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Install Firefox 48 on Ubuntu 16.04/14.04 and Enable Multi Process

firefox multi process

Firefox multi process support, which separate web content and Firefox UI process, was finally added in version 48 which was released on August 2, 2016. This is deemed to bring better responsiveness, stability, and security. Currently, this feature enables one process for all browser tabs and another process for Firefox UI. In upcoming releases, Firefox will create a separate process for each browser tab.

Other changes in Firefox 48 includes:

  • Enhanced protection against harmful downloads
  • Media improvement for the Android version
  • Mandatory Add-On Signing
  • GNU/Linux version gets better Canvas performance with speedy Skia support.
  • Stable WebExtension support

Install Firefox 48 on Ubuntu 16.04/14.04 from PPA

August 5, 2016 Update: Firefox 48 landed in Ubuntu 16.04/14.04 repository. All you have to do is sudo apt update && sudo apt install firefox.

Right now (August 3, 2016), the Ubuntu software repository still includes Firefox 47. If you like to try the latest stable version of Firefox, i.e. Firefox 48, then open up a terminal window and use the following commands to install it from PPA.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-mozilla-security/ppa

sudo apt update && sudo apt install firefox
ubuntu mozilla security ppa

This PPA also works on other Linux distributions that are based on Ubuntu 16.04/14.04 such as Linux Mint and Elementary OS. If you already have firefox installed, then Firefox 48 will replace the old version. Don’t worry, your configurations, add-ons, history, etc will be fine.

Once installed, you can start it from Unity Dash or application menu.

install firefox on Ubuntu command line

To check your Firefox version on Ubuntu, go to Help > About Firefox.

check firefox version on ubuntu

How to Enable Firefox Multi Process

Mozilla enables multi-support in Firefox 48 for 1 percent of users. To check if Multi-Process is enabled on your Firefox, type about:support in the address bar. If the value of Multiprocess Windows is 1, then it’s enabled.

firefox multiple processes

To manually enable it, type about:config in the address bar. Press Enter. Then type


in the search bar and toggle the value of this boolean to true. Then restart Firefox.

firefox enable multi process

Please note that your add-ons are not likely to support multi-process right now, so you may need to disable some of your add-ons. Once it’s enabled, open system monitor, you should see a new process called Web Content.

firefox multi process web content

Do you feel any performance boost with multi process enabled in Firefox? In my case, I do and I’m once again a happy Firefox user. Leave your comments below. And as always, if you found this post useful,  subscribe to our free newsletter or follow us on Google+Twitter or like our Facebook page.

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