back to article Opera Jon's sparkling Vivaldi proves the browser isn't dead

The new browser by Opera founder and ex-CEO Jon von Tetzchner is available as a beta today, after ten months in preview. You can grab it for Windows, Mac and Linux – and he’s promised that a mobile version will follow. The pioneering Norwegian company he founded laid off hundreds of browser developers, as it began to focus on …

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Welcome back

...but how are we paying for this? I know it is beta at the moment, but in a world of "free" browsers I can't see Jon von T being able to charge real money, and if not, then how will his company survive? Am I the product again, and if so, to what extent?

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Re: Welcome back

I paid for Opera back when it was ad-supported (premium version had no banner, that was the only difference), I think version 6 or 7, and I recommended the browser to everyone.

I see no problem paying for Vivaldi now.

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Re: Welcome back

It's actually mentioned in TFA: affiliates and search traffic

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Welcome back

The article mentions how he's handling it. For the initial rollout, he's paying out of pocket. Once he goes mainstream, he intends to use search and affiliate fees.

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Re: Welcome back

You don't need to worry about being the product, you need to worry about your reading skills. The business model is in the article:

"It’s not only adopting the Opera ethos, but also it’s business model. He’s confident that with a few million users the search and affiliate fees will pay for the development team."

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Re: Welcome back

The financing is covered in the article: search referrals. Jon von T probably knows how many users he needs to get to get enough searches to cover costs.

They're might also be opportunities for additional income through value-added services if they can hone the user-focussed approach to serve niche markets better.

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Re: Welcome back

The financing is covered in the article

Alright. Alright! I admit, it was in the article, I didn't read it properly. But I did read all of it. It just didn't sink in.

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Opera 12.16 is still the best browser, despite 3 years of neglect.

The preview of Vivaldi is very good, just lacking a few features from Opera, which I'm sure they'll have soon.

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Re: Opera 12.16 is still the best browser, despite 3 years of neglect.

Get the mail client working, I'll happily use it as my default browser and PAY FOR IT. Like I did with Opera.

But I REALLY wish that not everything was based on Chromium which STILL gives me "redirect loop" errors on certain websites (e.g. Steam - when you go into your Inventory) that you just cannot get rid of or bypass, so you effectively can't use those pages. Broken pages or not, other browsers were fine with it, Opera 12.16 was fine with it, and old versions of Chrome were fine with it.

I'd just like to be able to get into my Steam inventory - even if I have to turn off an option that's on by default.

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Re: Opera 12.16 is still the best browser, despite 3 years of neglect.

I find this odd, given that I use Firefox and Steam and have no issues. Perhaps an add-on is messing with steampowered.com and causing a redirect loop.

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I like it

Been using the browser as a secondary one for months and it's become increasingly stable. Internally it's also running on Chromium so site compatibility isn't a problem.

I suspect it will become my main browser before the end of the year and I've come to the conclusion that I'd even pay an annual fee for a good browser and mail client.

The developers, many of which are ex-Opera, are extremely open to usability in a way that the major browser have lost. Opera really lost its way when it (thoroughly understandably) jumped on the Chromium ship and had to reinvent bookmarks having thought them irrelevant. It's now got a more coherent strategy that laudably focusses on third-world accessibility but for the rest seems to be chasing rainbows.

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Mushroom

Re: I like it

To me, it wasn't the lack of features (like bookmarks, or mail, or custom search engines, or mouse gestures, or quick shortcuts, or full-page-zoom, or...) of Chromium-skin-Opera that set my alarms ringing. It was their "Discover" tab - it seemed like a useful Flipboard-like (or Opera Portal) "curated magazine", until I found out, to my disbelief, that I couldn't add my own sites to the Discover tab - "oh, really, so I should just be expected to be fed this "sponsored content", as if I was a cow munching on straw - my eyeballs are not for sale, thank you." This told me all I needed to know about NuOpera.

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Re: I like it

Yet another Chromium browser? No thanks.

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Is this why my Opera 12 is bombarding me with 'update to latest version' popups?

(With the default being to do so without question from now on? Very sneaky, and not likely to make me trust you. If a user is still on a pre-chromium opera its very likely they are doing it on purpose)

I'll have to give Vivaldi a look.

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Re: Is this why my Opera 12 is bombarding me with 'update to latest version' popups?

Vivaldi has nothing to do with Opera 12 or Opera the company.

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Re: Is this why my Opera 12 is bombarding me with 'update to latest version' popups?

Just be careful and change that setting to "Never ask me again" - and keep enjoying your unb0rked browser.

I hope Jon has enough funding to get to the end of his vision, because M3 (the replacement mail client) has been pushed out from version 1 and will not be delivered in this release cycle. That's today's little bit of bad news, I'm afraid.

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Re: Is this why my Opera 12 is bombarding me with 'update to latest version' popups?

Opera 12 is, of course, not being maintained so it's not getting any security updates. You're well advised to at least install one of the more recent versions in parallel. They're acceptable since bookmarks were reintroduced and do benefit from a more modern rendering engine. Install Opera Mail standalone if, like me, you still use it because frankly nothing like as good is out there. If you do use Opera Mail you may need Opera 12 for some things such as certificate management.

The newer Opera browsers really are different browsers so no different to installing say Firefox or Chrome or even Vivaldi.

As for Vivaldi, give it a spin. You might even like it! And, if not, you might even appreciate being able to tell the devs what could be improved.

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Re: Is this why my Opera 12 is bombarding me with 'update to latest version' popups?

"Vivaldi has nothing to do with Opera 12 or Opera the company."

It seems to have the same focus as Opera 12 (user choice, innovation).

Previously if you wanted to upgrade from opera-the-way-you-want-it (12) to something still supported the closest choice was probably opera-chromium (33), now it could be Vivaldi. I'm speculating that this is why someone set up the aggressive update policy.

"Just be careful and change that setting to "Never ask me again" - and keep enjoying your unb0rked browser."

I would if I could find that option - the buttons are "download and install", "remind me later" and "help" (along with always upgrade without asking tickbox). This isn't the sort of user choice I was hoping for.

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"which is a skin around Chromium"

sorry to tell you this, but so is Vivaldi. With added javascript badness.

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Re: "which is a skin around Chromium"

We thank you for your insight.

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Anonymous Coward

Vivaldi uses Chrome's Blink rendering engine

So I don't consider a real alternative browser.

With all this consolidation, soon we're only going to be able to view the web as google wishes us to.

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Been using the pre-beta for ages in a "first alternative to main browser if TOR isn't needed" and I like it very much. Amazingly stable for the stage it's at (for me anyway).

Just installed the update and -YAY!- plugins! And a Linux version too!

The fact that it's called 'beta' is just about the only reason that I haven't made it #1 browser (and I might do it anyway after watching it suspiciously for a while). My current #1 -a "last version before it got really crap" Opera- is starting to fray around the edges a bit, so will have to go at some point in the near future anyway.

Good news.

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Impressive!

I've been an Opera devotee for a long time (version 2 ish I think) but since the Chrome conversion I'm not completely sold on it any more. Vivaldi looks good. Acid3 (natch) and HTML5 tests look great and it's really quick, I'll be switching very shortly unless it throws up something hideous in my further playing.

Nice job chaps!

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Anonymous Coward

Privacy?

I have no experience with Opera or Jon T at all. Where on the privacy spectrum does Vivaldi fall?

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UI still needs important work

Love the idea, all strength to it. Sadly, there seems to have been too little progress on the UI front.

There is still no single tab close button - all versions of real Opera up to and including 12.16 have this; so does Sea Monkey, so does Pale Moon, so does Firefox (albeit only via extension since the Firefox UI wreckers went mad on Australis). For many power users this is a use/avoid level feature. (Count me amongst them.)

There is still no obvious way to get a clean page without that annoying and useless panel bar down the left-hand side of the screen - you can move it but I can't find a way to get rid of it.CORRECTION: there is a way now, but it's not obvious - you have to find a little icon in the bottom left corner. Once you do though, it apparently works fine. All that's needed to complete this improvement now is put that setting where it belongs: in settings -> panel.

I won't list more minor things as the improvements are coming along nicely and I'm confident they will be sorted soon enough.

Without a single tab close button (i.e., an option to have the control to close the current tab always in the same place where it can be used automatically and without conscious thought - nothing worse in a UI than having to search for basic controls that move around) I can't view Vivaldi as a possibility for prime time use yet, but this latest version seems good enough now to replace Chrome as the 5th-choice browser on my machine. (And yes, I do use all five.)

Very keen to see Vivaldi progress: it's got nearly all the parts in place now.

PS: get it right - that means a modern browser with a UI as good as or better than Opera 12.x - and I'd be happy to pay cash money for it. I know they are looking at other ways of funding it, nevertheless, for many of us our browser is the single most-often-used program on our computers. If it cost $100 to have a better browser, I'd pay without an instant's hesitation.

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Re: UI still needs important work

I still have not yet found an Export Bookmarks utility, and pinned tabs forget who they're supposed to be dancing with (Windows 10). When it's ready for the prom, it'll be my go to.

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Re: UI still needs important work

The killer problem for me, as was the case in the version I tried a while back, is that there's still no way to get the tabs to behave the way I want. When I close a tab it should select the tab to the right if there is one, or the tab to the left if there isn't one to the right. The reason for this is that my heaviest use of tabs is when reading The Register, BBC News etc. - control-click on everything on the home page that sounds interesting to open them in a new tab, then move to the first tab to start reading. Closing a tab/story should then take me to the next story, not back to the home page.

Other things such as the lack of a proper menu bar, putting basic items such as "New Tab" into a sub-menu rather than being at the top level, and overriding my preferred window manager with its own title bar that provides substantially less functionality, are annoying but can at least be switched off. Having said that, I've had Vivaldi pop itself to the front of the stacking order for no readily apparent reason a few times, so it looks like switching to a native window doesn't quite turn off all the stupid.

All in all, not even close to tempting me away from Palemoon.

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WTF?

Re: UI still needs important work

Correct, no browser would overlook the ability to close a single tab.

Move your pointer to a tab and a close button will appear as if by magic.

You obviously don't understand how to use the panel on the left, or what it is (it is one of the most useful features).

It is not part of the page. It is part of the browser.

You opened it and if you have it open, then opening a new tab will not close it, just the same as it will not close any other opened windows.

Try the http://vivalditips.com site

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Shut up and take my money!

I bought opera back in the day, the new version is a pale shadow* of the old opera.

For once I'm not out of touch either.

The world needs another browser, and new red chrome is not it.

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Linux

Linux didn't take over the desktop, it took over the browser

More than half of the web browsers in use are running some variant of KHTML, the rendering engine for the KDE web browser.

KHTML - Konqueror (newer versions can use Webkit too)

Webkit (Apple fork of KHTML) - Safari, Amazon Kindle, Dolphin, Rekonq, Midori, Steam ingame browser

Blink (Google fork of Webkit) - Chrome, Chromium, Iron, Opera, Vivaldi

This is not an exhaustive list. I left out a bunch of really obscure browsers.

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Trollface

Re: Linux didn't take over the desktop, it took over the browser

"This is not an exhaustive list. I left out a bunch of really obscure browsers."

Like Microsoft's Internet Explorer?

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Re: Linux didn't take over the desktop, it took over the browser

Silly boy, that uses the Trident engine....

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Would love to try this...

...unfortunately, when I scan the app on a mac with clamxav it comes up with this alert

Vivaldi 1.0.303.32/Vivaldi.app Html.Exploit.CVE_2014_4138

So in the trash it goes.

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Re: Would love to try this...

I've been using Vivaldi for months. I have never seen a positive detection. Here's yours: Microsoft Internet Explorer 9 allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (memory corruption) via a crafted web site, aka "Internet Explorer Memory Corruption Vulnerability,"

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Re: Would love to try this...

Five seconds with a search engine (or going directly to the MITRE CVE list) would tell you that CVE-2014-4138 is a remote code execution vulnerability in Internet Explorer.

So a) you don't know what you're talking about, and clearly can't be bothered to find out; and b) the people at clamxav need to fix their half-assed scanner.

Unless you believe Vivaldi will secretly install Windows and an old version of IE on your Mac, I suppose.

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Anonymous Coward

Im still waiting...

For a browser that has an encrypted database backend that only I have the keys to.

Screw tabs and all that malarki.

Its beyond me why this doesnt already exist.

A browser spunking cleartext data to a hard disk is a bit archaic these days.

Im sick of purging "Temporary Internet Files" on users PCs. Id much rather have a database that can be scripted and purged on a regular basis.

I wish my programming skills were upto snuff...id do it myself!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Im still waiting...

Except such a database MUST be in a usable format at some point in order for it to be of use at all, and the biggest threat you need to consider here is live (hitting you while it's running) or physical access, at which point you're screwed in any event (the live session has the ability to decrypt, and you know what they say about physical access).

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Re: Im still waiting...

If only there were some way to encrypt part or all of a filesystem, this feature wouldn't have to be reinvented by non-experts who write browsers.

Personally, I'm waiting for a browser that implements the entire OS so I don't have to learn how to use anything else. Oh, wait, emacs is right over here.

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FAIL

Hmm

I've been running Opera 12.17 for years.

I reinstalled my neighbour's laptop and went to install a proper browser. Put the latest version of Opera on and couldn't believe what a massive pile of crap it is.

I've tried early versions of Vivaldi - sadly it's just a reskinned version of the beloved Google's chromium and last time I looked on Vivaldi's forum, it was phoning home to Google's IP addresses, so I hope they've knocked that one on the head.

Sad.

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Anonymous Coward

I've been trying out Vivaldi on one of my Macs today and I'm liking it a lot. I certainly appreciate the idea of a power user browser when the emphasis seems to be on (for me) over-simplicity. I'll try it out on Windows at work tomorrow.

Following this with interest and yes, if it it solves problems for me, I will buy it.

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Anonymous Coward

Ho hum

No content blocker.... so back to Opera 12 I go....

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Re: Ho hum

Even with Opera 12, I use "Content Block Helper" by Whochan.

This is also available for chomoid shaped browsers.

http://far.whochan.com/wlog.cgi/ContentBlockHelper

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Internet of what now?

today [Opera Unite] would be recognised as a platform for the Internet of Things

What, because the proponents of this latest bit of badger paws think every fucking thing is related to it? In what other way is sticking an HTTP server into a browser relevant to the Internet of Stupid?

Personally, I'm tired of this Internet of Things. I'm going back to the Internet of Abstract Concepts. Anyone remember the URL for deontology?

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