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-   -   Can Mozilla's Firefox Become a Dominant Force Again? (http://forums.techgage.com/showthread.php?t=9173)

Rob Williams 12-09-2011 12:07 PM

Can Mozilla's Firefox Become a Dominant Force Again?
 
According to some reports, Google's Chrome has overtaken Mozilla's Firefox in overall usage, while in others, it's set to happen soon. On our site in the past 30 days, 39.48% of readers used Firefox, while 30.21% used Chrome - so it appears that in some cases, the gap is still quite wide (Internet Explorer is 18.61%, Safari 4.72% and Opera 4.38%, for those interested).


Read the rest of our post and then discuss it here!

marfig 12-09-2011 02:55 PM

Can't see Firefox changing the tide either.

It just seems its going that downward spiral of past great applications once they meet their match and stop becoming the cool option everyone wants.

To me, the decison to move to Chrome was a no brainer. I didn't care about browsing speed (as if that mattered). Just the fact I don't trust any collaborative open source project that moves into a rapid release cycle. My own experience as a programmer tells me it complicates project management:

- Quickly become a mess and hard to manage
- Consistently delay the introduction of important new features
- Makes it harder the process of major bugs fixing

The difficult in managing large projects with people from all over the world is already self-evident without thinking on making it a rapid release cycle. Because large or complex features and bug resolution may invariably seep into the final release not properly tested, it tends to bring beta testing to end users. And quite frankly, a browser is merely a tool to me. I have no desire in becoming a guinea pig to their desire to emulate Chrome's (with a much smaller dev team and thus easier to manage) release cycles.

Chrome also proved to be less bloated. So that came as a bonus, albeit Firefox bloatness never really bothered me much.

...

On a final note, Firefox decision pretty much alienated its corporate user base (no matter what some may say, like a somewhat recent article on Ars Technica). That alone killed, and will keep killing some unknown percentage of its users.

Unless Firefox completely changes its face, I think this browser will just keep seeing its user base slowly decline, and decline, and decline.

DarkStarr 12-10-2011 02:34 AM

ROFLMAO sorry but really??? Chrome less bloated? No, just no.

Memory Usage:
FF (All my typical addons etc.): 1.6gb ram and 1 process for 3 windows and 88 tabs.
Chrome: 232mb ram but that's no addons and only 17 tabs in one window. There are also a dozen + Chrome.exe processes.

13.6mb average per page in chrome vs 18.18 in FF, again that's also 3 windows vs 1 Besides, Firefox updates dont seem to be THAT much more frequent, that and I think they recently did as Google did to a silent updater, if people knew how quickly Chrome updated it might annoy people too.

I would also prefer ONE process for the entire browser vs one per tab and a handful extra ones.

Doomsday 12-10-2011 03:19 AM

I tried to go for Chrome but I missed Firefox and all the changes I can make to it to feel more comfy! :D

RainMotorsports 12-10-2011 03:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marfig (Post 52033)
On a final note, Firefox decision pretty much alienated its corporate user base (no matter what some may say, like a somewhat recent article on Ars Technica). That alone killed, and will keep killing some unknown percentage of its users.

I find the IT department complaints against the release schedule to be beyond idiotic. Okay so I can't get my IT department to deploy a very important bug fix to the version we are using. But all of a sudden they feel compelled to update to versions we don't actually need? Then proceed to complain to me about it?

Consider the releases past 4 as what they actually are, not revolutionary. Only deploy at points that are deemed necessary, go back to playing solitaire while I pay you to maintain my systems.

Security is an important thing and so is compatibility. If a new version is coming out so fast it introduces too many bugs then were not updating to it are we? If we don't need the compatibility it introduces are we? If they delayed the release for 6 months this possible security change would not have existed would it?

Just don't understand how I can have a debilitating bug in a slow release and the bug fix version be such a pain to get deployed but all of a sudden someone wants to complain about something they DONT need to be doing.

I understand one of the harder points of the job is testing updates prior to deploying. You don't know the job of the person you are deploying this to and the larger the company the more potential problems there are. But having been the person doing that particular job I would have loved the job these guys have todo lol. Almost got the chance at a previous employer. Only my boss gave me a raise and then told the IT department to f off.

RainMotorsports 12-10-2011 07:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DarkStarr (Post 52036)
I would also prefer ONE process for the entire browser vs one per tab and a handful extra ones.

One tab crashing out the browser isn't good though. But at least threading the tabs out from the main thread is better than nothing at times.

marfig 12-10-2011 02:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DarkStarr (Post 52036)
ROFLMAO sorry but really??? Chrome less bloated? No, just no.

Memory Usage:
FF (All my typical addons etc.): 1.6gb ram and 1 process for 3 windows and 88 tabs.
Chrome: 232mb ram but that's no addons and only 17 tabs in one window. There are also a dozen + Chrome.exe processes.

Not sure what you are trying to say here. It's hard to compare values when you make no effort to at least produce comparable results.

A note, in any case:

- It's quite possible that things have improved greatly in recently releases. I distinctly remember reading about recent changes being done to memory management in Firefox; an area of the code that was in dire need of fixing (and probably still is -- what about memory leaks?). But don't bring recent improvements on Firefox as if it didn't have an history behind it. Firefox was bloated beyond belief whether you "roflmao" about it or not. And that has been in fact one of the major reasons that lead many people to adopt Chrome. "roflmao" that.

Quote:

Originally Posted by DarkStarr (Post 52036)
I would also prefer ONE process for the entire browser vs one per tab and a handful extra ones.

No, just no!
I don't want one badly written website on some tab, or some badly written script on some ad to kill my entire browser experience. A browser isn't like any other application. It's a container of application. Every website is an "application" that the coder wishes to run on our browser. Some are HTML, some C#, some Javascript, some HTML5, some whatever. One process per tab perfectly emulates the principle of process responsibility. And that is one of the most demanded features in Firefox.

Quote:

Originally Posted by RainMotorsports (Post 52038)
I find the IT department complaints against the release schedule to be beyond idiotic. Okay so I can't get my IT department to deploy a very important bug fix to the version we are using. But all of a sudden they feel compelled to update to versions we don't actually need? Then proceed to complain to me about it?

Many corporations don't operate like your computer at home, where you simply trust the updates source. Unless you have a maintenance contract with the company, and can thus make the source liable for any damages, updates coming from "untrusted" sources (like Mozilla), should -- by company policy -- be fully tested and the IT department has the responsibility of guaranteeing that any deployment will not break on users machines. It's their head otherwise and, depending on the company business and size, can have serious consequences.

Furthermore, some updates include important UI changes that are usually frowned upon by IT departments that know they usually represent an added cost in User Training.

Minor update releases are in fact looked upon more favorably, exactly because they don't ever include important changes to application past behavior. But even these are usually tested before deployment.

Now, what I can agree with is that we are rapidly coming to an age where corporate policies may have to start changing on this regard. That's up for debate. What I donb't agree with is that any of the current methods are idiotic. Again we are confusing things, and pretending rapid release cycles didn't start just 5 years ago, while companies and their internal regulations have been on this planet for much longer.

MacMan 12-10-2011 04:11 PM

I'll stick to Opera, warts-and-all!

RainMotorsports 12-10-2011 05:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MacMan (Post 52043)
I'll stick to Opera, warts-and-all!

On my cruddy feature phone I use opera mini lol. Haven't really used the real thing in awhile.

DarkStarr 12-11-2011 02:59 AM

LOL one tab taking the browser RARELY happens, and if it does I could care less since I can restore my session WITHOUT that tab thanks to addons. On top of that, firefox is RARELY closed at any point, my laptop goes to sleep and my desktop stays on and has an SSD so I have no problems.

Also TBH no browser has better memory usage, they all suck just chrome is a bigger pain in the ass, I dont want 100+ chrome.exe in my processes so until windows will shrink it to one and have a dropdown to expand screw chrome. IMO chrome is like IOS, easy to use and designed for derps hence its growing base, it clearly worked for apple.

marfig 12-11-2011 03:54 PM

I had Firefox crashes on a few occasions. Certainly not something to complain much about. But it happened. And while some users may feel fine with it, you have to realize that these aren't just the whims of someone nitpicking. Software development should in fact conform to principles that have existed for a long time. Some actually imposed by the operating systems own General Development Guidelines.

Not all, but a lot of what gave Windows a bad rap was exactly the combination of poorly written software (and device drivers) along with poor understanding of programming languages rules. Memory leaks, abuse of system resources, non conformance to OS guidelines, usually lead to software that is problematic and that, in the hands of an unknowledgeable user, tends to put the blame not on itself but on the operating system.

Another point of concern is that with the emergence of HTML5 we might start to experience in upcoming years a shift in website development methods and website functionality. Web applications may become common and ubiquitous. It's of the utmost importance that web browsers isolate processes both for security and stability reasons.

Finally, it may bother you seeing one browser launching so many processes. But that is exactly the way an Operating System works and how it should work. More processes on your process list isn't going to consume more resources on your machine as long as the software was well developed and does proper process management. It's all just in your head and in your eyes. The operating system, on the other hand thanks the developer who is meticulous enough to do correct process management. And rewards him with an application that is more stable and more secure.

With Windows 8, the Task Manager will know how to present to you process groups in a tree like fashion and properly structure what is today just a laundry list. Chrome, for instance, will be displayed as just one process with several "processes" associated (one per tab).

Greg King 12-12-2011 09:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MacMan (Post 52043)
I'll stick to Opera, warts-and-all!

Of course you would. You really don't even need to post comments like that. I (We) already expect to hear from you on matters like this and your position on everything is just assumed to be in line with every single thought and comment you have shared on these forums.

Quote:

Originally Posted by RainMotorsports (Post 52038)
I find the IT department complaints against the release schedule to be beyond idiotic. Okay so I can't get my IT department to deploy a very important bug fix to the version we are using. But all of a sudden they feel compelled to update to versions we don't actually need? Then proceed to complain to me about it?

Consider the releases past 4 as what they actually are, not revolutionary. Only deploy at points that are deemed necessary, go back to playing solitaire while I pay you to maintain my systems.

Security is an important thing and so is compatibility. If a new version is coming out so fast it introduces too many bugs then were not updating to it are we? If we don't need the compatibility it introduces are we? If they delayed the release for 6 months this possible security change would not have existed would it?

Just don't understand how I can have a debilitating bug in a slow release and the bug fix version be such a pain to get deployed but all of a sudden someone wants to complain about something they DONT need to be doing.

Idiotic? Seriously? While I won't pretend to know what you support in your IT department, I will generalize your job for this single comment and assume that when you say that you work in IT, you are implying that you support computers with browsers installed on them. You support infrastructure alone. I might be wrong but based on your comments above, I think I'm spot on. As long people can get to the internet, to hell with their experience once there. Right?

I agree with what Marfig has said about the frequent upgrades released by the Firefox team as I have seen the troubles first hand. Firefox 7 was released at the end of September and as soon as people started to slowly upgrade when prompted, we began to see significant issues with the software that my company writes. While not back breaking, the issues we began to see did break core pieces of our program and our uses began to get more and more vocal. Starting when it was released, it took about 3-5 days for widespread adoption to take place. After that, a large majority of users were using Firefox 7 and were then unable to load the problematic areas of our program. Bugs were reported and tickets were submitted. Work began immediately on a fix and after about 2 and a half week of work, we had a fix for the problem areas. We are at FF7 launch +3 weeks at this point. The next week we released the fix into the wild and our self hosted customers began to apply the update. The week after that we followed with our hosted customers. This was all just in time for Firefox 8 to drop, the first week of November. The issues with Firefox, relative to our specific problems, were fixed with version 8 so the previous 5 weeks had been for little gain. The effort and work to provide a quality product to our customers was for nothing because the issues introduced in 7 were either removed or fixed in 8. I believe that these are the issues that Marfig is alluding to in his comments.

As a user that doesn't personally use my browser for much more than daily browsing, I am fine with the frequent updates. As a corporate employee impacted by frequent changed, I am livid with the wasted cycles we have to spend every time a new release is unleashed. TO be fair though, FF8 was very tame and little issues were reported. FF7 was a bitch.

RainMotorsports 12-12-2011 01:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Greg King (Post 52053)
TO be fair though, FF8 was very tame and little issues were reported. FF7 was a bitch.

I had issues with 6 and 7 from the get go just in personal web browsing. I switched back to 5 and then went 8 Beta 3 on my laptop for awhile. I would not have even considered deploying either and cant think of too many reasons a Wholesaler, Retailer, Dealership, similar would have ever needed the upgrades. Mind you luckily its not my job to worry about such things. The times I worked in those fields a browser upgrade came around the same time they upgraded the hardware.... eek.

What concerns me is the this urge to upgrade all of a sudden that did not exist prior. Ive been in places where it was okay that we had to restart machines due to memory leaks. Too much of a pain to deploy that fix but now you moan that every 6 weeks there is a new version. How many people would wait 5 weeks when a new version of IE came out to even download it to see what the general feedback on the web is?

As I said I know the hardest part is testing software against someones job you don't even do. There are too many unknown variables that don't get tested until after being deployed. With rapid release the real problem is lost money in lost productivity and more time spent tracking and fixing problems. But the problem is upgrading a working solution isn't something that was that compelling in the past and now it is?

Now if your customer base is using the browser is a different problem, but it is a problem if your a developer. I am just saying that's not the issue I am talking about. When a new version is out and you have very good communications with your client its almost easy to say please upgrade. When your client is the average web user this communication is not always there or is ignored. But if they don't have control of this then your really screwed. In the past developing browser based/browser interacted solutions probably could survive needing to be patched 6 weeks into a new browser release. Not sure If I want to describe it as a more urgent rush to fix at this point since obviously in the same amount of time a new version might fix this. But you have 6 weeks until another headache my arrive and you still need to find a permanent solution for the last problem.

I have Aspergers Syndrome so I have a little different logic. The way the world turns doesn't usually make much sense to me. I either follow very unwillingly or I stand up and take leadership. Please forgive me for my English. It is my first language sadly. I had a hell of a time with it in High School and College. For the laughs I always say I speak Borland Pascal just fine thank you.

Greg King 12-12-2011 01:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RainMotorsports (Post 52055)
I had issues with 6 and 7 from the get go just in personal web browsing. I switched back to 5 and then went 8 Beta 3 on my laptop for awhile. I would not have even considered deploying either and cant think of too many reasons a Wholesaler, Retailer, Dealership, similar would have ever needed the upgrades. Mind you luckily its not my job to worry about such things. The times I worked in those fields a browser upgrade came around the same time they upgraded the hardware.... eek.

What concerns me is the this urge to upgrade all of a sudden that did not exist prior. Ive been in places where it was okay that we had to restart machines due to memory leaks. Too much of a pain to deploy that fix but now you moan that every 6 weeks there is a new version. How many people would wait 5 weeks when a new version of IE came out to even download it to see what the general feedback on the web is?

As I said I know the hardest part is testing software against someones job you don't even do. There are too many unknown variables that don't get tested until after being deployed. With rapid release the real problem is lost money in lost productivity and more time spent tracking and fixing problems. But the problem is upgrading a working solution isn't something that was that compelling in the past and now it is?

Now if your customer base is using the browser is a different problem, but it is a problem if your a developer. I am just saying that's not the issue I am talking about. When a new version is out and you have very good communications with your client its almost easy to say please upgrade. When your client is the average web user this communication is not always there or is ignored. But if they don't have control of this then your really screwed. In the past developing browser based/browser interacted solutions probably could survive needing to be patched 6 weeks into a new browser release. Not sure If I want to describe it as a more urgent rush to fix at this point since obviously in the same amount of time a new version might fix this. But you have 6 weeks until another headache my arrive and you still need to find a permanent solution for the last problem.

I have Aspergers Syndrome so I have a little different logic. The way the world turns doesn't usually make much sense to me. I either follow very unwillingly or I stand up and take leadership. Please forgive me for my English. It is my first language sadly. I had a hell of a time with it in High School and College. For the laughs I always say I speak Borland Pascal just fine thank you.

I think we are on the same page here :)

Concerning your English, if I have to forgive yours, I must implore you forgive mine as well.

RainMotorsports 12-12-2011 01:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Greg King (Post 52056)
I think we are on the same page here :)

Concerning your English, if I have to forgive yours, I must implore you forgive mine as well.

LOL. Most days I have no problems reading. I have no real understanding of sentence structure so reading something and then writing it are different. I have learned to imitate the basics. I failed my reading and writing comprehension prereq for college and a week later aced it. So it does vary. I hear people talking but sometimes don't comprehend a damn thing. You will also notice on of the other AS characteristics in my posts. Verbosity, Boy I can write a hell of a long term paper.


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