More news has surfaced about multi-process support for Firefox, with a prototype now completed.

Multi-process support gives each tabs, window, and plugins its own process. Browsers such as Google Chrome and Internet Explorer 8 already support this feature.

Benjamin Smedberg has blogged about the benefits of multi-processes:

  • Increased stability: if a plugin or webpage tries to use all the processor, memory, or even crashes, a process can isolate that bad behavior from the rest of the browser.
  • Performance: By splitting work up among multiple processes, the browser can make use of multiple processor cores available on modern desktop computers and the next generation of mobile processors. The user interface can also be more responsive because it doesn’t need to block on long-running web page activities.
  • Security: If the operating system can run a process with lower privileges, the browser can isolate web pages from the rest of the computer, making it harder for attackers to infect a computer.

Firefox developer Chris Jones has posted a screencast demoing the new technology.

No word on a final release date yet, but we may see this technology in production version some time in late 2010. Currently the team are focusing on Windows and Linux versions.

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