Canonical Continues Working On Ubuntu's Firefox Snap Performance
Written by Michael Larabel in Ubuntu on 16 June 2022 at 06:26 AM EDT. 73 Comments
UBUNTU --
Slow start-up performance of the Firefox web browser has been a frequent complaint on Ubuntu Linux since Canonical shifted over to using the Snap'ed version of Firefox by default. It's certainly what I find most annoying with Ubuntu as well, but at least Canonical engineers continue working on addressing the performance and other awkward issues with the Firefox Snap.

On the Ubuntu blog today is a new post by Canonical's Oliver Smith about their latest efforts to improve the Firefox Snap performance and other outstanding issues with this sandboxed version of the Mozilla web browser.

On the performance front they have made updates to ensure GPU-based rendering should work in more instances rather than falling back to software rendering. Ubuntu developers though continue working on these rendering problems including for the likes of Ubuntu on the Raspberry Pi.

As for Firefox's slow start performance, one of the big factors is due to copying a large number of language packs during Firefox's first start. They are working with Mozilla on a change similar to Firefox on Windows where only one locale would be loaded at a time based on the system locale, but that has yet to land.

Ubuntu developers are continuing to explore other performance issues like the futex() system call time being so much higher on Ubuntu compared to other Linux distributions.


Also being worked on still for the Firefox Snap is proper access to network mounts, native messaging support, and other items.

See the Ubuntu blog post for more details on their latest efforts to speed-up the Snap-confined Firefox browser.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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