Nate Lanxon over at CNET wants Mozilla to create a Firefox Lite capable of running on older computers:
Firefox, while initially a fairly lightweight Web browser, is now in its 188.8.131.52 incarnation and with a few extensions and a few open tabs, sometimes consumes upwards of a quarter of a gigabyte of RAM.
I would suggest that the Mozilla community produce a stripped-down, bare-bones version of Firefox — 'Firefox Lite', if we're going to follow beverage naming conventions.
Well Nate, I've got some excellent new for you! There is in fact a browser which can run on older computers, and you won't even have to sacrifice any functionality!
It's called Opera. And did you know that Opera even runs on mobile phones using the same rendering engine as on desktop? How's that for low-end? 🙂
I notice that you mention security as a good reason to use Firefox, and there's more good news: Opera's security track record is excellent as well. In fact, while Secunia lists Firefox with 13 security advisories, 6 of which are still open, Opera has no open security advisories, and only 8 in total.
So not only will you get the both the speed and functionality (a lot of the features we take for granted in modern browsers were pioneered by Opera, such as popup blocking, and the Web search field through which Mozilla makes money) on older computers by using Opera. You will also get an excellent security track record.
Why don't you give it a try, Nate?