DIV vs TABLE render times

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We are redesigning our website and my manager and I engaged in a debate
which included, among other things, whether to stick with tables for
structuring the website or use more DIV tags. I'm a proponent of doing
what works for the particular case, but I was interested in finding out
more about something he said. He claims that tables render much faster
than DIVs which sounded odd to me, considering how many people say that
DIVs render much faster than tables.

Is there any research that shows one being faster than the other (or,
for that matter, neither really being signficantly faster)? Is
rendering speed linked more to the size and complexity of the page?

Re: DIV vs TABLE render times

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I don't know if there is any research.

Modern day computers are fast, and I doubt many people would notice any
difference between the rendering of tables and DIVs.

Like for like, IMO a page made of DIVs would probably have a smaller
size and download quicker.  And would probably render quicker because
the browser doesn't have to do so much hard work making table and
contents fit each other.

I use a fairly slow 450mhz Windows Me during development.  I can usually
tell whether a page is table or DIV based by the speed and way it
renders.  To me tables seem slower.
Martin Jay
Phone/SMS: +44 7740 191877
Fax: +44 870 915 2124

Re: DIV vs TABLE render times


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Agree with him. He's obviously so far from having any sort of Clue that
there's just no point in arguing.

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I have no idea, and I care even less. Rendering is effectively
"instant", so just how instant it is is irrelevant.

There are two sorts of significant variation you do see in rendering.
One is an inability to render a partly downloaded page, until the whole
thing has arrived. This was mainly an issue for slow connections and
it's also made much worse by using <table>s. Older browsers often didn't
render a table until they received the closing tag for it.

The second issue is when a layout re-flows after more content appears.
This is typically seen with columns and absolute positioning, or when
images influece element positioning but didn't have their sizes set in
the HTML. If you have static banner or logo images, it's worth setting
their size in the HTML: code.

Re: DIV vs TABLE render times

On 26 May 2006 07:48:47 -0700, The alMIGHTY N wrote:

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It would be best to do your own ressearch - make two page layouts, one
using tables, and one using css.
If used proper, css (div layout) should produce at least 30% smaller .html

buy, bought, bye

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