nerd. links – Fix Firefox/Flash CPU Thrashing

I love FireFox, both as a web browser and as a web designer. I love it because it works, I love it for adhering (much better than IE ever will anyway) to web standards and I love it for the handy plugins that you can get.

I hate it though, for thrashing my CPU to 99% whenever I load some pages with flash animations in them. UnitedWebHosting which, as of this date, hosts this site (though probably not for long) is one that’ll do it. Today, I went to ZDnet UK only for a couple of Intel ads to do the same.

It seems like a bit of a joke that a company the size of Adobe (the makers of Flash: they write the plugin, not Mozilla) haven’t managed to resolve this, fairly major, bug. I’m sure they know about it, I mean different people seem to have been talking about since at least January last year.

FlashBlock inserts placeholders for Flash animationsObviously while FireFox is hogging 99% of your CPU there’s only 1% to share among the rest of the programs you have running, so Outlook and the rest didn’t have much of a hope of doing anything at all until I killed the FireFox process in task manager. As this wasn’t the first time this had happened, I decided to go hunting for a solution – which brings me to FlashBlock (hat-tip to The Idiot).

FlashBlock uses JavaScript to replace flash animations in web pages with placeholders (an empty square with a flash logo in the middle). Don’t worry though, clicking this will run the flash animation if you really want to see something (e.g. if you visit YouTube or another site where the primary content is encoded in Flash files). In fact you can even specify a ‘white-list’ of sites in which flash content will run automatically.

Author: nerd.

An experienced IT professional, I used to run a number of small websites and spend a lot of time tinkering with my sites or my PC - back when I had free time.

4 thoughts on “nerd. links – Fix Firefox/Flash CPU Thrashing”

  1. Uninstalling my old firewall (outpost) solved the problem.
    Just disabling the firewall didn’t solved anything.
    Now I use Comodo and everything works great.
    I hope this helps.

  2. Flash consumes an awful amount of CPU. I do not know if this is adobe’s fault or the flash programmers’ fault, but FlashBlock really helps, thanks for pointing this out.

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