Mozilla changed the way the Firefox web browser works with the release of Firefox 57 Quantum a few months ago, by using separate processes to speed up web page loading and bring more stability to the browser.

Now the company has released Firefox 58, and this time the company is promising smoother graphics, faster page load times, and improved support for progressive web apps on Android devices.

But the biggest speed gains come if you enable “tracking protection,” a feature that Mozilla says prevents websites from tracking visitors… but which effectively works like an ad blocker, since that’s what most online ads do these days.

Tracking Protection first made its debut in Mozilla’s InPrivate browsing mode in Firefox 42. But since Firefox 57 was released, you’ve been able to opt into tracking protection for all web sites, whether you’re browsing in private mode or not.

Mozilla notes that while the feature is designed to protect your privacy, it can also make some websites load as much as twice as quickly. Of course, installing an ad blocker in Chrome, Edge, or another browser will also speed up page load times, but Firefox is one of only a handful of browsers that has such a featured baked in (others include Opera and Brave).

Other changes in Firefox 58 includes support for using a dedicated CPU thread to “paint” on-screen graphics more quickly, an updated bookmark manager in Firefox for Android, and support for adding progressive web apps to your phone’s home screen with a simple tap of a button (so that those apps function almost as if they were native apps).

The browser also throttles the timers in background tabs to help reduce overall CPU usage (with exceptions for tabs that you’re using to do things like play audio or engage in real-time voice or video calls).

Mozilla is also working on bringing its new WebRender page renderer to future versions of Firefox, which could speed up page load times eve more.

Firefox 58 is available for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android.

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7 replies on “Firefox 58 released with support for faster graphics, progressive web apps, and tracking protection”

  1. After listening to the Lunduke show about Mozilla being in bed with George Soros….I couldn’t be happier after switching to Waterfox. I only have 4GB’s of memory and Quantum slowed my computer to a crawl after 5 or 6 tabs. Before this new Quantum…I could have 25 tabs open without a problem. Not sure what’s going on with the Mozilla Foundation, but it seems like they’ve fallen off the privacy oriented browser horse and can’t seem to get back up again. Frankly…Mozilla scares me, I’ll never use Firefox again.

    1. Pardon me, but what does George Soros has to do with firefox and even if he does give money to it how does that mean you have to change browser? What does politics have to do with browsers?
      I understand your argument if it’s “quantim slows down my computer”, but it’s not like George Soros one day woke up and decided to screw Michael DuBois ower by slowing his PC down by giving money to the Mozilla foundation.

    2. Really? Right now I’m using FF 57.04 32-bit with Quantum on a crappy Lenovo 11.6″ Celeron N2840 equipped laptop with just 2GB of soldered down SDRAM running 32-bit Linux Mint 17.2 Cinnamon. I regularly keep 3 private browser windows open each with at least 10 tabs all open simultaneously without any noticeable slow down, even with one tab playing an SD YouTube video. Yeah at that point things will stutter a bit if I start another large application and you can hear the rotating HDD thrashing, but everything is still usable. Are you running Windows?

      Hey, I just noticed the EDIT button. Yay!

      1. For me, Firefox Quantum has been hit or miss. It works well on some computers and poorly on others. They’re all Windows 10 computers, and they all have a minimum of 4GB of RAM. I have tried everything I can think of to get it running better on the machines it runs poorly on, dumping cache, browser resets, reinstalling, etc. The only things I can think of that might be causing the problems is that Quantum is conflicting with software on some machines (they’re all Windows 10, but they have different software installed), or Quantum doesn’t run well on some processors/graphics (because the machines are all different generations). What happens is the Windows process Superfetch goes crazy and starts using 100% of the hard drive. The whole system slows to a crawl. It’s absolutely being caused by Firefox because I’ve seen it happen on different machines and once Firefox is closed things go back to normal. Sometimes it happens with a lot of tabs, sometimes not that many. Other browsers don’t have this issue on the problem machines. I think Mozilla is still working some bugs out of the new engine.
        The biggest issue I’ve had with Quantum as a whole is the loss of some of my add-ons. I’ve been using SeaMonkey more since it still supports the add-ons that I want.

  2. Dear Brad!
    So, this has been on my mind for some time now, it’s kind of off-topic (I only commented it here so people may notice and read it) and it’s definitely going to be downvoted into oblivion. It’s also a personal opinion and I don’t mean to tell you how to run Liliputing.

    With that in mind I think the commenting system on the site is broken, particularly the voting. I don’t say it because I regularly get the most downvotes, let me explain. In the current commenting system you can get upvotes and downvotes. Upvotes are simple: they let people express in an easy way that they agree with you 100%, so there is no need for fifty “I think so too” and “+1” comments. It’s fine, if you agree with someone and don’t want to spam the comment wall.

    The problem lies with a downvote. If you don’t agree with a comment, you press the downvote button. And… that’s it. You didn’t tell what part you didn’t agree with, you don’t give a counterpoint. There is no argument, no communication. Getting a lot of downvotes simply says “we don’t agree with any of your points, in fact we think you are so stupid there is no point to explain or argue with you”. And while it’s maybe fine on facebook or reddit or 9gag, on a tech site, like Liliputing, where talking about tech includes some argument, this is counterproductive. It stops argument and talking, and expressing opinions becomes a lazy +1 / -1 deal, or worse some people will abuse this and press -1 not because they don’t agree with something but because the person who wrote that. How do I argue with an anonymous -1? I just don’t. I’ll simply comment less or comment only when I’m sure I won’t get hate in return. Banalities, like “I also think Cuphead is a great game”. Basically, commenting becomes a +1 to a main topic, a simple upvote for an article. And as much as it might look good that there are only positive comments, I think excluding the arguments from the comment section is counterproductive.

    So how to fix this? One option is to disable voting altogether. But that means a lot of “+1” comments. Another option is to disable downvoting only, which means if you don’t agree with something you can write it in a reply as write “I think Cuphead is too hard!” instead of pressing -1. You can also change the voting to not go into negative numbers, so for example +5 votes and -3 votes is 2 ups, but -5 and +3 is 0. And for the next two upvotes it stays 0. Still an option is to list the nickname of the voters, so if someone downvotes and don’t give a reason you can ask the person on their opinion on the matter.

    Again, I don’t mean to tell you how to do your job. I’ve been a reader since the beginning (when I got an UMID Mbook M1 so many years ago), and I’ve seen the community grow around liliputing, and I’m really happy for that. But with a bigger community changes come and I think one such change need to be this issue. So that we can grow even more.

    Thank you for reading this, and if you don’t agree please comment instead of pressing -1!

    1. The tools I’ve got currently make it all or nothing. I can show the vote buttons or hide them, but I can’t enable upvotes while disabling downvotes.

      What I have done is effectively upped the limit of possible downvotes so that users can downvote a comment as much as they like, but that won’t automatically get it booted into the spam folder. That was happening for a little while on some of the GPD Win 2 posts.

      By default, comments are also not arranged in the order of most upvoted or downvoted. So the only thing that really happens when a comment receives a bunch of downvotes is that you see that number below the comment.

      I’m not sure there’s enough of a problem to justify eliminating voting entirely right now, but I’ll keep an eye on it in the future.

      1. I feel you should just get rid of the voting system. The fakes votes can get annoying (not super bad, I guess). For example, the GPD articles has so many fake up and down votes from GPD fanboys and maybe even GPD themselves. Just creates a negative environment.

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