COMPARING THE APPLICATIONS - SeaMonkey, Mozilla Firefox, and Mozilla Thunderbird
Some people find this to be something of great interest: making and supporting the claim that Firefox and Thunderbird together are faster, use less memory, and take up less disk space. Generally, I don't care. I prefer SeaMonkey and, as I think you'll see, on modern systems the differences in disk footprint, memory, and load times are trivial.
I gathered the results in the following table using the NVST methodology: Not Very Scientific Testing. For the record, here's what I did:
I believe I ran this first set of tests in 2006.
|memory||virtual memory||time to load (from fresh boot)||time to load (after start:close sequence)||disk footprint|
|Firefox 1.5 - open to local file||35.8 Mb||27.8 Mb||9 seconds||6 seconds||216 File(s) 20,318,400 bytes|
|Thunderbird - 1.0.7 to password prompt||22.1 Mb||12.8 Mb||4 seconds||3 seconds||126 File(s) 19,469,045 bytes|
|Total for FF and TB||57.9 Mb||40.6 Mb||13 seconds||9 seconds||39,787,445 bytes|
|SeaMonkey Suite 1.0 Beta|
|- browser - load first||63.2 Mb||52.8 Mb||12 seconds||6 seconds|
|- mail/news - to password prompt - memory is total of browser and mail/news||64.5 Mb first start - 49.5 Mb second start||54.1 Mb first start - 39.5 Mb second start||3 seconds (after browser loaded)||2 seconds (after browser loaded)||232 File(s) 23,258,601 bytes|
The system I got in late 2005:
Yes, on slower and older systems the times would be longer. But I first did this comparison about two years ago on a 933 MHz machine with 512 Mb of RAM. The numbers were a bit different but the differences between FF+TB vs. a Suite application were still trivial. Make up your own mind.
Another interesting thing is the claim that adding a command-line switch (/Prefetch:1) to Firefox will speed up its load time. Near as I can tell this is a complete myth. Not only have I tried it myself on more than one occasion but the following links will, I believe, successfully debunk this myth. It apparently stems from misunderstanding of how the "prefetch" feature of Windows works. This is, by the way, what accounts for the differences in load times in my test and why I did it the way I did. See these links:
For more thoughts on the Suite/SeaMonkey vs. FF/TB please see The SeaMonkey Page.
Okay, somebody asked so I re-ran a simplified version of these tests in November 2013.
I only did the test after loading and unloading the apps once. Interesting info.
The FF and SM browser profiles are indentical. The TB profile was imported from SM.
|memory||time to load||disk footprint|
|Firefox 25 - open to local file||205 Mb||11 seconds||193 File(s) 52,613,528 bytes|
|Thunderbird - 24.1.0 to stable after accounts all loaded||76 Mb||3 seconds||695 File(s) 669,354,633 bytes|
|Total for FF and TB||281 Mb||14 seconds||721,96,816 bytes|
|SeaMonkey Suite 2.22|
|- browser - load first||62 Mb||3 seconds|
|Total with browser and mail/news - to stable after accounts all loaded - memory is total of browser and mail/news||159 Mb||Mail/News - 8 seconds - Total = 11 seconds||232 File(s) 23,258,601 bytes|
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