How To Really Reduce The Memory Usage in Firefox

After the release of Firefox 2.0, the memory leak has become an even more notorious problem than before. On average, Firefox should take up no more than 80MB of RAM. Any more than that and you can consider yourself a victim of Firefox’s memory leak. I’m sure you’ve probably already seen a ton of guides on how to fix the memory leak problem in Firefox already. The reason why I’m writing another one on Vista Rewired is because none of those have worked very well for me. This one will be a little different because I’ve added a few of my ingredients in.

Just to give you a heads-up, this guide is going to be quite long but it’ll cover everything you need to know.

Before we do anything, make sure you have the newest version of Firefox. If you don’t have the latest version, you can

1) Check your extensions and themes:

The most common cause for high memory usage for Firefox usually lies in the extensions and themes. If you overloaded your Firefox with extensions, you can expect high memory usage. Uninstall the ones you don’t need, and update all the ones you will be using. After that, you’ll first want to consult this list of problematic extensions that could be causing the problem. Make sure none of the extensions you are running are on that list.

After comparing with that list, if you still have the problem, it could be the result of a newly installed theme or extension. Experiment with shutting down suspicious extensions or switching themes.

2) Start Firefox in Safe Mode

If one of your extensions is not in that list, boot Firefox into Safe Mode to disable all extensions and themes. You can do this by going to Start > Run, and entering:

firefox -safe-mode

A box similar to the one below should appear.

Check Disable all add-ons, then select Continue in Safe Mode. Now, compare the RAM usage of when Firefox had it’s add-ons enabled and when they were disabled.
You can expect a difference of a couple megabytes since the extensions have been disabled. But if you notice a large difference in RAM usage, this may suggest a problem within your extensions or theme.

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