Why is switching over multiple tabs in Firefox so slow?

shah March 10, 2011
Ads by Google

I’m using HP mini with Windows 7 Starter 1 GB RAM.

My problem is just the slow switching over multiple tabs in Firefox. Each time I go to another tab it takes a while (sluggish), or you can say the ‘click’ on the tab takes time to happen. The rest Firefox is working perfect in speed.

Don’t know how to solve it, followed all the steps on the MakeUseOf Firefox Speed Up Guide The Ultimate Guide To Speeding Up Firefox 3.5 Read More , still having same problem.

Second problem is how to stop the automatic ‘Get add-ons’ which can be seen in Tools>Add-ons>Get add-ons. Can anyone help please?

  1. akarmique
    April 15, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    Agree with Karl, ljujym, Mike and Kevlam79. I run both Chrome and Fx11 with 8GB RAM.  I have the exact same set of addons/extensions in Fx and in Chrome, As soon as I have more than 4-5 tabs open, Fx start showing a lag when switching tabs, Chrome shows no lag at all. I never noticed this before so I'm believe Mike when he said this started with v. 10 and 11. Love Fx for so many other reasons but this needs to be fixed, it's getting annoying. 

  2. Kevlam79
    March 22, 2012 at 3:59 pm

    I'm using Firefox 11. My multiple tabs switching is slow compare to chrome. After I removed Yahoo Application State Plugin. My Firefox tabs switching is fast.

  3. Ijujym
    October 12, 2011 at 6:58 pm

    Agree, Iv recentlty boosted the RAM up to 8 gb with i7 to improve the tab hadneling but it didnt helped significantly, I usualy have about 65 - 100 tabs opened, and at this amount in ff it feels just like on the good old 486 , it uses about 2 gb and I still have about 4 free and 50% of CPU, and the tabs are slow ... but the worst I think is that the | thing starts blinging 10x slower!!! it feels just like ff is drunk and stops breathing on my hands 

    • Mike
      February 22, 2012 at 12:41 pm

      This appears to be some sort of recent (few months) Firefox 9 or 10 new bug - nothing like that happened before Firefox 10 with my installation.

  4. Karl
    September 11, 2011 at 4:39 am

    I both run Chrome and Firefox on the same machine. What I don't understand is Firefox being sluggish in switching tabs while Chrome doesn't. I don't think this is a PC limitation.

  5. Roy
    March 11, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    The delay in switching between tabs could just be due to the limitations of the machine. The more tabs you have open, the more memory and processor power you're using. Any PC will see this type of issue with enough open tabs, but those with more powerful processors and more RAM can handle far more tabs before the issue becomes noticeable.

    For example, my PC at work is an older machine, a Pentium 4 with 1.5GB of RAM, running Windows XP. I experience the same kind of slowness if I open a lot of tabs (by a lot, I mean 20+).

    On my home PC (Core i5, 4 GB RAM and Windows 7), it would take a lot more open tabs to affect performance. What it comes down to is that each machine will have different limitations based on its hardware configuration.

    Any PC running any version of Windows 7 with only 1GB of RAM will probably run into this type of problem with what seems like a minimal amount of load on the system resources. A machine with Windows 7 - even Starter edition - should just always have more than 1GB of memory installed. I would recommend upgrading your netbook's RAM to at least 2GB. This will probably make a difference, though it will still have more limitations than the average PC due to the less powerful CPU.

    • Shahhafiz81
      March 11, 2011 at 6:55 pm

      thanks friend for the nice tips, would you think replacing the windows with xp will solve my problem, as I use PC just for net usage and the only thing disturbs me is slow performance in net surfing. I got the xp version and can install it.
      Or what programs should I delete from my system to make the current RAM efficient, as I said I am not interested in the other features of system/windows except net usage. Thanks

      • Tina
        March 11, 2011 at 7:30 pm


        I'm not sure whether Windows XP will make your machine faster. Besides, you will need drivers for Windows XP, make sure HP provides them!

        If you would like to increase the performance, there are three simple things you can do:
        1. disable graphics and RAM intensive features to speed up Windows 7.
        2. upgrade RAM to 2GB or whatever the netbook supports. If you cannot afford this upgrade, try ReadyBoost (#7) to increase your virtual RAM.
        3. install another operating system for netbooks like Ubuntu for netbooks or Chrome OS.

      • Roy
        March 11, 2011 at 8:59 pm

        Windows XP would probably give you a little bit of improvement, but as Tina said below, you have to make sure you can get all the drivers for your machine before you try that option. With XP, the OS itself should use less of your memory, which could improve it a little bit.

        The alternate netbook operating systems are also a good option. I don't personally like Ubuntu's netbook edition, but some people love it. I've used Linux Mint on a first-generation netbook and it runs pretty well. It's important to consider that with most netbook operating systems, you'll be running Linux. It's not difficult to use, especially for web browsing, but will take a little bit of getting used to. The only thing that may be an issue is that you can't install any Windows software that you already own. Any Linux variant will have great (and free) alternatives to most commonly used software.

        I still highly recommend upgrading your RAM. That is probably the best way to improve your performance.

        You may also want to try a different browser such as Google Chrome. It's pretty lightweight and might perform better.

  6. Anonymous
    March 11, 2011 at 7:01 am

    Some addons can do this if you installed, try to disable one by one, look for fireCookie
    and see if its the one causing the problem.

    Try uninstalling, then going to c:Documents and SettingsYOURUSERApplication DataMozillaFirefoxProfiles and deleting everything there. That should clear your profiles and force Firefox to create a brand new one

Ads by Google