Mozilla Firefox 3 Beta 5 Released

Wednesday April 2nd, 2008

Mozilla Firefox 3 Beta 5 has been released for testing. The fifth beta of the next major Firefox version offers over 750 bug fixes over Beta 4, including improvements in user interface, location bar autocomplete, bookmark backup and restore, full page zoom and other new features based upon user feedback.

Firefox 3 Beta 5 can be downloaded from the Firefox beta page. The Firefox 3 Beta 5 Release Notes have more details, including information about what's new in Firefox 3 and what's been improved in this specific milestone. The Mozilla Developer News weblog's announcement of Firefox 3 Beta 5 includes links of interest to developers.

#74 Firefox 3 beta 5 - Crashes every hour

by justinz

Thursday April 24th, 2008 7:33 AM

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Mozilla has me frustrated this year. With more than a few windows open, Firefox 2.x (win32) creeps up to over a gigabyte of memory usage, and this beta FF3b5 crashes on me constantly. In FF3b5 I limit my addons to the latest Firebug just released for 3b5, and run a fresh profile. I'm [trying to be] a web developer, so I'd like a stable browser that can open 50 tabs over several widows, and remain open for days without crashing and/or running up memory, as early versions of FF2 would. (When working on pages, I concurrently run FF2, FF3, IE6, IE7, Safari, and Opera.)

I've tried very hard to switch to Opera, but often a flash object won't play -- it's just hard to switch completely since I had become very familiar and dependent on FF plugins. But at least I can leave Opera running indefinitely.

Moz developers will tell you that the Firefox memory usage problem is not a leak, but it is -- whether it's due to bad garbage collection, or a design decision to cache limitless pages. (Is this intended for the occasional light user with one or two pages open, who decides to compare its speed to Opera?)

It seems to me that Firefox has been unstable lately for my usage needs/habits. I hope this beta sees some fixes before a final release. I would also like to see new settings for trading speed/features for stability, such as options for disabling caching (but I know nothing of the hardship of implementing such things), and certainly the ability to run multiple version on the same profile, or share a bookmark file between them would be hugely useful to.