Every, day as always, I use both Opera and Firefox browsers simultaneously. I have a dual screen setup so it’s addictive to do separate tasks on each screen. Every day I seem to find a new reason for why Firefox is so much better than Opera. Yet I still use Opera every day even though it becomes more and more painful with each new update they put out. As I was testing the newest version of diggZ-Et today I noticed in opera it would slow down my blog’s homepage. It would literally take twenty seconds to load, being the same result every time. At first I thought, geese something in my code must be choking WordPress. So I load it in Firefox and my blog homepage loads in three seconds. I think Opera’s system for handling JavaScript is the culprit, as I have noticed it handles JavaScript much slower than other browsers. So I decided to test diggZ-Et in all the mainstream browsers to see how the performance differentiates between browsers.

The tests will basically just test the load time of my blog’s homepage in each browser with and without diggZ-Et being enabled. The test is just for my curiosity and to prove that Opera’s JavaScript handling is the culprit. I will be using the following browsers in the test; Opera 9.27, Firefox 2, Firefox 3.0 RC1, Explorer 6.0, Explorer 7.0, Explorer 8.0, Safari 3.0.4 (Windows Beta).

The Tests

The test results below indicate diggZ-Et enabled / disabled.

20 Seconds / 2 Seconds – Opera 9.27

3 Seconds / 3 Seconds – Firefox 2.0

3 Seconds / 2 Seconds – Firefox 3.0 RC

8 Seconds / 4 Seconds – Explorer 6.0

6 Seconds / 5 Seconds – Explorer 7.0

8 Seconds / 5 Seconds – Explorer 8.0 (Beta)

5 Seconds / 3 Seconds – Safari 3.0.4 (Win Beta)

3 Seconds / 2 Seconds – Opera 9.5

As you can see diggZ-Et performs best when using Firefox 3.0. Opera takes the cake for the slowest speed when diggZ-Et is enabled but my blog still loads the slowest in IE 7 and 8 with the plugin being disabled. I would also like to note that all these tests were done on a 1.5 broadband connection.

I think the Opera Dev team seriously need to rework their JavaScript system. I always thought opera was the best browser but now Firefox is taking that spot in my mind. Although I should be looking for a way to completely encase these Digg buttons in divs so it won’t have to load the JavaScript from Digg’s website. This will be on my to-do list but no guarantees.

Update 6-12-08

Opera recently released version 9.5 and with this new version they seem to have gone and fixed their JavaScript handling. Opera 9.5 now performs on the same level as Firefox 3.0 with JavaScript handling.

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