Firefox 3.0b1 on OS X Leopard quick review

I downloaded and installed the beta version of Firefox 3.0 a few days ago and have been using it since on my OS X Leopard laptop.

I also installed the Proto theme for Mac Firefox which significantly enhances the look of Firefox 3 on the Mac.

firefox 3.0b1 on OS X Leopard

My initial impressions of Firefox 3.0b1 are very positive. It is fast, stable, looks really sweet and many of the memory issues which have dogged Firefox appear to have been fixed.

To expand on the memory comment, in Firefox the memory used to leak so the longer it remained open, the more memory it consumed. I have had Firefox running on this Mac now for several days with up to six windows open some of which have up to twenty five tabs running. Currently this is using 1.38gb of virtual memory. At the same time, Safari which has one window open with two tabs running is consuming 1.41gb of virtual memory!

Another change is the ability to Star and Tag bookmarks. Personally I prefer the way Flock allows you to bookmark directly into

One disadvantage of running the Firefox beta is that none of my favourite plugins now work but at least have a bookmarklet which runs well out of the bookmarks toolbar so I can still bookmark there from Firefox.

The release notes list a raft of improvements under the headings:

  • More Security
  • Easier to Use
  • More Personal
  • Improved Platform for Developers and
  • Improved Performance

Overall, I like it. It seems much improved, more responsive and less of a memory hog. Shades of good things to come!

3 thoughts on “Firefox 3.0b1 on OS X Leopard quick review”

  1. I’ve been using and it is miles better than 2 but I keep getting this strange bug where you can’t enter text in the address bar, the search bar or any text fields on a website.

    I have to open a new window to fix it. Also, the ‘Do you want Firefox to remember this password’ thing doesn’t work.

  2. Ya, I gave up on Firefox during 2 not because of the memory bleeds but because it had become so prone to crashing even after a fresh instal with no plugins. So I switch to Opera which I am pretty happy with although it is less compatible.

    Sounds like good news about 3. The only new feature that really excites me is that it is supposed to be color aware which is become the big pink elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about with wdie gamut monitors. Honestly though until IE adopts a similar solution or it coloraware gets added to Windows the impact web content will be a blip.

    Any word on how long before it leave beta?

  3. Aha – nice find with the Greasemonkey 🙂
    I find I get the odd visual defect with FF3 – sometimes the page and/or toolbars don’t refresh properly. But it _is_ a lot faster, particularly (for me) opening the download window, which used to take _ages_ and hang the rest of Firefox.

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