IE 8 Developer Toolbar Hanging and Locking Browser
I have found that one of the primary causes of IE 8 hanging with the developer toolbar is its console logger. If you have a script that outputs messages to the console I have found that IE will hang until all the messages have been outputted to the console. The more messages you have the longer it takes. Also unlike Firebug which seems to output the messages during normal page load activity IE seems to cache all the messages and then output them all in one batch (or has the appearance of doing so). The CPU seems to max out during the outputting of these messages.
I have been doing a lot of work lately with styles, fades and CSS which has obviously meant working with Internet Explorer building in code to handle the differences between IE and other browsers e.g getting computed styles from IEs currentStyle, Opacity differences etc. This has meant using trying to use the Developer Toolbar which was shipped as standard in IE 8.
However I have found that this developer toolbar add-on has a tendency to hang especially after the first use of it. I can go to a page and then open the developer window to change the browser or document modes or step through some debug. However if I minimise the window and go back to the main window and then try to open the developer window again the majority of the time it will refuse to come back to focus. Even if I try to maximise or restore the window or go to the desktop to find it. I have also noticed that when I do get focus back it will only partially be visible as if its trying to load content but struggling.
In fact checking the Task Manager usually reveals a CPU of 50% or more. There will be two processes open one for the developer window the other for the main IE window but even though the developer window is hanging it seems the process with the high CPU is the browser window.
I don't know if this is common issue that developers have found but at the moment I am tending to use Firebug-lite or a custom DIV for outputting debug if I need to and custom pages for killing sessions and checking the current document mode and browser mode which are the 3 most common tasks I find myself doing which is a shame as I really like the layout and functionality the toolbar offers. Its just a shame that it seems to run very badly at the moment.