to me. I can deal with this fine.

Thanks to both of you for taking time to help me!

clagow16 0 solutions 2 answers

I'm on v. 16.0.1, however, I'm having similar problems such as FF freezing, crashing, slow startup, using too many resources, etc. I did a search to find out why this may be happening and came across this thread as it seemed to be the most recently dated result in my search. I do not find these suggested tips to be very helpful. Why should I start my computer in safe mode, or disable extensions/add ons, turn off hardware acceleration, etc. in order for a browser to work properly? This seems to be an excessive number of "go-arounds" just for a browser to be able to work. I've been a long-time fan and user of FF, but with the increasing number of issues it seems to be having, it just doesn't seem to be worth using any longer. Just too much trouble. Also, what is this "Nightly" deal???? I recently had computer repairs done which involved formatting my hard drive, necessitating my downloading FF again. The most recent version 17 had two options, FF v 17 and Nightly. Both are incredibly unstable, crash constantly, freeze and force close constantly and are simply too much trouble to even bother with. I reverted to v 16 and it's a little better, but not by much. Will Mozilla be getting their act together anytime soon, or should I just switch to Chrome?

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2348 solutions 20818 answers

Hi clagow16, I'm sorry to hear that Firefox isn't working well for you.

When Firefox crashes, various details are recorded which you can report to Mozilla and we can look up the details. If you open a new tab to about:crashes you should see a list of long random-looking numbers. If you can post a few of those crash IDs, that should help the volunteers here get a better idea of what's going on.

The steps you found in your research are designed to pinpoint the cause of the problems that occasionally inflict an installation of the browser.

  • Firefox's Safe Mode is a diagnostic tool. It bypasses extensions and some custom settings. If the browser works well in Firefox's Safe Mode, then you have a smaller list of potential issues to work through. This is different than running your OS in its Safe Mode, which shouldn't be necessary for troubleshooting.
  • Firefox's hardware accelerated graphics feature makes the browser highly dependent on your graphics card drivers, which differ from one PC to the next and therefore can't all be tested thoroughly in advance -- or predicted in the future (earlier this year a driver update caused 100% CPU utilization for many users).

"Nightly" is the latest cutting edge version of Firefox which is being tested for future release. You will not normally be offered this version. Did you download from the office site at http://www.mozilla.org/ ?

If you want recommendations more focused on your setup, try starting a new thread with your system information and add-on list. https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/new/desktop/fix-problems

xuartema 0 solutions 2 answers

Hi Clagow16. I had similar problems with FF 17.0.1. It was running smoothly until I installed a new add-on. Then it froze completely all the time as soon as several tabs were opened along with a lot of memory consumption. My only option was to force shutdown my computer and restart. Then I run FF in Safe Mode and realized how fast it was with no crashes at all. Then I decided to disable the add-ons I installed recently and everything returned to normal. Then I enabled some add-ons again, until I located which one was causing troubles. This one I let disabled. Keep in mind that some add-ons are not fully compatible with the latest versions. My FF 17.0.1 is going like a charm now, as always.

clagow16 0 solutions 2 answers

Thanks for your response. I actually have very few add-ons. I have an adblocker, amazon wish list, and pocket enabled. I have just decided to revert to version 16. When FF gets the bugs out, I'll upgrade but not til then. It's way too annoying. They really should know that and get that stuff straight prior to releasing updates. Software developers that release versions that are not completely tested for most if not all eventualities don't really instill continued confidence in their products.

Question owner

Which add on was your problem? Perhaps it's the same for me and then I wouldn't have to go through so much work to find the answer.

Question owner

Well said and Amen!

xuartema 0 solutions 2 answers

Hem.... re-reading my answer, it looks like I'm working for them... but not at all, rest assured ! I'm just a Firefox enthusiast since version 0.6 or 0.7 back in.... 2003/4 as I recall. Anyway, as for the latest release (17.0.1), THE ADD-ON I TURNED OFF WAS NOT THE CAUSE OF THE CRASHING. I turned it on, loaded pages up to the brim, until my RAM was almost full and NOTHING special happened. FF remained stable. Later on, I had only a few pages opened and suddenly, without warning, CRASH!!, Blue Screen of Death of sinister reputation, with this message on : IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL. I still have to figure that out but apparently it's a memory-related issue of some sort. If ever you come across such BSoD-attached message, here some explanations about it : http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314063. Maybe I should temporarily roll back to a previous version until they at FF sort this problem out. Right now I cannot say for sure if it's the latest version 17.0.1 that is flawed or something else but the add-on in question is definitively NOT the culprit. This had to be said.

Helpful Reply

Here's my stance on this: I still have Firefox, but I've been using Google Chrome as my default browser for months.

I'm not interested in going through this business of starting in safe mode and going through the rigamaroll of closing down all add ons and then restarting one-by-one until you find the culprit, or culprits.

As far as I'm concerned, that's Mozilla Firefox' job -- to have their browser ready for release and ready and dependable for people to use. If they don't want to do that then I'll find something else that works for me. I've loved Firefox for a long time, but when they stop developing it so that it works for people, then I guess I'm done. They should thoroughly test add ons before they release them for download to make sure they are not going to foul up their browser; not my job or my desire.

Chris Ilias
  • Moderator
115 solutions 1064 answers

Hi Nikilet, Have you using the latest version of Firefox? A few months ago, Firefox was updated with a feature to prevent memory leaks caused by add-ons.

Could you help us (support volunteers) understand why you posted? I figured if you went through the trouble of registering and posting, you were willing to find out which add-on is causing the problem, because that takes even less time. If you do find out which add-on it is, the author of that add-on can be contacted about fixing their problem. After all, add-ons are developed by third-parties, not Mozilla. ;)

If you're just here to vent, this really isn't the place to voice opinions about development. That's what the Submit Feedback item in the Help menu is for. That info gets collected at http://input.mozilla.org/, where a team of people read it and gather data about the most common issues. That data along with data from the support forum is then presented in the weekly Firefox delivery meeting.