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Making FireFox a whole lot faster

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    By: MatthewHSE In

    I’ve heard it said, here and other places, that Opera is the fastest browser available. It is fast – there’s no denying that – but there are ways to make FireFox render pages every bit as quickly, with just a few easy “tweaks.” I had thought these adjustments were pretty well-known, but it’s beginning to seem as though they may not be. So I thought it was worthwhile to bring these “hidden settings” more into the light.

    To get started, type “about:config” in your FireFox address bar. The settings you’re looking for are:

    1.) network.http.pipelining
    2.) network.http.pipelining.firstrequest
    3.) network.http.pipelining.maxrequests
    4.) network.http.proxy.pipelining
    5.) nglayout.ititialpaint.delay

    Set #1, #2, and #4 to “true”. Set #3 to a high number, like 32. Set #5 to 0.

    Enabling the pipelining features allows the browser to make multiple requests to the server at the same time. The “maxrequests” is the maximum number of requests it will send at once. I’ve heard that 8 is the most it will send at once, but setting it higher won’t hurt, just in case. The initialpaint.delay is the length of time (in milliseconds) after the server response before the browser begins to paint the page.

    Adjusting those settings will help pages render much faster in FireFox. In fact, my own observations have been that, tweaked in this manner, FireFox will render faster than Opera (and yes, I realize that others may experience different results).

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