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Leaving Firefox
blaisepascal
A couple of years ago at work I decided to try out Google Chrome (it wasn't available for Linux at the time). Very quickly it became my browser of choice for non-work-related stuff. It suited my needs, worked for me, and provided a good separation between personal and business.

I stayed with Firefox at home, although there were things about Chrome I wish I could have -- chrome handles lots of tabs better than Firefox does, and the "pin tab" functionality keeps my most visited tabs (gmail, google reader, and live journal) permanently in the upper-left, etc. Chrome wasn't available initially on Linux, and didn't support extensions, and, etc.

Today I found out that YouTube doesn't support HTML5 video on Firefox, but Chrome handles it fine. (Yes, Doc, I know this is because YouTube only supports the evil patent-ridden H.264 video format, and not the angelically Free Ogg Theora. I know, but it isn't as important to me.) Chrome supports both H.264 and Ogg Theora within HTML5 video elements. This made me decide to look at Chrome again.

Chrome installs cleanly. Chrome has extensions now -- including Flash Block and Ad Block. I use the "Morning Coffee" extension in Firefox to handle my daily web-comics which don't have RSS feeds. Chrome has a "Daily Links" extension which does the same job.

There's no reason for me to stick with Firefox; I've switched to Chrome at home.

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Can/will Chrome save my dozens of tabs and allow me to reopen them at will if it happens to crash, like Firefox's "Sessions" addon?

Yes. I often have dozens of tabs open, and on the rare cases when Chrome crashes, I get them all back. There's a setting in the options of "when starting, reload last opened tabs" which takes care of that.

I find I use fewer extensions/add-ons with Chrome because a lot of the behavior I want (like sessions) are already handled.

Also, because Chrome runs each tab in a separate process, one tab crashing won't usually bring down all of Chrome.

For the most part, I find FF to be fine until it's taken up (due to failure to release) more than about 1/3 of my memory, at which point it gets less stable and eventually crashes.


I do find that, sometimes, Chrome displays a page extremely slowly--as in, it takes 5-10 seconds to draw one screenload of data. Have you experienced this? (It could be FF's fault, for all I know, as they're generally both running.)

When Chrome takes up too much memory, I'll have a slew of tabs crash simultaneously. I'm not sure when I saw Chrome as a whole go down.

It's harder to track Chrome's memory usage, since it spawns an awful lot of processes when you have dozens of tabs open. But I also tend to run VS Studio at work too, which is a memory hog in its own right.

The only time I've really noticed slow page loading in Chrome is when I'm starting it up and it's trying to load a score or more tabs simultaneously. I also do a lot of "load this link in the background in another tab while I continue reading", so I might not notice long load times.

Not important to you? Not important to you??!!?? How can you say that??!!?? We're talking anarchy! Anarchy, I say! Cats & dogs living together! Mass hysteria!! When civilization as we know it falls to dust, I'll be there pointing a finger at you saying, "You! You could have prevented this! All it took was you standing with us against the Vast Evil that was H.264, and it all could have been all right. But noooooooooooo." But...enough about that now. Enough that civilization is going to hell in a hand basket because you couldn't be bothered to care. I won't say another word.

Well, maybe one more. No! No, I promised I wouldn't...

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I never looked at Google Chrome. It takes a lot for me to switch browsers - I've used three in the live of the web - Netscape, Safari (for just a couple of years) and FireFox.

You gave an interesting review. I might have to look at it.

Thanks!

If by "Chrome installs cleanly" you mean "Chrome won't let you choose what directory to install it into, and forcibly installs itself into your user directory", then why yes, it's very clean. However, I find this both rude and stupid, which is why I promptly uninstalled it.

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