Firefox stalls on certain sites and Opera 8 font-rendering bug
December 17, 2005 2:28 AM   Subscribe

I'm having major problems with both Firefox (my browser of choice) and Opera 8. Firefox stalls consistently for a considerable amount of time (1 min - 5 mins) on specific sites (for instance and Opera has a font-rendering bug on most sites (for instance, again,

Regarding the firefox problem (screenshot):
- oddly, during the time that firefox is not responding, the CPU usage is only between 0% and 2%.
- if, in the same session, I visit the site again or refresh it, it loads just fine. However, the problem can present itself for different sites multiple times in one session.
- I have Firefox 1.5, though I've had the problem since at least 1.0.4
- I've tried deleting my profile and creating a new one. No luck.
- I don't have any extensions installed, other than the Talkbalk one that comes with firefox.
- I've tried uninstalling the current version and reinstalling to a different directory. Again, no luck.

As far as the Opera 8 rendering bug is concerned (screenshot) , even when the website's css specifies a font that it should use to render the page, it will instead render the page with regular Bauer Bodoni LT in some instances and Bauer Bodoni LT RomanSC in others. It makes Opera completely unusable, since I can't tolerate reading long amounts of text in small caps. Maybe this will provide a clue: about a month ago wikipedia used to be displayed in Bauer Bodoni LT RomanSC, but now it shows up with a sans-serif font. Please help!
posted by Frankieist to Computers & Internet (15 answers total)
oh, and Metafilter shows up in Bell Centennial rather than Verdana. So strange.
posted by Frankieist at 2:37 AM on December 17, 2005

I think you would be best off asking for help in the mozillaZine forums.
posted by grouse at 3:33 AM on December 17, 2005

Although you've deleted your profile, I'd try creating a new profile and checking behavior there. I'd be curious to know if you experience these problems in Firefox's safe mode.
posted by boo_radley at 3:34 AM on December 17, 2005

What extensions do you have installed on FFox? Could be that one of them is interfering with the rendering?
posted by slater at 4:53 AM on December 17, 2005

The problem persists in safe mode.
posted by Frankieist at 6:22 AM on December 17, 2005

I think you need to check your font preferences in Opera. I think it's highly likely you've got Bodini being selected as a default CSS font.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:00 PM on December 17, 2005

Probably a plug-in or spyware related problem.
Try starting Windows in safe-mode and see if the problem goes away. If so, it's probably not a Firefox issue.
In Firefox, type in the address bar: about:plugins and check if you see anything weird there.
The MozillaZine forums is indeed the best place to ask these things.
posted by Sharcho at 1:18 PM on December 17, 2005

I found it interesting that task manager showed the CSRSS process using 96% of your CPU cycles. That is extremely unusual (in years of supporting Windows machines, I've never seen it), and it may suggest a trojan. Scan your system!
posted by dhartung at 2:36 PM on December 17, 2005

Hm, that link says that most of the worms that use CSRSS.exe run a local smtp server. Here's what I get when I try to connect to ports 25 and 26 (in Cygwin if you're confused):
$ telnet localhost 25
telnet: Unable to connect to remote host: Software caused connection abort

$ telnet localhost 26
telnet: Unable to connect to remote host: Connection refused
The error response for port 25 comes up immediately, whereas the latter response takes 5 seconds to appear. I had noticed the CSRSS thing many times before, but since I use an auto-updating version of McAffee designed by the computing services department of my university (Rutgers) I shrugged it off as nothing. Can anyone suggest any good open source or otherwise free antivirus software?
posted by Frankieist at 4:53 PM on December 17, 2005

I can not say enough good things about Avast antivirus software--free, slick install, hassle free and quick/automatic updates. Go to Avast, click on downloads and look for Free 4 Home. I have never had a singhave had le problem installing or using and clean scans. It has real time protection.
posted by rmhsinc at 5:05 PM on December 17, 2005

Sorry for typos--brushing fingers across a very sensitive touchpad
posted by rmhsinc at 5:08 PM on December 17, 2005

Perhaps a font has become mis-identified. I think there is a font cache, perhaps it is corrupt. You should check, in order:

1. Opera Preferences > Web Pages > the two fonts there
2. Opera Pref > Advanced > Fonts > the umpteen fonts there
3. Delete the font cache (google it)
4. Cold reboot (ie. BIOS power-on sequence replayed)
5. Check Windows > Fonts > (??) font viewer or some such, make sure the file names, internal font name, and font glyphs all jive with one another.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:14 PM on December 17, 2005

Wow, I never would have thought that the two problems might be related! Fixed everything, and I'll post the solution on here in case anyone else ever stumbles upon this problem. Thanks to dhartung for focusing my attention again on the csrss.exe thing. Did a search on for "firefox" and "csrss.exe" and came up with this. Turns out that it was actually the huge number of fonts that I had installed... for some reason ever since version 1.0.6 Firefox cycles through all the installed fonts on certain pages, and this can take forever to complete. Firefox must be doing some sort of Windows API call that routes through csrss.exe. I uninstalled everything except the bare minimum I need to do design work with Adobe Type Manager, and sure enough, problem's gone.

If you think this might be what's causing firefox to freeze, try going to this site, as it seems based on the forum entries that this url universally stalls firefox for people with the font problem. If it stalls on you, you're probably going to have to uninstall some fonts until the developers come up with a fix (before I had 5000+ fonts installed, now I'm down to ~1700 fonts and everything works great). Thanks everyone!
posted by Frankieist at 12:27 PM on December 19, 2005

And so what of Opera's problem? Same source?
posted by five fresh fish at 3:52 PM on December 19, 2005

Apparently, it's gone now... probably some problem with figuring out what the default font should be when there are so many.
posted by Frankieist at 3:35 PM on December 27, 2005

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