Firefox 3 Dies a Few Times a Day

I like the new Firefox, but it should still be labeled Beta.  I’ve detailed my installation problems here,  and the fact that the “Use my choice for all cookies from this site” button does not work is horribly frustrating, on some sites I keep on hitting “OK” dozens of times before I can proceed.

But there’s something even worse: periodically, but several times a day, Firefox simply stops reacting. No, not a complete freeze: you can still type, open/close new tabs .. it just won’t browse.   Whatever URL you type in, the damn thing won’t move, until you restart Firefox.

A browser that stops browsing. smile_sad

Update:  PG-13 version of the Firefox logo.


  1. “…a Firefox crash is a Firefox crash. It won’t matter to most that the blame might more accurately be directed toward a poorly-written, if free, add-on.”

    That is an excerpt from Paul Thurrott’s Firefox 3 review. Are you sure the issue is with Firefox and not an extension? Perhaps you are making one work with FF3 by changing the compatibility? I highly doubt it is a Firefox issue, except maybe the cookie thing. Give CookieCuller a try for managing cookies, it is a great little extension. But try browsing in FF safemode, I bet that fixes your issues.

  2. Lucky you, mine does not even care to freeze to let me screenshot my tabs or whatever I was typing, it just closes unexpectedly…

  3. Daniel,

    I am absolutely not sure, but to be honest, I don’t really care. I tend to agree with Paul here, I don’t want to be a tester, just a user, there’s a reason why I did not download the pre-release versions.

    I have no problem using “perpetual betas” like Google or Zoho 🙂 – but would rather have my browser rock solid. If you follow the “installation problems” link from the post, you’ll see I first investigated the extensions, only to find the issues to be with core Firefox… but I’ve just had enough:-(

  4. I had all the issues you describe in the beta\RC releases but suprisingly the final version works well on all my machine so far.

    The only thing annoying me about FF3 is that they broke html-rendering compatibility which make certain sites not work… luckily there’s the IE-Tab FF add-on 🙂

  5. I have the same problem as Julien, it just closes unexpectedly. Very annoying.

  6. Can you type about:crashes into your url bar and send the results to me?

  7. It says: No crash reports have been submitted – which I think is right, like I said above, it’s not a real crash, Firefox does not freeze, I can type, open/close tabs, except it no longer responds to any URL I type in.

  8. schrep, I have 7 crash reports if you’d like them…

  9. What platform are you on? Can you disable all plugins and add-ons for a bit and see if that helps?

  10. I have exactly the same problem. The “Go” button just won’t react. I suspect they’ll fix this fairly quickly though.

  11. Marc Savoy says

    Despite being one of Firefox’s greatest fans, I can’t help but feel vindicated by the problems reported about Firefox 3.

    I fled back to the warm, friendly environs of where I couldn’t be happier after Firefox 3 left me irked, annoyed and underwhelmed by all sorts of cognitive dissonance with what was heralded as new and improved.

    I’ll postpone upgrading to Firefox 3 as long as possible but Mozilla isn’t going to support what is now beyond December, 2008.

  12. Here’s the list of add-ons I have enabled (but other users experienced the same, even here in comments and they will likely have a different set):

    Delicious Bookmarks
    Diigo Bookmarks
    ErrorZilla Mod
    Extended Copy Menu
    Gmail Manager
    Google Gears
    Google Notebook
    Google Reader Notifier
    Open IT Online

  13. Have been using FF3 since the first release candidate and so far not a single crash or stopping of browsing here.

    I don’t run many plugins though, StumbleUpon and SearchStatus is all of them.

    It’s all working like a charm and a lot faster than FF2 for me.

  14. I used to have the Firefox unexpected crash all the time. I found a tip on a message board that seems to be working: Right click the Firefox icon on your desktop. Go to Properties, then Compatibility. Click on “Run this program in compatibility mode for” and select Windows 2000.

    So far, so good …

  15. Ouch 🙁

  16. Upon further review, screw it. It’s still crashing for no reason.

  17. Perhaps make it compatible with Windows ME? Wait, that’s Vista! 🙂

  18. Uh huh. And there’s no listing for Windows XP.


  19. DOS 3.1? 🙂

  20. I thought Vista was “new coke” 🙂 Anyway, I had the beta of Firefox 3 installed, and uninstalled it. Then when upgrading to Firefox 3 final version… I lost about half of my saved favorites. Still, I would never shop online using IE, but… I wish I had just kept Firefox 2 a bit longer.

  21. Soap said: “Still, I would never shop online using IE”

    ‘Splain, please.

  22. I thought I was the only one having such problems. I’m on a mac and FF has to be “forced to quit” @ least 5 times a day. It’s really getting to a point where I’m about to find another browser because I’m sick and tired of having to restart my browser.

  23. TrashCompaqtor says

    I’m running Vista Home Premium SP1, with Firefox 3.0.4 and the original problem described is happening to me as well. It seems that certain sites like MYSPACE cause the internet connection to be unresponsive for ONLY Firefox – while IE and other internet apps are still working just fine.

    I haven’t tried disabling any addons, but they all passed compatibility checks.

    Waiting a few minutes or restarting the browser clears up the problem until it happens again. Seems like maybe it’s certain scripts or screwy html on some sites that is causing the error in Firefox… the error console is just worthless for when this happens.

  24. TrashCompaqtor says

    And I forgot to mention, for those random sites that seem to usually cause it to die, it’s a freakishly intermittent problem!

    Like, all of Myspace works fine and loads everything on the pages super fast…. then randomly sometimes it just dies. It makes trying to replicate the problem sorta difficult, I can hit reload on a certain page that had previously caused the freezing…. but I successfully load the page each time.

    I have no freakin clue why it kills the connectivity from time to time!

  25. Firefox would crash on me also intermittently. I have about 25 addons. So I would disable one addon at a time until the problem stopped. When I disable PayPal addon the crashes stopped and Firefox is working well now.

  26. hii Zoli,

    I agree with you!
    as per security i am a big lover of firefox!
    but sometimes it stops responding… i am not a techie but i think developers need to work on it!


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