Sluggish Firefox - and what a hog!

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Okay - for the past few days I’ve been irritated with the browsing experience at home. Pages (google reader, Yahoo mail etc seemed inexplicably slower than before - but they’d load alright - just seemed that teeny weeny bit slower that’s enough to leave you suspicious).

I first suspected my ISP (verizon) for frequent dropped connections (saw the DSL modem lights reset a couple of times a day), then my wifi modem (not a high end one), then spyware/malware. So after the usual barrage of tests - wifi interference sources/anti virus/anti spyware/cable tests etc, I still hadn’t nailed it.

Finally, used procexp( you can use plain 'ole Task manager too - this is just flashier) and saw that FF had 330 MB of RAM with 3 or 4 tabs. Also, just plain clicking on a text box was slow, typing into a text field would echo characters after a noticeable delay - so this was definitely a browser problem.

When you have eliminated all which is impossible, then whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.
— Sherlock Holmes

Ain’t that an apt quote??? I love the addons I have and probably I have one too many. This page on problematic addons  was a life-saver - after disabling a bunch of infrequently used addons (stumble upon toolbar, google toolbar, browser sync, adblock filterset g, foxy tunes and some more), I’m back in browsing heaven. The only addons I have now enabled are

  • diigo toolbar

  • all in one gestures

  • Adblock

  • Flashgot

  • Piclens

What a relief!

BTW, addons are also the latest attack vector. So be wary of who you let into your browser!