Firefox sucks on gnu/linux

Why, oh why is firefox such a pain to use in gnu/linux? There are few minor irritants the recurs over and over again that really irritate. I am an ardent supporter of Firefox. I use it in Windows. I’ve been using since 2003. I use it @ work. The only time I do not use it is when I use IE Tab (again this is in Firefox) to browse some of the Korean websites that are written in a way to comply with the non-standards compliant IE (6 for now). It is perfect for use on windows.

So what happens to the same base code when it comes to gnu/linux? Why do I get this feeling that there is a step-motherly conduct when it comes to gnu/linux? Hereon, the OS I refer to by default is gnu/linux. From the very start I noticed that firefox is pathetically slow. Every single menu item responds as if it were an eighty year old virgin in a red light area. Click on the “Tools” menu and move over to “Edit” and this takes around 2 secs to respond.

Then there is this nonsense of opening the text in the clipboard when you middle click anywhere on  the page. If I were streaming some video over the net, opening a new url in the same page means that I have to stream the video all over again.

Why does Firefox behave so differently on different OSes? I am not talking about complying with certain OS related standards. I am talking about getting things to just work. Firefox, I remember, used to run extremely smooth even on a system that had half the power as my current one. When I check the list of processes in “top” firefox is ALWAYS @ the top. I think it is time to fix all the bugs on ALL the OSes. Oh and please stop treating firefox on gnu/linux as just a port to be done. Afterall the X server is where Firefox’s most ardent supporters, like me, like to work.

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6 responses to “Firefox sucks on gnu/linux

  1. You’re right, although the lag in firefox is tolerable in windows, in linux its too much. Just to fire up it takes a looong time. These days I’m feeling more and more inclined to use epiphany (gnome’s web browser) which is lightning fast in comparison to firefox. But, although it has a few common extensions such as adblock and greasemonkey, I miss firefox addons. 😦

    I’ve noticed that when there’s a site with lots of javascipt or ‘heavy’ content which can cause slow loading, firefox’s xul gui is also affected. It becomes slow and unresponsive, and switching tabs or closing them takes a lifetime. Sometimes it only responds when the site has finished loading. Thankfully this is not the case with epiphany (which, btw, uses firefox’s gecko engine under the hood) since the gui is gtk.

    Also if you use stumbleupon you could try disabling the prefetching option. That helped me anyways.

  2. Maybe firefox’s core developers only work on windows. and on high-end computers, and don’t optimise their code enough. Anyway, I’ve noticed firefox clogs up more ram in linux than in windows, but its just me and my low end system.

  3. bloops:
    What baffles me is that Epiphany and Firefox use the same rendering engine and still have such huge difference in response time. I never had trouble with the stumble upon plugin for the simple reason that I have enough bandwidth to support prefetching.
    I suspect that the mozilla devs are concentrating on taking back the 80~90% browser market share that IE currently has. While I cannot TELL them what they must do, I would definitely think about switching to some other browser if things keep going this way.

  4. Ahh firefox’s hundreds of ‘features’, its xul layout and god knows how many memory leaks are to blame.

  5. Btw there is also the flash issue in gnu/linux. I’ve noticed a marked slowdown in both firefox and epiphany whenever I’m browsing websites with flash content, especially if it happens to be streaming video.

  6. bloops if there were a problem with Adobe’s implementation of flash then I would complain to Adobe. Besides I use Gnash. Sure not every website works with it but, I’d like open standards. I am ok with proprietary implementations of the standards.

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