Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 27th Sep 2011 19:45 UTC, submitted by lemur2
Mozilla & Gecko clones Mozilla has released Firefox 7. Unlike releases of Firefox 5 and Firefox 6 which were relatively minor upgrades to the browser, Firefox 7 includes a number of significant improvements, most important of which is probably the drastically reduced memory usage.
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I don't think so. On Windows 7 32-bit, with only one tab open (this very one I'm using to write this), firefox is taking 140 mb of memory. This is with add-ons disabled. It's ridiculous and, while Firefox will probably remain my primary browser until I can get my add-ons on other browsers (Chrome is the closest), Chrome's memory usage with add-ons enabled generally holds at about 30 mb with one tab open. Mozilla's got a long way to go before they can start claiming they've drastically reduced memory consumption. Linux or Mac users, what've your experiences been with ff7 in this area?

Mozilla released Firefox 7 today, and the new version of makes web browsing faster than ever.

The update is especially helpful for the hardcore web junkies among us who browse with scores of open tabs and browsing sessions that span multiple days.

Firefox 7 reduces memory usage by 20 to 50 percent, which translates to quicker response times and fewer crashes. These improvements constitute the first publicly available implementation of MemShrink, Mozilla’s project focusing on decreasing Firefox’s memory consumption to make browsing faster and more stable.

The hackers at Mozilla are still working on accurate benchmark tests for quantifying Firefox’s memory usage and improvements.

Mozilla says Firefox 7′s improvements should be most noticable to users who leave browser windows open for many hours or days on end, who browse with multiple tabs at once, who open image-heavy pages or pages with large amounts of text, who run Firefox on Windows machines or who use the browser simultaneously with other programs that take a large toll on memory.

Open a few tabs and leave them open, and see what happens.

Memory Use (No Extensions)—Winners: Opera and Firefox!

Note that these memory tests were a bit interesting—while IE, Chrome, and Opera all held fast to their memory values, Firefox fluctuated a bit more. It started up higher with Chrome and IE, but then backed off after a few seconds for much lower memory usage.

Memory Use (Five Extensions)—Winners: Opera and Firefox!

While each browser used up a good deal more memory with five extensions attached, Opera still used the least when started up and Firefox used the least once we loaded nine tabs. Again, it fluctuated for a few seconds before it got into first place, but it got there nonetheless.

Overall Scores

Obviously, there's a lot more to browser choice than speed—variety of extensions, customizability, and so on—but when it comes to performance, here's how our favorite browsers. We gave each contender a point value for its placing in each of the above tests, then tallied up the totals and divided them by the total number of points each could have received.

Opera 11.51: 82%
Firefox 7: 73%
Internet Explorer 9: 47.5%
Chrome 14: 43%

Opera's still the speed champion, as usual. The other browsers have surprisingly switched places, though: Firefox, so often looked down upon for its sluggish speeds, has jumped up to #2 with version 7, and Chrome has slowly worked it's way down to last place. Granted, Chrome's inability to complete the CSS test probably pushed it over the edge from 3rd place into 4th. Still, we have seen Chrome slowly gain bloat with each new version, and boy did it feel slow when we ran these tests. Hopefully they can take a hint from Firefox and make a comeback soon.

Edited 2011-09-27 23:56 UTC

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