well the mussus is already kicking off at me for the upgrade because stuff is in different places.
Not only that, but bloody zynga poker has froze twice loosing her chips !!!
Been using it all afternoon under Windows 7 (shush, I dual boot) and it's pretty good. Can't comment on load times as the initial load was obviously converting my profile/checking add-ons, but once loaded, it's pretty sprightly. Opera and Chrome die-hards will probably crow about theirs being 0.2ms faster to load a page, but really, the difference now is slight enough that I couldn't care less. There's far more to browsing the web than rendering speed, after all. Now that FF4 is out and IE is becoming less of a hog, I don't think there's a current browser out there I'd describe as "slow".
I'm not a fan of the new minimalist interfaces in any of the current browsers, to be honest, but getting everything back where it belongs really didn't take long. (This was also the first thing I did in IE9.)
Some of the new options and fiddles are nice. Having Sync built straight-in is a boon, and the new add-ons/personas screen is very nice indeed. I also like the "app tabs" or whatever they call them - very useful indeed for getting my most used sites down to a wee pinned favicon and out of the way.
The concept of tab groups appeals, but there really really needs to be a keyboard shortcut to switch between them. I might knock together an add-on that does just that. My personal view has always been that every second spent reaching for the mouse is a second wasted. ;-)
Probably half my add-ons aren't listed as compatible, which is the real bitch. Some of these are stupid things I haven't used in ages, like Froggr (exactly what you think it is), so I've removed them, but others are useful to me, and I'm hoping that the add-on developers are still around to fix them up. That's the risk you take with a system like this, though. You can't just assume compatibility, after all. The major must-haves still work, fortunately, like Firebug and the Developer Toolbar. Thanks guys!
Incidentally, being able to install/uninstall without restart is a kick-ass addition. That always used to do my head in.
In all, I like it. There are a few tweaks that I would have made here and there, but it seems stable enough, it zips along, and it works as well as it ever did. Just got to wait for some of my add-ons to update. Looking forward to playing under the hood with the new developer tools, as soon as I get chance.
Now, over to the inevitable Opera fanboy to yell about how rubbish it is and how all the good bits were stolen from the Cult of the Chosen.
Why do people always start moaning about stuff like this without even trying it.
You can change it to have a regular old menu bar and have the tabs below the address bar in 4 clicks total.
If you want the status bar back, that's trivial too. Another right click on the toolbar and a click to select it.
"Your strawman is showing, "fanboy"."
Uh-huh. You missed the mention of IE9 in my post then? That and Opera being installed on pretty much every device I own. Right next to Firefox, admittedly, but it's there.
As I've said a number of times, I think Opera is a great browser, but man oh man, its fanboys are OTT. So I find that if I'm near the beginning of a thread, and I make some sarky remark about them, they don't turn up for fear of me posting a large JPEG of a trout. Works well!
Well, until you showed up, that is.
Truth is, we're so spoiled for choice now, firefox is no longer the exciting new contender for the crown.
I recall earlier days of firefox, when the download was a mere 3.7mb, microsoft was resting on the laurels of ie6, chrome was nowhere to be seen & opera was hardly a blip on the radar.
It seemed to me, back then, that FF was a damn side faster than it is now - the whole web was faster.
Sure, it's nifty not to have to reload an entire page for all page update operations, but it's hardly a 'killer' feature when your browsing for information.
Get your router (or install a service) to not download the crap at source. I've still got to get around to this, but using the g/f's Mac at home is a nightmare with all the ads, pop-ups, highlighting, surveys and general crap that gets in the way of the content.
The web is on usable with NoScript, AdBlock, Flashblock, BetterPrivacy, CookieCuller and Ghostery all installed and running. Oh, and the odd Greasemonkey script.
These plugins are why IE (even 9) is a waste of space as a browser.
A 64 bit Windows version is, as with most other software, not included by default. Considering they've been creating official builds throughout the process, how much effort would it have required to add it?
To be honest, not terribly impressed. It's faster but still tends to freeze at times. It's only a bit of inertia stopping me checking out Iron and IE9..
64 bit will be faster if you're shifting around large amounts of data, but is not by its nature vastly faster.
On x86-64 Windows, however, there are two considerations :
32 bit Windows programs running under Windows x64-86 will typically encounter a small performance penalty (although it depends what they're doing. For accessing lots of memory they may be faster)
Under x86-64, more registers are available. With a decent compiler this can lead to a noticeable speedup (5% or so, IIRC).
Plus, it's good practice. 16 bit is now dead in x64-86 land and terminal in x32. One day x32 will follow.
You might as well ask why other platforms (Linux, etc) want 64 bit Firefox and 64 bit Flash. It's no different, except for the fact mozilla.com only provides a source level distribution, with binaries typically provided by Unix distribution repositories.
The location of an authorised *nix repository is generally known; the source for Windows software is typically the vendor's website.
To answer my own question :
To summarise :
Linux 64 bit isn't officially supported, despite the fact a number of 64 bit Unix distributions include 64 bit Firefox/Iceweasel
Windows 64 bit isn't supported either, despite asking since 2008 because.. oh shut up and stop asking, will you?
PPC isn't supported because not as many people run OS X PPC and those that do, don't count (despite the fact Camino runs nicely on sub 1GHz PowerMacs, at least until Flash is added)
Parts of the DOM code run 20% faster on OS X x64-86, but hey, who needs 20%?
No worries though, it's not as if Firefox has any competition, is it? (and yes, Chrome/Iron doesn't have a 64 bit build easily available either. IE does, though).
Must also check if the internationalisation in Firefox Windows is still incredibly poor. I thought it could do with some work on IE8 until I discovered how much worse everything else was..
that is compiled specifically for the OS. Mozilla I am more forgiving of, but M$ really pissed me off when their default IE client in the 64-bit OS was the 32-bit client and you had to adjust the OS if you wanted to use the 64-bit version by default.
What utter crap. What about when the browser IS the OS?
What they meant to say is that, due to a management oversight, all of middle management were given a bonus goal for 2010/11 of making sure none of their devs were running XP anymore.
As you say. Crap. As long as the OS can get your image off the hard disk and into ram, and connect you to a few network sockets and HID things, the rest could be up to your browser. If chrome & firefox can do it, refusal by microsoft is either lies or manipulation. Or both.
"The browser is only as good as the operating system it runs on" is indeed correct insofar that it thus totally disqualifies ANY version of IE as usable or safe - because all run exclusively on Windows (version in principle immaterial).
I think you should applaud such openness. I'm sure that wasn't quite what he meant to say, but that's what he actually meant, a Freudian slip*.
* : A Freudian slip is where you say one thing, but you mean your mother. Or something like that.
Are a good thing! I've always used late beta versions of firefox since it was called phoenix. They are always pretty stable. The only downside is that extensions often don't keep up. Hopefully, quicker releases will make developers keep their extensions in sync sooner rather than wait for release candidates.
I've been using firefox4 since well before Christmas and it's been great. Today is a bit of yawn moment for me :)
Today FF3 asked me if I wanted to upgrade on my work's XP box. I said yes and to my surprise the download was only a few minutes even over our crap network. At first I thought it was was just downloading an installer but when it restarted it was all fully installed. All but two extensions worked out of the box, one needed an upgrade the other I don't need/use.
I ran the rest of the afternoon with FF4 testing various intranet sites that I have to use and some internet sites I frequent. Overall much faster on XP than FF3, making the company standard IE6 seem dreadful.
Visually you can see the Google influence on it, but it's not that radical, especially when compared to Opera. After a few hours of use it seems fine we shall see if it's fast enough on my home Linux boxes to make me switch back from Chrome/chromium.
How's that £2m a year tech forecasting job going for you? You've obviously got it tied down so tight you've got time to come and gift us peon masses with a bit of your sparkling insight before heading off for a quick chopper ride to play the back nine at St. Andrews.
Geez peace ya radge.
"unlike IE, Firefox 4 supports WebGL, which provides hardware accelerated 3D inside the browser"
If your video drivers support it. Want to find out if yours do? Go to demos.mozilla.org (spoiler alert - if you have an Intel integrated chipset from Dell, likely not)
Let Firefox update itself to version 4.
It grumbled about an incompatible extension, downloaded what it said was an update to the broken extension, showed me the start screen. Then hung solid. Hung solid while using 100% of one of the cpus.
Hung so solid that even Vista's Task Manager refused to stop it. Had to kill it with Process Explorer.
Tried a few restarts. Same.
Had to start Opera to get to Mozilla's support page and learn the -safe-mode command switch to start Firefox with no extensions.
Disabled and uninstalled all extensions. That made it work.
Now slowly adding them back to find the Firefox killer.
So not an automatic update for me.
The first thing I do when I sit down at my computer or open my laptop is to hit refresh on all my tabs (at least the ones for news sites). This slows FF3 to a crawl, tab switching gets painfully sluggish, etc. Doesn't seem to have improved with FF4 unfortunately. Chrome does not suffer from this problem.
"The browser is only as good as the operating system it runs on and a browser running on a ten year old operating system tethers the web to the past..."
FF4 on linux is fine, and that's been kicking around for >10 years. Maybe if MS concentrated on writing an OS that wasn't so spaghetti, they might find they could update core pieces of it as required to make it run better over time, without complete borking the whole thing.
But then I suppose they're happy forcing their users to install complete OS upgrades every 3 years, keeps the cash coming in...
Now that Microsoft doesn't want me and my xp ? After all these years I have always used MS stuff ... Well because of it I am now starting to use Firefox . So far I am happy to use Firefox 4 on my xp pc . It loads a lot quicker than IE 8 EVER did ... They ( MS ) want to push forward well I can say you have lost me because of your choices ... I am staying with xp as last as I can and whenever that day come and it dies on me ? I can guaranteed I will never buy another software from MS again ... The sad part is I have Vista and 7 but I don't care for either . I'm going to try to sell them ( retail version )
I've said that in the past.
Problem is, the next new OEM machine comes with Win7.
A self build doesn't really save much money these days as the OEMs can buy in bulk, even including the Windows tax.
And there are always those 1 or 2 applications that need a Win machine.
Installed it, looked at it, went back 3.6.
Too many low value cosmetic changes and too many extensions not ready yet. The All-In-One Sidebar menu bar is stuffed, its supposed to be FF4 ready. I'll wait a while & find a time when I'm less busy, assuming grim reaper doesn't take me first.
I wish they'd provide a dark default theme in the box.
Browsers are so f@#!ing boring, even word processors more interesting than browsers.
"The developer community has been vocal that they want to push the web forward"
And everyone in Infrastructure and Operations actually knows that developers are idiots. If they developed decent code that was optimised and efficient then we wouldn't require the powerful machines with the extreme OSs. The developers are pushed along by the arty-crafty poofters in Marketing who haven't got a clue either.
Given the numerous FAILS by many websites in recent years, do the public really want the web pushed forward? Or let me phrase that better - is it in the public's best interest to push the web forward!
The statement you quoted is all about the next set of web standards being widely adopted and actively supported. It has sod all to do with requiring Cray superboxes to run your browser on. But then you wouldn't get that, since you're clearly not a developer.
And if progress is bad, what are you reading this site in? Lynx? Or did someone "push the web forward" to the point where you can use a mouse?
I click on a link and don't move the mouse - the page doesn't load.
I move the mouse - the page loads. Tested on google, bbc news and my own lovely website. I even waited 45seconds for a page to load which usually loads in about 150ms as timed in firebug.
A bit of a stonker of a bug if it's more than my copy affected!
I am using IE9 in certain contexts and am now split between Chrome and Fx4 for everything else.
Ghostery has made it to Chrome which is awesome. NoScripts on Chrome is perhaps stopping me jumping completely from Fx as I feel Fx has become bloated. Fx4 is of course interesting so I am sticking around for a while....
What I like about Chrome is that I don't have to install Flash to occasionally view a video and that the darn thing updates pretty well without my brain being involved. This is fabulous and definitely the way to go.
Frankly, speed is not really something I see differing greatly in my experience. Certainly not for what I surf. I rarely reboot and don't tend to often close browsers.....
If I rate what I prefer to use right now.....
1. Firefox; if there was one thing to change for them, it would be to stack the plugin icons into a single button somewhere rather than on the nav and status bar. My main PC has only 1024x768 as it's a ThinkPad x61.....more is definitely more for my screen!
2. Chrome (only just)
3. IE9 (not far behind but missing things to nuke cookies after session and other plugins)
4. Safari and Opera I would not bother with. I saw them on the browser ballot thing that Opera kicked and screamed about until MS delivered it....
btw I have Linux Mint and OSX running at home, they'll get the Fx4 treatment shortly.
I think I was more excited about IE9.
I tried out the new firefox, and was reasonably impressed - it certainly seemed snappier, and the layout is nice and flexible, but...it killed all the extra navigation buttons on my mouse (except the scroll wheel), and with a bolt, a plate, and arthiritis in my wrist, I need those buttons.
Reverting to 3.6 was easy, and I'll certainly be going back to give FF4 a more thorough try out as soon as I've scoured the web to (or actually sat down and tried to) find a fix for the mouse problems.
64bits though? Pretty please?
How do you know it's better if you haven't bothered to try IE9?
I won't be trying IE9 either (or indeed FF4) because I'm happy with my current browser. Which brings me to what I see as being a very confusing aspect to the browser wars. I meet an awful lot of people who always download every new browser version that comes along and usually declare it to be the best thing since sliced bacon. I have a neighbour who seems to be on a different browser every time I speak to him. He's particularly obsessed with whichever benchmark test the new browser happens to be fastest in. One day he's telling me how fast Safari is, then it's Opera, Chrome, Firefox and occasionally IE. The weird thing is that he doesn't seem to be at all concerned with the experience of using the browser, just which one scored best in benchmark tests.
He's not as bad as his son who seems to change Linux distro as often as his dad switches browsers.
I let this install last night and it works ok, I didn't really see any major difference in the speed of rendering web pages, but it feels a bit smoother when creating new tabs, 3.6 was quite juddery on some pages or took an eternity to actually open the tab then another two minutes to render the page.
Two extentions didn't work but this is not the end of the world unlike some people would have us believe. I just uninstalled them and presto FF4 working happily. I was running it alongside Opera and Chrome and quite frankly they all seem to do the same job and do it quite well. FF is going to stay my main browser for now but I regularly have a Chrome browser open doing something else along side.
I think it was worth the wait.
"But beyond raw speed, we're speeding up the way users flow through the internet. We're speeding up your real online life, improving startup time, tab switching, and scrolling – stuff beyond the benchmarks."
My real online life (puhlease!) is not spent waiting for tab changes, scrolling or startup. I start my browser only once a day, a matter of a few seconds and hardly significant in terms of a whole day. Switching tabs is so fast as to be barely noticable and certainly not something anybody has to wait for unless their hardware is over ten years old, certainly I've never heard of anybody getting impatient when switching from one tab to another. As for scolling, well can you read faster than your browser can scroll? Course not.
OK so I will admit that FF3 is incredibly slow to startup when compared to Opera and Chrome, but I've never noticed any browser being slow to switch tabs or scroll. This sounds like the ramblings of a salesman who has little or nothing new and worthwhile in his latest product. People in the motor industry will know the symptoms, if you don't recognise them wait for the next launch of a "facelifted" car. You know the sort of thing it looks a bit different, but is essentially the same car. When the marketing men start telling you about the dynamic styling of the new bumpers or pointing out the additional cup holder in the back you will recognise the same desperation as pointing out a browser's faster scroll speed.
On my Atom-powered Windows 7 tablet, Firefox 4 is the only browser that allows smooth flick scrolling of large, media heavy pages; that's really the only instance I've actually noticed the performance improvements, but it's welcome.
However I really wish that all the effort they've devoted to tab management had gone instead to bookmark management. The bookmark system is still f*%ked, with three separate, and almost equally inadequate, ways of accessing bookmarks (toolbar, sidebar, and menu). The Firefox devs acknowledged this during the planning stages of FF4, but it seems they decided not to do anything about it. Perhaps they think people will stop using bookmarks altogether, and just keep every page they want to reference in the future on an open tab, but that doesn't work for me. I'd love to be able to organize and manipulate bookmarks the way you can work with tabs in the new tab manager, here's hoping something like that happens in the future.
No big difference so far. Media and JS heavy pages i try to stay away from anyway.
But the aggregation of "firefox menu button" and tab headers into the title bar seems to cancel out on loading pages (at least some, i din't bother to investigate), leaving the UI with more top-of-the-page overhead (namely an empty toolbar or something) than i had before in the previous versions.
I tend to customize it so that there is few UI left and this was nicely taken over on the update - until that said canceling out.
XP by the way, maybe it has something to do with the XP titlebar not friendly to such unexpected customisation :)
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