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Websites show a spinning wheel and never finish loading

This article explains what to do when specific websites (not all) start to load, but never finish (i.e. the tab displays a spinning wheel and "Connecting..." for several minutes).

If none of the below solutions work, try the methods described in the Troubleshoot and diagnose Firefox problems article to see if they will address your problem.

Search for malware

A variant of the Vundo trojan is known to cause Firefox to have problems loading certain high-traffic sites, including Google, Yahoo, MySpace, Facebook, and more. Not all variants of the Vundo trojan can be detected or removed by malware scanners.

However, you should scan your computer for infections first. For detailed instructions, see Troubleshoot Firefox issues caused by malware.

Lower the max number of HTTP connections

On slow connections, too many HTTP connections may cause timeouts.

  1. In the address bar, type about:config and press EnterReturn.

    • The about:config "This might void your warranty!" warning page may appear. Click I'll be careful, I promise!I accept the risk! to continue to the about:config page.
  2. In the Filter box at the top, type network.http.max-connections.
  3. Double-click on the network.http.max-connections preference, the "Enter integer value" dialog box will open.
  4. In the field, type 30 which was the default value in old versions of Firefox and click OK.

Disable JavaScript

In rare cases, a web page may be using an external JavaScript file which is in the wrong format. Try disabling JavaScript - see JavaScript settings and preferences for interactive web pages. If the page now finishes loading the bad Javascript file may be coming from:

  • a proxy filter that is incorrectly filtering that website's files. If you are running a proxy filter such as Privoxy, try disabling it.
  • the server. Contact the site administrator for that website.
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Thunderbird

Version History
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Comments

See /forums/knowledge-base-articles/525168 for past discussion about this article.

This article, as well as other KB articles involving connection issues, was also discussed here: /forums/contributors/534301

On the new "Lower the max number of HTTP connections" section added Oct 5, 2011 (to modify the value of network.http.max-connections from 256 to 30) see:

See also bug 648570#c13 and bug 692260.

I approved scoobidiver's revision. "Lower the max number of HTTP connections" section is now for =fx6, =fx7 only.