|Original author(s)||Tony Gentilcore|
|Stable release||3.9.811 / July 9, 2012|
|Development status||Re maintained|
|Operating system||Currently all|
|Available in||Czech, German, Finnish, French, Frisian, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Lithuanian, Dutch, Polish, Russian, Slovak, Slovenian, Swedish, Turkish, Ukrainian, Chinese(Simplified), Chinese (Traditional)|
|License||Private License Agreement.|
|Origins and lineage|
Fasterfox is a Mozilla Firefox extension that provides an interface to tweak some performance related settings such as browser network connection, cache, timings, as well as provide an optional controversial feature which forces link prefetching. These changes can decrease (or if sub optimally set, increase) page loading time. Since 2007, the original extension is not maintained by the developer Tony Gentilcore and is not compatible with Firefox 3.0 or later. However, there are currently alternative extensions that are compatible with the latest versions of Firefox. As of August 2008 Rights were Sold/Transferred to (Rsccman Production) "Fasterfox" Who maintained and has updated the versions to be usable to Firefox 22.*+ and Future Firefox Builds.
There are currently no mobile Versions being looked into from (Rsccman Production).
An interface is provided to adjust a range of networks settings. This allows adjusting of:
With Fasterfox prefetching enabled, the browser will prefetch all links on a page in the background. Subsequently, if (or when) one or more of those links is clicked, only a fraction of the time to load the page will be used, since the page has already been cached; users can disable this option. Fasterfox version 1.0.1 and later checks the robots.txt file on the root folder of servers to see whether or not it should prefetch the page.
Prefetched file types
When enabled in Fasterfox, Firefox will prefetch all links with the following extensions (it deems other things to be dynamic content by URL):
Forced prefetch controversy
Forcing link prefetching, or forcing links which are not explicitly specified as able to be prefetched, is a controversial feature, for several reasons (as a result, the preset is disabled):
- it is not standards compliant (even though prefetching in itself is not a standard)
- prefetched links that are never subsequently viewed are downloaded
- some links cannot be cached
- dynamic content cannot be cached anyway
- pages can be explicitly marked as not to be cached
- websites may fail or browsing become annoying
- unintended side effects when visiting a web site that ascribes actions to links (e.g. exposing a "Cancel" or "Delete" action via a link)
- users may receive error messages in connection with pages which they are not actually viewing
- webmasters may block browsers that show signs of robot activity, or simple block browsers with the Fasterfox
As mentioned above, websites can use their robots.txt file to block Fasterfox's user agent from prefetching links to their documents (or to just some of their documents). Many websites do this in order to lower their bandwidth costs and improve responsiveness.
Fasterfox also blocks pop-ups that appear as a results of Flash plug-ins (movies) and Flash exploits.
- Maybury, Rick (2006-04-03). "Bootcamp 418: Mozilla Firefox top tips". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
- "FasterFox FAQ: I'm a webmaster, how can I prevent prefetching".
- Gibbs, Mark (2006-12-15). "The perils of precaching". Network World. Retrieved 2008-02-03.
- Newton, Mark (2006-06-29). "Things move on". PC Pro. Retrieved 2008-02-03.