FIREFOX SPLITS WORKLOAD TO
T he firefox browser has been given a long overdue performance boost by increasing the number of memory processes it uses for the first time.
Version 54 of Mozilla’s browser delivers – after eight years of development – separate processes for each tab, which theoretically improves performance and stability.
Multiple process browser tabs have been an important part of Chrome for years, but have the downside of swallowing system memory as each tab requires a separate instance of the browser’s rendering engine.
Mozilla restricts multiple processes to four threads, which it claims is the optimal number for systems equipped with 8GB of RAM. “If a browser uses too much memory, your computer may not have enough left to the run the other apps,” claimed Mozilla’s Ryan Pollock.
“Conversely, if a browser doesn’t use much memory, it might not be doing some of the things that it could to make your browsing experience fast and fluid.”
Mozilla claims its four-thread strategy hits the sweet spot between performance and memory hogging, and users can alter the number of threads if they have enough memory.
The announcement came as another fringe player – Vivaldi – also launched a refresh of its interface, with the browser for power-users given a fresh, more easily customised start page.
New features also include a panel for sorting your downloads and the ability for developers to dock tools so they can easily inspect elements and test and debug code.
Version 54 of Firefox finally delivers separate processes for each tab