Firefox / IE Browser Tweaks2005.10.04 07:56 by Philip
Keywords: tweak, browser, pipelining, Registry, Internet Explorer, Firefox
Below, you will find browser-specific settings and registry entries to speed up both Firefox and Internet Explorer. The settings are generally intended for broadband internet connections, and can noticeably improve your web browsing experience.
According to the HTTP specs, only a limited number of simultaneous connections to web servers are allowed, while loading web pages. With today's broadband connections, it is beneficial to increase the number of concurrent connections to reduce page loading time. To increase the number of concurrent connections, add the following entries to the Windows Registry (the settings are not present by default in all Windows versions).
Under Windows 9x/ME/2k/XP
Navigate to Start > Run, type: regedit , find the following locations and add the DWORD values:
Internet Explorer 8 under Windows Vista/7/2k8 Server
Click the Windows button, type: regedit, and navigate to:
The above parameters, and the web patch in the downloads section of the site work with Internet Explorer versions 4 and above.
Alternatively, to apply the above tweak for Windows 9x/XP/Me/2k, you can download a web patch (sguide_webtweak_2k) from the download section of the website.
While these entries improve web page loading considerably, there is some concern that they tend to strain webservers more (they increase bursts of concurrent requests), but have no effect on average throughput.
This setting is equivalent to the IE tweak above. It allows for more simultaneous connections to web servers. Note that the HTTP specs suggest for 4 concurrent connections. Setting this value to 10 allows for more web page components being downloaded at the same time, noticeably improving browsing. To appy the tweak, follow the simple instructions below:
Note: Setting the number of connections per server to a much higher number (over ~10) can cause web servers to drop some requests, resulting in incomplete pages, increased retransmissions, etc., so it is not recommended.
Reduce Initial Page Delay
By default, Firefox waits 0.25 seconds (250ms) before beginning to draw web pages. To reduce this initial delay, do the following:
Note: This setting is not present by default. When not present, Firefox waits 250 milliseconds before first displaying the page.
Use memory cache
Firefox has the ability to write cached files to RAM instead of the hard disk. This is much faster, and reduces hard disk drive wear. It is highly recommended if using SSD drives.
To change the cache location to RAM:
Advanced Firefox Settings
Below, you will find settings that may increase your perceived page loading time a bit further. Note that those are most likely best left at the default values. These settings generally do no exist under the Firefox about:config, and need to be created if you'd like to experiment with them.
content.interrupt.parsing - default/recommended is true. When true, parsing can be interrupted to process UI events.
See this link for all Firefox about:config entries with descriptions and defaults.