Friday, April 10, 2015

Why Waterfox is my new favorite browser

You may have heard that Mozilla Firefox will soon be releasing a 64-bit version of its browser for Windows.  It was originally slated to be released at the end of March, but it has been pushed back and delayed until sometime in May.

I have been a long-time user of Mozilla Firefox and it has easily become my most heavily used browser (even over Google Chrome).  The extensive library of plugins (especially Firebug) as well as its better management of memory has easily trumped it in my favor against the use of Google Chrome.

Unfortunately, its lack of 32-bit support has also been my bane.  My heavy usage of 50 or even a 100+ tabs is very common as part of my daily development activities.  Being limited to a 32-bit address space of 4 GB causes Mozilla Firefox to crash on an almost daily basis for me.

Well, along comes a side project called Waterfox!!

This project boasts 64-bit support as well as being built on the same code base as Mozilla Firefox.  Of course, one of the downsides of being built on the same code base is that it forces me to choose between Mozilla Firefox or Waterfox because Windows does not recognize them as distinct browsers and therefore only allows one instance of a Mozilla-based browser running on my system at any given time.

Nevertheless, it is easily much more stable than Firefox and can readily handle the heavy usage of hundreds of tabs open simultaneously.  It not only performs well but it has not even crashed on me once in all of my usage over the past few weeks!  How great is that!!

So, at least until Mozilla Firefox releases full 64-bit support for its browser, I am sticking with Waterfox for the foreseeable future and I would advise any existing Mozilla Firefox users to do the same!!

Happy browsing!!

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