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Vista w/FF Slow/Freezez

by WayneStrauss / October 19, 2011 3:07 PM PDT

Normally I find my
system slows down to a dead crawl every few days even though I run CCleaner
often. The first to "freeze" is FF after which I may be able to close
any open apps, but FF hardly ever recovers. I thought it might be that I had a
large number of tabs open(20+), which alway caused FF to fail but now I try to
keep the number of tabs to 10 or so (I may also have as many as 10 apps open
although that's high for me) but since FF v. 7 it seems to be worse. Task
Manager shows idle 90%+ and FF about 2%. Eventually FF crashes and I'll restart
it or just reboot out of frustration. I've been dumping apps and add-ons. I
don't know if this is a FF or Vista problem although, up time seems better
w/Chrome. I don't want to xpost so when I happened here I though I'd give it a
Config: Intel
Core2 Duo CPU E4500 2.20GHz. 3,240 GB Mem. 390 GB disk, 97 GB Free. Vista Home
Premium, SP 2, all update applied, Norton 360, FF 7.0.1, Verizon DSL

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Best Answer chosen by WayneStrauss

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I would try a test.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / October 23, 2011 10:29 PM PDT

Open Firefox in it's Safe Mode.

Note, that is not Windows' own Safe Mode, but with Windows loaded normally and opening Firefox in safe mode.

How to start Firefox in safe mode.

This temporarily disables all add-ons and plugins and is used as a diagnostic mode to see how Firefox performs in its basic mode. Any web sites you visit in this mode may not display, render, or work properly because web sites now depend heavily on extras, but if Firefox works without freezing in this mode then you have narrowed the problem down to
add-ons, toolbars, or plugins.

If that's the case then your next step is to load Firefox normally and try elimination tests for Firefox's add-ons and toolbars.

See if that helps.


{Note, this is a re-post. My first included an incorrect link}

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Thanks, but ... (there's always a "but")
by WayneStrauss / October 31, 2011 2:20 AM PDT
In reply to: I would try a test.

I understand perfectly and agree with the methodology you described--I've done it before--and look forward to doing it again like the root canal I've got scheduled for tomorrow (truly!). However, I've seen a lot of complaints here about FF 7.0 being slow loading pages. My wife and I have our own machines with different configs (both Vista
w/FF 7.0.1) and different mix of addon-ons and it seems we're both
experiencing the same symptoms.

Since this is a self-help forum it seems to me there will be a lot of people going through the same procedure and perhaps finding problems with the same add-ons. Even if many of the systems are unique identifying some commonality(s) would save thousands of hours. And what about the FF crash reports sent to Mozilla; if this is a pervasive problem I would hope they would give it high priority.

I'm now using Chrome and not seeing the severe page load problem. Of course I have a different mix of add-ons in Crome than I have in FF.

Thanks again

P.S. I've been in IT software system architecture for close to 45 years so I'm not afraid to get my hands dirty in the bowels of code, I just don't want to if I don't have to.

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I understand
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / October 31, 2011 5:42 AM PDT

but I have to say I am using FF 7.01 on my 50Mbs broadband connection and page loading is lightening fast.

Here's a list of my Firefox add-ons and plugins.


AdBlockPlus - {disables all web site advertising}

British English Dictionary

NoScript - {Disables all web page scripts, and allows me to select which scripts to allow, if I wish}.

WOT - {Web of Trust, helps me identify suspicious web sites}


getPlusPlus for Adobe 162103 - {No idea what this is, except Adobe does weird things with their Flash Player plugins and other Adobe components}.

Java Deployment Toolkit

Java(TM) Platform SE 6 U23

Microsoft Windows Media Player Firefox Plugin 1.0.0..8

Shockwave Flash - {Flash Player}

Shockwave for Director 11.6..629 - {Again, no idea. Strangely it says for Netscape plug-in}

Silverlight Plug-in {Microsoft's answer to Flash}

Unity Player - {Not sure where this came from}.

So you see, I have a number of different add-ons and plugins, and all I can say is, Firefox 7.01 works well for me.


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This **may** save you some time..
by Carol~ Forum moderator / October 31, 2011 7:18 AM PDT


The below list may save you some of those "thousands of hours" worth of time. I don't know how often the list has been updated. Or if it's been updated at all. But it might be worth looking at.

"Problematic extensions"

If it makes you feel any better, I've also had problems with FF. From all I've read, I don't believe the problem is specific to Vista. In my case, I can't be sure if it's FF, my system or a combination of both. It's a sore subject, so I will say no more. Sad

And by the way, in this "day and age", a root canal procedure doesn't live up to its (past) reputation. I can attest to the fact, it's time consuming and expensive, but not painful.

Good luck tomorrow!

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Root Canal
by WayneStrauss / October 31, 2011 7:54 AM PDT

Thanks for the encouragement; root canals were associated with the Marquis de Sade, but I've had one a couple of years ago and the procedure itself was painless. It was the pain AFTER the anethesia wore off that made me want to throw myself under a bus. I just threw it in for dramatic effect although I really am getting one tomorrow and an implant Friday. But, this has nothing to do with FF except that I'm going to dump a bunch of add-ons as soon as I can "get a bite on it."

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by Carol~ Forum moderator / October 31, 2011 10:50 AM PDT
In reply to: Root Canal

I stand corrected about AFTER the anesthesia wears off.

Another "by the way "..

If you (only) wanted to throw yourself under a bus after a root canal, "suicide" comes to mind, when thinking of the dayS after an implant! Devil

Having "been there .. done that" twice, the only thing I know to suggest is.......

Get a Rx for as many narcotics as is legally possible! Silly

On a more serious note, the best thing you can do for yourself, is listen to what "they" say about "ICE packs". It helps minimize the "discomfort" they say you'll experience. ⇐ ⇐ Their words NOT mine!

I suspect you won't be in a "FF state of mind" for a while. We may just have the answer you're looking for you by then.

I (sincerely) wish you luck, And hope both procedures go well and are pain-free!

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What else besides norton?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / October 19, 2011 3:11 PM PDT

We find that some other apps like Teatimer conflict and do what you wrote. I know it's tough but without diving into a Hijackthis log file or output from Autoruns, I'm just guessing.

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First off
by Jimmy Greystone / October 19, 2011 10:57 PM PDT

First off, CCleaner is not some magic panacea for system performance. Unless it's gone through a major overhaul since the last time I looked at it, it basically does squat beyond empty the recycle bin and clear out temp files (which can actually cause problems rather than fix them), maybe a few other almost entirely useless functions that are already built into Windows. If someone were going to write a paper on the placebo effect with regards to computer programs, CCleaner would make for an excellent case study.

Second, have you tried a different browser for a day or two to see if it's just a bad FF profile? Go download Safari or Opera. You don't have to use them for long if you don't like either of them, just for 1-2 days to see if the problem seems to be triggered by FF or if it's any browser.

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Other Browsers
by WayneStrauss / October 21, 2011 9:57 PM PDT
In reply to: First off

Chrome is operating well although not through yet, Have installed Safari & Opera but not used.

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by WayneStrauss / October 23, 2011 3:21 PM PDT
In reply to: First off

I don't (well, hardly ever) install software I haven't researched. CCleaner was touted as a "must have" everywhere I looked. Maybe I'm not looking in the right places?

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A lot of things
by Jimmy Greystone / October 23, 2011 11:25 PM PDT
In reply to: CCleaner

A lot of things just get parroted/regurgitated because rather than admit ignorance, people just go along with something someone else said.

Case in point... Way back in the day, around the time of Win95, the amount of RAM in computers was "exploding" and we went from 4MB being huge, to 8, 16, 24, 32, even 64MB. Crazy times, let me tell ya! Kidding aside, there was an issue with most computers only coming with 256K of L2 cache, and I forget the specific amount, but it could only store the memory addresses of say 32MB of RAM. The exact amount isn't really important. So you had a lot of people out there saying how you should NEVER install more than 32MB of RAM in a computer, because any more would cause a performance hit. You can probably still find a lot of archived websites where this information was repeated. The problem is it was only partially right. It is true that cached RAM is faster than uncached RAM, but even uncached RAM would be significantly faster than the alternative of using the HDD for swap space. Instead of being thousands of times faster it might only be hundreds of times faster, so there WAS a performance hit, but you were still better off with uncached RAM as opposed to swap space. Didn't stop all manner of people from running around saying how you should never have more than 32MB of RAM because it will slow your computer down, and all kinds of other misinformed comments.

So, basically it comes down to the fact that a bad idea doesn't suddenly become a good idea just because it's popular. That just makes it a popular bad idea. I'll admit to having not looked at CCleaner in a couple of years, but based on information gleaned from posts here, it's still basically the same program it was then, they've just added a few more things to it. Which also isn't to say it doesn't have utility, but programs like CCleaner are intended to be surgical and allow you to target very specific parts of the system. They're also intended more for people who actually know what all the different options are, and when to target one over the other. The problem comes in when you get a bunch of people who think that because the program has a bunch of technical sounding options, it must be some kind of power tool, and then some moron gets it in their head that suddenly they're a "power user" or a "tech" or whatever term you want to use. It doesn't. It just makes them a moron with a potentially dangerous program who doesn't even understand the potential danger. Think of it like the people who discovered radiation. They had no clue just how dangerous the material they were handling was until it was too late. CCleaner may not be fatal to humans, but it might be to your OS.

Getting back to the main issue though, if other browsers seem to be working fine, then the next step is to try starting Firefox without any extensions enabled. If that works, then you get to go through and enable extensions one at a time until you find the one causing problems. If that doesn't work, then you might consider creating a fresh new profile, and using that sans extensions for a time. If that resolves the issue, then SLOWLY add back your extensions. I know it will be tough, but if you maintain discipline it will pay off long term.

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