Firefox slow to load

Discussion about official Mozilla Firefox builds
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Joined: March 31st, 2006, 9:56 pm

Post Posted June 23rd, 2009, 6:32 pm

Firefox is taking an age to open - sometimes up to a minute. I'm working my way through the Mozillazine Standard Diagnostic.
I've cleared the cache
reset toolbars and controls
Reset all user preferences
checked extensions all to no avail. I do have a large number of bookmarks and wonder if there is a way to keep them all but somewhere where they can't slow down the opening?


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Post Posted June 23rd, 2009, 6:49 pm

I assuming this is a problem with the 3.5 version you are posting with. I will move you to the proper forum under that assumption.
Alcohol and Calculus don't mix. Never drink and derive.

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Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 3:46 am

Large bookmarks+history numbers are known to cause slow start-up times. Losing bookmarks is probably unwanted, but you could remove some of your older history and see if it helps works.

Backing up your profile first of course, oh, and does firefox also start slow with a fresh profile?

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Joined: May 17th, 2008, 6:00 pm

Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 10:15 am

I began using Firefox 3.5 with beta4. It was very slow to load (~ 1.5 minutes), along with the expected incompatibility with a few of my add-ons. So, I uninstalled it and went back to using FF 3.10.10. Everything worked greatly with FF 3.10.10 and most recently with FF 3.10.11. Hoping things would be improved, I installed FF RC2. It is very slow to load... again ~1.5 minutes. It takes about this amount of time to restart after installing/uninstalling add-ons as well. At times, it "freezes", and I have to end the process to close it. When I open it again, it takes a long time to load. A short while ago, I created a new profile, with no bookmarks, add-ons, etc. imported. Just basically, a plain clean profile, and it too was very slow to load, and also froze up, so I again had to end the process to close FF 3.5 RC2. I deleted that new profile, and am now using my original profile. I don't have what I would call a lot of bookmarks, and my history is cleared when I close FF, and I also clear it at times when I am using it. I have never had anywhere near the problems, with previous releases of FF, that I am having with FF 3.5. Very, very, disappointing.

Thank you.

Jim too
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Joined: December 29th, 2003, 11:16 am

Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 10:17 am

Does turning off the all the check for updates change start-up time?

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Joined: February 11th, 2003, 2:26 pm

Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 10:26 am

Which OS and OS version is this on? What processor speed, memory, etc? Are you overclocking? What about video drivers - what kind of video cards are you running, and what driver versions? What do you have set as your home page? Is it hitting the disk hard when that happens, or does the processor time seem to go to 100%?

FWIW I've had no problems whatsoever with either Beta 4 or RC2. Very quick both at startup and when browsing, but then I've been using it on a moderately high-end machine. Still if it's taking over a minute on anything that's even a halfway modern box, I'd think that I'd notice the lag even on my PC. However often such things are very installation specific, and involve interactions with the particular OS version, add-ons, profile, etc. They can even be caused by hardware problems - in fact, I've finally given up on non-ECC memory for that exact reason (weird software and memory problems and even OS crashing on several machines that didn't even get fixed by swapping out handfuls of memory sticks and running memtest for days or even weeks ... for the few extra dollars that ECC costs, it's just not worth the cost of my time to have to troubleshoot flakey non-ECC memory sticks) - but that's a whole other story.

Any specifics you could provide would be useful (and possibly even essential) for replicating or troubleshooting the problem.

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Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 11:00 am

@ Jim too

I deselected Automatically check for updates to Firefox, Installed Add-ons, and Search Engines. I then closed FF 3.5 RC2, and even rebooted my computer. I launched FF and it did load quicker, but when I clicked on a bookmark on my Bookmarks Toolbar, it (FF) stated "not responding" at the top left hand corner of the browser. As before, I had to end the process to close FF. When I launched it again, it took about 1.5 minutes or so to load.

@ SoftWrightSys

I have a HP Pavilion a6110n. It has an AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core Processor 4400+. I have 2 MB of memory. Graphics is NVIDIA GeForce 6150SE nforce430. I am not overclocking, etc. I have FF start with a blank page.

I am using Windows Vista SP3.

Thank you both.


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Joined: February 11th, 2003, 2:26 pm

Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 11:23 am

I hope you mean you have 2GB of memory - I don't think either Vista or Xp will run with only 2MB of memory (!).

I'm not sure what you mean by 'Vista SP3' - do you mean you have a beta copy of the Vista SP3 service pack, or that you're running Vista SP2, or that you have Xp SP3? As far as I know the Vista SP3 is not yet generally available.

Your machine isn't as beefy as mine, but it's not that shabby either. You shouldn't be having that kind of problem with it, strictly from the hardware capacity point of view. I will try installing the RC2 build on a low-end Vista Ultimate SP2 box that I have (that's much less capable than the machine you have) and see what happens, but I'm not at that location right now and may not be able to try it out until later this evening. I've mostly used RC2 under Xp, so if there are any problems with it under Vista I probably wouldn't have encountered them.

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Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 11:24 am

(Sorry, somehow did a double submit)

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Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 11:41 am

@ SoftWrightSys

Oops, typos... Yep, I have Vista (Home Premium) SP2 and 2 GB of memory. :) My PC is about 2 years old. I've never had any problem, with any computer I've had over the years, with updates to Firefox. Don't understand why I am having them now.

Jim too
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Joined: December 29th, 2003, 11:16 am

Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 12:46 pm

If I understand, stopping Firefox from going to the internet to check for updates during start-up reduced the start-up (by an unspecified amount). What is specified as the home page? I don't remember you explicitly stating the results of starting in safe-mode.

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Joined: February 11th, 2003, 2:26 pm

Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 1:05 pm

Well, I had to run over to the other building to take care of a few things, and was able to install Firefox 3.5 RC2 on that Vista Ultimate SP2 box (1GHz AMD Athlon processor, 1.25 GB memory, low-end Brand X video card). Firefox 3.5 RC2 takes maybe about 5 seconds to come up on it - subjectively not much different from Firefox 3.0, though I didn't attempt a scientific test. Not an impressive Vista machine, but it's still useful for testing purposes.

You certainly have more than enough horsepower, and there's nothing particularly odd about it running on Vista SP2.


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Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 1:47 pm

I have been running 3.5 on both vista and win7 on a laptop with an Intel T2500 2GHz core duo with 2GB of RAM and the onboard integrated Intel graphics without slow startup.

@pedum In addition to the trouble shooting you have already done you could try eliminating any globally installed plugins as a source of problems.

To do this I would uninstall fx from remove programs control panel, (taking care not to delete your profile), and then delete the program files\Mozilla Firefox folder to get rid of any addins located there, possibly from a previous version.

Then reinstall 3.5RC2 and create a new profile (firefox.exe -profilemanager) launch 3.5 and open Tools | addons and disable any plugins (not extensions as you shouldn't have any in a new profile).

Try running like that to see if you get better startup times. If so then transfer your data files from your old profile. It is not generally recommended to downgrade a profile by reverting to a previous version of fx, and switching back & forth between major versions is a known way to cause problems. Note upwards migration of a profile should work OK.

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Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 2:44 pm

how big is your places.sqlite file? Do you use google toolbar by chance?

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Joined: May 17th, 2008, 6:00 pm

Post Posted June 24th, 2009, 7:23 pm

I had closed FF 3.5 RC2 several hours ago. When I opened it a few minutes ago, it "froze up" when I tried to click on a bookmark on my Bookmarks Toolbar. As I mentioned above, I had to end the process to close it. I then reopened it, and it took 1.5 to 2.0 minutes to load, after which it appears to be working fine, as has been the case in the past, after I get past the freeze ups and slow loadings, etc.

@Jim too

Having Firefox to NOT check for the various updates as I mentioned above, probably decreases the load time only by a few seconds if that.

My home page goes to Google Reader, allowing me to view the various RSS feeds I subscribe too. However, I have Firefox to load a blank page when I open it.

I did start Firefox in Safe Mode, and it did the same thing. It loaded, but froze up, so I had to end the process to close it. When I restarted it, it took 1.5 to 2.0 minutes to load.

@ Harlequin99

What specifically, would fall under the category of "Globally Installed Plugins"?

@ mak77

My places.sqlite file is 3,112 KB in size.

Thank you all.

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