The web wants fast browsers. Cutting-edge HTML5 web pages play games, mash up and share maps, sound, and videos, show spreadsheets and presentations, and edit photos. Only a high-performance browser can do that. What the web wants, it’s our job to make, and we’ve been working hard to make Firefox 4 fast.
JägerMonkey has full support for x86, x64, and ARM processors, so we’re fast on both traditional computers and mobile devices. W00t!
(Crunchy technical stuff ahead: if you don’t care how it works, skip the rest of the sections.)
Property accesses, like
o.pthat gets the property by laborious searching. But once that code runs, the JITs finds out what o‘s shape is and how to get the property. The JIT then generates specialized machine code that simply verifies that the shape is the same and gets the property. For the rest of the program, that
Code generated by basic JITs spends a lot of time reading and writing memory: for code like
x+y, the machine code first reads
x, then reads
y, adds them, and then writes the result to temporary storage. With 64-bit values, that’s up to 6 memory accesses. A more advanced JIT, such as JägerMonkey, generates code that tries to hold most values in registers. JägerMonkey also does some related optimizations, like trying to avoid storing values at all when they are constant or just a copy of some other value.
On Windows Vista and Windows 7, all web pages are hardware accelerated using Direct2D . This provides a great speedup for many complex web sites and demo pages.
On Windows and Mac, Firefox uses 3D frameworks (Direct3D or OpenGL) to accelerate the composition of web page elements. This same technique is also used to accelerate the display of HTML5 video .
About Stormy Peters
Stormy Peters is Director of Websites and Developer Engagement at Mozilla. She is passionate about open source software and educates companies and communities on how open source software is changing the software industry. She is a compelling speaker who engages her audiences during and after her presentations and frequently speaks on business aspects of open source software.