Is it the browser, Firefox or Add-ons that make it good

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by zmechys, Mar 17, 2013.

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  1. zmechys

    zmechys Registered Member

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    I have a question about Firefox.

    Is it the browser, Firefox, itself or all those Add-ons (no script, no trace, AddBloc, Better Privacy, no squint, etc...) that make Firefox good?

    IMHO, it's about the Add-ons for Firefox that makes the browser very useful.

    What is the reason that we don't have a lot of Add-ons for Internet Explorer?
    Microsoft?
     
  2. luciddream

    luciddream Registered Member

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    I would think people take everything into consideration and consider the whole picture. To me it being highly configurable is a huge plus to me. Between about:config & addons I can make it exactly what I want in a browser. Very privacy friendly, which to me is a plus. And performance wise, on my box & setup I can get it faster than any other browser. In large part due to the Element Hiding Helper for ABP, but other things too.

    This is on XP Pro SP3. On Win7/8 then Chrome would get more consideration from me due to the integrated sandboxing. But then again since I'm a SBIE user/lover with a lifetime license, ultimately I could see myself staying with FF even then. If Chrome could get a NoScript equivalent though... then I'd have a decision on my hands.
     
  3. Mman79

    Mman79 Registered Member

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    This is a topic that will wildly vary in opinion for people. My take on it is that Firefox is a solid browser in functionality. It lacks the security of newer versions of IE or Chrome (The browser it will always be compared against), and, depending on which benchmarks you want to run or testers you feel like listening to, is "slower" than others in regards to Javascript and all that. Where it succeeds however is in add-ons and development. Not even Chrome, with its pretty big database on its own add-ons can beat Firefox. Certainly not in customizing-type add-ons. Both Chrome and Firefox develop faster than IE probably ever will. There are several reasons for that, none of which are that important to the discussion at hand.

    Why won't IE ever likely have the same success with add-ons as the other two? That's simple, design philosophy and the fact that IE would likely need to be rebuilt to have the same kind of effect achieved by Firefox/Chrome add-ons. Much like browser security, I don't imagine such can be done without having thought about it right from the beginning.
     
  4. wat0114

    wat0114 Registered Member

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    For me the lone difference maker is the inimitable NoScript add-on, otherwise I'd go with Chrome.
     
  5. moontan

    moontan Registered Member

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    same thing here,
    unfortunately, there is nothing quite like NoScript for Chrome, for the moment.

    i also like the fact that Firefox is customizable, it can be skinned and you can move, add and delete buttons where you feel like.

    i also like that i can set Firefox to delete all data automatically when it closes.
     
  6. niki

    niki Registered Member

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    Firefox without extensions would be like an emperor without clothes. I have been using Fx since Nov 2004. Do I need to say more? :D
     
  7. xxJackxx

    xxJackxx Registered Member

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    Yep, pretty much the add-ons. I doubt I would use it otherwise. It's pretty much Adblock Plus that even makes the internet usable.
     
  8. ratchet

    ratchet Registered Member

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    All of the above. I just love it. It's tweaked like my 04, 5.9L Dakota or built ( by me) like this PC I'm on!
     
  9. zmechys

    zmechys Registered Member

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    One of my annoyances with Internet Explorer is when I want to "Delete
    Browsing History".
    I click "Delete".
    IE delete Form.PNG

    A few seconds later, I get a message that my browsing history has been deleted.
    Delete-completed.PNG

    I click on my "Back" arrow/button, and all my browsing history is there.

    With Firefox, if I delete my browsing history, it's really deleted.
     
  10. TheWindBringeth

    TheWindBringeth Registered Member

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    IMO, Firefox requires a few addons to be a "good" browser. So I'm inclined to say it is the addons, but I actually think it is something else. It is the people who say "users should be able to control that" and in some way contribute to making it happen (criticize shortcomings, make suggestions, write software, test builds, report bugs, etc).

    If all you care about is profit, you design software for the average person. If you want quality software, you never design for the average person. You design for the small minority of advanced users who are demanding, then where necessary use defaults, basic/advanced interfaces, and/or extensions to make things average-user-friendly without eliminating those features that appeal to advanced users.

    Firefox still falls short in various ways, and could use more participation from demanding users. We each must try to make some time for that :)
     
  11. jo3blac1

    jo3blac1 Registered Member

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    Yes some extensions are just plain hard to replace, especially something like Self Destructing Cookies, I doubt it exists in Chrome or Opera.
    But even if they did, I simply got adjusted to conservative looking browser with tabs on bottom, menu bar on top with easily accessible bookmarks menu. Something that definitely does not exist in other browsers with exception of Opera.
    So yeah to a degree add-ons is what counts but simple plain looking UI that was there for the past 10 years and doesn't change is what I like. No weird IE menu on bottom or Chrome's tabs on top. And no annoying Opera button on the left hand side.
     
  12. zmechys

    zmechys Registered Member

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    What is the reason that we have FREE Add-ons for Firefox created by users on one hand, but on the other hand, Add-ons for Android - have paid versions of utilities?
     
  13. Kirk Reynolds

    Kirk Reynolds Registered Member

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    The extensibility is huge.

    Plus Firefox is pretty reliable and stable. It's not immune to bugs and security holes, but Mozilla usually patches it fairly quickly.

    It's the extensions and configurability, though, I think. Firefox (amongst others) represents the antithesis to IE and MS's closed source uninspiring "you'll do it our way and like it" philosophy.
     
  14. TheWindBringeth

    TheWindBringeth Registered Member

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    Firefox attracted a significant number of users and people willing to contribute things for free? Firefox is desktop oriented and those out to monetize things have focused their attention on the hot mobile space? Lack of a store/marketplace that makes it easier for, and encourages, developers to charge for their addons? Edit: Firefox users are too ______ to make money off of?
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2013
  15. zmechys

    zmechys Registered Member

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  16. allizomeniz

    allizomeniz Registered Member

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    For me it's the add-ons. If it didn't have 'em I'm sure I'd be using something else. :)
     
  17. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    I used Firefox for quite a while without any add ons at all & I thought it was still far better than IE. I tend to customise it a fair bit these days though. If I could only have one browser it would be Firefox. It really is that good. After all, downloading Firefox is what Internet Explorer is for. ;)
     
  18. jo3blac1

    jo3blac1 Registered Member

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    Right on ;)
     
  19. allizomeniz

    allizomeniz Registered Member

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    Now that I think about it, if FF didn't have add-on, I'd be more willing to check out other options. As it is, I've got FF set up like I want it and haven't had any desire to look elsewhere. But if the add-ons suddenly became unavailable, I'd definitely be game for checking out other options. I might stay with FF but maybe not.
     
  20. Kirk Reynolds

    Kirk Reynolds Registered Member

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    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  21. Techwiz

    Techwiz Registered Member

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    I'd have to agree with lucid on several of the points he made. I use Firefox predominately over other browsers because of how configurable the browser is over all. I'm not particularly a fan of the overall design/layout of some other browsers and seem to keep coming back to what's familiar and enjoyable to use.

    Things that I like about Firefox:
    - this frame feature: allows me to view content in a separate tab or window. This can be really useful if you need to give a presentation and want to remove the ads and other unnecessary clutter. I'm taking blended courses, so this is a really neat way to just show the course lecture without all the menus and other web elements.

    - inspect element () feature: Alternatively, you could use this feature to hide or delete elements from a webpage that you don't want to view. This is great for getting around those annoying "subscribe to view this content" pop-ups that cover content on websites. Among other things.

    - As lucid pointed out, Firefox can be configured to match my particular needs and wants. This makes it indispensable compared to many other browsers that I've used.
     
  22. noone_particular

    noone_particular Registered Member

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    I don't use FireFox but SeaMonkey, which is quite similar and shares the same origins. Many of the FireFox extensions also work on SeaMonkey. For me, it's been a combination of things that have made it my favorite. They got tabbed browsing right, long before MS ever considered adding it to IE. It's always been faster on my hardware and more efficient with resource usage. It's not integrated into the OS like Internet Explorer. It's very configurable and very customizable. It's Open Source. It hasn't been attacked or exploited anywhere near as much as Internet Explorer has. Overall, it's always worked great for me. IMO, these are more than enough reasons.
     
  23. NGRhodes

    NGRhodes Registered Member

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    They are a lot harder to write than Chrome or Firefox addons. Confusing documentation (as you can write them in C++, C# or even vb com objects and each interact differently with IE), lack of examples and some convoluted ways of working, various gotchas (e.g. having to manipulate registry) make it a painful process.

    e.g. http://stackoverflow.com/questions/5643819/developing-internet-explorer-extensions

    Cheers, Nick.
     
  24. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    I like SeaMonkey a lot, it utilises exactly the same rendering engine as Fx. Unfortunately these days, due to Mozilla's rapid release cycle, SeaMonkey is losing extensions as the developers don't have the time to keep updating them. Although, there are extensions I use on SeaMonkey which aren't available for Firefox.

    A couple of tips for anyone wanting to give SM a try: it has no plug-ins folder so it can be an advantage to either copy & paste Firefox's into it (or just make a folder in) - Computer - Local Disk (C) - Program Files - SeaMonkey. Then you can add the Windows Media Player plug-in np-mswmp.dll file to the folder. This will enable you to run flash. Also this add-on will greatly help in running other add-ons.
     
  25. Wild Hunter

    Wild Hunter Former Poster

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    IMO, latest vanilla Firefox is worse than latest versions of IE, Chrome and Opera in many aspects (although not in every aspect). But with the right extensions, Firefox certainly becomes a great browser (it's the one I'm using most right now).
     
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