A few weeks ago, Mozilla announced Electrolysis, a new project that aims to make Firefox a multi-process application, with separate processes for the user interface (chrome), each tab, and plugins, in order to provide higher stability as a a problem with a plugin or a certain web page wouldn’t bring down the whole session; higher performace, as today’s multi-core processors can handle multiple tasks at a time; and stronger security, as each could run on different security contexts.
Chris Jones, a member of the Electrolysis team, along with Benjamin Smedberg, Boris Zbarsky, Ben Turner, Joe Drew, and Jason Duell among others, has released a demo video that shows a very basic implementation with a process running Firefox’s UI and another that takes care of displaying the content (gecko in-frame). As you can see in the video, the content process is manually terminated, and then restored, simulating a “page gone bad” crash.
The team is on track to the targeted mid-July release of a very early implementation that should do exactly this. Electrolysis uses the IPC message-passing and setup code from Chromium (the open source code base for Chrome) which, like Internet Explorer 8 have a multi-process architecture.