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Firefox 6 & 7 periodically stop loading pages + high CPU

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exasperated
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Post Posted September 30th, 2011, 2:13 pm

I'm on a Windows 7 (64-bit) desktop. Since upgrading to Firefox 6, I've noticed that Firefox will sometimes stop loading all web pages. I am able to consistently reproduce the issue by logging into Google Plus, which only partly loads. No 404 page is returned, it just seems to hang in a loading state. This affects the "Get Add-ons" page as well in Firefox menu > Add-ons. The Web Console shows that GET requests never receive a response. Task Manager shows firefox.exe using 100% CPU resources (actually 50% in my case, one of two cores).

During this time, web pages will load fine in all other browsers (Chrome, IE, Safari).

I was hoping that Firefox 7 would resolve the issue, but it seems to have made it worse. With Firefox 6, Google Plus seemed to be the only site that caused this issue, but with Firefox 7 I've come across other sites that cause the issue as well.

I've tried changing proxy settings, restarting Firefox in safe mode, creating a new profile, uninstalling Flash and Adobe Acrobat (I don't use Reader), and restarting Windows in safe mode.

In an effort to narrow down the cause, I downloaded and installed the PortableApps versions of Firefox 5.0.1, 6.0.2 and 7.0. The issue does not occur in v5.0.1, but it does in the other two.

Right now it seems like my only option is to roll back to Firefox 5, though I know that exposes me to security issues that have addressed in the versions released since.

I'd love any ideas or suggestions. I'll be glad to do more testing if any other information might help.

LoudNoise
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Post Posted September 30th, 2011, 2:20 pm

What is your AV and firewall?
Post wrangler
"Choose between the Food Select Feature or other Functions. If no food or function is chosen, Toast is the default."

exasperated
Guest
 

Post Posted September 30th, 2011, 2:27 pm

Sophos Anti-Virus and Windows Firewall.

I forgot to mention that I've added Firefox to the list of allowed programs in the Windows Firewall settings.

Guest
Guest
 

Post Posted September 30th, 2011, 4:12 pm

I started to get this problem with firefox all the time after i updated to the version 6.0.2 (never had this problem before that version): when trying to go to some website that included "lots of stuff" on it (e.g. different forums), firefox stopped all downloading and the cpu usage went to 100%. Every time this happened, I couldnt load any new sites on firefox - it felt like the internet connection had gone completely dead. But other applications - including the Internet Explorer - worked perfectly fine.

Sometimes firefox started to work again if i closed the tab/tabs that i had just opened and waited for about a minute or two (extremely frustrating). Often i had to restart Firefox to make it work again (restarting Firefox always fixed the problem but sometimes the "restore previous session" -feature wasnt available even though it should have remembered the tabs that were open before closing Firefox).

Safe mode didnt help at all - neither did disabling that hardware acceleration -thing.

Then i typed this to the address bar: about:config

That opens a long list of settings. I went to the "network.http.max-connections" -line, and changed its value from 256 to 48. Then just closed that config-tab, and the problem was gone - no more freezing with cpu usage at 100.

exasperated
Guest
 

Post Posted September 30th, 2011, 5:22 pm

Guest, thanks for sharing your experience...it was right on the money.

I cross-checked the network.http.max-connections setting and noticed that the default value is 30 in Firefox 5, while in Firefox 6 & 7 the default value is 256. I promptly lowered it and, as you said, the issue disappeared. My next task will be to figure out what might be limiting the number of HTTP connections to my browser (firewall? NIC? network? ISP?)

I'm wondering what the reason was for the change in the default value, and if it's adversely affecting anyone else's ability to browse. If there's any way to request that the developers to shed some light on this, I'd love to know how.

LoudNoise
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Post Posted September 30th, 2011, 5:26 pm

Thanks for posting Guest. I really thought you just got lucky. :)
Post wrangler
"Choose between the Food Select Feature or other Functions. If no food or function is chosen, Toast is the default."

ron1001
Guest
 

Post Posted October 1st, 2011, 9:02 am

Hallelujah !!!

I have been looking for a solution for this nerve wrecking problem for days,

I was about to give up on Firefox even though I am addicted to my 50 add-ons.

You should get the Nobel Peace prize for this one bro.

vohk
Guest
 

Post Posted October 2nd, 2011, 12:22 am

Dankt Gott!

This one has been killing me since FF6. Giving this a try now.

Mr Rogers
Guest
 

Post Posted October 5th, 2011, 10:58 am

Worked for me. Thanks.

Dennis77
 
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Joined: October 5th, 2011, 1:02 pm

Post Posted October 5th, 2011, 1:16 pm

Thank you very much for this solution. I kept switching back to version 5, which always worked except for security issues, etc. I must have switched dozens of times to 6, the updated 6, 7, and the updated 7. I signed up for Mozilla solutions, one had almost 1000 people signed up who had the same problem (I suspect many more because some will write up their own or lump in with similar ones. Some forums suggested going into the registry. After uninstalling 5 and backing up bookmarks, I cleaned up all Firefox traces from the registry before re-installing the newer (not working versions). I wish we could let Mozilla know this answer to help others.

Then you came along with this simple but effective solution. How elegant and brilliant (at least considering how much time I spent - even switching to Chrome in case there was no solution).

Thanks,
Dennis

LoudNoise
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Post Posted October 5th, 2011, 1:40 pm

We have a sticky on the subject and one of the mods from Sumo has posted in one of the local threads. The two major support sites know about the problem and the work around.
Post wrangler
"Choose between the Food Select Feature or other Functions. If no food or function is chosen, Toast is the default."

jduell
 
Posts: 1
Joined: October 5th, 2011, 6:01 pm

Post Posted October 5th, 2011, 6:59 pm

Hi! I'm a Firefox developer. We're trying to figure out what's going on here. Previously, this has been caused by third-party software in DLLs (libraries loaded into Firefox that we don't control). See, for instance:

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=681198

We suspect something similar might be going on here. If we can get some users to give us a list of the DLLs that are running in firefox.exe when you see this hang, that would be *very* very helpful.

To help:

1) Reset your network.http.max-connections back to the default (256).

2) Download Microsoft's "Process Explorer" software:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysi ... 96653.aspx

3) Browse with Firefox until you see the hang, then report the list of DLLs you see to us. The best way to do this is to file a comment in the bug report we have open for this, here:

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=692260

(You'll need to create a bugzilla account: takes just a minute!)

If you need step-by-step info on how to get the DLL list with Process Explorer, follow these instructions here (except for firefox.exe, not outlook of course :)

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/970920

Thank you! It sucks to see an issue like this slip through testing :( I hope we can fix it ASAP with some of your help.

best,

Jason Duell

cwrasmo
Guest
 

Post Posted October 6th, 2011, 9:34 am

I did not see this issue starting with 6 (not saying it wasn't there). The way "Guest" described it is EXACTLY what was happening to me. The max-connections work-around also fixed my problem.

If I have anything to add, it's that I just recently started frequently using tab groups pretty heavily with 3 or 4 groups at any given time with an average of about 5 tabs per group. I also noticed that if the problem started after loading a new page, closing that page would sometimes fix the issue.

VivaSudoku
Guest
 

Post Posted October 6th, 2011, 10:57 am

Heyy, incredible!

Thanks for your expertise & suggestion, guest.
It worked!

Reducing the number of connections seems to solve the problem in my case - I had the exact same issue (stops loading pages, consumes 100% CPU...) with my Firefox 7.

Thank you soooo much!!!

All the best,
Viva

paul11974
 
Posts: 105
Joined: September 25th, 2004, 4:50 pm

Post Posted October 9th, 2011, 12:02 pm

Guest wrote:I started to get this problem with firefox all the time after i updated to the version 6.0.2 (never had this problem before that version): when trying to go to some website that included "lots of stuff" on it (e.g. different forums), firefox stopped all downloading and the cpu usage went to 100%. Every time this happened, I couldnt load any new sites on firefox - it felt like the internet connection had gone completely dead. But other applications - including the Internet Explorer - worked perfectly fine.

Sometimes firefox started to work again if i closed the tab/tabs that i had just opened and waited for about a minute or two (extremely frustrating). Often i had to restart Firefox to make it work again (restarting Firefox always fixed the problem but sometimes the "restore previous session" -feature wasnt available even though it should have remembered the tabs that were open before closing Firefox).

Safe mode didnt help at all - neither did disabling that hardware acceleration -thing.

Then i typed this to the address bar: about:config

That opens a long list of settings. I went to the "network.http.max-connections" -line, and changed its value from 256 to 48. Then just closed that config-tab, and the problem was gone - no more freezing with cpu usage at 100.


:-k THANK YOU This worked a treat =D>

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