Improve Performance of Firefox Extensions [Developers Must Read]


Recently the Mozilla Developer Network came up with a blog post for Mozilla Firefox extension developers to improve the performance of the Firefox extensions. One of the major advantage of Firefox browser is it’s extension capability. With tons of Firefox extensions which makes millions of its users an easy way to finish up the task. So from the developer community of Mozilla, they have given some tips on how to improve the extension performance when developing an Firefox addon.

As I have told above, there are millions of Firefox users who uses Firefox browser as their primary one and on a recent stats, Google chrome has been growing high at a steady pace due to its super fast loading and browsing experience. Firefox lacks in starting up quickly. This is mainly because of its poorly written extensions. This severly impacts on the browsing experience, including the overall performance of the Firefox itself. So, the mozilla developer network has come up a detailed post on how to improve the performance of Firefox addons when developing them.

I would like to mention the key points and also will give the link to the original article for better read. Here are the key points that developers should make a note for improving the extension performance.

Improving the startup performance :

Extensions create great impact when opening up a new browser window. Everytime a new browser window is opened, it is loaded and run. So how to reduce the amount of time that your extensions delays the user to view his content. Below are some things as a developer you must note down.

  • Load only what you need, when you need it
  • Use JavaScript code modules
  • Reduce the functions at load event listener in main overlay

General Tips :

  • Avoid Writing Slow CSS
  • Lazily load services with defineLazyGetter() and defineLazyServiceGetter()
  • Reduce file I/O
  • Use the right compression level for JAR and XPI files
  • Use asynchronous I/O
  • Unnecessary onreadystatechange in XHR
  • Remove event listener if they not needed
  • Populate menus as needed
  • Avoid mouse movement events
  • Combine multiple images into one (sprites)

Check out the detailed instructions from Mozilla developer network

For a limited time I'm sharing some select Tips and Tricks and How-To Guides for FREE.

Speak Your Mind