During my roaming around the Internet, I stumbled upon Dot Net Perls site that had an interesting profile on the memory usage for several browsers. The browser tests included Firefox 3.5RC, Chrome 3.0, Safari 4 and Opera 10b. The testing is described as follows:

Here we note that the previous study of browser memory usage on dotnetperls.com was performed by monitoring a user’s actual interactions with the browsers in a memory tabulation program. Due to the burden of having to use certain browsers for three hours in a row, this experiment automates all URL visits through the command line. This means that each browser was tested for exactly 150 remote URLs, using the same command-line arguments for different executables.

And also:

Because every user has a different selection of sites he uses, the sites tested programmatically in this examination were taken directly from the Alexa top sites CSV file at http://s3.amazonaws.com/alexa-static/top-1m.csv.zip. This list is the property of the Alexa service and will not be made available on dotnetperls.com. The CSV used was downloaded on June 19, 2009.

And now for the winners:

Here we see the results of the experiment when performed as described above. During the experiment, 384 memory checkpoints were taken, which amounts to 1152 seconds or 19.2 minutes. Google Chrome posted the highest maximum memory usage when all chrome.exe processes were summed, reaching 1.18 gigabytes, while Firefox posted the lowest maximum memory levels of 327.65 megabytes. This means Firefox used 73% less memory during peak periods.

With this chart comparison:

Peak memory usage measured during experiment.

Chrome:  1216.16 MB      [Largest]
Firefox:  327.65 MB      [Smallest]
Opera:    554.11 MB
Safari:   517.00 MB

There is one thing missing. What about Microsoft’s IE?
Comments welcome.