Though Firefox add-ons are great to add features and improve security in Mozilla’s browser, they can at the same time slow down its performance. However, Mozilla is taking action against these speed-killing extensions. It has already outlined a series of initiatives designed to minimize delays caused by add-ons.
Firefox performance is extremely important to users, especially how quickly it starts up and loads websites. Customization is also extremely important, and while most add-ons cause only a tiny performance impact, others can significantly slow down Firefox. The slowdown can be significant, particularly if you’re running several add-ons at a time. According to Mozilla, each add-on adds about 10 percent to Firefox’s startup time. The company’s performance data shows that installing 10 add-ons will double the amount of time it takes the browser to launch.
Mozilla’s new Firefox 4 browser promises faster graphics rendering, page loads, and startup times. Faster add-ons will help the new version succeed, too. Meanwhile, Mozilla is running automated performance tests on the top 100 add-ons and posting the results. The worst offenders, which currently include the FoxLingo Translator/Dictionary and Firebug, a developer’s tool, will be publicly shamed. Users will know which add-ons to avoid.
Mozilla is asking developers of slow add-ons to improve the speed of their software. In addition, its add-on gallery will show warnings of programs that slow Firefox’s startup time by 25 percent or more. A future version of Firefox will display these warnings in the browser’s Add-Ons Manager too. And lastly, an upcoming version of Firefox will not allow the installation of third-party add-ons in the browser without your consent/permission.