Menu
Firefox 3.0 wins memory battle, claims tester

Firefox 3.0 wins memory battle, claims tester

Mozilla's Firefox 3.0 browser uses memory much more efficiently than its rivals, according to an independent tester who wrote a memory-monitoring utility to track usage by Firefox, Internet Explorer (IE), Flock, Opera and Safari.

In a lengthy post to his Web site, .Net developer Sam Allen spelled out the data he collected from the "Memory Watcher" application he wrote specifically to track Web browser memory use.

Although Allen acknowledged that the testing was unscientific -- he ran each browser between 2.69 hours and 2.91 hours, for instance, and didn't claim to have visited the exact same pages with each -- he claimed that the trend lines drawn by Memory Watcher were valid. The results, he said, "Are not a direct comparison in any way, but they offer a visualisation of trending in the memory behaviour of the layout engines and interfaces."

Firefox 3.0 was the clear winner, not only because it used the least amount of memory of any of the tested browsers, but its memory use didn't noticeably grow over time. "This browser exhibits memory usage that is by far lower than the others," Allen said of Firefox 3.0. "It releases memory to the system and the trend line is nearly flat."

The poorest marks went to Apple Inc.'s Safari 3.1 for Windows -- Allen tested only the Windows versions of each browser -- which consistently consumed more memory the longer it was used. "Safari on Windows shows extremely poor memory management," he said.

Other browsers, including Microsoft Corp.'s IE 8 Beta 1, Flock Inc.'s Flock 2.0 and Opera Software ASA's Opera 9.5, were in the middle, memory management-wise, he argued. While their memory use crept up over time, the increase was much more gradual than Safari's. "IE did well...although a worrying trend in the data could indicate that it[s memory usage] would keep escalating," Allen said.

Browsers are regularly dinged for "memory leaks," the term used to describe the increase in memory use the longer an application is used. In some cases, the memory load becomes big enough to degrade the overall performance of some computers.

Older versions of Firefox, including Firefox 2.0, for example, were assailed for rampant memory leaks, criticism that drove Mozilla to reduce the browser's memory footprint in the just-released Firefox 3.0.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags operaFirefoxIE 8 Beta 1Flock 2.0international newsmozilla

Featured

Slideshows

Tech industry comes together as Lexel celebrates turning 30

Tech industry comes together as Lexel celebrates turning 30

Leading figures within the technology industry across New Zealand came together to celebrate 30 years of success for Lexel Systems, at a milestone birthday occasion at St Matthews in the City.​

Tech industry comes together as Lexel celebrates turning 30
HP re-imagines education through Auckland event launch

HP re-imagines education through Auckland event launch

HP New Zealand held an inaugural Evolve Education event at Aotea Centre in Auckland, welcoming over 70 principals, teachers and education experts to explore ways of shaping and enhancing learning using technology.

HP re-imagines education through Auckland event launch
Reseller News ICT Industry Awards 2017 - Meet the winners...

Reseller News ICT Industry Awards 2017 - Meet the winners...

Reseller News honoured the industry’s finest on a standout evening for the New Zealand channel, recognising the achievements of established and emerging partners on a memorable night in Auckland.

Reseller News ICT Industry Awards 2017 - Meet the winners...
Show Comments