When Firefox Freezes on Your Mac

By Sidharth | Apple

Solution for MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and iMac computer running Mac OS X Snow Leopard or Lion.

Finding why and how a browser freezes and crashes unexpectedly can be a tricky thing. There are several reasons why your Mozilla Firefox is paralyzed, and if this is your first time, there’s little you can do to fix it on your own.

On Mac, Force quit might not be an option to try every time to get rid of the constant freezing of your Firefox browser. On the other hand, if Firefox freezes even after giving it a much-needed restart, and you have no clue what to do next, then there are several options for you to try out.

Update Firefox to its Latest Version Fixes Firefox Freezing Issues

First, make sure you have an updated Firefox browser running on your Mac. More often than not, many of us never update our browser. If you are unsure of the Firefox version installed on your Mac, simply launch Firefox, click on About Firefox from the menu.

If you are using addons and plugins as a supplement to enhance your browsing functionality, you may want to check and update them regularly. A good place to find out if you are using outdated plugins is to visit this page. Also, uninstalling buggy addons has proved to fix the freezing issue.

Make Firefox Better by Deleting History

If the browser is not up-to-date, then you’d be better off updating it. Even after updating, if Firefox is freezing at regular intervals, then make sure to turn off or delete Firefox’s history. If you are a regular Internet user, the browser history can account for a massive pileup of data, which can bring Firefox to its knees, ultimately leading to a crippled browser that leaves you with nothing but frustration.

To clear browsing and download history, click on Tools from the Firefox Menu, then navigate to Clear Recent History. A window like this appears, where you are free to select and clear information that is unnecessary for you.

Firefox History Fix

Alternatively, you can also use the addon Form History Control to optimize your history. The addon can remove websites from the history index that are no longer used, thus creating enough room for Firefox to stop crashing every time you browse the web.

When Firefox Beta Freezes on Your Mac

Even the powerful browser can erode when you open tonnes of tabs while browsing, and there’s no exception with Firefox. In fact, Firefox on Mac is a beast — a memory hogger.  Also, whenever you have a beta version of Firefox installed, it tends to show signs of unstable behavior.

You can fix this problem by downloading Places Maintenance addon. Once you’ve this addon installed, type in about:addons in your Firefox address bar. Then open the Options dialog box. Select Expire operation, click Execute. [Source]

This poses as an easy solution to get rid of the constant freezing issues connected with your stable, nightly builds, or beta Firefox browser.

Update Your Flash Plugin to Avoid Firefox Crashing

Another reason for Firefox crashing relentlessly on your Mac is attributed to Flash plugin. Make sure that your browser has been updated to the latest version of Flash player.

Although this is a rare case, but for those who have third-party drivers installed, which is linked to Firefox automatically — printer drivers, for example — then make sure to update these drivers, too. Usually, drivers are bundled with Apple’s Software Update. You might want to click on Apple Menu and check if any update is available.

Alternatively, you can also use update checker tool to keep your Mac up-to-date.

About the Author

Hi, I am Sidharth. Full-time blogger. Editor of Blogote. And a self-proclaimed geek!

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