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Plugin-Container. exe - What Are Your Thoughts Here?

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DasFox
 
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Post Posted June 27th, 2010, 9:40 pm

Ok, for me personally I've never had Firefox ever crash because of a plugin now maybe you have. But the thing is for me, I've used this browser since this project started long before it was called Firefox, and even going back that far in all these years I've never had that many problems and none of them were ever plugin problems or crashes...

So now comes along the plugin-container.exe which from what I've read is suppose to help those who do run into problems to keep it seperated so a plugin problem won't take down your whole browser.

Well thanks to this now, which I personally don't need, now I have firefox using up more memory, something I'd rather have less of.

So what's your thoughts here on this plugin-container people?

Should Mozilla ditch this, or make something a bit more efficient? For me I don't like having a program using up 30MB of ram just to help with plugins, which I think is foolish, especially since I've been using many various browsers over the past 20 years without problems, now we need this? :(
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LoudNoise
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Post Posted June 27th, 2010, 10:00 pm

How little ram do you have? Assuming you have at least a gig we are talking about the plug-ins container using .03gb here. If you don't need it turn it off.
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Post Posted June 27th, 2010, 10:24 pm

Plus soon every other major browser will have something similar.
So no Mozilla should NOT ditch this as people have been screaming that Firefox should not crash just because a plugin crashes this will fix that need. Any other topic you would like to attempt a flame war on?
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 1:13 am

If you have never had problem with Flash crashing, you must be one of the only people on the planet!
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 1:16 am

This is fine to make improvement but not at the cost of needing to increase memory consumption.

Firefox still has memory issues that no one has ever seemed to want to deal with or fix.

Just today as example firefox with 4 tabs open and on your basic flash site nothing fancy was using around 180MB of ram.

I don't mind progress and improvements but the Mozilla team has never fixed the problems with memory usage/management in this browser.

As I said I've used this browser since the project started and in that time I've never had problems with plugins.

I work also as a computer tech so I keep up with the industry and I have never seen anything overwhelming that demanded the attention of any such plugin device because there were so many problems.

If this was such a problem I'd really love to hear from a Mozilla developer what percentage of users were experiencing problems that brought about needed change?

I'm also not alone in the fact that since this project has started, I've never personally known of any person that has ever had a plugin issue either and I've been around a big network community of Windows and Unix users the world over, which I've never seen any problems from...

Something I forgot to mention, the biggest problem I've seen is when people have a load of addons in Firefox and they wonder why it's crashing when it typcially has nothing to do with the plugin but the instability of the browser with to much crap installed in it riddled with bugs...
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 1:56 pm

I really find these comments hard to believe. Flash didn't get it's terrible reputation for no reason. It may not be as bad as Steve Jobs wants everyone to think, but it's pretty darn crashy. And on slower machines, Java ain't so hot either.

On the memory issues, you might try comparing Firefox's memory consumption to another browser... all of the modern major browsers consume far more resources... although apparently you are using K-Meleon, which is quite simply the *lightest* modern browser on the planet, but honestly, Firefox is still the second lightest.

If you take the time to browse through the recent posts to this forum you will find half-a-dozen other threads about the same topic full of information about how to disable this feature, some technical information about memory management and recovery, and of course blind rage over what everyone who leaves their task manager open too much *perceives* to be a problem, and no evidence of any actual performance problems.
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 2:21 pm

And can you quantify exactly how much more memory Firefox is using?

I preformed 8 tests. 4 with the plugin-container and 4 without. I set a YouTube video as the home page so only that 1 page would load, and I restarted the browser after each test.

* Without the plugin-container the Firefox process averaged 83.38MB over 4 tests.
* With the plugin-container, the Firefox process averaged 43.53MB and the plugin-container averaged 46.15MB. Which is a total of 89.68MB.

So with the plugin-container, Firefox's memory usage was marginally higher (which was expected), but nowhere close enough to cry wolf.

And, by the way, last I checked, Firefox had better memory management and usage than the other browsers.
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DasFox
 
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 4:45 pm

patrickjdempsey wrote:I really find these comments hard to believe. Flash didn't get it's terrible reputation for no reason. It may not be as bad as Steve Jobs wants everyone to think, but it's pretty darn crashy. And on slower machines, Java ain't so hot either.

On the memory issues, you might try comparing Firefox's memory consumption to another browser... all of the modern major browsers consume far more resources... although apparently you are using K-Meleon, which is quite simply the *lightest* modern browser on the planet, but honestly, Firefox is still the second lightest.

If you take the time to browse through the recent posts to this forum you will find half-a-dozen other threads about the same topic full of information about how to disable this feature, some technical information about memory management and recovery, and of course blind rage over what everyone who leaves their task manager open too much *perceives* to be a problem, and no evidence of any actual performance problems.



Yes they say Flash is buggy, I believe it, but I personally haven't experienced it either , and yes I've never ever had a flash problem on any site in the past 10 years. But as I was saying, if you're going to stuff a bunch of extensions/addons into Firefox, then you're looking for problems. The only thing I typically use on Firefox is DownThemAll and DownloadHelper.

I use to run K-Meleon in the past, but I had ditched it for some reason I can't remember, but I'm going to start using it more regularly now and just use Firefox when I need DownThemAll, because that's a nice app for downloading, does make a big difference in speeds...

If you take the time to browse through the recent posts to this forum you will find half-a-dozen other threads about the same topic full of information about how to disable this feature...

Disable what feature, the plugin-container? Hmm I'd of thought if you disable it, then you don't have plugin support...

I've actually had a lot of performance problems with the high mempry usage in the past with Firefox, more like Firefox causing the entire system to slow down and Firefox locking up and crashing itself. Having a browser lag a system isn't fun and I've had this happen many times.




Bluefang wrote:And can you quantify exactly how much more memory Firefox is using?

I preformed 8 tests. 4 with the plugin-container and 4 without. I set a YouTube video as the home page so only that 1 page would load, and I restarted the browser after each test.

* Without the plugin-container the Firefox process averaged 83.38MB over 4 tests.
* With the plugin-container, the Firefox process averaged 43.53MB and the plugin-container averaged 46.15MB. Which is a total of 89.68MB.

So with the plugin-container, Firefox's memory usage was marginally higher (which was expected), but nowhere close enough to cry wolf.

And, by the way, last I checked, Firefox had better memory management and usage than the other browsers.



quantify, well in what way do you think we should quantify?

Let's look at it like this, because there are many different set of specs out there on hardware it makes it difficult to quantify and make everything absolute across the board...

The task manager is all I look at just to get a basic idea of what is going on, it's accurate enough to tell you what usage is happening at the moment on the browser.

You said you ran tests, but how many tabs are we talking open on these tests? More tabs does increase the memory usage.

For all the years I've used Firefox, I have typically never had more then 4 tabs open and I've seen with only 4 tabs open and surfing various sites, with possibly only one flash intensive like a flash movie site like YouTube cause Firefox to run at around 180-250MB of ram and that's it in a nuttshell, nothing complicated or fancy to figure out.

4 tabs open and 180-250MB of ram is just to much consumption, I don't exactly call that lightweight.

P.S. And the reason I made this post is because yesterday with the plugin-container I saw Firefox reaching close to almost 300MB of ram on only one flash site and with 4-5 tabs open, that's pretty sad consumption... :(
Last edited by DasFox on June 28th, 2010, 4:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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LoudNoise
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 4:51 pm

4 tabs open and 180-250MB of ram is just to much consumption, I don't exactly call that lightweight.


Do you have a comparison? I.E. does not count since it off-loads things to the OS.
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DasFox
 
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 5:02 pm

LoudNoise wrote:
4 tabs open and 180-250MB of ram is just to much consumption, I don't exactly call that lightweight.


Do you have a comparison? I.E. does not count since it off-loads things to the OS.


What do you mean by a comparison, as to what we think it should be doing and what is acceptable?

I compare to what others have experienced for one, and you don't find many people talking about Firefox running at 200-250MB of ram with only 4-5 tabs open, for starters...

I've used many different browsers to compare against to just get an idea of what they do, as compared to Firefox.

Here are some browsers I've used over the years:

Opera, Safari, Chrome & Chromium, Netscape, Firefox in Linux/Unix, Mozilla/Seamonkey, GNU IceCat, Maxthon, NeoPlanet, Flock, Konqueror, Galeon, Epiphany, and Dillo.

Granted some of these were used on different systems besides Windows, OS X and Unix/Linux, but it still gives you an idea of what to expect from the average browser.

The truth is, as I mentioned before, I've been around this Mozilla project since it started in the beginning and Firefox for many years has had memory leaks and poor memory management, it's just the way the browser is. In fact if you've ever used Unix/Linux, you'll even hear people complaining in those circles on those systems about the memory problems too. I know because I've been there first hand to see them and hear them and yes even to this day I use Firefox in Linux and memory is still an issue on it there, but I'm not seeing it as bad, at least for the moment I've not had problems with it, but if I do I'll post back here and show you some screenshots of the consumption in Linux...
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LoudNoise
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 5:30 pm

What do you mean by a comparison, as to what we think it should be doing and what is acceptable?


As compared to memory usage with other browsers.
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 5:46 pm

DasFox wrote:Disable what feature, the plugin-container? Hmm I'd of thought if you disable it, then you don't have plugin support...


Again, if you read the half-dozen other threads, it's all in there. If you disable Out Of Process Plugins, the plugins will be handled within the Firefox process as they were before. In fact, this is how Windows 2000 users experience it since Out Of Process Plugins are not offered for that platform. The only difference will be that you will loose crash protection and crash recovery if a plugin should prove to fail.

DasFox wrote:I've used many different browsers to compare against to just get an idea of what they do, as compared to Firefox.

Here are some browsers I've used over the years:

Opera, Safari, Chrome & Chromium, Netscape, Firefox in Linux/Unix, Mozilla/Seamonkey, GNU IceCat, Maxthon, NeoPlanet, Flock, Konqueror, Galeon, Epiphany, and Dillo.


Over the years doesn't do much good in comparisons today. The web is a different place than it was only 4 years ago and many pages that look fairly simple are bogged down with all sorts of scripts and embedded objects that really weigh things down. There may be historical browsers with better apparent memory management, but probably only because they are ignoring code they don't understand. If it doesn't rank high on ACID2 and ACID3, it's not a modern browser. Of the browsers you list, only a few are currently updated. Several of them are based on Firefox. Of the ones that are currently updated, Firefox 3.6 out preforms every one of them in memory use which can be verified on various benchmarking sites. This is another topic that has come up time and again and there are many old topics about it on MozillaZine for your reading enjoyment. You can do your own memory tests if you like, but the perception that Chrome and Safari are "light" is nothing more than perception and clever marketing.

DasFox wrote:I've actually had a lot of performance problems with the high mempry usage in the past with Firefox, more like Firefox causing the entire system to slow down and Firefox locking up and crashing itself. Having a browser lag a system isn't fun and I've had this happen many times.

DasFox wrote:The truth is, as I mentioned before, I've been around this Mozilla project since it started in the beginning and Firefox for many years has had memory leaks and poor memory management, it's just the way the browser is.


Let's not confuse the past with the present. Firefox 3.6 is not the same monster that 3.0 was and is by far the most stable most efficient Firefox so far.
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 6:27 pm

DasFox wrote:Yes they say Flash is buggy, I believe it, but I personally haven't experienced it either , and yes I've never ever had a flash problem on any site in the past 10 years.

Then you must be the golden child, because that is extremely unlikely.

DasFox wrote:If you take the time to browse through the recent posts to this forum you will find half-a-dozen other threads about the same topic full of information about how to disable this feature...

Yes, because the back-port of the feature from the development trunk to the 3.6 branch was a bit of a rush job. Plus, it's a 'new' feature, and people are always afraid of things that are new.

DasFox wrote:quantify, well in what way do you think we should quantify?

DasFox in first post wrote:Well thanks to this now, which I personally don't need, now I have firefox using up more memory, something I'd rather have less of.

...

Should Mozilla ditch this, or make something a bit more efficient? For me I don't like having a program using up 30MB of ram just to help with plugins, which I think is foolish, especially since I've been using many various browsers over the past 20 years without problems, now we need this? :(

I was asking you to quantify how much additional memory Firefox was consuming because of the plugin-container... since your whole argument seemed to revolve around it.

DasFox wrote:The task manager is all I look at just to get a basic idea of what is going on, it's accurate enough to tell you what usage is happening at the moment on the browser.

Actual, not it's not. I do not think the task manager shows the actual memory usage by default.
http://shsc.info/WindowsMemoryManagement
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commit_charge

If you really want a good view into process information, you should really use something like Process Explorer
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysi ... 96653.aspx

DasFox wrote:You said you ran tests, but how many tabs are we talking open on these tests? More tabs does increase the memory usage.

Now you're talking about something completely different. You started the topic about memory consumption of the plugin-container.exe, but now you're talking about memory consumption of multiple tabs over time. Those are two completely different topics.

DasFox wrote:For all the years I've used Firefox, I have typically never had more then 4 tabs open and I've seen with only 4 tabs open and surfing various sites, with possibly only one flash intensive like a flash movie site like YouTube cause Firefox to run at around 180-250MB of ram and that's it in a nuttshell, nothing complicated or fancy to figure out.

4 tabs open and 180-250MB of ram is just to much consumption, I don't exactly call that lightweight.

First off, that's pretty typical. With 5-10 tabs open, 100MB-200MB of memory usage is pretty normal. And if you didn't see from my tests, Flash consumes a lot of memory.

If that's the memory consumption you've always seen, than how is it any different now? As my tests pointed out, the plugin-container should not add an appreciable amount of memory usage to Firefox. It mainly just separates it into different processes.

In fact if you've ever used Unix/Linux, you'll even hear people complaining in those circles on those systems about the memory problems too. I know because I've been there first hand to see them and hear them and yes even to this day I use Firefox in Linux and memory is still an issue on it there, but I'm not seeing it as bad, at least for the moment I've not had problems with it, but if I do I'll post back here and show you some screenshots of the consumption in Linux...

I use Linux and I haven't seen any memory problems for quite a while.

As of Firefox 3.5, all of the major leaks have been fixed and the developers made great progress in improving memory allocation and management. Most 3rd party comparisons showed Firefox to be in-line or better at memory allocation, use, and management than other browsers.

So as LoudNoise said, show us some comparisons of memory usage. Install and test some up-to-date modern browsers (except for anything IE based) and substantiate your claims.
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DasFox
 
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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 8:01 pm

Over the years I didn't mean to imply in the past and not to date, I meant from then till now, hence the years to present date.

I went in the direction yes off topic a bit about the memory but I was talking about memory usage on the plugin, no it wasn't much only 30MB but when you are running an older box with limited ram it's pushing it. Let's not assume everyone is running Firefox on modern up to date systems with 4GB Ram...

Running Firefox with only 4-5 tabs open not surfing anything code intensive and then watching one Flash video for barely 1 min. and hitting close to 300MB I don't consider to be good memory usage/management...

Rather then me go and install and substantiate claims, I would suggest you do this for yourself as I've already done this as I said with all those browsers, so I know what I've seen and tested in the past few years to date. It's better to see if for yourself rather then take my word on it, then there can be no doubt.

Going back only 1-2 years hasn't made any major changes in code/web development that is going to dramatically change browser memory management.

The thing is, there are many different variables one can come across, your hardware, software installed, different windows running at the time, and so on that will bring about different changes and to just try and test a browser for a few days or a few weeks isn't fair on the part of the software. To really see something you're going to have to spend a few months running through all sorts of scenarios. Then when you thought you've done your best on that, don't be surprised if something else pops up because chances are it will.
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Bluefang

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Post Posted June 28th, 2010, 8:35 pm

DasFox wrote:I went in the direction yes off topic a bit about the memory but I was talking about memory usage on the plugin, no it wasn't much only 30MB but when you are running an older box with limited ram it's pushing it. Let's not assume everyone is running Firefox on modern up to date systems with 4GB Ram...

I go back to my first post in this topic: it is not 30MB more, it is 30MB from the Firefox process. If you add up the Firefox process and all of the plugin-container processes, it should be about the same as if you ran all of the plugins in-process.

DasFox wrote:Running Firefox with only 4-5 tabs open not surfing anything code intensive and then watching one Flash video for barely 1 min. and hitting close to 300MB I don't consider to be good memory usage/management...

Firefox can not control what plugins do or how they manage their own memory. That is another nice advantage of running them out-of process: they no longer contaminate Firefox's memory heap.

DasFox wrote:Rather then me go and install and substantiate claims, I would suggest you do this for yourself as I've already done this as I said with all those browsers, so I know what I've seen and tested in the past few years to date. It's better to see if for yourself rather then take my word on it, then there can be no doubt.

First of all, you're the one making the claims, the burden of proof is on you.

But for the sake of it:
http://lifehacker.com/5457242/browser-s ... extensions
http://www.dailytech.com/Browser+War+Fi ... e16181.htm
http://www.multimolti.com/blog/2010/04/ ... er-tested/
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/fir ... 558-4.html
http://dotnetperls.com/chrome-memory (older)
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