Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Firefox using 90MB+ of memory

  1. May 14, 2004 #1
    This is getting ridiculous. With my last installation of Firefox, which was an upgrade from Firebird, it used to take up a lot of memory and frequently halt. At the time I attributed this to the fact that it was not a new installation, but an upgrade from a previous version.

    However, now I've installed Firefox on my brand new computer and a day later it is already using 90MB of memory and counting. Even Internet Explorer uses less than this. I doubt all programs on my computer combined would use up so much memory.

    Is this a known problem? Is there a fix? I've posted this also on the MozillaZine forums, but they get (literally) thousands of help requests every day and most go unnoticed. If I can't solve this problem I will have no choice but to go back to IE, as much as I don't want to.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 14, 2004 #2


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    It's not a bug, it's called memory cache. Instead of just caching pages on the hard drive (which it does), pages are also put into ram so clicking the back button makes the page load instantly.
    I don't know how to turn down the amount of memory cache in Firefox, just try poking around in the options.
    If you turn memory cache off, clicking the back button will not load instantly, and you will not be able to recover text in input boxes. What that means is if the forum gives you an error and doesn't post, clicking the back button will not recover what you attempted to post; that's why I always leave memory cache on.

    Try Opera. It's as safe as Mozilla but has more options than Firefox. It's easy to disable memory cache in Opera :wink:.
    Last edited: May 14, 2004
  4. May 14, 2004 #3


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus

    Firebird should only take up around 20MB of RAM, but it also depends on how many tabs you have open as well. I'm pretty sure caching is done to the hard drive, not the RAM. How exactly are you coming up with the 90MB+ figure. Are you looking at the Windows Task Manager?
  5. May 14, 2004 #4
    may i ask how come you know how much memory is consumed when using firefox and when opening tabs ?

  6. May 15, 2004 #5
    Cache or not, Firefox is not supposed to take up more than 30MB of memory. I run several graphics programs and none of them even comes close to 90MB, that's insane. I get that figure from the task manager, yes. Vance, press Ctrl+Alt+Delete once and go to the Processes tab. I've been told to try a nightly build which might fix this problem, so I guess I have no other choice but to do so.
  7. May 15, 2004 #6
    Thanks Chen,
  8. May 15, 2004 #7
    I don't think it's caused by having too many tabs open, by the way. Just for Firefox to completely load after starting it, it uses a bit more than 30MB. And then every page is a couple more hundred kilobytes... if Shawn is correct about caching the data in RAM, they could at least delete it once I leave the site or close the tab! No wonder that if I leave it running for a few hours it uses so much memory...
  9. May 15, 2004 #8


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus

    Chen, if your leaving Firefox open and it is consuming a lot more RAM a few hours later there may be a memory leak. You should download the source for firebird and try to debug the problem yourself. :wink:
  10. May 15, 2004 #9
    ...or I could just switch to a software that isn't filled with bugs. :smile:
  11. Mar 21, 2005 #10
    right now my firefox is using 124 868k of memory. i never notice anything cuz i have 512MB to i have plenty 2 spare but it shouldnt be doin this! to make it worce, its been doin this weird thing lately. at random times it will just move the curser left while im typing. as if sum1 pressed the left. done it about 20 times in this post alone. u can imagine how annoying it is!!!

    im starting to think its a virus or sumthin! huge memory usage and annoying/weird things happening.
  12. Mar 21, 2005 #11
    if you type
    in the Firefox' adres bar you get a list of many settings that you can change, I guess that if you turn browser.cach.memory.enable to false the memory usage will drop substantially
  13. Mar 22, 2005 #12
    Hmm, my Mozilla Browser component of the Mozilla Suite is using less than 10MB of RAM at the moment. :smile:
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?

Similar Discussions: Firefox using 90MB+ of memory
  1. Firefox the memory eater (Replies: 53)

  2. Post Using Firefox? (Replies: 3)