Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 21:36 UTC, submitted by google_ninja
Internet & Networking Now this is a subject sure to cause some discussion among all of you. LifeHacker's Adam Pash is arguing that Chrome has overtaken Firefox as the browser of choice for what he calls 'power users'; polls among LifeHacker's readership indeed seem to confirm just that. He also gives a number of reasons as to why this is the case.
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Switched to Chrome on Day 1
by umccullough on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 21:46 UTC
umccullough
Member since:
2006-01-26

I admit, I pretty much switched to Chrome the day it was released.

However, I always keep Firefox installed and updated as well - and will often use it interchangeably (although Chrome serves as my default browser, both browsers are side-by-side on my windows quicklaunch bar). Edit: To clarify, IE doesn't even earn a place on the launch bar any longer - I've even removed it from my start menu at home to prevent accidental usage.

Firefox still serves as a backup browser for some websites that Chrome doesn't handle properly for some reason.

Strangely enough - I even used Chrome during the "dark days" before it had an ad blocking extension. And suffered a degraded browsing experience compared to firefox because the speed and pleasure of using Chrome outweighed the desire to block ads. I guess everyone has different priorities.

Edited 2010-09-23 21:47 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Switched to Chrome on Day 1
by Valhalla on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:57 UTC in reply to "Switched to Chrome on Day 1"
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24

Well I tried Chrome around the time it was officially released but it felt kind of clunky back then, particularly the lack of smooth scrolling in webpages using mouse drove me nuts but that was along time ago and I'm sure this and tons of other things have been fixed.

For me to migrate to another browser there must be something drawing me, javascript speed would probably be the most interesting thing, v8 is the fastest one around by all accounts and although I'm not bothered by Firefox's slower javascript now, it would seem that as it will be used more aggressively on the web my perception of this may change. Firefox new javascript engine is promising though so this may not be an issue after all, time will tell.

Tab process separation, well I don't have these frequent crashes some people seem to have so it's really a non-issue for me. Maybe it's because I use adblock,noscript,flashblock and only whitelist these things on a site by site basis.

Tabs on top doesn't really affect me either since I use the Tree Style Tab extension.

Are there any other advantages to Chrome that I am unaware of (other than it being new and shiny)?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Switched to Chrome on Day 1
by molnarcs on Fri 24th Sep 2010 05:51 UTC in reply to "RE: Switched to Chrome on Day 1"
molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

There are plenty of advantages if you are an Android user and own at least 2 computers. I have a PC with nice big screen for home, a fairly decent netbook for travel (the Asus 1201N with ION and HDMI output) and a Nexus One. I started using Chrome primarily for its speed, and it is a better option for lower end netbooks. My girlfriend really appreciates it on her Acer Netbook (standard Atom 270 + 1Gb RAM crap) - it is noticeably faster there both in start up and rendering speed.

Back to my case, I appreciate it that all my Bookmarks, settings, even the skin is synchronized between my PC and netbook. I know you can duplicate the same in Firefox, but it's not as smooth. Moreover, your bookmarks are synced via your google account, and are also accessible on Google Docs. Lastly, I found Chrome To Phone extension really really handy when it comes pushing pictures, links, docs, whatever I find interesting to my phone. Seamless integration between all my devices is a definite advantage. And as a geek, you gotta admire the small footprint, innovative UI design (that everybody seems to copy nowedays - good think IMHO) and efficiency of Chrome!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Switched to Chrome on Day 1
by google_ninja on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:13 UTC in reply to "Switched to Chrome on Day 1"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Same with me. I literally switched the day it was announced, and never went back.

I am a web developer, and would use firefox as basically a firebug bucket, but nowadays the webkit dev tools are much better then they were, and I don't even need it for that anymore.

FF is now doing the same thing as opera, safari, and IE on my machine, which is just to test to make sure stuff looks ok.

Edited 2010-09-23 23:14 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Switched to Chrome on Day 1
by Liquidator on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:52 UTC in reply to "Switched to Chrome on Day 1"
Liquidator Member since:
2007-03-04

I would need the "Clippings" extension in Chrome.

Reply Score: 2

Switched user
by shashank_hi on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 21:47 UTC
shashank_hi
Member since:
2009-08-27

There are several reasons that made me switch to Chrome.

1. It felt fast; loaded faster, tab management was slick.
2. When you close tabs, the tabs don't resize until you're out of the tab area (something Adam Pash also pointed out).
3. Better screen real estate.
4. When you "find" something on a page, it shows the number of hits.
5. I usually have 10-20 tabs open at same time, and in Chrome, all tabs are visible at the same time, so no more arrow clicking.
6. If you're watching a Flash video or reading a PDF on Firefox, you cannot switch between tabs using keyboard shortcuts until you click outside the flash or PDF frame. In Chrome, if you switch application to Chrome, it regains focus, allowing you to switch tabs. So eventually, I could "Alt-tab" twice and then switch tabs from the keyboard shortcut.

Reply Score: 3

naahh
by Nex6 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 21:57 UTC
Nex6
Member since:
2005-07-06

i use, IE, FF, Chrome and safari; I test compat and useability.

Chrome may be faster, but the others are catching up fast. and chromes bookmark handling is abysmal.

tho, I like things about chrome, the no sidebar, poor bookmark handling and GUID tracking are to much.

Reply Score: 3

RE: naahh
by ricegf on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:11 UTC in reply to "naahh"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

Yes, and for delicious users, the Firefox plugin is far, far superior to the Chrome versions I've found thus far. And nothing comes close to the flexibility of the Firefox TabMixPlus plugin for making tabs behave how *I* want them to behave!

That said, I do use Chrome quite a bit anyway. It "feels" faster and more elegant even on non-Javascript pages, and just gets out of the way of accessing web information and apps. I hope Firefox 4 can capture this user experience - that would be the best of both worlds!

Reply Score: 3

Comment by foobaz
by foobaz on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:02 UTC
foobaz
Member since:
2009-12-05

On Windows, I switched to Chrome as soon as it was out of beta, mostly because of its speed, but also because I'm a fan of WebKit.

Reply Score: 1

I switched to Chrome
by No it isnt on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:05 UTC
No it isnt
Member since:
2005-11-14

But frankly, I don't think it's because I'm a power user (I'm not), and certainly not due to its feature set. I think it must be due to the feeling of speed alone, just from trying something new and enjoying it.

Chrome certainly has its fair share of annoying traits. To me, as a Linux user, I find the way I can't middle-click links into the browser page to be insulting. I've found that cut & paste sometimes stops working (at least on Slashdot). Other things, like how it handles tabs, the "clean" UI with the unified location/search bar, etc., are really only very superficial and does nothing for me. Come to think of it, maybe I should switch back.

Reply Score: 2

I switched, then switched back
by Elv13 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:06 UTC
Elv13
Member since:
2006-06-12

The reason is simple, I am a developper. Not a web, developper, event if it would make my point better, but a simple developper.

Firefox UI use Xul, an HTML like XML tree contain all the interface element and the web page itself. It can be skinned with CSS and extended with JavaScript just as any websites. It is so easy to tweak the pixels and save space that in the end, Firefox can be more minimalistic than chrome. The extensions store is also much bigger. AutoPager get ride of the multiple pages in most websites (page 1, 2, 4, 5 for a story or a forum thread, or just google). Adblock and noscript make the pages cleaner, total toolbar make the elements more flexibles, firebug and DOM inspector make simple tweaks faster. Stylish allow better and cleaner style for webpages, GreaseMonkey add features to webapps. And so on! Many of them are being ported to chrome, but not all, I miss those too much.

Yes, it is a lot slower, and I don't like that. But it is so customizable. As a power user, it just offer me too much for the speed I lose. It is an offer I can not refuse.

Firefox 4 is also back in the game for many aspects, while other like tab candy / panorama make it just better than anything else

+1 for Firefox

Edited 2010-09-23 22:12 UTC

Reply Score: 15

RE: I switched, then switched back
by sorpigal on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:31 UTC in reply to "I switched, then switched back"
sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

Right on. Until Chrome has all the extensions I use on Firefox, I won't use it. The same can be said for a lot of power users (who tend to use a lot of extensions). We probably use overlapping but mostly different sets of extensions, so Chrome will really only win power users when it supports most extensions that power users use... which won't be happening any time soon, if ever.

Chrome vs. Firefox is like Macintosh vs. Linux: One of them has precisely what the average person wants most of the time, the other has precisely what I want (or I can change it till it does). Adequately average (and fast/easy) may be good enough for a lot of people but for those with exacting requirements the only killer feature is control.

Reply Score: 2

Usability and Performance vs Ethics
by bombuzal on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:09 UTC
bombuzal
Member since:
2010-07-22

I should apologise in advance for this comment as I'm typing it while I have the flu and it may go on forever!

Generally I'm the type of person who wouldn't pay for something which I thought went against my beliefs, morals, whatever. However, I'm also a sucker for performance and usability.

When I first tried Chrome as a Firefox (and Mozilla, Lynx/Links2/elinks prior to its initial release) user I didn't really like the interface - I like minimalist, but I also like easy access to things I need. I'm really bad at organising my bookmarks, and with Chrome it just seemed to worsen the situation; I went back to Firefox.

I did decide to give Chrome a second chance however, and even now that I have much better hardware than I did back then - I tend to use it over Firefox and Safari, on all OSes I use. The minimal interface works in my favour now, I took the time to look at how bookmarks work rather than just blindly CTRL-D'ing everything and wondering where they went, I have the adblock, flashblock and JS-disabling features I need as well as the excellent performance, memory management and the ability to kill individual tabs without closing the whole browser.

Having said all that, I'm not a huge fan of Google, Inc. I don't like the idea of service-based computing, operating systems which rely on such services becoming more popular and the rest of it. But despite all that, they do have the resources to build a good browser!

Firefox seems rather bloated in comparison at the moment (though I hear the next release will be rather excellent), and I suppose that shows one difference between private company (or otherwise funded) OSS, and true, community OSS. Perhaps, if one's not already being developed, Firefox could release a 'light' version of their browser with limited plugins/addons available, maximum performance upgrades - I'm sure everyday users don't require anything more than W3C standards [CSS+HTML4/5] and Javascript (as well as certain 'core' technologies such as Flash) for browsing websites.

Apologies again for the long post of drivel!

Reply Score: 2

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

I did not switch to Chrome, I have it installed I sometimes use it.

But I came to the following conclusions:

- Chrome is more buggy then Firefox, even Firefox with lots of extensions. It has more problems rendering pages, as a webdeveloper I tend to notice it.

- I like the advantages of Chrome, tab-process-seperation and speed

- Yes, maybe I don't want to help Google, I do want to help Mozilla though. Just browsing with Firefox helps Mozilla. If ever, I would be using Chromium instead of Google Chrome.

I would love to see the advantages of Chrome to be added to Firefox. :-)

I do also think, competition is good, it keeps vendors/projects honest. Just look at the big effort the IEW developers are putting in right now.

Edited 2010-09-23 23:47 UTC

Reply Score: 4

Ruahine Member since:
2005-07-07

Perhaps, if one's not already being developed, Firefox could release a 'light' version of their browser with limited plugins/addons available, maximum performance upgrades - I'm sure everyday users don't require anything more than W3C standards [CSS+HTML4/5] and Javascript (as well as certain 'core' technologies such as Flash) for browsing websites.


Well if by chance you're using a mac then the answer is Camino. (Before anyone has a go at me: Yes, I know Camino isn't based on Firefox, but it is associated with the Mozilla Foundation, and does effectively act as a minimalist Firefox).

Reply Score: 1

pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

I've tried Camino, but it always seems to lag behind in terms of updates compared to Firefox.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Brynet
by brynet on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:09 UTC
brynet
Member since:
2010-03-02

No.

Reply Score: 3

Ideology
by usr0 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:13 UTC
usr0
Member since:
2006-10-27

There are still users using Firefox not because it's really better (as they admit) but because it's NOT from Google. This anti-Google and anti-everything-big attitude is especially in Germany pretty wide-spread.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ideology
by bombuzal on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:23 UTC in reply to "Ideology"
bombuzal Member since:
2010-07-22

Indeed.

I can't disagree with them though, anti-US-capitalism is quite common everywhere - a sentiment I often share ;) .

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ideology
by JPisini on Tue 28th Sep 2010 22:23 UTC in reply to "Ideology"
JPisini Member since:
2006-01-24

I like Google, I even have an Android phone, but I use Firefox because as of right now it works the way I do. I could use Chrome or Opera (IE and Safari are a no go as I am a Linux user) but while I always install all three just in case I need them (they don't take a lot of space) I am a devoted Firefox user.

Reply Score: 1

Opera
by himanshu on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:20 UTC
himanshu
Member since:
2010-09-23

I use opera because i love the page resize feature of opera, and opera turbo when i am using 3g/2g connections.

Been using opera since version 3, when it didn't had any tabs to manage multiple windows.

Never felt the need to switch to any other browser.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Opera
by orestes on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:23 UTC in reply to "Opera"
orestes Member since:
2005-07-06

I would likely be using Opera, if they had never started trying to litigate themselves a userbase in Europe. That Farce pretty much poisoned my interest in anything they have on offer.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Opera
by PresentIt on Fri 24th Sep 2010 22:01 UTC in reply to "RE: Opera"
PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

I would likely be using Opera, if they had never started trying to litigate themselves a userbase in Europe.

What on earth are you talking about?

Opera didn't "litigate" or sue anyone. All that happened was that Microsoft's illegal business practices were reported to the authorities, and then Mozilla, Google, and a number of companies joined the complaint.

No one ever sued Microsoft.

So... Are you boycotting Google and Mozilla because they supported and joined the antitrust complaint?

What about Google's antitrust complaint against Microsoft a while ago? Are you boycotting Google over that?

Or are you boycotting Microsoft over their antitrust complaint against Google?

Basically, are you just mindlessly bashing Opera, or are you actually honest and informed?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Opera
by Liquidator on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:39 UTC in reply to "Opera"
Liquidator Member since:
2007-03-04

Opera is overall better.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Opera
by Boldie on Fri 24th Sep 2010 07:53 UTC in reply to "Opera"
Boldie Member since:
2007-03-26

Opera is the only software I ever payed for. (not counting Vista that came with the machine I have now). I liked Opera and payed to get rid of the banner ads. A month later they removed the banner... Than I fell in love with FLOSS and Firefox came into my life, ADD-ONS!

A few month ago I gave Chromium a chance and I have stayed.

What will I use tomorrow? Hopefully the best software for my needs!

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Opera
by ricegf on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:19 UTC in reply to "RE: Opera"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

Isn't choice grand? :-D

Reply Score: 2

I need NoScript
by Eugenia on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:25 UTC
Eugenia
Member since:
2005-06-28

Without NoScript, I won't switch to anything. NoScript can offer added security on top of Chrome's current security. I just need the flexibility and added security of NoScript. The web is not as innocent was it was 10 years ago.

Currently, Chrome does not offer the right APIs for Noscript to exist there. So until this happens, I'll stay on Firefox.

Reply Score: 7

RE: I need NoScript
by DHofmann on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:29 UTC in reply to "I need NoScript"
DHofmann Member since:
2005-08-19

Same here. Chrome just isn't powerful enough yet for the features I need.

Reply Score: 2

RE: I need NoScript
by WorknMan on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:08 UTC in reply to "I need NoScript"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

Without NoScript, I won't switch to anything. NoScript can offer added security on top of Chrome's current security. I just need the flexibility and added security of NoScript. The web is not as innocent was it was 10 years ago.


I don't use NoScript, but I do use adblock and flashblock. If Chrome has these, I might consider switching. I hear the adblock implementation in Chrome isn't quite full-featured, but not sure why? Does it update automatically with filter subscriptions like FF's adblock plus?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I need NoScript
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:46 UTC in reply to "RE: I need NoScript"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Without NoScript, I won't switch to anything. NoScript can offer added security on top of Chrome's current security. I just need the flexibility and added security of NoScript. The web is not as innocent was it was 10 years ago.
I don't use NoScript, but I do use adblock and flashblock. If Chrome has these, I might consider switching. I hear the adblock implementation in Chrome isn't quite full-featured, but not sure why? Does it update automatically with filter subscriptions like FF's adblock plus? "

For a long while, because of the design of Chrome not Adblock, Adblock couldn't actually block ads on Chrome. Adblock on Chrome was only an "ad hider", and ads would still be downloaded but not actually shown. What was the purpose of that I might ask ... why download the ad and use up the users bandwidth if it wasn't going to be displayed anyway?

However, for a few months now, this has been partially fixed. Now Chrome implements a mechanism whereby Adblock can actually mostly prevent the ads from being downloaded ... mostly. Adblock under Chrome still can't do this for every ad.

Adblock under Firefox has no such limitation.

Reply Score: 6

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by Liquidator on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
Liquidator Member since:
2007-03-04

Adblock actually has an equivalent in Chrome: Install HostsMan and it will prevent you from downloading these ads. Then install Adblock to hide ad placeholders. Problem solved.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by flanque on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:14 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

So what you're saying is, there are limitations on the hooks into Chrome which would impact other "Firefox Add-ins"?

Is this just an AdBlock issue or a general extensibility issue with Chrome?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: I need NoScript
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:33 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: I need NoScript"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

So what you're saying is, there are limitations on the hooks into Chrome which would impact other "Firefox Add-ins"?

Is this just an AdBlock issue or a general extensibility issue with Chrome?


According to the author of AdBlock for Chrome, it is a Chrome issue only.

https://chrome.google.com/extensions/detail/gighmmpiobklfepjocnamgkk...

Webkit in Safari apparently does not suffer the same issue.

http://code.google.com/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=35897#c63
A partial solution to this problem is now available. Chrome now contains an event accessible to content scripts called "beforeload".


"beforeload" is a partial solution only in Chrome, apparently some percentage of "loads" still occur only in Chrome.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: I need NoScript
by flanque on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:45 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: I need NoScript"
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

What I am getting at is whether or not there is some sort of API deficiency in Chrome compared to Firefox with respect to making Chrome extensible like Firefox is.

Do you know?

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: I need NoScript
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:17 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: I need NoScript"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

What I am getting at is whether or not there is some sort of API deficiency in Chrome compared to Firefox with respect to making Chrome extensible like Firefox is.

Do you know?


Firefox and Chrome are both extensible using web technologies such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS.
http://code.google.com/chrome/extensions/
Extensions are small software programs that can modify and enhance the functionality of Google Chrome. You write them using web technologies such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS.


https://jetpack.mozillalabs.com/
Jetpack is a project to make it easy to build Firefox add-ons using common web technologies like HTML, JavaScript, and CSS.


HTML, JavaScript, and CSS are standardised, and they work the same way in both Chrome and Firefox AFAIK.

The particular problem for Adblock in Chrome, as far as I know, concerns the hook or trigger event (for the HTML, JavaScript, and CSS elements) called "beforeload". AFAIK, in Chrome only, the "beforeload" trigger doesn't always actually fire before all loads. Therefore, the loading of some elements that one might like to suppress is not always suppressed.

Firefox can also have extensions via its implementation of XUL.
https://developer.mozilla.org/En/XUL
XUL (XML User Interface Language) is Mozilla's XML-based language that lets you build feature-rich cross platform applications that can run connected or disconnected from the Internet.


XUL (not Jetpack) is the way extensions for Mozilla work right now. AFAIK, Mozilla want to make Jetpack the future direction, not XUL.

Chrome has nothing like the equivalent of XUL.

This is about the extent of what I think I know about it. Some of this "understanding" may in fact be dead wrong.

Edited 2010-09-24 13:18 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: I need NoScript
by flanque on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:42 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: I need NoScript"
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

XUL (not Jetpack) is the way extensions for Mozilla work right now. AFAIK, Mozilla want to make Jetpack the future direction, not XUL.

Chrome has nothing like the equivalent of XUL.

This is the bit I was wondering. Thx for the info.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I need NoScript
by Morph on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:50 UTC in reply to "RE: I need NoScript"
Morph Member since:
2007-08-20

I hear the adblock implementation in Chrome isn't quite full-featured, but not sure why?


The reason is that Chrome doesn't have the equivalent of Firefox's 'content policies'. Firefox allows extensions to install a hook which is called whenever a url is about to be accessed. The extension can then cancel the url request if it is an ad, before any connection is made to the ad server. Chrome doesn't provide this level of control to extensions yet. Chrome adblock extensions have to wait until after the page is fully loaded (including all ads) and then hide the ads from the page using DOM methods. This is why the ads usually appear for a second or two before the blocker nabs them.

http://www.mail-archive.com/chromium-discuss@googlegroups.com/msg04...

Edit: lemur2, do you have a reference to any info about the new mechanism? Thanks!

Edited 2010-09-24 00:53 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 01:05 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Edit: lemur2, do you have a reference to any info about the new mechanism? Thanks!


http://www.webupd8.org/2010/07/chrome-adblock-can-now-block-ads-bef...

It is apparently something that Apple (not Google) added to webkit relatively recently. I don't know any technical specifics, but I'm sure that you can "Google it" to find out. ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I need NoScript
by bitwelder on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:29 UTC in reply to "RE: I need NoScript"
bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27

[I hear the adblock implementation in Chrome isn't quite full-featured, but not sure why?

Perhaps because it doesn't play well with Google core interests?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

AdBlock on Chrome works just like the one on Firefox, and blocks every ad - it doesn't download them.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: I need NoScript
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:55 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: I need NoScript"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

AdBlock on Chrome works just like the one on Firefox, and blocks every ad - it doesn't download them.


Well some reports said so:
http://www.downloadsquad.com/2010/07/20/adblock-for-google-chrome-n...

but when the author was actually asked:
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/07/20/chrome_does_resource_blocki...
until recently, the AdBlock extension could merely hide ads — not block them. "Firefox has always had support for blocking resources from downloading," Gundlach tells The Reg. "But when Chrome extensions came out, they lacked that ability, so they weren't as powerful as Firefox was. We've been having to hide the ads after downloading them or add CSS rules that say 'don't show these ads' even though they're downloading

...

It's unclear when the "beforeload" event was added to Chrome — in part because it wasn't added by Google. Apple added it to the open source WebKit engine used by Chrome, and at some point, it made its way into the Google browser. It's now available in the latest stable version of Chrome, version 5. "Thank Apple," says Googler Aaron Boodman, the man who created the Firefox Greasemonkey extension, in an online discussion recently dug up by a Slashdot reader. "They added it to WebKit. We just inherited it."

...

Boodman also called beforeload a "partial solution" to the resource-blocking problem. "The 'beforeload' feature is considered a good workaround but not a complete solution," he says. Apparently, Google is looking into additional tools.


Its close, but not quite there.

Edited 2010-09-24 06:56 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: I need NoScript
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 24th Sep 2010 07:12 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: I need NoScript"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Uhm, interview or no, just look at the feature descirpton of AdBlock 2.0 on Chrome.

"New in version 2.0: Ads are actually BLOCKED FROM DOWNLOADING now, instead of just being removed after the fact!"

Seems pretty clear to me.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: I need NoScript
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:45 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: I need NoScript"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Uhm, interview or no, just look at the feature descirpton of AdBlock 2.0 on Chrome.

"New in version 2.0: Ads are actually BLOCKED FROM DOWNLOADING now, instead of just being removed after the fact!"

Seems pretty clear to me.


Sigh!

https://chrome.google.com/extensions/detail/gighmmpiobklfepjocnamgkk...
New in version 2.0: Ads are actually BLOCKED FROM DOWNLOADING now, instead of just being removed after the fact!

Note that Chrome doesn't actually support this all the way, so a few resources might still load before AdBlock can get to them, in which case we'll remove those as usual. AdBlock does block resources flawlessly in Safari -- get it at safariadblock.com.

Enjoy!
Michael


Yep, perfectly clear.

No question ... it mostly works in Chrome, so that a few resources might still load.

As I said. Close, but not quite there yet.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I need NoScript
by bnolsen on Mon 27th Sep 2010 03:58 UTC in reply to "RE: I need NoScript"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

I don't use adblock at all anymore, just flashblock and noscript. Those two plus disabling animated gifs makes browsing pretty acceptable. I only get annoyed when the overloaded ad servers actually keep my page content from loading as fast as it should.

Reply Score: 2

RE: I need NoScript
by google_ninja on Fri 24th Sep 2010 02:57 UTC in reply to "I need NoScript"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Javascript is not even remotely as big an issue as browser plugins (java/flash/silverlight/adobe reader/etc) when it comes to security. To me, noscript is like browsing the web with images turned off to avoid jpeg or gif vulnerabilities.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I need NoScript
by Fergy on Fri 24th Sep 2010 07:51 UTC in reply to "RE: I need NoScript"
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

Javascript is not even remotely as big an issue as browser plugins (java/flash/silverlight/adobe reader/etc) when it comes to security. To me, noscript is like browsing the web with images turned off to avoid jpeg or gif vulnerabilities.

You do understand that you need to whitelist the pages that you actually want to see? Most of the time if a page doesn't work correctly without flash and javascript and I am only going to visit this site once I don't even bother.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by ricegf on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:26 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

I used a JavaScript blocker for a while, but the whitelisting finally wore me out and I gave up. I visit a *lot* more obscure tech-oriented websites than I expected, and the all love JS. So pre-screening URLs is roughly the same as a blocker for me, AFAICT.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by google_ninja on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:56 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

What I am saying is that if you are using a browser with decent security, blocking javascript is not worth destroying your browsing experience over. There are jpeg and gif vulnerabilities out there, there have even been vulnerabilities with css. Those things are about as big a threat as javascript, so you probably want to block them as well if you are blocking javascript.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: I need NoScript
by Panajev on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:31 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: I need NoScript"
Panajev Member since:
2008-01-09

What I am saying is that if you are using a browser with decent security, blocking javascript is not worth destroying your browsing experience over.


Overstatement of the year ;) .

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: I need NoScript
by google_ninja on Fri 24th Sep 2010 16:59 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: I need NoScript"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

not really, you are turning off any kind of interactivity. It may just be a subtle glow effect, or a fade in/out, or maybe you are just breaking menus. In any case, you are basically hobbling the intent behind the design and development of the site.

Again, it is completely arbitrary. I understand flashblock, cause plugins like flash is where almost all browser vulnerabilities come from. Yes, there have been exploits through javascripts, but also through jpegs/pngs/gifs, and styles. If you are going to turn one off and whitelist it back, you may as well go for all 3. That would be 3x as secure as just noscript, and instead of just going back in time by about 10 years (when javascript was barely used for anything), you will go back 30-35 years, which is essentially the lynx experience.

Of course, you could just uninstall flash/silverlight/java/etc, which will make a way bigger difference then blocking javascript. But it seems like "power users" who use noscript also tend to have every adobe plugin under the sun installed as well, no matter how bad, frequent, and widely publicized security issues with those plugins are.

but hey, as long as it makes you feel safer, its totally up to you. I just find it baffling.

Edited 2010-09-24 17:00 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: I need NoScript
by wirespot on Fri 24th Sep 2010 21:09 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: I need NoScript"
wirespot Member since:
2006-06-21

I just find it baffling.


That's probably because you are clueless.

You are mixing vulnerabilities up. Exploits that target rendering (images, CSS, HTML) and plugins, are used to get out of the browser space and provide remote access to your system. JavaScript vulnerabilities do not provide access to your system but instead to websites that you visit, under your credentials.

Both are equally serious, just the data being exposed is different.

Then there's also the concern with people who don't want to break in anywhere, they just want to spy on you. JavaScript can be used for that too. Remember the "everlasting cookie" article a few days ago? And here's another example:
http://www.mikeonads.com/2008/07/13/using-your-browser-url-history-...

NoScript and cookie whitelist extensions (CookieSafe or Cookie Monster) are extremely useful for protecting your privacy and preventing creative malicious uses of JavaScript. This is stuff that's actively exploited on a wide scale and works no matter what OS the browser runs on, unlike the other type of exploits.

I use such Firefox extensions (and builtin about:config settings) to create a super-hardened browser that I use exclusively when visiting my banking site, sensitive accounts or whenever I have to enter my credit card data. You cannot do that with Chrome (not to mention Google themselves spying on you with it).

Such privacy concerns strike you as paranoid? Suit yourself, it's your choice.

Edited 2010-09-24 21:27 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: I need NoScript
by google_ninja on Fri 24th Sep 2010 21:18 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: I need NoScript"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

you are talking about CSRF and XSS. Any site that gets you with XSS you are probably going to whitelist anyways (like google or facebook), and if you are blocking authentication cookies already, CSRF completely goes away.

As for tracking cookies, unless you release your ip every time you visit a site, who cares if they cookie you? It is not like cookies magically break privacy, all that data is available server side. The only difference is they are able to tell that you are the same person if your ip changes, that is it.

You are right that javascript is a part of CSRF and XSS attacks, but not checking "keep me signed in" on sites you actually care about completely eliminates CSRF, and like I said before, if it is a good site to do an XSS attack on, it is probably a site you have whitelisted anyways.

Extensions like what you are talking about basically play on the fears of people who know just enough to realize the implecations, but not enough to fully understand the concerns.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I need NoScript
by bnolsen on Mon 27th Sep 2010 04:01 UTC in reply to "RE: I need NoScript"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

Nothing to do with security, everything to do with annoyances. What people used to do with animated gifs, which then moved over to flash, started to switch over to javascript.

I like my machines to idle in the lowest power state possible, some idiot website spamming javascript shouldn't be allowed to keep my machine from that.

Reply Score: 2

RE: I need NoScript
by stardogchamp on Fri 24th Sep 2010 09:15 UTC in reply to "I need NoScript"
stardogchamp Member since:
2009-10-18

I don't want to switch to Chrome for the exact same reason. I have been using NoScript ever since I was told about it (in my 1st semester of studying IT, which was over 2 years ago) and I don't want to miss it when browsing the web.

I won't go for Chrome for Webkit's sake alone, although I really like its speed.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: I need NoScript
by Matt Giacomini on Fri 24th Sep 2010 09:49 UTC in reply to "RE: I need NoScript"
Matt Giacomini Member since:
2005-07-06

I don't want to switch to Chrome for the exact same reason. I have been using NoScript ever since I was told about it (in my 1st semester of studying IT, which was over 2 years ago) and I don't want to miss it when browsing the web.


Are you using NoScript only for security reasons. What about the fact that Chrome's sand-boxing provides an extra layer of security that FF doesn't?

Having the ability to read PDF's and know that they are running in Chrome's sandbox is big for me.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by Panajev on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:41 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
Panajev Member since:
2008-01-09

"I don't want to switch to Chrome for the exact same reason. I have been using NoScript ever since I was told about it (in my 1st semester of studying IT, which was over 2 years ago) and I don't want to miss it when browsing the web.


Are you using NoScript only for security reasons. What about the fact that Chrome's sand-boxing provides an extra layer of security that FF doesn't?

Having the ability to read PDF's and know that they are running in Chrome's sandbox is big for me.
"

A lot of stuff online malware wants to steal is or might be inside the sandbox itself.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: I need NoScript
by stardogchamp on Mon 27th Sep 2010 09:12 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I need NoScript"
stardogchamp Member since:
2009-10-18

Security is one part of it, the other is that I don't feel the need to run every (Java)script out there, if the script seemingly doesn't have anything to do with displaying the website correctly.

Reply Score: 1

RE: I need NoScript
by Philcm on Mon 27th Sep 2010 20:57 UTC in reply to "I need NoScript"
Philcm Member since:
2010-09-27

Have you tried NotScripts? Seems similar to noscript.

Reply Score: 1

Is there anextension for that yet?
by judgen on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:29 UTC
judgen
Member since:
2006-07-12

The last piece i need is the abllity to spoof my IP like i can with x-spoofer for firefox. Maybe then i would switch, but i can not stand not watching the daily show (with john stewart). It just cracks me up, but without the spoofer it is only available for people in the US and Canada. (It works on alot of other sites too [read most official American, Canadian and British TV streaming sites]

Reply Score: 4

bombuzal Member since:
2010-07-22

I'd be quite surprised [read: shocked] to see that changing X-Forwarded-For in the header would work for country-locked content-on-demand services such as BBC's iPlayer...

Edited 2010-09-23 22:36 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Nope...
by rhavenn on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:31 UTC
rhavenn
Member since:
2006-05-12

No "supported" FreeBSD version. I realize there is the Chromium port, but I'm happy enough with Firefox and the plethora of extensions to not bother with the hassle.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Nope...
by google_ninja on Fri 24th Sep 2010 02:53 UTC in reply to "Nope..."
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Just FYI, there is very little difference between chrome and chromium (basically stuff like branding and the h.264 codec isnt there)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Nope...
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:00 UTC in reply to "RE: Nope..."
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Just FYI, there is very little difference between chrome and chromium (basically stuff like branding and the h.264 codec isnt there)


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chromium_%28web_browser%29#Dif...

Chromium is the name given to the open source project and the browser source code released and maintained by the Chromium Project. It is possible to install the latest precompiled snapshots for Windows, Linux and Mac, or by downloading the source code and building it manually on those platforms.

Google takes this source code and adds an integrated Flash Player, the Google name and logo, an auto-updater system called GoogleUpdate, an opt-in option for users to send Google their usage statistics and crash reports as well as, in some instances, RLZ tracking (see Google Chrome) which transmits information in encoded form to Google, for example, when and where Chrome has been downloaded.

By default, Chromium only supports Vorbis and Theora codecs for the HTML5 audio and video tags, while Google Chrome supports these in addition to H.264, AAC, and MP3. Certain Linux distributions may add support for other codecs to their customized versions of Chromium.

In June 2010 Google confirmed that the RLZ tracking token is only present in versions of Chrome that are downloaded as part of marketing promotions and distribution partnerships and not in versions of Chrome downloaded from the Google website directly or in any versions of Chromium. The RLZ source code was also made open source at the same time so that developers can confirm what it is and how it works.


Actually, as well as Vorbis and Theora codecs, Chromium also supports WebM.

http://blog.chromium.org/2010/05/webm-and-vp8-land-in-chromium.html

Chromium can also run Adoe's Flash plugin for Mozilla. On Linux, all that is required is to add a symbolic link.

Edited 2010-09-24 03:11 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Nope...
by google_ninja on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:11 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nope..."
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

didn't realize chrome supported AAC, and didn't realize chromium didn't have the auto updater, you learn something new every day ;)

The main point of what I was saying is the two source trees are extremely in sync. Having a chromium in bsd is pretty much going to be the same thing as chrome.

Reply Score: 2

what about chromium???
by stabbyjones on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:37 UTC
stabbyjones
Member since:
2008-04-15

Chromium over Google Chrome any day of the week. I used Chrome at work for a while but stopped when I found a good way to install Chromium on Windows.

http://www.brothersoft.com/tlokzz-chromium-updater-download-301735....

The chromium updater has been awesome for Windows I update about once a week.

I've used chromium on Linux as soon as I could build it. Right now I'd say my usage of browsers goes:

Chrome > IE > Opera & Firefox tied.

Chrome on Linux is also WAY better because I can actually have a title bar!

Reply Score: 3

It's all about the Awesomebar
by pianom4n on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:37 UTC
pianom4n
Member since:
2010-03-21

No, because Firefox's search bar/Awesomebar combination is unmatchable. The Awesomebar actually lets me easily find things in my history, while with the Omnibar it's like pulling teeth. Also, being able to do an "I'm feeling lucky" search is super useful, along with being able to easily search domain names using the search bar and not having to go to google.com.

As a corollary, since I'm so dependent on my browsing history, Firefox sync is amazing and keeps my two computers synchronized. I know Chrome can sync bookmarks and extensions, but I don't want my extensions synced and I don't use bookmarks.

On the web developer front, Chrome's development tools are almost as good as Firebug and I use them simultaneously while developing, so that's not really an issue.

Reply Score: 5

meh
by helf on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:40 UTC
helf
Member since:
2005-07-06

I still don't like it. The UI annoys me the most ;) But it is also a memory hog (surprised? it actually uses more ram on my machine under normal use than firefox), and it is nowhere near as stable as people claim. its good, but it crashes just as often as firefox in my experience.

I'll suffer along with firefox for a bit longer..

The chrome obsession is worse than the firefox fanaticism of a few years back.

Edited 2010-09-23 22:43 UTC

Reply Score: 4

I did...
by Tuishimi on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:43 UTC
Tuishimi
Member since:
2005-07-06

When Chrome launched I was a Mac user so no (on the mac I preferred Camino and Omniweb)... but I've been using it since I've switched to Windows 7 - until IE 9 came out. Now I am trying my best to use IE 9 whenever possible and to report any errors or problems I encounter (I've logged at least 6 issues, I think).

Then again, I keep all the mainstream browsers on my machine: Firefox, Opera, Safari, Chrome, Chromium and IE.

Reply Score: 2

Firefox 4 will change the game again
by lemur2 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:47 UTC
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

Firefox 4 promises to turn the tables on Google Chrome.

Firstly, the new Jaegermonkey javascript engine in Firefox 4 just about matches it with Chrome.

Firefox 4 will have hardware acceleration for rendering and compositing, using Direct3D on Windows and OpeGL/Xrender on othe platforms, with performance entirely comparable to IE9.

Due to XUL, Firefox 4 still has its extensive library of extensions, which still manages to beat Chrome extensions in a number of areas, such as Video downloader for example.

http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/beta/features/
http://blogs.sitepoint.com/2010/05/17/firefox-4-features/

Google Chrome has nosed quite a way ahead of Firefox 3.6.x as it stands today, but Firefox 4 will very much put Firefox back in the hunt, and it will be leading the pack once again at least for a while after its release.

Reply Score: 7

google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

they still have a ways to go... http://arewefastyet.com/

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

they still have a ways to go... http://arewefastyet.com/


Please note the name of the benchmark for which there is still a way to go.

BTW: Google's V8 javascript engine has a way to go to catch up with Mozilla's Jaegermonkey on the Kraken benchmark.

http://digitizor.com/2010/09/15/mozilla-releases-kraken-firefox-is-...

Reply Score: 2

google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

the end of that is hilarious

In all the other tests like the SunSpider, V8, Peacekeeper etc., Firefox is considreably slower than both Chromium/Chrome and Opera. It is slower in their own Dromaeo benchmark as well. Now, Mozilla releases a new benchmark and “bam” Firefox is twice as fast as Chromium and Opera according to it. Of course all the vendors’ benchmark favors their own browser to a certain extent. But to see such such a huge difference in the result between Kraken and the other benchmarks is intriguing to say the least.

So right now we have an interesting situation -

Google’s V8 Benchmark says Chrome/Chromium is the fastest.
According to Apple’s SunSpider Benchmark, Safari is the fastest.
Internet Exploer 9 is the fastest according to Microsoft’s test.
According to the independent Peacekeeper benchmark, Opera is the fastest.
And now on Mozilla’s Kraken, Firefox is the fastest.
Yes every browser is the fastest browser now.


At the end of the day, it really doesn't matter as long as they are all in the same realm.

My personal test is http://280slides.com/Editor/, since thats the sort of app that is being made possible. I can't really tell the difference between chrome or safari, but I can between them and FF. (On IE it is pretty much unusable)

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

the end of that is hilarious [q]In all the other tests like the SunSpider, V8, Peacekeeper etc., Firefox is considreably slower than both Chromium/Chrome and Opera. It is slower in their own Dromaeo benchmark as well.


All results like these have to be taken with a very large grain of salt.

For example, very very few people are running Firefox's Jaegermonkey engine (the one with the purple plotline on arewefastyet.com ). That is because even the very latest released beta of Firefox (Firefox 4.0b5) doesn't include Jaegermonkey yet, it has only Tracemonkey (the gold plotline).

Many people even run these tests with Firefox 3.6.x.

We all know that Firefox 3.6.x. isn't very competitive when it comes to javascript performance.

Also to consider is GPU-hardware-accelerated compositing and rendering. Testers of IE9 previews like to claim that IE9 smashes every other browser for performance in rendering and compositing, but that is only because they use GPU-hardware-accelerated compositing and rendering only with IE9. Current betas of Firefox 4 also have this rendering, but it is not enabled by default, so of course people who want to hype up IE9 don't turn it on.

Happily this won't last long ... the very next beta release of Firefox will have GPU-hardware-accelerated compositing and rendering enabled by default, and it will include the Jaegermonkey javascript engine.

I am betting that articles which "test" performance comparisons of beta browsers will suddenly disappear from the web when that release happens. I'd wager that the silence will suddenly become deafening.

Edited 2010-09-24 04:06 UTC

Reply Score: 3

molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

One thing to note though is that the Firefox guys consistently show benchmarks of their latest code against stable, released versions of other browsers. If you filter out the drumroll what's left is a claim that says the browser we are going to realease will be as fast as the browser you have released months ago.

As of now, Chrome runs circles around Firefox in various performance benchmarks. Try peacekeeper, for instance: google "peacekeeper browser benchmark" - FF on my system gets 36xx score while Chrome gets 9001! We have this

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

One thing to note though is that the Firefox guys consistently show benchmarks of their latest code against stable, released versions of other browsers. If you filter out the drumroll what's left is a claim that says the browser we are going to realease will be as fast as the browser you have released months ago.


Everyone else does this also.

http://www.vikitech.com/1334/ie9-is-poised-to-be-fastest-browser-am...

(IE9 platform preview #4 is compared to Firefox 3.6.4 and 3.6.8).

Despite what the headline claimed, IE9 is definitely NOT "Poised To Be Fastest Browser Among Firefox 4, Chrome 5 & Safari 5". They didn't even look at Firefox 4.

Your point?

Edited 2010-09-24 06:16 UTC

Reply Score: 2

molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

Everyone else does this also.

http://www.vikitech.com/1334/ie9-is-poised-to-be-fastest-browser-am...

(IE9 platform preview #4 is compared to Firefox 3.6.4 and 3.6.8).

Despite what the headline claimed, IE9 is definitely NOT "Poised To Be Fastest Browser Among Firefox 4, Chrome 5 & Safari 5". They didn't even look at Firefox 4.
Your point?

My point is quite simple: if they feel confident about their browser's performance gains, why don't they publish benchmarks comparing code from specific days (dev version of the respective browsers on 31/8, 7/9, 15/9, etc.) The second (related) point is that they could just run it on an independent benchmark like peacekeeper and see how it stacks up to their results... The argument that "everyone does this" (ie. publish benchmarks that measure a single aspect of the browser, the one that compares favourably with others) doesn't make this practice prone to criticism you know...

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

My point is quite simple: if they feel confident about their browser's performance gains, why don't they publish benchmarks comparing code from specific days (dev version of the respective browsers on 31/8, 7/9, 15/9, etc.)


This is precisely what Mozilla do.

http://arewefastyet.com/

Each little circle is a plot point of the performance on a particular day, for the very latest daily build of each browser's javascript engines. The benchmarks being run are Sunspider (Apple's benchmark) and v8bench (Google's benchmark).

Latest results are nine days old.

Sheesh!

Edited 2010-09-24 11:54 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

One thing to note though is that the Firefox guys consistently show benchmarks of their latest code against stable, released versions of other browsers. If you filter out the drumroll what's left is a claim that says the browser we are going to realease will be as fast as the browser you have released months ago.

Wrong. Hover the graphs. They use latest builds of safari and chrome (or nitro and V8 if you want).

As of now, Chrome runs circles around Firefox in various performance benchmarks. Try peacekeeper, for instance: google "peacekeeper browser benchmark" - FF on my system gets 36xx score while Chrome gets 9001! We have this

We all know that FF is currently a bit slow. The question is, will FF4 be back among the others ? It seems that it might be the case. And the worst is that in the end, it does not matter : as a user, what's most important is not page rendering speed, it's UI responsiveness, and no benchmark currently measures this. E.g : IE7&IE8 take several seconds to open a tab when under load, FF3.5 was about as bad, though a bit faster (don't remember about 3.6), and on all other browsers the process is instant.

Edited 2010-09-24 06:23 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

"One thing to note though is that the Firefox guys consistently show benchmarks of their latest code against stable, released versions of other browsers. If you filter out the drumroll what's left is a claim that says the browser we are going to realease will be as fast as the browser you have released months ago.

Wrong. Hover the graphs. They use latest builds of safari and chrome (or nitro and V8 if you want).

As of now, Chrome runs circles around Firefox in various performance benchmarks. Try peacekeeper, for instance: google "peacekeeper browser benchmark" - FF on my system gets 36xx score while Chrome gets 9001! We have this

We all know that FF is currently a bit slow. The question is, will FF4 be back among the others ? It seems that it might be the case. And the worst is that in the end, it does not matter : as a user, what's most important is not page rendering speed, it's UI responsiveness, and no benchmark currently measures this. E.g : IE7&IE8 take several seconds to open a tab when under load, FF3.5 was about as bad, though a bit faster (don't remember about 3.6), and on all other browsers the process is instant.
"
A lot of effort has gone into making startup and shutdown faster. Also extension updates have been optimized. The main advantage of Chrome is the multiprocess stuff that really takes advantage of multiple cores and makes sure that the GUI never slows down. I hope Firefox 4.1 will introduce multiprocess.

Reply Score: 1

molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

Link please - the initial press release featured static benchmarks. I don't know which benchmark page you are referring to. I googled kraken benchmark, found this on tested.com:
http://www.tested.com/news/which-web-browser-can-best-mozillas-new-...

As I expected, even Chrome 6.xxx seems to beat FF 4 in speed.

Reply Score: 2

smitty Member since:
2005-10-13

He's probably talking about JM, which wasn't included in beta 6 but will be in 7. Here are some numbers from arewefastyet.com (take with a grain of salt, of course) http://arewefastyet.com/kraken_temp/.

I'm not sure those results really make sense to me. Benchmarks of FF4 should probably wait until JM is actually released in a working beta, at this point testing the nightlies is too fluid to get good results and the old betas aren't at all representative of what FF4 will be like.

It would also be good to have an expert breakdown of the kraken benchmark to tell us what it's testing. For example, is everything really blocked on javascript performance, or is it also testing the speed of the audio tag for those tests, and other DOM stuff.

Edited 2010-09-24 08:43 UTC

Reply Score: 2

molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

Thanks ;) Pity I have no idea what those tests mean, and how they translate into my browsing habits (rendering speed of pages I often visit). I still think that none of the vendor supplied benchmarks can be trusted (at least Google had the balls of calling its own v8benchmark). I still have FF installed, use it once in a while, and I'm happy about any speed improvement, even though I consider their claims marketing bs.

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Link please


http://arewefastyet.com/

I don't know which benchmark page you are referring to. I googled kraken benchmark, found this on tested.com:
http://www.tested.com/news/which-web-browser-can-best-mozillas-new-...

As I expected, even Chrome 6.xxx seems to beat FF 4 in speed.


That testing was for Firefox 4 Beta 6.

Firefox 4 Beta 6 doesn't include Jaegermonkey, it includes only Tracemonkey.

http://arewefastyet.com/

The gold plotline is "moz TM" ... Tracemonkey. This is what you will get in Firefox 4 Beta 6.

The black plotline is Jaegermonkey alone. The purple plotline is Jaegermonkey + Tracemonkey. The latter is what will go in Firefox 4.0 final release.

On Sunspider, Jaegermonkey + Tracemonkey = 430, Tracemonkey alone = 538.

This is a 25% improvement over Firefox 4 Beta 6.

On v8bench, Jaegermonkey + Tracemonkey = 2684, Tracemonkey alone = 5080.

This is a 90% improvement over Firefox 4 Beta 6.

Edited 2010-09-24 11:29 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Erunno Member since:
2007-06-22

One thing to note though is that the Firefox guys consistently show benchmarks of their latest code against stable, released versions of other browsers.


Bollocks. At least on arewefastyet.com they use the latest revisions for JSC/Nitro, V8 and SpiderMonkey.

As of now, Chrome runs circles around Firefox in various performance benchmarks. Try peacekeeper, for instance: google "peacekeeper browser benchmark" - FF on my system gets 36xx score while Chrome gets 9001! We have this


Ah, PeaceKeeper. Reminds me that a Mozilla developer recently discovered some badly engineered parts in the test suite: http://weblogs.mozillazine.org/bz/archives/020664.html

I really wish that the Apple, Google, Opera, Microsoft and Mozilla would come together and develop a common JS performance benchmark suite. My hope is that such a suite would be less biased to showcase the strengths of one particular engine alone as all stakeholders could contribute tests and fix suboptimal tests.

Reply Score: 2

Tabs on top
by Zifre on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:52 UTC
Zifre
Member since:
2009-10-04

I switched to Chrome as soon as they released the Linux beta for one reason:

It puts the tabs on top (as in, they can be accessed with the mouse at the top of the screen). This is a huge usability advantage as shown by Fitt's law. I never really noticed a difference in speed or anything else.

Yes, I know there is an extension to do this in Firefox, but it is slow and interacts poorly with window managers.

If Firefox gets real support for this, then I will definitely switch back.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Tabs on top
by lemur2 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:05 UTC in reply to "Tabs on top"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I switched to Chrome as soon as they released the Linux beta for one reason: It puts the tabs on top (as in, they can be accessed with the mouse at the top of the screen). This is a huge usability advantage as shown by Fitt's law. I never really noticed a difference in speed or anything else. Yes, I know there is an extension to do this in Firefox, but it is slow and interacts poorly with window managers. If Firefox gets real support for this, then I will definitely switch back.


Firefox 4 puts tabs on top by default (it can be changed back if you like). Firefox 4's Jaegermonkey javascript engine will just about match Chrome's V8 javascript engine, and Firefox 4 will support hardware accelerated page rendering and compositing, which will outperform Chrome's rendering speeds by many times over.

Firefox 4 should match Chrome for usability, and beat it handily for overall speed.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Tabs on top
by panzi on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:12 UTC in reply to "RE: Tabs on top"
panzi Member since:
2006-01-22

Firefox 4's Jaegermonkey javascript engine will just about match Chrome's V8 javascript engine, and Firefox 4 will support hardware accelerated page rendering and compositing, which will outperform Chrome's rendering speeds by many times over.

I believe it when I see it. Don't get me wrong, I really hope this will be the case but judging from some nightlies I really do not have much hope in that. I have to try a fresh nightly, though. Oh and I use Firefox. I only use Chrome when some site is just to horrible slow with Firefox (e.g. when browsing a very long archive on tumblr Firefox sometimes gets so slow it needs >15 seconds to react after each click).

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Tabs on top
by lemur2 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:42 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tabs on top"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Firefox 4's Jaegermonkey javascript engine will just about match Chrome's V8 javascript engine, and Firefox 4 will support hardware accelerated page rendering and compositing, which will outperform Chrome's rendering speeds by many times over.
I believe it when I see it. Don't get me wrong, I really hope this will be the case but judging from some nightlies I really do not have much hope in that. I have to try a fresh nightly, though. Oh and I use Firefox. I only use Chrome when some site is just to horrible slow with Firefox (e.g. when browsing a very long archive on tumblr Firefox sometimes gets so slow it needs >15 seconds to react after each click). "

The nightlies are sometimes a bit of pot luck, in that it is possible to get regressions.

I run the latest Chrome and Firefox 4 nightlies side by side on the same system each and every day. Some days Chrome is way faster, and other days (depending on the nigthly build), there is no perceptible difference in speed at all.

As it always has done, from an end user point of view, Firefox and its extensions still maintains an appreciable edge in functionality over Chrome, no matter the speed.

Also, if you are running Linux, you might consider running Chromium instead of Chrome, since Chromium does not send any of your browsing metrics type of data back to Google as Chrome does.

Finally, because different browsers optimise javascript differently, so speed comparisons can easily go different ways. For example ... the V8 javascript benchmark is called "V8" because it is actually named after Chrome's javascript engine. If you want another benchmark that isn't set up to show off the performance of Chrome's V8 javascript engine in particular, here is a new one that you might trial:

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/mozilla_releases_the_kraken_a_...
http://blog.mozilla.com/blog/2010/09/14/release-the-kraken-2/
http://krakenbenchmark.mozilla.com/index.html

Lies, damn lies and statistics, after all, can be made to say whatever one would like them to say.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Tabs on top
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:15 UTC in reply to "RE: Tabs on top"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I try the FF4 test releases. I still find FF4 slow, especially responsiveness-wise, Chrome kicks every other browser's ass. Launching Chrome is instant, FF4 - not so much. FF4's interface is still the same monstrosity, just prettied up. It's nowhere near as fast as Chrome. FF has too much baggage.

As for loading pages:

arewefastyet.com/

Says it all. Still a long way to go.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Tabs on top
by Erunno on Fri 24th Sep 2010 09:04 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tabs on top"
Erunno Member since:
2007-06-22

As for loading pages:

arewefastyet.com/


This has nothing to do with how fast pages load, it's just a couple of synthetic JavaScript benchmarks. During IE8 and IE9 development the IE team released a couple of interesting articles about the complexity of loading a web page. Hint: It's not just dependent on JavaScript execution speed. Depending on the site it can be rather minuscule compared to layouting, rendering, marshaling and unmarshaling of data, etc. A lot of speed issues get attributed to JS these days even if they have nothing to do with it. That's why some sites load faster (subjectively) in Firefox as Chrome is by no means leader in every aspect.

As for why I stay with Firefox for the time being:

-AwesomeBar. Omnibar is no competition for it. I don't need Google search as often as quickly pulling some sites I know from history or bookmarks. Bookmark tagging has completely changed the way how I organize my bookmarks, especially the ones which do not clearly fit into a single category (thus making a hierarchical folder organization rather painful).

-History sync between my computers. Having (mostly) the same history is a boon for a seamless browsing experience. Password sync is also only a partially solved problem on Chrome as extensions can't access the native store and have to use their own stores thus binding me to the extension/service.

-Privacy: True third-party cookie blocking (not some half-assed one like Safari, IE and Chrome), referrer spoofing, easy Flash cookie management (aka LSOs), overriding maximum age of cookies (against those 20+ years cookies), etc.

-Better extension ecosystem: Chrome may close in in sheer numbers, but a lot of the extensions leave a lot to be desired due to Google's approach to lock down extensions. Nothing compared to Firefox' extension which can remodel pretty much every aspect of the browser.

-Chrome does not scroll down a full page when hitting space but some kind of 8/10. This is driving me nuts because instead of continuing to read a web page at the top I have to find the point where I left of which is distracting.

-Bonus points for Mozilla's clear stance on keeping the web open.

Chrome though really is unmatched at the moment when it comes to interface performance, something I really hope Firefox one day will accomplish as well. They are half-way there with Firefox 4.0 but not yet in the same league as Chrome. Chrome also has a lot of small interface tweaks which makes it instantly pleasant to use. I only realized that when I looked at Mozilla's so-called "papercut issues" (a list of common Firefox annoyances), many which have never been an issue with Chrome from the beginning.

In the end I'm not really sure if power users are leaving Firefox for Chrome or just the easily pleased hipsters. After all, Firefox is a power user's wet dream due to its huge modifiability. It certainly gives more power to me as a user into my hands than Chrome does.

Edited 2010-09-24 09:14 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Tabs on top
by Zifre on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Tabs on top"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

Firefox 4 puts tabs on top by default (it can be changed back if you like).

You missed the key part: that tabs can be accessed with the mouse at the top of the screen (e.g. like the Mac menu bar). Firefox doesn't do this (at least not on Linux).

Firefox 4's Jaegermonkey javascript engine will just about match Chrome's V8 javascript engine, and Firefox 4 will support hardware accelerated page rendering and compositing, which will outperform Chrome's rendering speeds by many times over.

I doubt they will ever match Chrome's speed in synthetic tests. But I don't really care. I have no complaints about Firefox's speed (of course, faster is always better), and I'll definitely switch back if they give me my precious tabs on top.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Tabs on top
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:16 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tabs on top"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I doubt they will ever match Chrome's speed in synthetic tests. But I don't really care. I have no complaints about Firefox's speed (of course, faster is always better), and I'll definitely switch back if they give me my precious tabs on top.


I too doubt that Firefox's Jaegermonkey javascript engine will ever match Chrome's V8 javascript engine in the V8 javascript benchmark.

But then again, Firefox's Jaegermonkey javascript engine already outperforms Chrome's V8 javascript engine in Mozilla's new Kraken javascript benchmark.

I'll leave it up to the reader to try to figure out why the V8 benchmark is named as it is. The bottom line is that benchmarks are useful for measuring exactly how speedily different browsers run the benchmark ... but they are not necessarily much good for anything else.

Perhaps it might be instructive to look at what the benchmarks are said to be trying to measure.

Edited 2010-09-24 00:24 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Tabs on top
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:22 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tabs on top"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

You missed the key part: that tabs can be accessed with the mouse at the top of the screen (e.g. like the Mac menu bar). Firefox doesn't do this (at least not on Linux).


On Linux, one can always choose a Window style that doesn't have a titlebar of any significant width at all ...

... if you choose such a Window style, then "tabs on top" does exactly what you want, even on Linux.

Alternatively, have you ever run a browser "fullscreen"?

Edited 2010-09-24 00:28 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Tabs on top
by molnarcs on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:14 UTC in reply to "RE: Tabs on top"
molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

Firefox 4 should match Chrome for usability, and beat it handily for overall speed.


Take that with a grain of salt, especially since the Firefox guys publish benchmarks comparing their latest code with code released months ago. One has to wonder why... Don't assume - like FF devs do -- that the Chrome devs collectively went on a holiday after the 6.xxx release! Besides, why would I trust a benchmark released by Mozilla itself using their own benchmarking tools over something like peacekeeper, that seems to simulate real world scenarios (social networking, logins, encrypting connections, graphics commonly or not so commonly encountered on webpages, etc.). As it stands now, their new javascript engine must beat the one in FF 3.6 by 250% to become competitive against current stable release of Chrome.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Tabs on top
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:22 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tabs on top"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Take that with a grain of salt, especially since the Firefox guys publish benchmarks comparing their latest code with code released months ago. One has to wonder why... Don't assume - like FF devs do -- that the Chrome devs collectively went on a holiday after the 6.xxx release!


Chrome is contiinuously updated.

Look at this:
arewefastyet.com

The site compares the javascript engines from the very latest Firefox builds with the very latest Chrome and Safari builds.

There are no "released months ago" factors there.

The point stands ... the latest builds of Firefox are closing in on the latest builds of Safari and Chrome ... even for performance on the Safari and Chrome benchmark tests (called sunspider and v8bench).

The latest build of Firefox passed by the latest builds of both Safari and Chrome some time ago on the Firefox benchmark test (which is called Kraken).

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Tabs on top
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:41 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tabs on top"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

As it stands now, their new javascript engine must beat the one in FF 3.6 by 250% to become competitive against current stable release of Chrome.


Yes. Quite so.

http://www.webmonkey.com/category/javascript/
The new benchmark indicates that Firefox 4 (with the new JaegerMonkey JavaScript engine) is more than 2.5x faster than the current stable version of Firefox 3.6.


Where is the problem with that?

Edited 2010-09-24 06:42 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Tabs on top
by molnarcs on Fri 24th Sep 2010 09:01 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Tabs on top"
molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

"As it stands now, their new javascript engine must beat the one in FF 3.6 by 250% to become competitive against current stable release of Chrome.


Yes. Quite so.

http://www.webmonkey.com/category/javascript/
The new benchmark indicates that Firefox 4 (with the new JaegerMonkey JavaScript engine) is more than 2.5x faster than the current stable version of Firefox 3.6.


Where is the problem with that?
"

Oh no problem there at all. I certainly can see Firefox catching up with the competition with their 4th release. I merely contest the claim that it will beat/already beats Chrome stable/latest "heftily." Actually, I wouldn't have any problem if it turned out to be true eventually, I love to see vendors doing their best to outperform each other. I just don't see any evidence for the latter. You mentioned earlier that every vendor does this (ie publish benchmark that favours its own product). Microsoft was your example. That's my problem I expected better from the Mozilla folks, more honesty.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Tabs on top
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 11:02 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Tabs on top"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"The new benchmark indicates that Firefox 4 (with the new JaegerMonkey JavaScript engine) is more than 2.5x faster than the current stable version of Firefox 3.6.

Where is the problem with that?


Oh no problem there at all. I certainly can see Firefox catching up with the competition with their 4th release. I merely contest the claim that it will beat/already beats Chrome stable/latest "heftily."
"

Oh no problem there at all ... I haven't seen anyone make such a claim. Did you dream it?

Actually, I wouldn't have any problem if it turned out to be true eventually, I love to see vendors doing their best to outperform each other. I just don't see any evidence for the latter. You mentioned earlier that every vendor does this (ie publish benchmark that favours its own product). Microsoft was your example. That's my problem I expected better from the Mozilla folks, more honesty.


But it has already been pointed out to you, that Mozilla has been honest.

http://arewefastyet.com/

Results are plotted for the following javascript engines: moz JM+TM; google v8; apple nitro; moz JM and moz TM.

Each plot point is for the very, very latest engines on each day they are plotted, for all engines.

From the FAQ:
Who's behind it? Is Mozilla?

This site is maintained by Mozilla's JavaScript team.

What are the graphs?

The left-hand graph is Apple's SunSpider benchmark. The right-hand graph is Google's V8 benchmark suite.

Who are the players?

"JaegerMonkey" is the code-name for a new JIT being developed for Mozilla's JavaScript engine. Jaeger means "hunter" in German. "Tracing" is the original JIT. "Jaeger+Tracing" is them both turned on, working together. "Interpreter" is Mozilla's JavaScript engine without any JITing. "Google V8" is the JavaScript engine for Google Chrome, and "Apple Nitro" (aka JavaScriptCore) is the JavaScript engine for Apple's Safari browser.


How could it be any fairer, since they are using Apple and Google's own tests?

How could it be any clearer (they even give you a FAQ)?

Why do you keep insisting that Mozilla are not comparing the latest engines, when they actually are?

Sheesh!

That's my problem I expected better from the Mozilla folks, more honesty.


What more could you possibly expect from the Mozilla folks? They are using the oppositions own tests, and the very latest builds, and they are saying that under those test conditions, bent as far as possible to the opposition advantage, Mozilla aren't as fast yet.

It is perfectly, 100% honest.

What more could you possibly want of them?

Edited 2010-09-24 11:13 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Tabs on top
by molnarcs on Fri 24th Sep 2010 11:29 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Tabs on top"
molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

Hey I haven't seen that website before you posted it - I'm still reacting to their initial claims, I thought that's what we were discussing. I stand corrected.

Reply Score: 2

Firefox still my preferred browser
by edvim on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:53 UTC
edvim
Member since:
2010-03-12

The 'power user' term gets tossed around a lot when Google Chrome is mentioned but personally I find Chrome too locked down. Firefox has about:config and Opera has opera:config -- both will let me tweak any number of things Chrome won't. Also, Firefox's huge add-on environment is hard to compete with. I've read a number of references that Chrome's add-on farm is growing and growing but the last time I checked it was growing mostly for Windows. I run Linux, Windows, and OS X systems where I rarely run into add-on situations for all three, with Chrome the majority of add-ons are Windows only.

Reply Score: 8

Why not:
by panzi on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 22:58 UTC
panzi
Member since:
2006-01-22

Why not: Add-Ons. The amount of available Add-Ons and what you can actually do with an Add-On. You can pretty much change anything in Firefox. However, I wish Firefox had Chromes speed.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Why not:
by lemur2 on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:08 UTC in reply to "Why not:"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Why not: Add-Ons. The amount of available Add-Ons and what you can actually do with an Add-On. You can pretty much change anything in Firefox. However, I wish Firefox had Chromes speed.


It will have, in a couple of months time.

If you want the speed of Chrome in Firefox right now, you have to run a pre-beta version, which is not recommended if you are also looking for stability.

http://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/mozilla.org/firefox/nightly/latest-mozil...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Why not:
by chemical_scum on Fri 24th Sep 2010 02:59 UTC in reply to "RE: Why not:"
chemical_scum Member since:
2005-11-02

I am running Firefox 4.0beta6 on Linux now. It is very stable (no crashes yet), more so than the 3.0 stable release and it is significantly faster than 3.6.

I don't use Chrome all that much even though I keep the latest version on my system. I don't really feel at home with it. I have been using Firefox right back to the early Phoenix 0.3 days when it competed for me with Galeon then the fastest and best browser available. So I'll be sticking with Firefox as my primary browser.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Why not:
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:17 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Why not:"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I am running Firefox 4.0beta6 on Linux now. It is very stable (no crashes yet), more so than the 3.0 stable release and it is significantly faster than 3.6.


AFAIK, Firefox 4.0beta6 did not include Jaegermonkey. It has only the improvements to Tracemonkey.

Firefox 4.0b7pre includes Jaegermonkey, but that version is not yet likely to be stable.

So ... more speed still yet to come later for you. Enjoy.

:D

Reply Score: 2

Comment by lucas_maximus
by lucas_maximus on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:06 UTC
lucas_maximus
Member since:
2009-08-18

With Firefox because of ...

Firebug. Enough said

Reply Score: 5

Font control
by joef on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:35 UTC
joef
Member since:
2005-12-29

Firefox still has (more or less) absolute minimum font size control, but Chrome doesn't. It would not have mattered to me about 10 years ago, but now I prefer to be able to override font settings no matter what the page designer wanted. As a former newspaper editor, I know I'm missing out on overall design stuff, but hey, you gotta be able to read it.

Same goes for the browser: it doesn't matter if it loads faster if you have to zoom in before you can comfortably read the page.

Content is king, not design. So I'm still on Firefox, and still happy.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Font control
by cjcoats on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:07 UTC in reply to "Font control"
cjcoats Member since:
2006-04-16

Right. Absolutely.

I can't read the Flyspeck 3 that so many websites want to force on me.

I really want Use My Fonts, with my own minimum size-control.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Font control
by helf on Fri 24th Sep 2010 22:02 UTC in reply to "RE: Font control"
helf Member since:
2005-07-06

woops, misread I think.

This is a cool addon to improve that, tho.

http://urandom.ca/nosquint/

Edited 2010-09-24 22:03 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Comment by abraxas
by abraxas on Thu 23rd Sep 2010 23:38 UTC
abraxas
Member since:
2005-07-07

I switched to Epiphany on Gnome as my default browser a while ago but Firefox is a fantastic web development platform and I use it daily. I have chromium on my machine but I don't really use it for anything other than testing web pages. I haven't found a reason to switch yet. Firefox has all the extensions I could ever want or need and Epiphany is lightweight and well integrated into my DE. Firefox would have to screw up tremendously or Chrome/chromium would have to have a killer feature for me to switch and as of yet there is nothing Chrome/chromium does that I feel is a killer feature. The only benefits seem to be JS performance and tabs as a seperate process which are both short term advantages as FF is catching up in those areas.

Reply Score: 2

How can we win you back?
by jacquouille on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:03 UTC
jacquouille
Member since:
2006-01-02

Hey, Mozilla developer here. Not a representative at all -- just a random developer, speaking only for myself :-)

I've been wondering how to get back your attention, power users :-)

When it comes to browsers, there are basically two schools:
1. either you believe that only web apps matter and that the browser should be a minimalist shell ("chrome") around them.
2. or you want to exercise control over how web apps run on your computer, so you expect more features from your browser.

Of course, Chrome targets 1 while Firefox targets 2.

As long as Chrome was much faster than Firefox, it was impossible talk about anything else than speed --- Chrome had just redefined how smooth the web experience could be, and people wanted that.

Now that we have closed the performance gap (yes, FF4 is fast), can we resume talking about something else? KTHX :-)

Hints:
- it's still time to realize that if Firefox's AdBlock and Firebug are still unmatched by the competition, it's because our components (not just extensions) system is actually better :-)
- accessibility anyone ? Totally unexciting until you need it.
- What about all the other Mozilla projects floating around? By the way do you know about the new cool thing, Zaphod? It allows you to hack the JavaScript language itself, from JavaScript. How cool is that?

Reply Score: 9

bannor99
Member since:
2005-09-15

After years of using just about everyone browser from Mosaic to Chrome, I have to say that Firefox with Session Manager, Tree Style Tabs and Flash Block is tops with me for productivity.
As I frequently have anywhere from 3-6 windows with 30-100+ tabs ( personal record is 177 ), I find that Chrome tends to develop the annoying habit of blanking all tabs, except the active, until I switch whereupon I stare at a white screen for 3-10+ seconds. VERY, VERY annoying.
But Chrome does have great features - not having to restart the entire browser for an extension install, not always ( YES, IT DOES HAPPEN ) having the entire browser crash when it hits a troublesome site ( not sure if this is due to Flash, Java, Javascript or something else). The built-in Task Manager is great as is the ability to see the process stats for ALL running browsers.
Interestingly, while Opera frequently uses way more memory than Firefox and as much as Chrome for the same tabs, it still feels more responsive. I'm going to test just how much abuse each browser can take soon.

I am very pleased with the constant one-upping of performance over the last couple years. It's been a win-win for we 'netsurfers.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by kaiwai
by kaiwai on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:23 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm on Mac OS X and I've given Chrome a go but each time going back to Safari because I find Chrome isn't as smooth as it is on Windows. What I am happy about through is how Chrome have forced browser developer to take the idea of tab process separation as a serious feature that needs implementing. What I would be interested in is how Google will navigate the seas when Apple finalises Webkit2 which will have process separation baked right into the API itself rather than something added on as a feature.

As for plugin isolation, even though it provides added stability many of the problems related to stability aren't solely on the shoulder of the plugin provider - there are bugs that reside in the NPAPI or some other system component. The primary concern I have with OOP then is how it can be used as an excuse to blame third parties in lieu of actually fixing up browser bugs - "look, we have OOP and their plugin still brings it down - obviously the plugin sucks!".

Reply Score: 2

I'm stubbon - Live Bookmarks or bust!!!
by Yamin on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:34 UTC
Yamin
Member since:
2006-01-10

I get so much flak from my coworkers for this, but I won't use any browser that doesn't have live bookmarks.

both IE and chrome have plugins that try and do it... but firefox just does it the best. they are normal bookmarks that rss update. it is just so easy to check for updates without leaving the current browsing window.

I know... it's the power users way to use rss feeds, but dammit if it just works so well.
Then theres IETab, xmarks... I just have it setup so wall that chrome doesn't really offer me anything new.

So I'm putting me hands over my ears and chanting... live bookmarks..lallalalalallaa

Reply Score: 2

No
by woegjiub on Fri 24th Sep 2010 00:45 UTC
woegjiub
Member since:
2008-11-25

Until chrome has native extensions instead of their html ones, I will not switch.
The firefox interface is so much more customizable, and the majority of my addons are not even available for chrome.

If I were to use anything other than firefox, it would be Opera, because it has almost as many features.

Chrome is too simplistic for me.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by ssokolow
by ssokolow on Fri 24th Sep 2010 01:08 UTC
ssokolow
Member since:
2010-01-21

I switched to Chrome about a year ago but recently switched back to Firefox for the following reasons:

1. Chrome's memory consumption with many tabs is apalling.

2. Firefox, with the right mix of extensions and XUL userscripts, can be made to feel close enough to Chrome's responsiveness and minimal UI to satisfy me while also providing extra functionality.

3. Google kept making arbitrary decisions I didn't like and refuses to provide an equivalent to about:config. (eg. The removal of "http://" from the address bar without even an attempt to make a reasonable justification for it)

4. After several years, Chrome's Omnibar history search is still at least an order of magnitude slower than the Awesomebar. (5 to 15 seconds as opposed to 0.5 to 1.5 seconds to return results)

5. Google's API, while very nice for limiting the ability of developers to make a mess of the browser, also makes extension developers dependent on Google to enable things like CS Lite, NoScript, UserAgent Switcher, Video DownloadHelper, an AdBlock Plus that prevents the ads from being loaded in the first place, etc.

Some of the things I want which Google has refused to implement despite user demand:
- An option to re-enable single-click selects all on Linux
- Vim-style /-triggered find-as-you-type (Despite forcing Linux users to triple-click select in the name of matching platform behaviour)
- A toggle to bring back http:// in the address bar (How am I supposed to choose between copying http://www... and www... to the selection or clipboard?)
- An option to warn when closing multiple tabs (Chrome devs apparently hate modal dialogs even when they're justified)

...not to mention the trivial fixes they've been dragging their heels on like making blur() and focus() actually work in some fashion.

Basically, too many straws on one camel's back. Firefox has its warts (Needing an extension to use the scroll wheel to switch tabs, anyone?) but at least they can be fixed without maintaining my own C++ patch set. It's MY computer and MY browser and Google needs to remember that. It also helps that Firefox stable doesn't leak its way up to 3GiB of memory usage the way Chrome stable does.

(It also helps that I've got "Hide WinDeco" set to WinKey+T on my WM so a little Stylish XUL hackery is all that's needed to get Chrome-style Fitts's Law-compliant top-row-active tabs)

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by ssokolow
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 01:57 UTC in reply to "Comment by ssokolow"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

makes extension developers dependent on Google to enable things like CS Lite, NoScript, UserAgent Switcher, Video DownloadHelper, an AdBlock Plus that prevents the ads from being loaded in the first place, etc


There is now adequate but not complete support in Chrome for "An Adblock Plus that does not download ads", but AFAIK there is no support in Chrome for, and hence no equivalent to, Video DownloadHelper.

Vim-style /-triggered find-as-you-type


This is a great feature of Firefox that I also enjoy in KDE's Okular (a PDF viewer). It beats the hell out of typing "Ctrl-f" leading to a dialog box.

Edited 2010-09-24 02:01 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Meh
by TheGZeus on Fri 24th Sep 2010 01:10 UTC
TheGZeus
Member since:
2010-05-19

I switched to Conkeror years ago.
Faster than FF, 100% free software, and less of a UI jolt to me than either(Emacs/shell/StumpWM user).

Reply Score: 1

Comment by historyb
by historyb on Fri 24th Sep 2010 02:24 UTC
historyb
Member since:
2005-07-06

So, did you make the switch? Why (not)?

I still use FF, I like the extensions like tab mix plus and that you can do RSS within the Bookmarks I have not seen that on chrome

Reply Score: 2

NoScript
by moondino on Fri 24th Sep 2010 02:44 UTC
moondino
Member since:
2010-03-27

Without NoScript and an Adblock that blocks pre-page download, I won't use Chrome. The speed increases I gain from it are lost on page loads.

Reply Score: 1

No
by nbensa on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:12 UTC
nbensa
Member since:
2005-08-29

Chrome is manager's browser.

Real men use bash's /dev/tcp/${HOSTNAME}/80

Reply Score: 4

Firefox
by smitty on Fri 24th Sep 2010 03:24 UTC
smitty
Member since:
2005-10-13

I'm still using mostly Firefox, with a little bit of Chrome use on the side. I have a feeling that will soon switch to mostly Firefox + a little IE9 after that's released next year, but we'll have to wait and see how long it takes and what Chrome looks like by then.

What is clear is that Chrome is now the "cool" browser. As soon as they reach 20% I'm guessing people will start complaining more about Chrome as well, and something else will be the new browser to get.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

thanks to bundling Flash and silent updating.

As for power users who cares what they want, freakin nerds.

Reply Score: 3

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

thanks to bundling Flash and silent updating.


Bundling Flash means that Chrome cannot be distributed as open source. Not distributing it as open source means in turn that it is possible for Google to include anti-user features in it, such as the sending of metrics back to Google.

As far as a Flash player goes ... I can use the same Flash player plugin for Chromium as the one I use for Firefox if I so desire. This could be an open source Flash player such as Lightspark, or it could be Adobe's closed source player if I so choose.

http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=ODI2MQ

As for auto-updating ... if I add a repository for open source Chromium to the list of repositories for my Linux installation, Chromium gets auto-updated along with every other package from repositories. In this way I need but one auto-updater for almost all of the software on my system (so there are not dozens of auto-updaters for separate pieces of software).

All of that mentioned above which is true for Chromium is also true for Firefox.

Edited 2010-09-24 05:33 UTC

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Bundling Flash means that Chrome cannot be distributed as open source. Not distributing it as open source means in turn that it is possible for Google to include anti-user features in it, such as the sending of metrics back to Google.


Did you not catch the part about installing it on other people's computers?

Reply Score: 2

Tab overflow
by n0xx on Fri 24th Sep 2010 05:22 UTC
n0xx
Member since:
2005-07-12

Hi Tom! ;)

I, for one, love the way Chrome handles tabs and I don't get why you're always bashing it. I tend have... like... 30 tabs open at a time (thx 4chan) and I couldn't care less if the title is readable or not. I love the fact that I can just park the mouse over the close button of the first tab and click away to close them all.

Yes, i know ctrl+f4 does the same thing, but I think it's kind of uncomfortable (my hands are kind of smallish ;) ).

I've recently tried both IE9 and Minefield and the way Chrome handles tabs is something i just can't go without.

TLDR: I like the way Chrome handles tabs. For me it isn't a bug, it's a feature.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Tab overflow
by Fergy on Fri 24th Sep 2010 08:42 UTC in reply to "Tab overflow"
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

Yes, i know ctrl+f4 does the same thing, but I think it's kind of uncomfortable (my hands are kind of smallish ;) ).

It's CTRL+W to close the current tab.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Tab overflow
by n0xx on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Tab overflow"
n0xx Member since:
2005-07-12

It's CTRL+W to close the current tab.


Ctrl+F4 also closes the current tab. Try it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Tab overflow
by lemur2 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:01 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tab overflow"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"It's CTRL+W to close the current tab.


Ctrl+F4 also closes the current tab. Try it.
"

On my desktop, running both Chromium or Firefox, Ctrl+W closes the current tab, whereas Ctrl+F4 spins the desktop cube around and shows whatever is on desktop #4.

Edited 2010-09-24 13:02 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Tab overflow
by drstorm on Fri 24th Sep 2010 11:06 UTC in reply to "Tab overflow"
drstorm Member since:
2009-04-24

I second this. I HATE Tab Overflow! It's the reason I don't use Firefox 4 Beta. They started ignoring browser.tabs.tabMinWidth preference which I use to prevent the overflow.

That alone would keep me from upgrading if it doesn't get fixed. I would even consider moving to Chrome because of that, even though I find Firefox superior. Yes, I know it's slower, but the things it can do... <3

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Tab overflow
by sorpigal on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:01 UTC in reply to "RE: Tab overflow"
sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

FF4 has a number of wonky UI choices which will, I hope, be revertable via extensions.

Reply Score: 2

Tried it, liked it...
by Neolander on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:14 UTC
Neolander
Member since:
2010-03-08

...then removed it. I love Chrome's UI (except for downloads and tab management), but at some point I counted how much Google products I used and I thought that since all browsers are quite look-alike at the moment, it was time to move to something else.

Plus, HTML5 video on linux chrome still did not run, while on FF 3.6 it ran, albeit with extremely poor performance. I like my browser to be up to date as far as web standards are concerned. Web standards are already ugly enough when you consider their latest spawn, and I don't hate developers.

Then, back on windows due to hardware-related issues, I wanted to try something new. FF4 was not ready yet so I tried the new Opera, and tend to like it. Except, again, for tab management. None of the proposed methods look satisfactory to me.

I might switch back to FF when version 4 is released, provided that they manage to get the same... feeling as Opera as far as page scrolling is concerned. There's something just better about it in Opera, though I can't name it.

In the end, all browsers are pretty close to each other, again, except for IE 7&8 which are pure canned crap and it seems that even IE will get back on the trail of others with version 9. So which browser you use doesn't really matter in the end, except if you want to support or not to support some vendor. I don't support google, because it already owns too much of my life.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Tried it, liked it...
by Fergy on Fri 24th Sep 2010 08:44 UTC in reply to "Tried it, liked it..."
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

I might switch back to FF when version 4 is released, provided that they manage to get the same... feeling as Opera as far as page scrolling is concerned. There's something just better about it in Opera, though I can't name it.

The direct2d acceleration of Firefox 4 makes scrolling the smoothest I have ever seen. Opera used to be king in this area but these days you have to have direct2d to be king.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Tried it, liked it...
by j-kidd on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:03 UTC in reply to "RE: Tried it, liked it..."
j-kidd Member since:
2005-07-06

Firefox 4 is still beta. Opera has support for hardware acceleration since 10.50.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Tried it, liked it...
by Fergy on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:53 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tried it, liked it..."
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

Firefox 4 is still beta. Opera has support for hardware acceleration since 10.50.

Try this one: http://ie.microsoft.com/testdrive/Performance/01FlyingImages/Defaul...
Firefox 4 gets max fps: 60
Opera 10.62 gets about 10fps on my system.

If Opera 10.62 has direct2d support they are doing it wrong.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Tried it, liked it...
by flynn on Fri 24th Sep 2010 14:03 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Tried it, liked it..."
flynn Member since:
2009-03-19

Try this one: http://ie.microsoft.com/testdrive/Performance/01FlyingImages/Defaul...
Firefox 4 gets max fps: 60
Opera 10.62 gets about 10fps on my system.

If Opera 10.62 has direct2d support they are doing it wrong.


On my Windows 7 box:
Opera 10.62 - 60 fps
Firefox 3.6.9 - 40 fps
IE8 - 6 fps

I don't have Chrome installed so I can't compare that. But Opera's acceleration is in fact working.

Edited 2010-09-24 14:04 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Tried it, liked it...
by umccullough on Fri 24th Sep 2010 20:03 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Tried it, liked it..."
umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26



I hate that stupid benchmark because the FPS changes depending on how fast the images are spinning.

On Chrome here, I can get 60fps by just moving my mouse cursor to the middle of the screen so the images stop, or move very slowly, while I can also change it to get 35fps by moving my mouse to the side.

Stupid benchmark for comparing browsers unless it always spins the same speed every time.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Tried it, liked it...
by PresentIt on Fri 24th Sep 2010 22:02 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Tried it, liked it..."
PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

Nope, Opera 10.62 does not have hardware acceleration.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Tried it, liked it...
by PresentIt on Fri 24th Sep 2010 21:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Tried it, liked it..."
PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

Opera does not have hardware acceleration yet. But the Vega engine is super fast with software rendering.

Reply Score: 2

Opera anyone?
by mfaudzinr on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:30 UTC
mfaudzinr
Member since:
2008-02-13

I've been using Opera for as long as it been around it seemed. The first time I used Opera was in the late 90s. There are many features that I find lacking in other browsers that are ubiquitous in Opera many years in advance and only recently being implemented by those other browsers. It is unfortunate that Opera gets little recognition by the net citizens. Maybe it's marketing I don't know. Chrome is nice, new and shiny but not for me. I love Opera. Nuff said.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Opera anyone?
by btrimby on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:08 UTC in reply to "Opera anyone?"
btrimby Member since:
2009-09-30

Up until recently, Opera's GUI and rendering has always just felt "wrong" to me. I wish I could explain it, but I really can't. It's much improved in 10.x.

I use Opera mobile for Symbian^1 which works well, and I occasionally use Opera on my mac because sometimes flash video players like ABC or thedailyshow.com work sporadically in Chrome but better in Opera for whatever reason. I use almost none of the extra functionality they have in the application.

Reply Score: 1

They don't have me.
by UltraZelda64 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 06:52 UTC
UltraZelda64
Member since:
2006-12-05

Long story short, back when I tried Chrome, I hated its GUI (its menus have got slightly better since then, but I still feel crippled trying to do what I want) and Firefox had all the extensions. Chrome had (and still has) mouse gestures; now it has AdBlock, but I'm not sure if it blocks the ads completely or "hides" (ie. still downloads and wastes bandwidth) them. If it hides, no thanks--I'll take my Firefox with Adblock and REAL ad-blocking any day. NoScript is also still not available for Chrome. And Firefox's bookmarks handling is better than Chrome's.

But the big problem is their distribution. Their site sucks--by default you get a little online "installer" which installs an unwanted "Google update" service. If you want the full/offline installer without the update service crap, you need to practically do a Google search for it because it seems they purposely try to hide it. And when you do get it, the file has a cryptic, completely non-descriptive name, no version number whatsoever (same across all operating systems), so anyone who likes to keep local copies of the latest software (installers) is screwed for the most part unless they rely on the Wikipedia article or something else for the latest version and release date.

And then to update, you have to randomly and regularly click "About Chrome". WTF? Seriously, why can't it be like every other piece of software, and check upon startup whether there are updates, then notify you and ask if you'd like to download and install them? This and my previous point about the cryptically named and hard to find offline installer are the two biggest reasons I want nothing to do with Chrome. Its crippling GUI and the whole point of Google already getting enough information from me are secondary, but still more key reasons I don't use it.

I already use Google to search--what more freaking information do they want? Sorry, but I see no reason to give them more by using their browser. I don't trust them.

Reply Score: 1

RSS
by k.g.stoyanov on Fri 24th Sep 2010 07:02 UTC
k.g.stoyanov
Member since:
2005-07-12

call me, when chrome can do RSS out of the box

Reply Score: 1

javascript speed
by smitty on Fri 24th Sep 2010 07:42 UTC
smitty
Member since:
2005-10-13

You have to remember that the faster a browser gets, the harder it is to keep improving. V8 is getting closer and closer to running at native speed, and every millisecond they improve is an accomplishment. Meanwhile, Firefox is adding a whole new compiler they didn't have before, so massive improvements are to be expected. They're also cherry-picking code from both V8 and Webkit to improve their performance where it makes sense. For example, they ported over YARR (Webkit's regular expression engine) for FF4.

That said, there's no way FF4 is going to be faster than Chrome when it comes out. It should be about on par with Webkit, which is plenty competitive. V8 will maintain a lead.

Edited 2010-09-24 07:43 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: javascript speed
by jacquouille on Fri 24th Sep 2010 14:12 UTC in reply to "javascript speed"
jacquouille Member since:
2006-01-02

You have to remember that the faster a browser gets, the harder it is to keep improving. V8 is getting closer and closer to running at native speed, and every millisecond they improve is an accomplishment.


Actually, method JITs like v8 will never even approach native speed, and here's why. Native code knows the _type_ of the data it's manipulating, so it can pick the right assembly instruction at compile-time. But in Javascript, which is a dynamic language where types can change at any time during execution, that's not possible. So yes, v8 is an insanely fast method JIT for Javascript, but don't expect it to go at more than 10% of the speed of well-written native (say, C or C++) code.

The only way to get closer to native speed is to know the types at hand, and that was the goal of Tracemonkey, which is a loop tracing JIT. Tracemonkey analyses the actual types in hot loops and generates type-specialized code for them. When it succeeds, it goes closer to native speed than what any method JIT can ever hope to get. The disappointment is that it doesn't succeed all that often, because of the way that actual real-world Javascript behaves. But it's still worth keeping, especially with the growing importance of doing intensive computation in JS, and the introduction of Typed Arrays, especially in connection with WebGL. So in Firefox 4, we keep Tracemonkey, and in addition we add a new method JIT, Jaegermonkey. We try to trace (Tracemonkey) and when we fail, we have a second chance with Jaegermonkey.


That said, there's no way FF4 is going to be faster than Chrome when it comes out. It should be about on par with Webkit, which is plenty competitive. V8 will maintain a lead.


Even if we restrict attention to JS performance only, that's not so clear. On v8's own benchmark, v8bench, indeed we're unlikely to beat them. But on sunspider (Webkit's benchmark) we are only 10-15% slower right now on x86 and we keep improving fast. On other benchmarks that give Tracemonkey a chance to trace, we win.

I know that Google has more workforce and more motivation to keep a lead on JS performance (to us, it's just one out of many goalsl; to them it's more crucial) so even if we beat them for a while they're likely to reclaim the lead shortly after. Just wanted to make it clear that right now we're on the verge of winning on sunspider.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: javascript speed
by smitty on Fri 24th Sep 2010 17:42 UTC in reply to "RE: javascript speed"
smitty Member since:
2005-10-13

Actually, method JITs like v8 will never even approach native speed, and here's why. Native code knows the _type_ of the data it's manipulating, so it can pick the right assembly instruction at compile-time. But in Javascript, which is a dynamic language where types can change at any time during execution, that's not possible. So yes, v8 is an insanely fast method JIT for Javascript, but don't expect it to go at more than 10% of the speed of well-written native (say, C or C++) code.

Yes, as i understand it the way method JITs get around this is by implementing stub code for multiple types. So "x + y" javascript code generates native code for both integer and string addition, and then the correct path is chosen at runtime. A fallback path is present for non-commonly used types.

But it's still worth keeping, especially with the growing importance of doing intensive computation in JS, and the introduction of Typed Arrays, especially in connection with WebGL.

I'm curious, with the typed arrays doesn't the method JIT compiler have all the information it needs? It seems like that would be the one place where Tracemonkey wouldn't be able to improve upon.

Also, i was wondering if Chrome/Webkit have implemented this yet or if their WebGL code was still using standard float arrays?

But on sunspider (Webkit's benchmark) we are only 10-15% slower right now on x86 and we keep improving fast. On other benchmarks that give Tracemonkey a chance to trace, we win.

...

Just wanted to make it clear that right now we're on the verge of winning on sunspider.


Do you work on Firefox? Looking at the gains made on sunspider over the last few weeks from an external perspective it doesn't look like Firefox is improving much there at all, but perhaps that's wrong. I assumed it was an issue of overhead, that Firefox could do well on longer running tests where tracemonkey had a better chance of improving the code, but that short tests like sunspider favored newer javascript architectures with cleaner code and less overhead.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: javascript speed
by jacquouille on Fri 24th Sep 2010 18:06 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: javascript speed"
jacquouille Member since:
2006-01-02

"Actually, method JITs like v8 will never even approach native speed, and here's why. Native code knows the _type_ of the data it's manipulating, so it can pick the right assembly instruction at compile-time. But in Javascript, which is a dynamic language where types can change at any time during execution, that's not possible. So yes, v8 is an insanely fast method JIT for Javascript, but don't expect it to go at more than 10% of the speed of well-written native (say, C or C++) code.

Yes, as i understand it the way method JITs get around this is by implementing stub code for multiple types. So "x + y" javascript code generates native code for both integer and string addition, and then the correct path is chosen at runtime.
"

... but just choosing this at runtime can easily kill performance ;) Also, if you have N variables and they can each have P different types, you have P^N cases to compile code for.

I'm curious, with the typed arrays doesn't the method JIT compiler have all the information it needs? It seems like that would be the one place where Tracemonkey wouldn't be able to improve upon.


You might have a good point there :-) At least for code manipulating only typed arrays. But when an arithmetic operations involves both typed arrays and other JS variables, my concern is that the lack of typing of the JS variable would hurt performance.

Also, i was wondering if Chrome/Webkit have implemented this yet or if their WebGL code was still using standard float arrays?


Typed arrays (and WebGL) are definitely already implemented in WebKit.

Looking at the gains made on sunspider over the last few weeks from an external perspective it doesn't look like Firefox is improving much there at all, but perhaps that's wrong.


Have you tried since Jaegermonkey was merged 2 weeks ago? See http://arewefastyet.com for benchmark results.

I assumed it was an issue of overhead, that Firefox could do well on longer running tests where tracemonkey had a better chance of improving the code, but that short tests like sunspider favored newer javascript architectures with cleaner code and less overhead.


Sunspider is indeed too short running to give Tracemonkey a good chance. Good thing we have Jaegermonkey :-)

Reply Score: 2

still using firefox
by dominik.holler on Fri 24th Sep 2010 07:48 UTC
dominik.holler
Member since:
2007-05-24

I still use firefox, on different PCs, with weave and many add-ons. I would never use chrome, but I started to use Chromium for bakup. It seems to me that Chromium consumes more memory, if there are many tabs.
But ob mobile devices, I see not alternitve to chrome/chromium, because Android and Meego uses chrome(ium).
Chrome(ium) looks like not complete implementet, e.g. there seems to be no aspect ratio for theora videos.

Reply Score: 1

Still no Open/Run option on file downloads
by mfarmilo on Fri 24th Sep 2010 07:57 UTC
mfarmilo
Member since:
2009-02-28

Title says it all really. I frequently open zip / music / video / various other files. In Chrome, all these have to be saved somewhere, opened and then hunted down afterwards to be deleted. Every other browser gives you the option to save these in a dedicated temp folder and open them from there. Deleting is taken care of by periodically emptying that folder. This is one of the most frequently requested features for Chrome, yet the developers seem as though they can't get their heads around what's being asked for, or why. The annoyance factor of not having this (REALLY annoying) is by far enough to stop me using Chrome until it's fixed.

Reply Score: 1

molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

Title says it all really. I frequently open zip / music / video / various other files. In Chrome, all these have to be saved somewhere, opened and then hunted down afterwards to be deleted. Every other browser gives you the option to save these in a dedicated temp folder and open them from there. Deleting is taken care of by periodically emptying that folder. This is one of the most frequently requested features for Chrome, yet the developers seem as though they can't get their heads around what's being asked for, or why. The annoyance factor of not having this (REALLY annoying) is by far enough to stop me using Chrome until it's fixed.


Options -> Under The Hood -> scrool down a little. You can choose one folder where all downloads go, or you can let Chrome ask you each time where to put the files you're downloading. Just like in Firefox. In your download list you can click on "Show in folder" - so you can find your downloads very easily. On Win7 at least, every single file is handled by the appropriate application. I'm not sure I understand your complaint...

Reply Score: 2

mfarmilo Member since:
2009-02-28

"Title says it all really. I frequently open zip / music / video / various other files. In Chrome, all these have to be saved somewhere, opened and then hunted down afterwards to be deleted. Every other browser gives you the option to save these in a dedicated temp folder and open them from there. Deleting is taken care of by periodically emptying that folder. This is one of the most frequently requested features for Chrome, yet the developers seem as though they can't get their heads around what's being asked for, or why. The annoyance factor of not having this (REALLY annoying) is by far enough to stop me using Chrome until it's fixed.


Just the sort of reply that's usually given - completely missing the point. Like most people, I deal with LOTS of downloaded files that I'm simply wanting to open and then discard. In Firefox, you click 'Open' instead of 'Save' and it saves the file to its temp folder and opens it immediately. Emptying the temp folder periodically clears up all the trash. Using the method described - sure, I can set it to open the file immediately. But then I have to go looking for it afterwards to delete it (since I only wanted to 'view/open' it after all, not keep it). Very kludgy, and very annoying when every other browser does it for you. I know lots of other people use a feature like this, and hence can't use Chrome regularly because of the lack of it.


Options -> Under The Hood -> scrool down a little. You can choose one folder where all downloads go, or you can let Chrome ask you each time where to put the files you're downloading. Just like in Firefox. In your download list you can click on "Show in folder" - so you can find your downloads very easily. On Win7 at least, every single file is handled by the appropriate application. I'm not sure I understand your complaint...
"

Reply Score: 1

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

I think his problem is that on the internet, you often find files that you will open only once. Having all of those saved in a folder that you will have to periodically clean up is annoying.

Reply Score: 2

One more for FF
by bitwelder on Fri 24th Sep 2010 08:06 UTC
bitwelder
Member since:
2010-04-27

My default browser is Firefox, I like its configurability and I'm ready to trade some speed for that. In 2nd place is Opera, and 3rd is Chrome.
Chrome may be be faster but... I remember when I switched to FF it was a fast and sleek browser, then it got slower with time as it grew in size (and functionality). History has the annoying habit of repeating itself, why should I experience it again by switching to Chrome?

Reply Score: 2

Split decision
by Paradroid on Fri 24th Sep 2010 08:07 UTC
Paradroid
Member since:
2010-01-05

At work I always use Firefox because Firebug is indespensible for web development. Chrome has developer tools now and even though they're decent they're still not as good as Firefox.

At home the decision is harder, I try to use Firefox but there is no escaping the fact that it is slower than Chrome. Chrome's single box for entering addresses and search text is also very easy to get used to. I'm running Firefox 4 beta at home and am not impressed so far.

Reply Score: 1

Still with good ol' FireFox
by baderman on Fri 24th Sep 2010 08:12 UTC
baderman
Member since:
2006-07-17

I've started using mozilla engine since Netscape 6.0 and I'm using it till today. I don't really see reason to switch. Of course, I do use webkit based browser, like on my old nokia or brand new samsung galaxy s, but - that's a different thing. Noscript, Adblock, that's only one side of a story, on the other side, there's still a lot of questions regarding googles privacy handling. And for me, currently, it's blocking usage of chrome. And, as a commentary, I can add that having an android phone there's still place for right privacy conservation, although it's not that easy ;) .

Reply Score: 1

Comment by n.l.o
by n.l.o on Fri 24th Sep 2010 08:37 UTC
n.l.o
Member since:
2009-09-14

I switched to Chrome about 3 months ago while my Macbook Pro was out of action and I was using my wife's Aspire One.

Firefox was unbearably slow on that little thing and since i've gone back to my Mac (Dual booting Opensuse 11.3) I have stuck with Chrome ever since.

Adblock, Ghostery, Vidzbigger and Chrome-to-Phone did it for me.

I miss Noscript and DownThemAll though.

Reply Score: 1

chrome v firefox
by SILICONT on Fri 24th Sep 2010 09:45 UTC
SILICONT
Member since:
2010-09-24

today chromes flavour of the month wasnt that long ago firefox and dont forget opera or safari and internet explorer i use them all . do we switch to firefox if it it overtakes chrome for speed and simplicity etc .Fact is thers a browser war on and the situation is constantly changing . Chrome is excellent but so is sr iron a derivative of chromium with none of the associated privacy concerns about google . Each to there own and right now i am using pc linux chrome to write this but i use firefox aswell . I have a mac which i use Safari and like its zoom feature as i am long sighted and it increases the size of the text at the click of a mouse .Try seamonkey and type in a search for say maplin electronics just type maplin and it takes you straight into the site itself chrome doesnt .Icould go on and on i recommend people try all the browsers maxthon etc there there on majorgeeks and use whatever your comfortable with . If internet explorer doesnt have decent alternatives then there would be no innovation .So who knows Adam might be saying chrome today but if firefox safari or internet explorer comes up better next month do we all switch to save how much of a second of a page change . Bottom line browser wars are all about advertising revenue or will be in the end . Each to there own . Good article though but better aimed at the developers of the different browsers . Personslly i havent yet found a browser that fits all my needs.Cheers

Reply Score: 1

"Oh please let me switch"
by _xmv on Fri 24th Sep 2010 09:57 UTC
_xmv
Member since:
2008-12-09

I find interesting that most users "would like to switch to chrome" from the "evil slow firefox" but "can't yet because XX feature is not in".

This seems to be motivated only by the will to change to the "newest kid on the block" and what "every cool kid uses so must use it too".

Basically, superficial, superficial and more superficial reasons, blocked by 1 random feature.

The reality looks quite different to me. Firefox is actually very fast (faster than chrome in many areas, even thus not advertised quite as well - it's not google) - albeit said users are only taking into account initial startup time.

"Politically":
Firefox is 100% open-source (not Chrome.). Mozilla manifesto has been followed for more than a decade without major failures - can't say that for Google.

It's a bit like flash. It's optimized, it's fast, and not really buggy anymore. You play a flash video 1080p and it uses way less resources than playing it using native codecs on your HTML5 browser of choice.
But hey, Flash is the old guy, bloated and crap right? HTML5 is the cool thing, Apple said so ffs!

At the end of the day, I regularly use Chrome and I'm usually not finding it quite fitting my needs. Tabs crash more often than not. Bookmark support is lacking. Rendering/compatibility is not always perfect. Sometimes its just plain slow too.
Now it's not a bad browser, but it's not up to par with Firefox in many areas, and if they were equal I wouldn't change either.
It would have to be actually better on more things than initial startup time...

Reply Score: 1

I didn't switch
by vezhlys on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:03 UTC
vezhlys
Member since:
2005-08-19

I didn't switch to chrome. There are several reasons for this. Firstly, I just used to firefox. I began to use much earlier than it became part of mozilla (it was called phoenix at that time if I remember correctly). Secondly, I didn't like chrome interface. I simplified my firefox interface too (small buttons on one toolbar with menu so it takes less space on top than chrome). It feels much more simple to me. What is more, it wasn't feature rich when I tried it several times (not just less number of plug-ins). The speed? I quite satisfied with firefox speed. It is not that slow on modern computers especially in Linux, BSDs. So I don't think that I'll switch in the near future.

I use a lot google web products (gmail, docs, picasaweb, picasa and so on) so ethically I am not against them but I just don't like their web browser (alternatively I used safari and opera more than it).

Edited 2010-09-24 10:05 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Tried Chrome and switched.
by mkools on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:22 UTC
mkools
Member since:
2005-10-11

I've been a long term Firefox fan and user, still am sometimes but a couple of months ago I tried Chrome because I hated how bloated and sluggish firefox became. Long startup delay's, crashes etc.

I tried Chrome for fun a couple of times but then I noticed I began to start it as my default browser. The only time when I would start Firefox is when I wanted to browse videosites, because Firefox Adblock Plus can't still be beaten by Chrome (Or should I say Adthwart can't beat it yet).

Couple of weeks ago I bought a brand new Corei7 PC and told myself I would switch back to firefox but I didn't. It took 1 day before I installed Chrome with it and now I'm only using that. I think not even Firefox 4 can make me switch back, although we'll see about that later.

So yeah I really love Chrome but I used Firefox for years so I won't forget about that browser either.

Reply Score: 2

+1 FFX
by Laue on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:25 UTC
Laue
Member since:
2010-04-03

As a webdev these are my everyday points:

- The extension store is far behind in Chrome

- FFX gets global pass built-in, certificates handling is easy

- Even though the Acid3 is better on Chrome, the dev/rendering is easier to predict with FFX, then minimal fix the other browsers in my markup/css.

- Chrome is becoming the new IE6 with all his new markup, say it's a good thing to look forward, but i prefer the Mozilla way

- Chrome is Google, Chromium is Google - but heh, ok it's free

Hope to compare soon IE9/FFX4/C7, but when it comes to web form design, they're all a pain in the a.. !

Reply Score: 1

Tabs
by sparklewind on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:32 UTC
sparklewind
Member since:
2010-09-24

One important reason why I can never switch to another browser than Firefox, is that when you try to close it, it asks you whether you want to save your tabs or not. Chrome just silently closes them, Opera automatically saves them.

Reply Score: 1

Chrome is proprietary
by soulrebel123 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:45 UTC
soulrebel123
Member since:
2009-05-13

and firefox is not. So firefox.

Reply Score: 1

Numbers
by Priest on Fri 24th Sep 2010 10:56 UTC
Priest
Member since:
2006-05-12

I am certain this article will add some momentum. I'd be curious what the numbers look like in 3 more months.

For me Firefox "just worked" and I never made much effort to really explore chrome, but now I probably will.

Reply Score: 2

Chrome is inferior
by sorpigal on Fri 24th Sep 2010 11:57 UTC
sorpigal
Member since:
2005-11-02

If speed is all you want then Chrome beats Firefox. If one tab per process is the one feature you need then Chrome beats Firefox. In all other ways Chrome is inferior to Firefox.

Standards support? A few wins on both sides, but both are good enough.

Tabs? Don't make me laugh; Firefox plus its extensions make tab handling and management lightyears more sophisticated than Chrome. There is simply no way a tab fiend like myself can seriously use Chrome.

UI? Firefox's UI is okay, Chrome's is an abortion of an abomination... and a lot of it [i]can't be fixed[/]. Some people (Thom...) may like this ugly, unusable and unfriendly interface, and for them it's a match made in heaven, but for me it's like nails on a chalkboard at best... and completely unusable at worst. It reminds me of what it feels like to run Windows, where I feel trapped and constricted and frustrated at every turn. My blood pressure just can't take it.

I like speed as much as, and probably far more than, the next man. I typically run Firefox with 200+ tabs open at a time and any improvement in efficiency helps me more than it helps you by a LOT. Even so the disadvantages of Chrome outweigh the advantages.

If there's one feature that tempts me to use Chrome it's per-tab process management. If I can get that in Firefox I'd be happy.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Chrome is inferior
by j-kidd on Fri 24th Sep 2010 13:18 UTC in reply to "Chrome is inferior"
j-kidd Member since:
2005-07-06

If there's one feature that tempts me to use Chrome it's per-tab process management


Well, with your use case of 200+ tabs, you can't get per-tab process management with Chrome:

http://code.google.com/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=34944

It is more of a marketing gimmick anyway

Edited 2010-09-24 13:19 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Chrome is inferior
by sorpigal on Fri 24th Sep 2010 19:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Chrome is inferior"
sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

That's good to know! Again, for most people 35 tabs is more than they will ever use, but for a real tab power user it's just pitifully small.

Reply Score: 2

In one word
by Damnshock on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:05 UTC
Damnshock
Member since:
2006-09-15

VIMPERATOR

Can't live without this extension!

I know there are options from chrome/chromium but they are just wannabes...

Not to mention noscript, real adblock...

Firefox with no doubt ;)

Regards

Reply Score: 1

RE: In one word
by sorpigal on Fri 24th Sep 2010 19:48 UTC in reply to "In one word"
sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

Just like I can't live without Firemacs!

If you're used to a certain set of keybindings just working everywhere it's very disconcerting when they don't.

YES, I AM LOOKING AT YOU KDE4!

Reply Score: 2

Firefox innovated the web
by Pr3st00 on Fri 24th Sep 2010 12:38 UTC
Pr3st00
Member since:
2005-12-02

"If I have seen further it is only by standing on the shoulders of giants". Google about Chrome and referring to Firefox.

Reply Score: 1

another_sam
Member since:
2009-08-19

Firefox saved the web by punching Internet Explorer right in the face.

After that, as part of the evolution, came Firefox 3 with the Awesome Bar. But the Awesome Bar was and is too heavy for Gecko 1 (the guts of Firefox 3.6-). So Firefox became slow.

Then came Chrome with its clean, right to the point, back-end (much lighter) and front-end (noticeably more usable). And the V8 engine, that beast.

Since then, Chrome has been constantly updated and sharpen and Mozilla folks have worked hard to make Gecko 2 real. So what we have now is basically is Chrome at its best (and improving) and Firefox as always.

However, Gecko 2 is about to be released (inside Firefox 4), and with it, fixed start time and UI responsiveness. Also, JavaScript performance will jump from 0.5 to 0.8 Chromes for sunspider and from 0.25 to 0.6 Chromes for v8bench (arewefastyet.com).

Having no more features than Chrome and being slower than Chrome, why do I still use Firefox instead of Chrome? Because its free.

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Also, JavaScript performance will jump from 0.5 to 0.8 Chromes for sunspider and from 0.25 to 0.6 Chromes for v8bench (arewefastyet.com).


These 30% to 50% jumps in performance shown on arewefastyet.com are merely the jumps in Firefox 4 performance since July 28 to September 15.

They are not the jumps in performance from Firefox 3.6 to Firefox 4, which has seen a performance improvement of over 250% in all.

The speed improvement from gecko 1.9 to Gecko 2, when it is released, will be far more dramatic than the picture you paint.

Having no more features than Chrome and being slower than Chrome


The first is decidedly incorrect, the second is yet to be determined, it is still an open question, except for the performance of rendering and compositing on not-too-old hardware, where Firefox 4 is many times faster than Chrome.

Edited 2010-09-24 13:44 UTC

Reply Score: 2

another_sam Member since:
2009-08-19

About speed, I'll give you my rates at Bubble Bobble at:
http://benfirshman.com/projects/jsnes/
Firefox 4 Beta 6: 15 FPS. Chromium 6: 60 FPS. Opera: 10.62: 60 FPS.

About features, I think browser market share trends are a strong indicator of features demand/satisfaction. In this field, Chrome is growing exponentially while Firefox has converged at 25%. This tells me that, compared with Chrome, Firefox has no more features relevant to the average user.

Firefox 4 will still be slower than Chrome for sunspider and v8bench, and has not more relevant features for the average user than Chrome. Which is what I was trying to communicate with the first message.

Reply Score: 1

jacquouille Member since:
2006-01-02

Nah, the JSNES slowness issue was just a bug that's been fixed weeks ago. I guess the release process made the fix not enter beta6, but right now on a build from today I'm getting 45 FPS on my laptop.

Reply Score: 2

Erunno Member since:
2007-06-22

About speed, I'll give you my rates at Bubble Bobble at:
http://benfirshman.com/projects/jsnes/
Firefox 4 Beta 6: 15 FPS. Chromium 6: 60 FPS. Opera: 10.62: 60 FPS.


Beta 6 does not yet have the JavaScript engine (JÄgerMonkey) integrated. It will be released with beta 7 and runs the SNES emulator perfectly fine with 60 FPS.

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Firefox 4 will still be slower than Chrome for sunspider and v8bench, and has not more relevant features for the average user than Chrome. Which is what I was trying to communicate with the first message.


Firefox 4 will use both Jaegermonkey plus Tracemonkey, working together. The latest beta release Firefox 4.0b6 has only Tracemonkey, Jaegermonkey wasn't yet integrated at that release.

http://arewefastyet.com/

The gold plotline is Tracemonkey ... this is what you would have seen in Firefox 4.0b6.

The black plotline is Jaegermonkey, and the purple plotline is Jaegermonkey plus Tracemonkey. The latter is what you will get in the final release of Firefox 4.0.

If trends continue, Firefox with Jaegermonkey plus Tracemonkey will overtake Chrome for sunspider in perhaps two weeks time.

If trends further continue, Firefox with Jaegermonkey plus Tracemonkey will overtake Chrome for v8bench in perhaps four to six weeks time.

Exactly what performance Firefox 4.0 will have on release is still an open question, but it is by no means impossible that it will be faster than Chrome (even according to Google's own v8bench benchmark).

Firefox has a number of better features than Chrome as far as the average user goes, extension like this one not being the least of them:
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/3006/

Edited 2010-09-26 09:35 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Dave_K
Member since:
2005-11-16

Not all people who'd be considered "power users" use the browser in the same way. A web developer might require certain unusual features to aid their work, but not be so bothered about speed or tab management.

Personally I like browsing with a large number of open tabs, I find that more efficient than artificially restricting what I have open. Just shopping around online, looking at prices and product reviews, can cause my number of tabs to grow, and I'm often following forums and reading articles at the same time.

For me that makes Chrome pretty much unusable. Its tab bar would constantly be packed full and virtually unusable, and the browser itself just can't cope with a large number of tabs without slowing to a crawl.

Compare that with Opera, where you can open 200 tabs if you want and it'll keep on going without a problem. I can replace the standard tab bar with a scrollable, filterable by keyword, tab/window list in the sidebar, which I can hide and show when needed with a click at the screen edge. If I want to close a bunch of tabs from one site, I can simply filter the list, select them all, then hit delete to close them as a group. Opera also provides a pop up list of open tabs that can be quickly scrolled through with the mouse-wheel.

Features like that mean that I just don't have to worry about whether opening a load of links in the background will screw anything up or make browsing unmanageable. I can browse without the browser's limitations interrupting what I'm doing.

To me Opera's best "power user" feature is that it offers full MDI window management (badly bug ridden in 10.5+ unfortunately), rather than crippling it by forcing all tabs to be maximised. This means that tabs can be tiled side by side within the browser window, while other tabs are minimised and hidden out of the way. It's one great feature that I don't think you can add to Firefox/Chrome with extensions.

I can put an article I'm referencing alongside a forum post I'm writing, or compare price lists side by side rather than switching backwards and forwards. It offers some unique options, like being able to create a "follower tab" that displays any links clicked in its parent tab. It also allows tabs to be located spatially, by keeping the tabs in use arranged and visible on screen.

This is much more efficiently done within the browser than by separating tabs into multiple windows.

Reply Score: 3

My Take
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Fri 24th Sep 2010 15:00 UTC
Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

Chrome doesn't do what I want to do, but it does what the website author wants it to do. And does that the best. So often times, I find myself going back to it.

But for powerusers, I'd say its still firefox right now. More hooks to do different things. Its truer to the original intention of the web.

Reply Score: 2

As the...
by lispykid on Fri 24th Sep 2010 16:23 UTC
lispykid
Member since:
2009-02-02

performance whore I am it was Chromium from day one on.

Edited 2010-09-24 16:24 UTC

Reply Score: 1

PCMartin
Member since:
2010-09-24

According to correspondence I've had with extension developers, Google doesn't expose nearly as much of Chrome's guts to them as Mozilla does with Firefox. As I understand it, the underlying Chromium project may be open source, but the Google Chrome browser is not. As a result, there are lots of things extension developers can do in Firefox that they can't do in Chrome. For people who like to customize their browser in a certain way (e.g., with Tab Mix Plus), or take extra care with their security and privacy (e.g., with NoScript), Firefox still has the advantage.

Next, with a similar number of similar extensions in both browsers -- the Chrome extensions being generally less full-featured -- I don't notice that current versions of Chrome have had any noticeable speed advantage over current versions of Firefox on my three-year-old laptop with ample memory. On a five-year-old desktop with inadequate memory, Chrome *is* faster -- until more than a dozen or so tabs are opened, at which point it becomes noticeably slower.

Finally -- and this may be the result of something idiosyncratic on my particular configuration -- on *all* of the computers I use, I have had many more browser crashes or freezes in Chrome than I have had in Firefox over the past several months.

Because I have more control over its interface, functionality, security, and privacy, Firefox is still my browser of choice.

Reply Score: 1

Yes, and No
by achmafooma on Fri 24th Sep 2010 17:14 UTC
achmafooma
Member since:
2008-09-05

No real power user would use just one browser ;-)

Anyway, I switched fairly recently to Chrome as my day-to-day browser because it's fast and because it has the extensions I need (basically: adblock). It also has a lot of interface niceties I like (like being able to close a lot of tabs in succession without the close buttons jumping around).

As a web developer though, I still do most of my development in Firefox with Firebug. Chrome's dev tools are much improved, but still aren't nearly as good as Firefox+Firebug.

Of course, after the bulk of the development is done, I start firing up the site in everything else and polish it up...but while I'm developing, I'm switching back and forth between code and Firefox.

Reply Score: 1

I'm still sticking to Konqueror
by Kalessin on Fri 24th Sep 2010 17:41 UTC
Kalessin
Member since:
2007-01-18

I'm obviously in the minority, but I use Konqueror primarily. I like its feature set far more than that of either firefox or chrome (and, of course, since I'm using KDE, it integrates better).

However, on the occasions when I want or need a different browser, I end up using opera or chrome because firefox eats up way too many resources. I prefer firefox's UI and feature set to chrome by a long shot (I do not like the minimal approach; I'm a power user after all; minimal != power), but chrome's performance outperforms firefox enough that on those rare occasions that I want to use something other than Konqueror, it just makes more sense to fire up chrome.

Reply Score: 1

yes
by Tanner on Fri 24th Sep 2010 19:07 UTC
Tanner
Member since:
2005-07-06

Yes, I made the switch a long time ago and I install chrome on every computer that enters my computer repairing shop.

It is simply superior.

And keep in mind that I always contributed to the Firefox cause and I was totally in love with it... until now.

Reply Score: 2

Rather use Opera
by wowtip on Fri 24th Sep 2010 19:50 UTC
wowtip
Member since:
2005-07-14

I am still on FF, and so are most of the other "power users" I know.

To me it is more like the hipster users switched to Chrome, because it was New, Shiny, Hip and Google-made. Power users stayed with Firefox as it is more extensible and configurable.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by RichterKuato
by RichterKuato on Fri 24th Sep 2010 20:08 UTC
RichterKuato
Member since:
2010-05-14

What make Chrome a breath of fresh air compared to Firefox is:

It's clean un-bloated interface and using native compiled widget toolkits (Win32, GTK+, Cocoa) as opposed to a cross-platform script based toolkit (XUL/Javascript).

Also, it's the only commercial quality open source Webkit-based (really just WebCore) browser right now.

Reply Score: 2

Privacy Concerns
by benali72 on Sat 25th Sep 2010 01:41 UTC
benali72
Member since:
2008-05-03

I use FF with these privacy extensions & features --

Ghostery add on -- blocks web bugs
NoScript -- manages scripting
BetterPrivacy -- erases flash cookies and DMO storage
Ad Block -- blocks ads

Scroogle -- replaces Google web search tracking
Private Browsing Mode -- erases cookies etc

In comparison, Chrome gives everyone a unique ID (guid). See -- http://blog.gjl-network.net/blog/index.php?archives/166-English.htm...]=en.

Sorry Google, to me no privacy means no sale.

Point Street View and those new drones you just bought elsewhere. (drones see -- http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2010/08/09/google-buys-flying-drones/)

Reply Score: 1

faster FF4
by smitty on Sat 25th Sep 2010 04:09 UTC
smitty
Member since:
2005-10-13

A new commit today boosted performance by about 10% in V8Bench today. That's good enough that they've passed the webkit trunk code.

Reply Score: 2

RE: faster FF4
by PresentIt on Sat 25th Sep 2010 12:53 UTC in reply to "faster FF4"
PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

The only problem is, the V8 benchmark is designed for Chrome. Google basically cheated, and it doesn't measure stuff that takes a long time in their own browser. So it's not really a fair benchmark.

Reply Score: 1

Yeah Right
by Lorin on Sat 25th Sep 2010 06:10 UTC
Lorin
Member since:
2010-04-06

"I can think of few reasons why you would prefer Firefox over Chrome"

Firefox uses significantly less resources than chrome does, machines with less ram will get no speed increase.

All web pages I have found open and display correctly in Firefox, many in Chrome do not.

Most addons used in Firefox are not available in Chrome such as Adblock Plus due to features lacking in Chrome.

Reply Score: 0

Why Firefox?
by NuxRo on Sat 25th Sep 2010 07:55 UTC
NuxRo
Member since:
2010-09-25

Well, for ethical reasons; not necessarily because letting Google in every part of our lives is evil, but because Mozilla has been for a long long time supporting linux, and now as a linux user I am supporting Mozilla.

Plus, I really need some extensions in my work; when other browsers will come up with something like this[1] _maybe_ I will consider switching.

Sent straight from my Mozilla Firefox 4.

[1] - http://img.nux.ro/why-firefox.png

Reply Score: 1

From Chrome/Chromium to Firefox
by rykel98 on Sat 25th Sep 2010 08:56 UTC
rykel98
Member since:
2010-09-25

Like everyone else, I switched from Firefox to Chrome, then Chromium. BUT I RETURNED TO FIREFOX ALREADY.

Initially, I went to Chrome/Chromium for the faster speed, minimal UI and Bookmarks Sync, which of course is part of my Google Account.

Then one day, an incident happened.

FACEBOOK DELETED MY ACCOUNT WITHOUT WARNING and stubbornly refuses to reinstate it even after many appeals. Facebook WIPED OUT my photographs, conversations, buddy list (ie. contact numbers etc.), games etc. EVERYTHING.

Suddenly, Richard Stallman's warning against putting our information into the so-called cloud (ie. Software As A Service) became VERY painfully real.

That was when I decided NOT to put everything into a single account. That was when I decided that the cloud is good for DISPOSABLE information AND backups, but never for my all-and-all.

So I went back to Firefox because:

1. Firefox has NO agenda for or against ads;
2. It is owned by the community not a company;
3. It can sync bookmarks with other browsers via XMarks; and
4. Firefox 3.6 onwards feels really responsive, almost no difference from Chrome/Chromium.

By the way, if anyone reading this is able to help me with my Facebook account, please let me know. I have been victimised by Facebook and it seems like there is NOTHING I can do about it. My Facebook account is rykel98 at Gmail.com.

Thank you.

Reply Score: 2

for rykel98
by SILICONT on Sat 25th Sep 2010 09:49 UTC
SILICONT
Member since:
2010-09-24

i dont know if this will work but a freind had some success using this facility though it wasnt for facebook

http://www.waybackmachine.org

it basically lets you go back in time and look at snapshots of the internet weeks months or years ago . i dont know whether that would allow you to access your facebook account at an earlier date say six months ago or not but its worth a try .

Reply Score: 1

lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

FF4 goes past Safari for x86 v8bench.

http://arewefastyet.com/?machine=5

(Still a bit of a way to go to catch up to V8 for v8bench).

Within 10% of Chrome and Safari for Sunspider.

It is a much closer contest for X86_84

http://arewefastyet.com/?machine=4

Reply Score: 2

PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

As I wrote elsewhere, the problem is that the V8 benchmark is designed for Chrome. Google basically cheated, and it doesn't measure stuff that takes a long time in their own browser. So it's not really a fair benchmark.

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

As I wrote elsewhere, the problem is that the V8 benchmark is designed for Chrome. Google basically cheated, and it doesn't measure stuff that takes a long time in their own browser. So it's not really a fair benchmark.


We can assume the same of all the benchmarks. For example, AFAIK FF 4 with Jaegermonkey + Tracemonkey is already the fastest browser running Mozilla's own Kraken benchmark.

http://www.tested.com/news/which-web-browser-can-best-mozillas-new-...

(Note that AFAIK FF 4.0b6 does not yet include Jaegermonkey, it has Tracemonkey only).

Even though Mozilla claim to have designed Kraken to measure performance against real-world tasks, people will simply assume that the Kraken benchmark is designed to favour Firefox in the same way that v8bench is designed to favour Chrome.

Hence the aim of Firefox should be to beat the others at their own benchmarks. This in turn is no doubt why the arewefastyet.com site includes results for sunspider and v8bench, but not Kraken.

That way there should be no arguments about the measurements.

Edited 2010-09-25 13:50 UTC

Reply Score: 2

PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

Yes, Mozilla seems to be equally dishonest with Kraken. That still doesn't mean that the V8 benchmark is any better.

Peacekeeper is the only independent benchmark. Claims about Kraken from Mozilla, and the V8 bench from Google, must be taken with a grain of salt because they are clearly being dishonest about it.

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Yes, Mozilla seems to be equally dishonest with Kraken. That still doesn't mean that the V8 benchmark is any better.

Peacekeeper is the only independent benchmark. Claims about Kraken from Mozilla, and the V8 bench from Google, must be taken with a grain of salt because they are clearly being dishonest about it.


Oh, come on!

Mozilla, and Mozilla alone, are measuring their performance against the benchmarks put out by the other browsers.

http://arewefastyet.com/
http://arewefastyet.com/faq.html
What's this site?

This site tracks the performance of popular JavaScript engines.

Who's behind it? Is Mozilla?

This site is maintained by Mozilla's JavaScript team.

What are the graphs?

The left-hand graph is Apple's SunSpider benchmark. The right-hand graph is Google's V8 benchmark suite.


What is there that is even the teeniest tiniest bit dishonest about that? It simply doesn't matter how unfair Google's v8bench is, and how much it favours Google's V8 engine, if Moziila developers are using it to rate Firefox's performance against Chrome.

Sheesh!
In that context, Mozilla developers using v8bench and sunspider to measure Firefox is the precise, exact opposite of unfair and dishonest.

Get real. Try some other kind of FUD, because that one utterly and completely missed the target.

Edited 2010-09-26 09:17 UTC

Reply Score: 2

PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

The dishonesty here is making Kraken, and tying it to Firefox's JS implementation (like Google tied the V8 benchmark to V8).

So yes, both Google and Mozilla are being extremely dishonest.

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

The dishonesty here is making Kraken, and tying it to Firefox's JS implementation (like Google tied the V8 benchmark to V8).

So yes, both Google and Mozilla are being extremely dishonest.


That's crazy. You are making no sense at all.

How exactly are Mozilla being dishonest? Can't you read, or something? Mozilla are publishing direct comparison of their javascript engine to v8 and apple nitro, using the preferred benchmarks of Apple (sunspider) and Google (v8bench).

How is it dishonest?

BTW ... why can't Mozilla have a benchmark of their own, since Apple and Google both do? Mozilla say their Kraken benchmark is representative of typical work browsers must do ... but they don't ask you to believe them because they also show you their results against sunspider and v8bench.

How is that dishonest?

Think about it for a second. They publish information that they claim is typical usage, but they don't insist that this proves anything, and they also show their results against the opposition's benchmarks, and clearly state that they aren't as fast against those benchmarks.

Where exactly is the dishonesty?

Put up or shut up.

Reply Score: 2

PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

Mozilla are being dishonest by creating a new benchmark, Kraken, which is specifically tweaked to be fast in their new JS engine.

All the benchmarks claim to reflect the real world. There's nothing special about that.

Reply Score: 1

Firefox slow on my netbook
by jibadeeha on Sun 26th Sep 2010 19:52 UTC
jibadeeha
Member since:
2009-08-10

I bought a netbook a few years ago and found the performance of firefox to be somewhat sluggish - particularly with page scrolling.

When Chrome was released for Linux I decided to give it a go, and found the performance to be exceptionally fast. I have never looked back - so quick and simple to use in comparison.

Reply Score: 1

An early look at Firefox 4
by lemur2 on Mon 27th Sep 2010 05:41 UTC
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

http://www.conceivablytech.com/2976/products/an-early-look-at-firef...

There are just days left until Mozilla will release Firefox 4 Beta 7, the feature freeze release of Firefox 4.


This article has some interesting observations on performance, and other comments relavent to this thread.

Mozilla’s primary goal for Firefox 4 was improved performance. The idea was to increase the true rendering speed as well as the perception of browser speed.

Firefox 4 Beta 7 will integrate the new JavaScript engine JaegerMonkey, which takes the JavaScript performance of the browser into the neighborhood of IE9. Depending on your computer, you may see Firefox 4 either slightly faster or slower in the Sunspider test. We found Firefox 4 to respond much more favorably to multi-core systems than IE9. For example, Firefox 4 has a 5% lead over IE9 Beta on our Intel quad-core system and is about 10% behind on our AMD Athlon X2 test notebook at this time.

However, if you run Mozilla’s Kraken Benchmark, which claims to have more focus on real world apps, then you see Firefox ahead of every other browser out there. In the end, measuring JavaScript performance may be less important in the future as hardware acceleration becomes much more significant. There are a million and one ways out there how to measure JavaScript compilers today and it is somewhat up to you whom you believe.


Note that firefox 4 beta 7 is the first beta to integarte the new Jaegermonkey engine. This new engine provides a significant step up in performance, completely negating much of the observations made in this thread about earlier versions of firefox, and even earlier betas of Firefox 4.

Reply Score: 2

mlankton
Member since:
2009-06-11

1. Speed- I don't care about any feature nearly as much as I value a browser that is fast. Face it, since Apple created Webkit (from KDE tech I guess I have to add), it has been a Webkit world.

2. Stability- All of our browsers are stable nowadays. Which is least likely to crash?

3. Interface- A simple, pleasing interface with enough back end settings that I can tailor my experience to what I want. I also want my browser to look like it belongs on my os'es desktop. (Best preferences of any browser? OmniWeb.)

4. Compatibility- As a web designer, my browser better render pages that have compliant markup. I also mean HTML 5 audio and video tags.

In the end, Firefox had its place and was a great browser for its time, just like Netscape was great in its day. Mozilla's day is done however, and for the time being it is a Webkit world.

I also like Opera quite a bit, and it would be my second choice to Chrome.

Obviously, people whose web experience depends on a bunch of extensions will favor Firefox. I don't want a single extension on my browser. I want an unadulterated web, and Chrome delivers the fastest version of the wild, wild web.

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

1. Speed- I don't care about any feature nearly as much as I value a browser that is fast. Face it, since Apple created Webkit (from KDE tech I guess I have to add), it has been a Webkit world. 2. Stability- All of our browsers are stable nowadays. Which is least likely to crash? 3. Interface- A simple, pleasing interface with enough back end settings that I can tailor my experience to what I want. I also want my browser to look like it belongs on my os'es desktop. (Best preferences of any browser? OmniWeb.) 4. Compatibility- As a web designer, my browser better render pages that have compliant markup. I also mean HTML 5 audio and video tags. In the end, Firefox had its place and was a great browser for its time, just like Netscape was great in its day. Mozilla's day is done however, and for the time being it is a Webkit world. I also like Opera quite a bit, and it would be my second choice to Chrome. Obviously, people whose web experience depends on a bunch of extensions will favor Firefox. I don't want a single extension on my browser. I want an unadulterated web, and Chrome delivers the fastest version of the wild, wild web.


If you take out the factor of Firefox's better extensibility and larger and more capable extensions library, then I think you might be very surprised to find that Firefox 4.0b7 (which will be released in a few days time) still matches Google Chrome feature-for-feature that you mentioned.

Firefox has indeed been some way behind on the points you mentioned for some time now. Firefox 4.0 will redress that, and very much bring Firefox right back on par performance-wise with Google Chrome.

Remember also that Firefox has a much larger user base still than Google Chrome does, that much of Firefox's user base is very quick to upgrade versions, and that unlike you many users actually like extensibility features (and so Firefox will be seen by most people as having more features than Chrome).

So a little while after it is released, Firefox 4.0 will have more features, far more users, and just about exacttly the same performace as Chrome.

Mozilla's day is done however, and for the time being it is a Webkit world.


Nup. I don't think so.

Edited 2010-09-27 23:25 UTC

Reply Score: 2

interesting article
by smitty on Tue 28th Sep 2010 03:27 UTC
smitty
Member since:
2005-10-13

http://blog.internetnews.com/skerner/2010/09/mozilla-cto-why-firefo...

A couple quotes:

He added that at one point Google approached him to try and get the Chrome engine into Firefox, but that didn't work out due to both technical and philosophical reasons.

and

"Let's face it: Google did the minimized-UI, super-fast-to-start browser with Chrome," Eich wrote. "However good Firefox gets by those two measures, we have to (and I believe that we will) distinguish ourselves in other, deeper ways against Google and other browser vendors, who have different missions or agendas from Mozilla's."

Reply Score: 2

RE: interesting article
by lemur2 on Tue 28th Sep 2010 05:22 UTC in reply to "interesting article"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Let's face it: Google did the minimized-UI, super-fast-to-start browser with Chrome," Eich wrote. "However good Firefox gets by those two measures, we have to (and I believe that we will) distinguish ourselves in other, deeper ways against Google and other browser vendors, who have different missions or agendas from Mozilla's."


Exactly. Mozilla's agenda is to provide the best browser from a user's perspective, and to "open the web".

http://www.mozilla.org/about/manifesto
http://www.mozilla.org/about/mission.html
Mozilla's mission is to promote openness, innovation, and opportunity on the web. We do this by creating great software, like the Firefox browser, and building movements, like Drumbeat, that give people tools to take control of their online lives.

As a non-profit organization, we define success in terms of building communities and enriching people’s lives instead of benefiting our shareholders (guess what: we don’t even have shareholders). We believe in the power and potential of the Internet and want to see it thrive for everyone, everywhere.


Google make their fortune by providing an admittedly good service, but then inserting relatively unobtrusive ads targetted as far as possible at each user. In order to target ads, Google collects metrics about each user. Google has a direct pervading interest in users being unable to filter out ads.

Safari (via Apple) seems to have an agenda to try to push DRM, to take down Flash and to force the exclusive use of proprietary audio and video codecs on the web, and to effectively ban, disparage or suppress open codecs such as Vorbis, Theora and WebM.

IE used to have an agenda (most recently embodied in Silverlight) that people would need to run specifically IE on Windows in order to get a "full experience" on the web. Perhaps now, late in the game, they have moved away from that, but it is way too late and they have already caused enormous damage.

I'll leave it up to the users to work out which agenda best aligns with the said user's own best interests.

Edited 2010-09-28 05:23 UTC

Reply Score: 2

I didn't ...
by kvarbanov on Tue 28th Sep 2010 08:23 UTC
kvarbanov
Member since:
2008-06-16

... because of the addons, mainly, and because of existing habits. Short examples : if I'm on a web page, and I need to search for "rss" string, for instance, in FF I just type "rss" on the keyboard, without having to hit CTRL+F or /. Fast and simple, as soon as I find, I hit enter to follow the link. Most of my favorite addons are not available for Chrome. FF is rather well integrated with my Linux env, including Thunderbird, whereas Chrome behaves strange, in opening new tabs for example. FF has a lot more control on things you want to do, whereas Chrome has less ability in that regard, though I would agree that speed is sometimes noticeable. Waiting for FF4.
Last but not least - most of the sites I work with don't fully support Chrome, and the latter behaves different in another set of pages, example, a car site : choose a model from the dropdown menu - Subaru/Honda - hit enter - in FF this action selects the model, whereas Chrome treats it like : "display all available models, and I have to click back to Advanced Search. Then, when I finally get the list, middle click with the scroll is supposed to open the link in a new tab, but Chrome doesn't do it, as opposed to FF. I have hundreds of such examples of inconvenience.
I don't fully dismiss Chrome, it just doesn't suit my usage.

Edited 2010-09-28 08:34 UTC

Reply Score: 1