Which Web Browser Can Best Mozilla's New Kraken Benchmark?

By Wesley Fenlon

Mozilla's new benchmark aims to provide a more realistic test of a browser's capabilities.

We all have our favorite Internet browsers--these days, the two-year-old Chrome tends to be the web’s star child, but Firefox and Safari still get plenty of love and affection. Every new iteration of these browsers promises faster page rendering, better JavaScript performance, and new features--claims that are always tested with popular benchmarks like Sunspider and Mozilla’s Dromaeo. Apparently, Dromaeo didn’t sate Mozilla’s appetite for raw performance data, as they’ve just announced a new test: Kraken!

According to Mozilla, Kraken “focuses on realistic workloads and forward-looking applications.” The benchmark aims to chart the progress of open web products like Firefox as they improve the performance of day-to-day browser tasks. Kraken 1.0 will soon expand into a more feature-filled testing system, and like all Mozilla’s projects, it’s an open source endeavor.


BrowserKraken Benchmark Score
Firefox 3.6.9
 Firefox 4 Beta 6
  Chrome 6.0.472.59
 Chrome 7.0.503.0
 Internet Explorer 8.0.7600.16375

Each score above links to the full breakdown of Kraken's benchmark results. All tests were performed on a machine running 64-bit Windows 7 Ultimate. 

Amusing anecdote: Internet Explorer 8 took about half an hour to complete the test, and required a registry hack to disable a neverending slow script warning. Firefox 3.6, the second slowest of the bunch, finished in well under 10 minutes. There's clearly something very, very wrong there.