Mozilla officially announced they’re going to make the number of content processes run by Firefox with version 66 from 4 to 8 and it will be set as default. Firefox 66 is scheduled to release on March 18, 2019.
With the Multiprocess Firefox aka Electrolysis (e10s) introduced with Firefox 56, Mozilla increased content process count to 4 to improve performance and stability. The company has enabled e10s to users gradually through a system add-on, later, multiprocess feature turned on by default for all regular users in Firefox 58.
Firefox 66: content processes increased to 8 from 4
Till current Firefox 65, the number of content processes running set to 4, now this to be changed to 8 in the upcoming version. The company is doing this after testing and getting good results. Memory advocate @Mozilla, Eric Roham confirmed the news in a blog post and said by doubling content processes number they noticed only 6% increase in memory, roham feels that is quite impressive.
Mozilla is tackling memory overhead problem in Firefox through various approaches, FYI, the company already testing tab unloading feature in Firefox 67, where tabs will be unloaded in low memory scenario.
In the current beta and Nightly and in the upcoming Firefox 66, you’ll notice the announced change about eight content processes.
To spot it in non-stable version right now,
Click on hamburger menu >options > General >Performance
Uncheck “Use Recommended Performance Settings”
You can notice the “Content Process limit” as 8 (default).
You can lower the number according to the configuration or RAM you’re having, if you’ve noticed Firefox consuming more memory, reduce the number from 8 to 7 or 6 or 5 or 4.
Firefox browser itself warns users in its Performance settings like this: “additional content processes can improve performance when using multiple tabs, but also uses more memory”. Now the company is doing that and they’ve their test results to back that up, we’ll see how users react to this change.
If you’ve greater than 8 GB memory, the number of processes increased may not a problem, but if you’ve memory capacity lower than that, then you may suffer.