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Which firefox do you use?
Regular www-client/firefox - this is the normal Gentoo way even with a slow box
70%
 70%  [ 47 ]
www-client/firefox-bin - my machine is too slow to build
5%
 5%  [ 4 ]
www-client/firefox-bin - don't have enough sacrificial disk space (SSD or 0 bytes free)
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
www-client/firefox-bin - this is the "legal" binary Mozilla.org builds.
5%
 5%  [ 4 ]
I have them both installed...
4%
 4%  [ 3 ]
I don't use firefox at all.
13%
 13%  [ 9 ]
Total Votes : 67

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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 8:26 pm    Post subject: firefox vs firefox-bin - do you compile it or not Reply with quote

I need to do some more testing but it seems that on my Atom box, firefox built with -march=atom actually "feels" faster than using firefox-bin. Both are still very slow on my single core dual thread 1.6GHz Atom, but for some reason, it seems it's actually noticeable - most of the times I don't notice speed differences between compiled vs prebuilt binaries much. Perhaps it's USE flags, don't know for sure.

I'll need to do benchmarks for sure because I have been fooled before "it's Gentoo so it must be faster!", but curious as to which firefox people use.

Any good HTML benchmarks out there to seed the testing?
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Roman_Gruber
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Code:
ASUS-G75VW roman # qlist -Iv firef
www-client/firefox-bin-51.0


My installation is quite old. For unknown reason (no idea why) i moved from compiling ot the prebuild one. There were some constraints from firefox itself or from portage.

AFAIK firefox does not really do threading and is only single core. So a higher single core frequency benefits more than multiple cores.

AFAIK firefox has startup issues. Is very very slow

These effects are software related and not hardware related
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One box I admin I ended up using firefox-bin because there was simply not enough space to build firefox (2GB RAM, less than 4GB HDD free - enough for most packages but not firefox.) So forced to use the binary. It's a Celeron-M 1500 and not exactly a fast machine either.

Firefox tends to load up fairly quickly for me, or perhaps I don't have as stringent load time frustration. In my opinion, as long as it doesn't pause during loading - i.e. it keeps on doing demand fetches from disk and keeps near 100% disk utilization - then it's good for me. The annoying thing is that firefox will poke the network during startup (version check? other stuff? yuck...) and if the network doesn't respond, it will be slow to load.
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Hu
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 2:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Starting Firefox in Offline mode can deter some of those network accesses. Unfortunately, starting in Firefox 7 (yes, plain 7), upstream deliberately removed the ability to remember offline mode across process restarts because users were confused by it. Now, you need an extension that can switch Firefox into offline mode during early startup. I use Offline Restart Buttons for this.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 3:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I no longer have slow machines so I always merge firefox rather than firefox-bin. However, I used to have a laptop with Pentium III Coppermine (800 MHz) and 288 MB RAM, and I merged firefox-bin on that for obvious reasons. A few years ago on another laptop I recall merging firefox then uninstalling it and merging firefox-bin, and was surprised to find that firefox-bin performed much better than firefox built from source, even though Gentoo on that laptop was installed and configured correctly and Portage world was fully up-to-date.
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 5:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes this is what I would have thought, the Mozilla.org distributed bins should be very well optimized, but for some reason the self compiled "feels" faster...

Again if anyone knows of some basic benchmarks I'd like to know for sure... The GUI feels ever so slightly less "laggy" for some reason. I unmerged firebox-bin but think I should re-merge it to do some tests...
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The Doctor
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 5:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't imagine a modern box having any problems. I haven't messed around with any (optionally) binary packages in years.
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fedeliallalinea
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use firefox when since it was called "Phoenix" and always compiled from source, but in the past year I switched to -bin version for a matter of time (especially at work)
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krinn
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

the funny thing about optimization: the worst it is to compile for your machine, the best result you'll get ; while a ultra fast cpu will take the benefit, but it will be hard to notice you have get any.

i use this method: firefox from source with masked updated version (yep, no rebuild for a new -r update), until i decide it is worth building a new one.
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Randy Andy
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 10:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi guys,

following the good old Gentoo way, it was normal for me to build all packages from source since years, although it takes ages on very week laptops.
In newer days I build it for them via crosscompile, distcc or chroot compile on my strongest machine.

Nevertheless shortly I made an experience, which let me rethinking this strategy a little.
On my wife's Laptop, I guess is was forefox 45.6.0, crashes regular, so I quickly installed 45.6.0-bin and it runs stable. I used the ERSR versions of firefox on her machine, cause others crashes quite often on this old an weak laptop.

So I wondered at first, why the same version is more stable in a binary version...
Now I guess it could be cause some of the CVE-2016-9897: Memory corruption issues an others.
Actually I compiled version 51.0 from source and had 45.7.0-bin installed parallel for the worst case. So lets see if 51 is stable again on this machine.

51.0 crashes also on my biggest machine, when using its hardware acceleration and opening google maps for example, but I guess this is known with some hardware-software combinations.
Maybe its worth to submit some crash and bug reports...


By the way (Doctor),
whenever I had trouble with periodical rebuilding dependencies in the past, it was mostly caused by -bin packages.
Only one example from a post of mine, sorry, in german:
https://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic-t-900196-highlight-bin.html

And Hu, after reading your comment, I'm asking myself when FF version 7 was released, but when looking into my referenced post, I see that it was around 2011.

Just my 50 cent,

Andy.
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Other than the UI slowness on the slowest machines, both bin and portage compiled 45.6 seems stable on all my machines, google maps included. I have not tried 51 yet.

("Slow" machines:
Atom 1600
P3 933
P4 3400
A64 3000)

I suspect some of the slowness on startup for me are from loading interpreted extensions - both loading greasemonkey and privacy badger... and this shows up on all machines, even the big iron i7.
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frostschutz
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I normally use the firefox-bin, but currently I'm downloading directly from mozilla (the developer / nightly version) because I'm working on an addon / webextension... and firefox' webextension support is kind of in a state of flux
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Dr.Willy
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think firefox takes that long to build.
From my experience, the biggest offenders are libreoffice and chromium.
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It doesn't take that long alas it does require quite a bit of disk space and RAM for the link phase. Libreoffice is worse for sure, and seems like chromium as well.

I think boost, webkit, and llvm are on the cpu-intensive list... And since Chromium uses webkit...
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 1:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

eccerr0r,

There is no firefox-bin for arm64, so I build it on a Raspberry Pi 3.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 1:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Comparing to binary [distros] I find Gentoo unbelievably stable, making me think custom-built binaries actually are more crash-proof. Maybe I'm all wrong. :roll:
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 1:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I clicked the "legal binary" box, but the real reason is that I see absolutely no difference in their performance which seems limited more by internet speed and human reaction speed, so I'm unwilling to spend any resources on building from source (amd64). NeddySeagoon has the best reason for building from source.
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Ant P.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 2:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can compile chromium on an Atom, that takes ~12 hours. Firefox is about 5 times quicker so I don't see any reason to avoid it.
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 4:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The atom box is a laptop/portable and I worry about letting it run for 12 hours, in case I need to take the laptop and actually do something with it, possibly having to power cycle it due to battery. I do keep suspend/resume working which helps a bit.

That's probably the main reason why I don't want to run anything for too long, even if it's an hour or so. Annoying when you're 11 hours into a 12 hour compile and you can't find a power source with hibernate broken.

And knowing how slow the Atom, P3-933, etc. are at running firefox, I really feel for whoever actually uses firefox as a main browser on anything slower - like a r.pi... Yeah, for f.g.o it's usable, but a lot of today's web content is just too slow on these machines, and even more so on a r.pi...
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Tony0945
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 4:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ant P., why spend two hours building something no better than the binary?
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fcl
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 6:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've switched to using the Nightly binary straight from Mozilla. It's way faster than stable and actually doesn't hang when I open new tabs with resource heavy content. Plus it's easy to update.
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mv
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 8:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tony0945 wrote:
Ant P., why spend two hours building something no better than the binary?

"Better" is a relative notion: I consider it better if e.g. firefox is not able to access dbus and act as a SSID spy for whichever website desires this information. And yes, I prefer that firefox has not built in this ability at all so that I have less risk that some bug/feature can be exploited to override my choice in some settings.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

NeddySeagoon wrote:
There is no firefox-bin for arm64, so I build it on a Raspberry Pi 3.

How long it takes?
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

P.Kosunen,
Code:
Pi3 64bit ~ # genlop -t firefox
 * www-client/firefox

     Mon May  2 03:24:34 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-46.0
       merge time: 6 hours, 49 minutes and 49 seconds.

     Wed May  4 00:32:57 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-46.0
       merge time: 6 hours, 17 minutes and 52 seconds.

     Wed Jun 29 03:13:06 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-47.0
       merge time: 9 hours, 21 minutes and 5 seconds.

     Mon Jul 25 12:32:37 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-47.0.1
       merge time: 12 hours, 40 minutes and 20 seconds.

     Mon Nov 28 04:56:18 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-50.0
       merge time: 7 hours, 34 minutes and 30 seconds.

     Mon Dec  5 05:30:25 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-50.0.2
       merge time: 10 hours, 30 minutes and 35 seconds.

     Mon Dec 19 05:44:00 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-50.1.0
       merge time: 10 hours, 4 minutes and 1 second.

     Tue Dec 27 19:33:21 2016 >>> www-client/firefox-50.1.0
       merge time: 6 hours, 50 minutes and 55 seconds.

     Tue Jan 10 06:34:04 2017 >>> www-client/firefox-50.1.0-r1
       merge time: 6 hours, 53 minutes and 21 seconds.

Pi3 64bit ~ #


The longer builds are with -j1. firefox-50.0 was the first one that actually worked.
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Ant P.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tony0945 wrote:
Ant P., why spend two hours building something no better than the binary?

firefox-bin has a hard dep on gtk3, firefox doesn't. If I'm going to spend at least an hour compiling something I might as well make it something I want.
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