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Okay, so I am having some issues lately with web browsing. I'm rather unsatisfied with performance. I primarily use Firefox with a slew of super handy extensions that I have a hard time giving up. I tried to set up Opera 10.51 to match my Firefox setup as closely as I could, but it has similar issues. I just can't get into Chrome(ium) because the extensions don't work as expected.
Problem 1: Brief freezes
This happens mostly in Firefox, but Opera does it occasionally, too. In Firefox it happens for 5-10 seconds at a time when starting and finishing a download. Downloading multiple small files is a major pain in the ass. Virus scanning within the browser is disabled and my real-time virus scanner is disabled. It also freezes up periodically while scrolling through a page or typing something into a text field. Even while watching Youtube videos everything will freeze up, but audio will continue to play, for a few seconds. The video catches up immediately. I notice brief hard disk activity when this happens so I have moved my Firefox installation and profile into a RAM disk. At first I was pleased, but it only took a few minutes to realize it did not resolve the issue.
Problem 2: Blurry/slow scrolling
This happens in both Firefox and Opera. Scrolling blurs the page and is rather slow in general. I don't know what the deal is here. This is not a problem in Chrome.
Problem 3: Tabs cause more freezes
Opening and closing tabs makes the browser unusable for a few seconds every time. Both Firefox and Opera are affected while Chrome is not. I guess this is just due to the (lack of) UI threading in the browsers, but it's super annoying.
So does anyone have any good solutions? Should I just use Chrome with inferior extensions (example: adblock is pretty useless in Chrome)?
Windows 7 Ultimate
AMD Phenom II Quad Core
8GB DDR2 RAM
500GB Seagate drives (7200.9 or .10? From year 2007)
Chrome 5.0 (latest dev)
I disabled Greasemonkey to see if it's a contributor to the problem. It feels snappier now, but I will need more time to evaluate. Too bad Greasemonkey is so awesome.