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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time Web Browsers
My Firefox gets slow, particularly the launch time. Real slow. I couldn't honestly figure why, until tonight. I looked in my Downloads panel for info on a file I had downloaded earlier today. Lo and behold, there was information there from the time I initially installed Firefox on this computer; nearly a year and a half of downloads.

I clicked the Clean UP button on the Downloads window, and quit Firefox. When I restarted Firefox, it went from a 12+ bounce launch to a three-bounce launch on my iMac G5. The Mac Pro was even more surprising. It's brand new (one week this Monday), but I had imported info from my Powerbook G4. It went from five or six bounces to one.

Page loading speed seemed to be improved as well. I wish I could have tested it with a memory checker; maybe someone else could do this and see if it's improved.

[robg adds: I can't confirm this one, as my Downloads window in Firefox only ever has a couple items in it. If someone out there has a fully-loaded Downloads history and could do a bit of testing, please post your results in the comments.]
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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: cgguido on Mar 14, '07 07:53:30AM

Wow! absolutely!

I am running Firefox 2.0.0.2 (with my fair share of extensions :-) ) on a MBP 2.16 GHz Core 2 Duo, 1GB Ram, mac os 10.4.9.

Had a very long list of downloads... took 8 seconds to start Firefox.
Emptied the download list... took under 2 seconds, not even a bounce!

Wow! Double wow! Tripple Wow!!

Thanks a lot!



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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: adrianm on Mar 14, '07 09:20:26AM

no bounces yet a bit under two seconds? i normally get one bounce per second, so i'd expect at least one... did you slow down your bouncing? or perhaps turn bouncing off?

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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: giulio on Mar 14, '07 08:03:02AM

Wouldn't this have anything to do with the program being cached by mac os x? The true test is to restart mac os x after each modification. Otherwise you're comparing a cold-launch to a cached operation.
FYI Photoshop CS3 takes 8 seconds to launch. If you quite and relaunch, it's down to 2 seconds.

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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: Dave Andrews on Mar 14, '07 12:29:29PM

LOL.
Try rebooting and see how long Firefox takes to open. The first launch always takes a while, maybe due to some lib's being loaded in to memory or maybe Java being loaded - I'm not sure. I do know that the first launch takes a lot longer than subsequent launches. Sorry to disappoint . . .



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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: Lee_Adama on Mar 14, '07 12:56:37PM

I can indeed confirm giulio's suspicions that the application is cached in RAM - I tested several applications by timing their load speeds fresh and after they had been quit but the computer had not been rebooted. On my PowerMac G5 Dual 2.0Ghz the following were my results for three of the applications I tested, in seconds. The first number you see, like Photoshop's 17.25 is the fresh load. The number in brackets in the time it took for the application to load once again after been previously launched.

Photoshop CS2 17.25 [5.53]
GoLive CS2 18.15 [7.89]
Illustrator CS2 21.88 [5.79]

Sorry to whoever submitted this hint, but it looks like it's a culmination of being loaded into RAM and a heavy application.



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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: zane on Mar 14, '07 02:24:35PM

Yeh, I'm gonna have to agree with the other commentaries as I've made this observation as well in the past, and can confirm its reliability.

On a fresh launch, ie: its first launch since booting my system, FireFox can take anywhere from 10-15seconds to load up on my machine (old PPC PB15") - and I usually never have anything in my download manager as all my http downloads always go thru Safari. If I quit-then-relaunch within the same OS instance, FF's load time is always cut back to about 2-3 seconds.

It does indeed seem that it is OS X's application caching at play here (whatever that might entail), not FF's clean download manager. As with the above poster, I also see this effect in other apps.

I don't really think the hint is doing much other than keeping the FF download manager clean. :)



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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: thebigl032 on Mar 15, '07 04:14:43PM

Tried it out.. I had 71 items, mostly image downloads for powerpoints, but i had a few large files and I only lost one bounce..

-Terry



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This speeds up Firefox, but in a different way
Authored by: bluesdance on Mar 17, '07 10:08:40AM

Clearing my download history sped up Firefox, but not in launching -- rather, in starting downloads. I used to have to wait several seconds watching the beach ball spin round and round every time I started a download in Firefox. Turns out I was waiting for it to populate that previous downloads list. When I cleared out my history, I solved that. Now when I start downloads there's no wait. Thanks, MacOSXHints!



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This speeds up Firefox, but in a different way
Authored by: poesco on Jun 21, '07 10:53:24AM

Firefox was starting to annoy me so much... I tested the result before I deleted the downloaded items... downloading of any item started after 21!!! seconds. deleted the downloaded items list. now it's instant!
this hint saved me from going back to safari :) thanks!



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Automatically clear the a download off the downloads list after every successful download
Authored by: ko on Mar 18, '07 11:01:47PM

There's a way to automatically clear the download list every time. I set this up on every firefox install that I do because I find it so useful.

My current version is 2.0.0.2 so these instructions relate to that version. It's similar in other versions 1.5+ but named slightly differently.

In preferences, under the privacy tab, there is a checkbox for "Remember what I've downloaded". Uncheck that and the download box clears every successful download after they've finished. Since I found that, I've never had a problem with Firefox taking a long time before starting downloads.



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One possible way to reduce Firefox's launch time
Authored by: tmon on Jan 22, '08 06:31:14AM

Everytime I click on "Clean Up", Firefox freezes, and I have to shut it down through Task Manager. What can I do to clean up my downloads if this keep happening?
Thanks,
tmon



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