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Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

The Firefox team looks back at its 2011 accomplishments and discusses its plans for this year. "With fullscreen support in web browsers, the next step is improve the gaming and interaction experience for building more advanced web sites with key input in fullscreen mode and also being able to use the mouse as a controller instead of as a pointer."
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Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 15:12 UTC (Wed) by xl0 (guest, #52696) [Link]

How about "stop eating your RAM"? Is there such step in the program?

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 15:18 UTC (Wed) by mpr22 (guest, #60784) [Link]

Having read the fine linked article, I now have the impression that you didn't read the fine linked article.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 20:39 UTC (Wed) by valyala (guest, #41196) [Link]

There is also an interesting blog about memshrink progress in Firefox - http://blog.mozilla.com/nnethercote/category/memshrink/ .

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 15, 2012 19:51 UTC (Thu) by scientes (guest, #83068) [Link]

> However, until this week, this don’t-discard-it-immediately behaviour was also used when a tab is closed!

I don't exactly agree with the exclamation point, as I do alot of ctr-shift-t (restore previous tab), but I guess that already requires the whole page to be fetched and reloaded again.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 16, 2012 9:26 UTC (Fri) by valyala (guest, #41196) [Link]

I suppose tab contents is restored from browser's cache if pages's caching policy allows this. Site's data can be either in RAM or already swapped out to persistent storage, but this is still faster than fetching the data from the internet.

As for the image data discarding, this means that browser discards only decoded pixels, while keeping the original encoded image in the cache. Since decoded pixels may occupy more than 10x memory comparing to the encoded image, smart image data discarding can significantly reduce browser's memory consumption. Read "#2: Better Foreground Tab Image Handling" at http://blog.mozilla.com/nnethercote/2012/01/25/memshrink-... for more details.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 15:27 UTC (Wed) by krakensden (subscriber, #72039) [Link]

From the article:
> Memory usage
> A lot of work went into this area, and there were improvements resulting in up to 50% less memory usage.

Additionally, there IS exactly such a button now. If you go to about:memory, you can see where every chunk of memory is going, and if you scroll down to the bottom, there is a "minimize memory usage" button.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 15:37 UTC (Wed) by shmerl (guest, #65921) [Link]

That button is mostly for testing purposes, and it causes forced garbage collection (which happens rather efficiently on its own anyway). It won't work miracles to reduce memory 50% ;)

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 15:42 UTC (Wed) by krakensden (subscriber, #72039) [Link]

Yeah... but sometimes I get a little peeved at cookie cutter trolls who haven't used the software in question in years.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 16:28 UTC (Wed) by jengelh (subscriber, #33263) [Link]

>about:memory

Now this is useful.

JS is responsible for over 50% fat in the browser..

122.80 MB (100.0%) -- explicit
├───70.29 MB (57.23%) -- js
│ ├──39.90 MB (32.49%) -- compartment([System Principal],)
│ │ ├──25.00 MB (20.36%) -- gc-heap

Let's turn off JS (about:config javascript.enabled=0) and turn off Firebug and restart/revisit LWN:

88.96 MB (100.0%) -- explicit
├──38.19 MB (42.93%) -- js
│ ├──27.92 MB (31.39%) -- compartment([System Principal],)
│ │ ├──16.53 MB (18.58%) -- gc-heap

Still there? Die, JS, die!

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 16:36 UTC (Wed) by krakensden (subscriber, #72039) [Link]

Good luck with that- I'm pretty sure large chunks of the browser itself are written in JS.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 16:38 UTC (Wed) by mpr22 (guest, #60784) [Link]

It is my belief that significant parts of firefox's user interface are implemented in Javascript, and my expectation derived from that belief is that the configuration option you tweaked merely acts as a killswitch for JS in webpages.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 17:04 UTC (Wed) by etiennez (guest, #53056) [Link]

As a side note, I don't know if it's still the case, but firebug use to be a performance killer, even when it is not active in any tabs.
I always put it in a dedicated web development profile.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 17:07 UTC (Wed) by jengelh (subscriber, #33263) [Link]

>firebug use[d] to be a performance killer, even when it is not active in any tabs.

Guess that's why Firefox 10 now has its own unconditional firebug-like "Inspect Element"... not that that's ready to supplant Firebug (for one, F10s Inspection does not seem to allow to delete arbitrary elements yet). So I am paying twice :-/

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 15, 2012 5:24 UTC (Thu) by keeperofdakeys (subscriber, #82635) [Link]

Firebug killed performance because it disabled JIT, otherwise it couldn't do its work. If you don't know what JIT is, it basically converts the javascript to bytecode 'just in time' for execution. Commonly executed javascript doesn't need to be reinterpreted, giving speed improvements. It also requires a lot more memory. I'm not too sure how the new firefox web developer tools and chrome developer tools do, I assume they turn off JIT just for the current page, whereas Firebug was global.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 15:56 UTC (Wed) by slashdot (guest, #22014) [Link]

I'm very disappointed that there are no plans for coffee making functionality.

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 17:06 UTC (Wed) by avtechmjc (subscriber, #50477) [Link]

Firefox for Android is nifty, but there are already plenty o' browsers for Android.

What I need is Thunderbird for Android, so I can have a decent IMAP client that supports client ssl certicates for authentication (and not just server certs for encryption). There is no such beast at the moment...

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 17:28 UTC (Wed) by kev009 (subscriber, #43906) [Link]

k9 mail doesn't do this?

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 17:34 UTC (Wed) by avtechmjc (subscriber, #50477) [Link]

Don't think so:

http://code.google.com/p/k9mail/issues/detail?id=1466
http://code.google.com/p/k9mail/issues/detail?id=2556

The stock imap client does not - "no support for client certificates is planned for IMAP":

http://code.google.com/p/android/issues/detail?id=3620

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 14, 2012 17:39 UTC (Wed) by ceplm (subscriber, #41334) [Link]

k9mail cannot do it?

Firefox in 2011 – Firefox plans for 2012

Posted Mar 22, 2012 19:16 UTC (Thu) by Zizzle (guest, #67739) [Link]

I'm looking forward to the results of project snappy.

Firefox really does seem to block the main UI thread doing IO for me a lot lately.

SQL lite and the history/awesomebar I'm guessing.


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