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Firefox 57, aka. Firefox Quantum
torhu
Member #2,727
September 2002
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So what do you think, Google fanboys? ;D Firefox is now pretty fast, and at least as slick looking as the competitors. More room for page content vertically, especially compared to unmaximized Chrome. And it's still got a customizable toolbar and the Libary interface to the history and bookmark database. The fancier extensions are gone, like Chatzilla. All in the name of multicore rendering. Progress? Depends on what kind of user you are, I guess. I'm happy with the change so far.

https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2017/11/14/introducing-firefox-quantum/
http://www.zdnet.com/article/just-how-fast-is-firefox-quantum/

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
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I'm still angry that they broke my extensions. >:( It was really in their worst interest to come out boasting about how noticeably faster it is because from my user experience I haven't noticed any change. Even if I wasn't already mad I would have been annoyed by that. The way I see it, they've alienated their user base. They've essentially created a Google Chrome clone.

I'm not sure who is supposed to be excited about this. Google Chrome users already had a Google Chrome. I don't anticipate too many of them switching to a nearly identical browser, just to change. People don't like change. On the other hand, many Firefox users are losing extensions that they've come to rely on. Extension developers are losing code, and for some of them they can't even reproduce the same functionality in the new Firefox without hacking on Firefox itself (i.e., patching the browser).

From what I've seen, the performance is at best about on par with Chrome. In practice, it seems Firefox is still a bigger memory hog, though they're both write-offs in this regard. I really think Mozilla has lost their way. And I don't know what their future will entail since they've pretty much lost their market share over the past 5 years, and they don't seem to have any smart strategies to gain it back.

I still consider myself a Firefox fanboy. I've preferred it since I knew what a browser was. I just can't seem to justify my preference anymore. I've already been forced to use Chrome at work, and I've gotten used to it. I still use Firefox at home, but I'm not happy with it anymore. It doesn't do the things for me that it used to do. Extensions that I used to love and rely on have been broken for years because the amount of work to fix them was too great with such little notice (and had they done the work it would all be thrown away now anyway), and it's not possible to recreate them anymore with the new engine.

Firefox 57 seems like basically a Google Chrome clone. If anything, you can say that it's a more free browser because Mozilla is a non-profit, but the Chromium browser is still free software so it's probably about as trustworthy in practice. And it doesn't seem like Mozilla cares what their users want, and it seems to have been corrupted to the core with unhealthy politics.

I'm sure it was a lot of work, but I think that the work should have been stretched out over more time to achieve feature parity with past versions and to ease extension developers into newer systems rather than making them throw away their hard work overnight. I'm not impressed. It's a yawn at best. At worst, it's upsetting.

torhu
Member #2,727
September 2002
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Well, there's always forks like Waterfox and Pale Moon :)

MiquelFire
Member #3,110
January 2003
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There was a feature that Firefox used to have built-in. All of a sudden, they directed people using that feature to an extension to keep using it because they decided not enough people used it to keep it around. Now, there's currently no way to emulate that feature...

Some features I had from another extension, I got some of it by hacking up about:config at least, but some I just lost for good now (and some, they just need to at least add a few more about:config stuff to allow me to get it back at least...)

---
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Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
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I despise Mozilla as an organization but I'll give it a shot based on your recommendation.

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

raynebc
Member #11,908
May 2010

I'm on the Firefox beta release channel at work, so I've been using Quantum for a while. My biggest gripes were that it took a while for AdBlockPlus to update their plugin to be compatible and NoScript isn't ready yet (possibly by the end of the week). Without ad/script blockers, the browser's CPU and memory bloat is significant throughout the day and negates any speed improvements it would have had over my old Firefox 56 install.

The only other plugins I care about are ChatZilla and Session Manager, but hopefully they're updated soon.

torhu
Member #2,727
September 2002
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raynebc:
I switched from ABP to uBlock Origin earlier this year, quite happy with that. And I switched to HexChat for IRC, although I don't do IRC that much anymore.

Chris Katko:
Cool ;D

I always use a theme for Firefox, otherwise it looks as dull as vanilla Chrome:
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/animated-snoopy-nap/

NiteHackr
Member #2,229
April 2002
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Well, I am using it now, just updated it today. So far it seems to be running fairly well. I have noticed some horrible slowdowns on some pages in the past, so hopefully this fixes things. Seems to be a tad faster, but that just may be my imagination.

They broke some extensions, but if you check the add-ons, there are "legacy" extensions you can enable again I guess, though honestly, it will do me good to disable a few of them. I got the ones I need. Many extensions were updated for this and work perfectly fine and don't seem to need a restart to enable them anymore, which is a good thing.

All in all, I am happy they are at least trying to improve it more speed wise as that has gotten pretty bad lately. I'll have to give it a week or so before I can tell if there is a noticable improvement. I certainly have noticed the lag lately, to the point of making me angry waiting for a response (but I think there is something Facebook does that causes that, I make certain I leave it off most of the time when not on it).

torhu said:

I switched from ABP to uBlock Origin earlier this year, quite happy with that.

The theme I use is Dark Fox..
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/dark-fox-18066/
Same here, also quite happy with it. Works well and they didn't sell out.

There's also a plain one called "Dark" by Mozilla which is nice, black background and light text on all bars. I also browsed the addon themes and found one called "Owl" which is an addon more than a theme, you click it and it turns any webpage dark with light text. Here's a screenshot of this page as I type now with it.

{"name":"611121","src":"\/\/djungxnpq2nug.cloudfront.net\/image\/cache\/d\/e\/de169d9721f38a2d55bd83c68d4b3b48.jpg","w":1920,"h":1018,"tn":"\/\/djungxnpq2nug.cloudfront.net\/image\/cache\/d\/e\/de169d9721f38a2d55bd83c68d4b3b48"}611121

beoran
Member #12,636
March 2011

I also use Firefox but it's memory use is insane. Then again, the whole browser as a platform idea is insane as well. You can run a cross compiled Linux kernel in your browser... So, sometimes I use suckless surf. At least they have a better attitude on software development. https://surf.suckless.org/

Polybios
Member #12,293
October 2010

Its new design just reminds me of IE. Can't say I like it.
Why do they choose to break extensions? My beloved NoScript is not working yet. Couldn't they give extension-devs more time at least?

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
avatar

Mozilla seems to love !@$!ing on it's extension developers.

It definitely "felt" faster. But I can't tell if it's for sure or not. Notice the "omg it's 2x faster" is actually... 2x faster than the last version of Firefox... which was still insanely slower (order-of-magnitude!) than Chrome in Javascript benchmarks.

{"name":"JS_benchmark_v8_002-small.jpg","src":"\/\/djungxnpq2nug.cloudfront.net\/image\/cache\/4\/2\/42e7a28cd26a17bf0b901af3676fe00b.jpg","w":454,"h":234,"tn":"\/\/djungxnpq2nug.cloudfront.net\/image\/cache\/4\/2\/42e7a28cd26a17bf0b901af3676fe00b"}JS_benchmark_v8_002-small.jpg

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

OICW
Member #4,069
November 2003
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I installed Firefox 57 today and immediately got pissed off. FireGestures are gone and the alternatives do not live up to it. Also, given the fact I'm using Linux I had to map the gesture key to the middle mouse button instead of the right one as it now triggers always the contextual menu. Not to mention that it no longer works in the reader mode.

Also NoScript is gone, although it should be back again. I already switched to uBlockOrigin so that's fixed. But ScrapBook is gone as well. I haven't noticed any performance improvements, although at work on Windows I'm noticing humongous memory usage (not 57 though). One of my first thoughts today actually was: "well I might just as well start using Chrome." So, well done, Mozilla, well done.

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torhu
Member #2,727
September 2002
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Yeah, you definitely have to do some research before deciding to upgrade :-/

If you are still on 56: The extensions that will stop working will have the Yellow Stamp of Death on them in the Addons Manager. Some have replacements, some not. Some might get replacements later, as Mozilla adds more APIs for WebExtensions.

Polybios
Member #12,293
October 2010

Why do they force it down people's throats when the APIs are not even there? I really cannot think of a valid reason to do so. >:(

OICW
Member #4,069
November 2003
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torhu said:

Yeah, you definitely have to do some research before deciding to upgrade :-/

Well, I knew it's going to happen. Only when I did check the 57 today morning during the package update I was like: "hm, wasn't the 57 the one that will kill all the legacy extensions?" And I have to say that performance wise the 57 seems to me a little bit worse. Some pages take simply to load than previously.

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SiegeLord
Member #7,827
October 2006
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Yeah, I've had 56 pinned on my Linux (and disabled upgrades on Windows) since I just don't feel like losing my extensions (Tab Mix Plus is the main one). I did let it update on my fiance's computer, and since she has been complaining about speed issues on certain websites (I haven't ruled out pesky bitcoin miners yet) it'll be interesting to see if it helps, so I'll give it a try vicariously...

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torhu
Member #2,727
September 2002
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<hyperbole>While this marks the end of an era for web browsers, it could also mean both significant improvements to Firefox, and a larger part to play for Firefox forks.</hyperbole>

NiteHackr
Member #2,229
April 2002
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It seems to be running fast enough and smooth enough for me. I lost a few extensions, but nothing important. I already found a replacement for one that I used a lot today. But this is all par for the course. Whenever someone makes major changes that generally lead to improvements on this scale, you're bound to have some bumps in the road and a short period of adjustment time. Most of the add-ons will get updated no doubt and things will be back to normal.

I tried other browsers and didn't see the speed improvements in them at all, but I did see the same memory hogging, so I don't blame Firefox for that. I think it's just the nature of the web, with all the larger images and media these days coupled with multiple tabs has to lead to greater memory usage. Facebook seems to be the absolute worst for memory hogging and I am certain they have a memory leak in whatever they have running in the background as you can do nothing on Facebook, and just sit and watch the memory usage continually rise.

In any event, I'll stick to Firefox, it does what I want, fast enough on my 7 year old computer. I don't think Firefox is slow, I think people are way too impatient.

torhu
Member #2,727
September 2002
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There has been a problem with YouTube and Firefox for the last few days. The workaround is to click on your profile icon, the last link there is for going back to the old YouTube layout. YouTube is much nicer that way, too.

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
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Here is an interesting read. It's an interview with the NoScript developer. From August. He was porting the extension months ago, and even then estimated that the release of 57 was the earliest he'd be done (note: he's not done yet, it isn't released as of now when I just checked both the addons "portal" and noscript.net).

In the comments people point out that apparently this guy develops NoScript 24/7, and as far as extension developers go he is the best case scenario. I don't know if it's true that he develops the extension 24/7 or not, but nevertheless, it's clear that Mozilla put a huge burden on the extension developers without giving them a more realistic easing-in period. So you can't blame extension developers that weren't ready for this. It's entirely on Mozilla's shoulders.

On a side note, I'm used to some things being broken in Firefox because of my security addons. NoScript blocking JavaScript, XSS, etc., and Cookie Monster blocking cookies, Ghostery blocking trackers, and AdBlock Plus blocking ads. However, NoScript and Cookie Monster are no longer installed since they are not currently compatible. Usually blocking trackers only break that specific functionality, not the whole site. Similarly, usually blocking ads only prevents the ads from loading, not the page. However, I've noticed that Firefox 57 fails to load various pages even in this state.. Kind of blows my mind. It's probably still addons to blame, but I digress. I seem to have less control over it now. Pretty much I have to just switch to Chrome...

raynebc
Member #11,908
May 2010

As of right now, my Firefox Quantum installation has NoScript working. I didn't even restart my browser, it must have installed the newly-compatible version automatically because it was in my list of obsolete plugins. The UI in it is new, but it looks like it will be easy enough to adapt to. The performance seems fine to me so far, I guess I don't have any more complaints about Fx 57.

Polybios
Member #12,293
October 2010

Well, Noscript's UI could be improved, really has a lot of glitches.

MiquelFire
Member #3,110
January 2003
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When I went to Google News this morning, I saw a title (didn't read it) about someone leaving Chrome for Firefox. I wonder if Firefox 57 is actually an improvement for those who were using something else? We just don't notice because we been using Firefox, and the changes break most things we're used to having.

And an add-on somehow got uninstalled by itself just now...

---
Febreze (and other air fresheners actually) is just below perfumes/colognes, and that's just below dead skunks in terms of smells that offend my nose.
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Windows 8 is a toned, stylish, polished professional athlete. But it’s wearing clown makeup, and that creates a serious image problem. ~PCWorld Article

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
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There went my list of opened tabs... I closed Firefox to save some memory while I played CSGO, and when I fired it back up my 50+ opened tabs were lost. Session Manager is what I used to use to manage that, but surprise Firefox 57 doesn't support APIs to reimplement it so now I just don't have that feature. Fuck. Mozilla.

torhu
Member #2,727
September 2002
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Options -> General -> When Firefox starts -> Show your windows and tabs from last time :o

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