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A Mixed Review For Google Chrome On Linux

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the but-on-the-5th-hand dept.

Chrome 223

omlx contributes this link to LinuxCrunch's short review of Google Chrome on Linux, writing: "The summary of it is that although Google Chrome is in a beta stage, it is fast, stable, and has a simple, clean, and effective GUI design. On other side, Google Chrome has a small number of extensions, doesn't support RSS, lacks integration with KDE, and doesn't support complex scripts very well. Personally, I didn't succeed in using Flash Player on Google Chrome beta 1 (I am using OpenSUSE 11.2) and I wonder how the quality of Google Chrome OS will be, especially if it's based on Linux and Google Chrome."

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223 comments

UI responsiveness (4, Insightful)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586374)

Speed

If you look for a fast web browser, Google Chrome is the answer to you. The start-up speed is amazing comparing to Firefox. The Google developers did a very well job in this regard. the reason behind its speed is that Google Chrome does not use a cross-platform framework unlike Firefox which uses XUL. Google Chrome in GUN/Linux uses GTK+ directly without any layer in between. It uses also a different GUI library for each operating system it supports.

While I dont myself use Chrome, I have to agree here. UI responsiveness in such things like a browser is REALLY important. I have asked firefox developers and users many times why the UI isn't more responsive, and the sum answer of that is XUL. I love Opera's UI responsiveness. I love Chrome's UI responsivess. But Firefox's and IE's is just shit. It's really something Mozilla should work with, because until it's on those twos level I wont be using Firefox. What is the real reason to use it then? Many people say its easily extensible. sure, XML like language probably is. But you could even try to optimize it. Convert it to byte or machine in run time, or something. Firefox is really lacking behind on this aspect and I'd really like to see them improve it.

But why are both Opera and Chrome better in UI responsiveness than Firefox, IE and other problems? Is it because they see the advantage on it, or is it really that hard? What could be done for it?

Nothing but praise here (4, Insightful)

lessgravity (314124) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586742)

I have installed both Chrome and Chromium on about 15 machines and 3 flavors of Linux. In each case the UI responsiveness is amazing. Huge improvement over Firefox. So far everything has worked beautifully on each of these machines. No problems with Flash. I'm surprised that the link review complained about the lack of extensions. There are plenty of extensions. Kinda made the rest of the review look poorly researched.

Re:Nothing but praise here (4, Informative)

berwiki (989827) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586834)

It not only has tons of extensions, (all the basics included, like Ad Blocking, Gmail Checker, etc) but has a fantastic way to search for them... on par with Mozillas plug-in search.

I agree, if I even bothered to RTFA, I would have stopped reading at that point.

Re:Nothing but praise here (4, Interesting)

eqisow (877574) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586930)

Last I checked (two months ago?) Chrome had no ad blockng to speak of. Sure, there's AdSweep and AdBlock+, but they just hide ads with CSS, where Firefox stops the ads from ever being downloaded. When I was using Chromium regularly I ended up using Privoxy for ad blocking.

As I understood the situation at the time, this shortcoming was due to the functionality not being possible in Chrome. So, the browser from the company that sells ads has limited ad blocking functionality. Is anyone really surprised?

Re:Nothing but praise here (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586990)

Not sure I see the problem here. You dont see the ad (CSS is blocked), advertiser gets their "page view" that they paid for. Unless you are still on dialup, this shouldnt impact load times significantly.

If this gets the hits for advertisers that prevents paywalls, while keeping you safe from the really annoying stuff, it sounds like a win-win to me. What am I missing?

Re:Nothing but praise here (2, Funny)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587022)

To be fair, the lack of flash plugin (or so the summary says) is enough for me to endorse the browser.

Re:Nothing but praise here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30587526)

I'm afraid flashplayer has worked in chrome unstable builds on my linux box for several months now, before they added support for nsplugins i would use it over firefox sometimes, but now i just use firefox and flashblock

Re:Nothing but praise here (3, Insightful)

KlaasVaak (1613053) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587082)

Yes there is a problem if you are concerned about your privacy and yes big flash ads will slow down page loading no matter how fast your connection is.

Re:Nothing but praise here (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30587234)

In addition to what KlaasVaak mentioned, I would also cite "security" as a concern, as AdBlock Plus also blocks javascript and flash from blacklisted sites.

Re:Nothing but praise here (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587520)

My only problem was I visited a site with Chrome in Windows with Adblock+. The ad still rendered, but was hidden. This slows down page rendering, but worse, there was malicious code that downloaded and tried opening a virus-infected PDF file.

This was a drive-by ad when I was reading Ain't It Cool News. I went right back to Firefox.

I like a lot of things about Chrome, but I need a good Adblock solution.

Chromium is ocmpletely open-source, and there is a fork with a built-in Adblock solution called Iron, but it is apparently fairly unstable, and extensions are completely broken at the moment.

Someone could take the proper Adblock code from the Iron fork and submit it as a patch to the main Chromium tree and see what happens.

Re:Nothing but praise here (2, Informative)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586940)

Indeed. I also have installed it on my machine and have had no troubles. Responsiveness is slightly better than firefox, though the difference isn't as great as when I boot into Windows on the same machine where I also have Chrome and Firefox.

In the end Chrome has several good features for general browsing especially speed but lacks the extendability of Firefox. Firefox has more available features but is slower. Both are likely to improve.

Re:UI responsiveness (4, Interesting)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586798)

I don’t know how many times I have recommended this simple and effective solution to the XUL problem:

Just compile the damn stuff into something faster! Like a library, but a bit safer (sandboxed).
Leave the XUL files where they are, monitor them with inotify or at specific events, and re-compile them if they were changed (e.g. by installing a extension. Do not accept pre-compiled stuff in an extension. That way you still get to see all the source.

There, done. I don’t get what’s so hard about this. The whole parsing and error handling thing is already done. Just walk the tree with functions that replace the nodes with binary code or something alike. And get the dragon book if you haven’t already. :)

Re:UI responsiveness (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586848)

P.S.: That’s what I get for answering to a comment without reading more than the first paragraph. ^^

P.P.S.: That’s what you get for forcing us to go “tl;dr”. ;)

P.P.P.S.: *Imagines getting a +5 Funny anyway*

Re:UI responsiveness (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30587420)

The original post said:

Convert it to byte or machine in run time, or something.

This would make it go faster, but you are still held back by how good the compiler is at translating the high level language to machine code. C & C++ compilers have been around for a long time and subject to much research so are quite good at their job. XUL is much newer and much higher level, so compilation probably still isn't that great and will rely on newer research.

The other thing is that compilation at install time avoids a startup wait, but also doesn't give the app a chance to profile and optimise the executing code. Something like a JIT which then keeps the results for future sessions is probably close to what you want without adding too much complexity, although means the first ever run of some new code branch will be a slow path (often seen with the pause when opening a new dialog in a Java app which is yet to be fully loaded and optimised).

It'll take a while and a fair amount of research for XUL to get upto native speeds and have a level footing against things like GTK+, but I don't think its impossible. Hopefully the implementation/debugging/portability gains Firefox gets from XUL allow time to be spent improving that technology.

THX138

Re:UI responsiveness (1)

Inda (580031) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586810)

I thought the same, after finally installing Chrome on Vista, after the billboard adverts finally got to me.

The UI was blistering fast on Chrome and I thought WOW. After 10 minutes of use, I was not happy with the UI bugs (when zoomed, some links on some sites don't work), and the lack of UI customisation options.

FF3 is still a more finished product.

Re:UI responsiveness (1)

Rei (128717) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586942)

It's not just UI responsiveness -- Chrome has great Javascript performance. If only setting opacity through Javascript didn't occasionally break Chrome with an "Aw, Snap!" error...

Flash not working (5, Insightful)

avandesande (143899) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586408)

I thought flash not working is a feature.

Re:Flash not working (1)

armanox (826486) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586440)

Flash works fine in chrome for me under Linux. Although not working would almost be like ad-block.

Re:Flash not working (4, Insightful)

GF678 (1453005) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586578)

So not being able to view video on sites like YouTube seamlessly (ie. without requiring extensions/workarounds to view FLV files in a 3rd-party player) is a feature?

And do give me that shit about YouTube not having anything useful to watch. If so, you just aren't trying very hard.

Re:Flash not working (1)

short (66530) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586678)

Do you call GPLv3+ gnash [gnu.org] plugin an extension or workaround? What is a proprietary Flash player else than an extension? And what 3rd-party player are you talking about?

Re:Flash not working (1)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586868)

Well, I use a short shell-script to play youtube url's with mplayer. Works a hell of a lot nicer for me (especially fullscreen). To me, lack of flash is certainly a feature.

Re:Flash not working (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587276)

I thought half the point of Chromium was to get us the HTML5 video element and bypass the Flash.

How it works (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586580)

If Windows doesn't support an application and Linux does, Windows has a problem.
If Linux doesn't support an application and Windows does, the application has a problem.

Re:How it works (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586912)

If Windows doesn't support an application and Linux does, Windows has a problem.

Can you think of an example? The majority of your Linux apps are free, so a Windows binary tends to get built as well.

Re:How it works (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30587004)

On other side, Google Chrome has a small number of extensions, doesn't support RSS, lacks integration with KDE, and doesn't support complex scripts very well.

Re:Flash not working (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586672)

I got Flash working just fine with Chrome and openSUSE 11.2, but I manually had to copy the file to /opt/google/chrome/plugins I believe.

Re:Flash not working (3, Insightful)

westlake (615356) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587114)

I thought flash not working is a feature.

To the geek.

To everyone else it is a show-stopper.

This rule applies to any program, add-on, plug-in, or extension that is considered an essntial download by almost every OSX and Windows user.

so you don't use it yet are somehow qualifed? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586412)

slashdot? Oh, nevermind !!

Re:so you don't use it yet are somehow qualifed? (2, Funny)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586562)

You get plenty of reviews on slashdot by people who never use the device. For example: the Amazon kindle, Microsoft Windows, and girlfriends.

Re:so you don't use it yet are somehow qualifed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586804)

You get plenty of reviews on slashdot by people who never use the device. For example: the Amazon kindle, Microsoft Windows, and girlfriends.

"No wireless. Less space than a nomad. Lame. "

Not Chrome's Fault (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586430)

Linux is shit.

That's why every Linux application available looks like shit.

You didn't think that was a coincidence, did you?

Re:Not Chrome's Fault (4, Insightful)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586612)

Hell no, bro. I finally transitioned to an all-Linux household after the release of the ultra-mature, ultra-stable Ubuntu 9.10. It worked wonders right out of the box. The only gripe I have about 9.10 is the default desktop wallpaper which is colored like tubgirl's whale-spout.

My 7 year old Dell Latitude D600 [cnet.com] runs the compiz cube and with all the pretty window effects and dosen't even slow down until a skydome image or 3-d windows on cube rotate are added. All hardware is detected with the best drivers and there are no issues with hibernation. There's also no need for command-line boot options. It just works(tm).

Next up for Linux, media production software. What the fuck is up with Hydrogen and Ardour? Can't they get at least one real musician on their design staff?

Re:Not Chrome's Fault (2, Informative)

Hel Toupee (738061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586916)

Psshhh... ultra-stable? 9.10 is the worst distro Ubuntu has had since I started using it back at Fiesty (7.04). I'll give you one example -- Upstart. Upstart is absolute crap. It tries to do away with a convention (Init) that has worked for years, and is standard across many distros, and replace it with one that was never ready for prime-time. They didn't even get the script for frackin' X right -- they had to push a patch through to stop upstart from constantly restarting X if, for some reason, your configuration was bad. That really pissed off those of us that had intel on-board graphics that made the driver Karmic shipped with poo itself.

Re:Not Chrome's Fault (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586842)

How is this not modded Troll or Flamebait?

Chrome largely looks the same on Windows and Linux. Firefox used to, but Mozilla has been working to make Firefox on each platform look more integrated.

I happen to believe KDE 4.3 looks as good as any desktop on the planet. There are plenty of great looking Linux apps. I say that as a guy who spends 90% of his time in Windows between my two jobs, and runs both Windows 7 and openSUSE at home.

Re:Not Chrome's Fault (1)

lytles (24756) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586894)

Linux is the shit.

there - fixed that for you. google chrome runs great on ubuntu 9.04 - quick startup, fast page rendering, fast switching between tabs, and flash works fine. i've had a page crash, but never lost the full browser - usually have 5-20 tabs open. chrome's "developer tools" are good - firebug is better for many things, but the developer tools are much less intrusive, don't slow down page loads nearly as much. the two tools compliment each other well

in short, chrome is a big improvement for me ...

Google Chrome linux (4, Informative)

cavedweller96 (1549997) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586432)

Personally, I disagree. Flash works flawlessly on chrome. More features can be added later, you have to remember it is a beta. finally, as a person who had compiled Chrome OS, It works great. My only problem with it is lack of wireless card support, but once again BETA.

Re:Google Chrome linux (1)

rve (4436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586620)

Personally, I disagree. Flash works flawlessly on chrome. More features can be added later, you have to remember it is a beta. finally, as a person who had compiled Chrome OS, It works great. My only problem with it is lack of wireless card support, but once again BETA.

Gmail was in beta for more than 5 years,

Re:Google Chrome linux (1)

psbrogna (611644) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586998)

Some would argue that there are currently market-leading OSes still in Beta.

Re:Google Chrome linux (1)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587532)

Sure, but some would argue that shit tastes just fine and the texture is otherworldly.

Which is to say that opinions are like assholes. Fuck em.

Re:Google Chrome linux (1)

crazycheetah (1416001) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587320)

There's a few gripes on this article about Chrome on Linux that I don't agree with or care about. For RSS, for example, I can't say I care about it. On my mobile phone (though I have the droid, and I have to say, the only time RSS tempts me is when I'm not on wifi with it...) or maybe a plasma widget (KDE4) on my desktop, RSS is great. But in a browser, or where a browser is easy enough to access just as easy as anything RSS, I don't care. I like going to the website and seeing it that way, and otherwise haven't found much use for RSS. But that is personal preference, so I guess Google needs to get on that for some people.

As for Flash... I've been using it since you had to have the --enable-plugins flag when you ran Chrome. Back then, it was buggy in some circumstances. Now, I haven't had a problem in as long as I can remember not having to use that flag and a little before that.

Plus extensions work well now. Only problem there, is that some of them are shoot and miss at times. Some work great, some need a little work. That's typical of any application with extensions/plugins for me, though.

Complex scripts and KDE are two more things I don't care, so I leave it to others to know if Google needs work there. I run KDE, but I deal with GTK apps enough, I'm familiar with the GTK interface. It bothers me to some degree (I hate some of GTK's dialogs compared to Qt/KDE's, as personal preference), but Google's far from the only one that would need to work on that, if I was to gripe about that. Complex scripts on the other hand, I just don't deal with, so I refrain saying anything.

I'm using Chrome on Linux to type this, though. I've pretty much fallen to only using it, except when I can't. Some websites don't recognize it (Yahoo mail, I'm looking at you; coupled with finding out I have to go through their ridiculous--well, actually, pretty good for what it is--mobile site on my droid, instead of using a more uniform interface for the OS--I have to pay for POP access?! >.< I used to use POP on my WinMo Treo with them, too--has led me to tell everyone using my Yahoo mail to switch to a gmail that I can just filter specific tags on to), and so you either can't access it all, or have to use some light version of the site that just doesn't make sense--this is Chrome; I should be able to use the damn javascript heavy page just fine! As such, I still have Firefox installed for now like 1 site that I use for work, which only lets IE and Firefox use it for some retarded reason (that's the only options it actually says, anyway). My view of it remains, however, that Chrome is a great browser on Linux. I'm not a fan of Firefox, to be honest, and Chrome suits my needs and wishes for a browser wonderfully.

sigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586436)

who really cares? it's beta.. you don't like it? don't use it. You like it? fine, use it. geeshh..... and to bitch about the lack of KDE integration.. who cares? really. It doesn't integrate with my desktop and you don't see me bitching to my mother about it

Re:sigh (4, Insightful)

pclminion (145572) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586486)

"Don't criticize it, it's a beta." That's nonsense. The whole reason you release a beta is to get feedback.

As far as the KDE thing, though, I agree. Exactly what sort of "integration" with KDE was expected?

Re:sigh (4, Informative)

bvankuik (203077) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586760)

As far as the KDE thing, though, I agree. Exactly what sort of "integration" with KDE was expected?

I would appreciate it if Chrome took it's default font size/color from the KDE settings. What would even be better is if there was a KDE theme that also took over the KDE look and feel for the browser window and the tabs, and the buttons and dialogues that Chrome has.

Re:sigh (2, Informative)

Wintervenom (1468867) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587010)

This is not so much the job of Chrome as it is of GTK. Have you tried making it use the GTK Qt engine [gtk-qt-engine]? That -- and setting Use System Title Bar and Borders -- will at least get Chrome to match your text and Qt engine style.

Re:sigh (2, Insightful)

Xugumad (39311) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587386)

Feedback is something you write to developers, not something you write in an article on your advertising supported website...

Re:sigh (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586638)

And since Chrome OS will be a full-screen web page on top of linux, kde integration is not applicable.

It is slightly amusing that KHTML became WebKit became Chrome with GTK underneath. At least it wasn't the windows version recompiled with WINE.

Re:sigh (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586704)

That was the first way to get Chrome running under Linux, was with Wine. I wouldn't be shocked if some people were still doing that.

My wife doesn't like the lack of top and buttom buttons on the scrollbar with the GTK/Linux version of Chrome, where as the Windows version has normal scroll buttons. If she keeps griping about them, I may install Chrome via Wine on her laptop.

I would have tried it (1)

iamacat (583406) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586452)

But it only comes in an rpm with redhat-specific dependencies, so it doesn't work on my somewhat less common distribution. Why can't they just provide a mostly-static binary like Opera does?

Re:I would have tried it (2)

armanox (826486) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586484)

Actually they originally only provided a deb file (Debian and Ubuntu). The RPM is a newer addition to the releases. Also available as source code.

Re:I would have tried it (3, Interesting)

pclminion (145572) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586564)

What are those dependencies, and how are they licensed? Depending on the license, static linking could force them to open source the entire application.

This was a continuing source of irritation back when I worked on a closed source Linux app. The glibc people do not give a crap about binary-breaking changes. This resulted in us having to create multiple variants of our product to link against different versions of the runtime libs (in order to support older distros), multiplying our testing efforts by a factor of three. We desperately wanted to just link glibc statically, but that's a no-no because it's LGPL.

Re:I would have tried it (3, Informative)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586724)

The entire Chrome application is open under a BSD license. You can check out the licenses of the dependencies as well here:

http://code.google.com/chromium/terms.html [google.com]

then take the fucking hint already... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586764)

...and keep your proprietary trash away from linux.

to all of you about to respond with "this is why linux will never...": fuck you, linux doesn't need to meet your arbitrary expectations.

Distribute glibc then ... (1)

Bananenrepublik (49759) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586880)

If you're having problems with different versions of glibc on different target system then nothing's preventing you from distributing your application together with your favorite glibc. It's not like disk space would be any concern with any reasonably large application. You could also cut down glibc to whatever you need. And BTW this is an advantage of Free software as you are automatically entitled to redistributing the library yourself.

Re:Distribute glibc then ... (3, Insightful)

pclminion (145572) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587042)

We briefly considered that, but decided it was unacceptable. The glibc binary is just too large. One of the things our customers consistently praised us for was that our .exe was under 1.5 megabytes, while the closest competing app was over 15 megabytes. glibc alone was equal to the size of the app. Slicing and dicing the code to the bare minimum wasn't acceptable either, because then it wasn't a stock library anymore and we would have had to put it through testing, and we were not interested in testing runtime libs. Not to mention that if we ever had to upgrade the library we'd have to do it all over again.

Actually, I briefly undertook a skunkworks effort to trim glibc down to the bare minimum. I gave up after just one evening when I discovered that simply calling printf() drags in almost the entire freaking library by reference. I was dumping linker dependency maps and it was clear that it would take MAJOR changes to make even MINOR effects on code size. The entire glibc codebase is so twisted and interdependent that I gave up in disgust. There's theory, then there's practice.

Anyway, somebody already pointed out that Chrome is BSD licensed, which I didn't know. In that case, your distro of choice should be building a compatible package for you. Patience!

Re:Distribute glibc then ... (3, Insightful)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587162)

And BTW this is an advantage of Free software as you are automatically entitled to redistributing the library yourself.

An advantage of Free software is that it lets you, using an arcane and complex process, fix the problem caused by using Free software in the first place?

Wow.

Did you try the tarballs? (2, Informative)

Sits (117492) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586948)

I use a Chromium nightly tarball [chromium.org] unpacked to a directory in /tmp on Slackware 13.0. It wasn't straightforward but I did get it working by copying some libraries from firefox into the same directory.

Flash works fine (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586466)

I'm running ubuntu using a weak desktop-- flash works perfectly, and the browser is 10x faster than any others I've tried. I was previously using ephiphany, but chrome makes ephiphany look like firefox.

Flash works fine... (2, Insightful)

baldbobbo (883186) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586478)

on Ubuntu using GNOME. I've been using Chrome since Alpha, and once they had flash compatibility, I haven't used anything else. Super fast, occasionally crashes, but when it does, it's flash loading, and the browser doesn't shut down on you. Didn't RTFA, but he should have tried different distros. To say "It sucks on Linux" when you only use one distro is like saying "Ice cream sucks" when you only taste one flavor. You gotta try em all

Re:Flash works fine... (2, Funny)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586568)

I'm lactose intolerant you insensitive clod

Re:Flash works fine... (1)

Hel Toupee (738061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586956)

Flash works as well in Chrome as it does in Firefox. Flash performance on Linux is far below what I would consider "fine". At least in Chrome, when Flash starts gobbling up RAM and CPU, you just lose the one tab, and not the entire browser.

Extensions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586490)

Considering that the Linux version is a beta and extension support is only available in the betas, they have a surprisingly large number of extensions.

Long (relatively) user here. (3, Informative)

pwnies (1034518) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586500)

I've been using a mix of chrome and chromium on linux now as my primary browser for the last six months. I'm surprised at how stable it actually is (especially now). When I first started using it, the chromium builds weren't integrated into the UI very well, and were very finicky (especially with plugins). Now though, I've had zero crashes with the latest build (4.0.266.0) that I'm using. Flash works great under Ubuntu 9.04 with chrome, the dom inspector is up and running, networking options are now available (an improvement from the previous chromium build I was using), complex scripts (hebrew, arabic, etc) are working, and UI is operating exactly how you'd expect it to. Oddly enough, the only problem I'm having with it, is if the width of a text input box goes larger than around 600 pixels, I can't select the text outside of that 600px with my mouse (not that it's a problem, I just click elsewhere and use my lovely keyboard to get me where I need to be). Other than that, zero problems. Very happy with it.

Re:Long (relatively) user here. (1)

stakovahflow (1660677) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586702)

Ditto... I've been using Chromium on Arch 2009.08... Stable as they come. Surprisingly fast, even on the EEE 1000HA & 701.

I'd probably never use Chrome OS, but there is very little wrong with the browser...

Installed adobe flashplayer from pacman and pressed on.

Not too bad, IMHO...

--Stak

Re:Long (relatively) user here. (1)

Thelasko (1196535) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586934)

Same here. I've been using Chromium daily builds on my Ubuntu 8.04 machine for some time now. It runs quite well, Flash works, and it even has rudimentary support for adblock plus.

My only complaint is the regressions and bugs in some of the builds, none of whom have effected stability. However, bugs are to be expected in such a release.

I think the writer of this fine article is simply too picky, and using the wrong version of Chrome in the first place.

Re:Long (relatively) user here. (1)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586946)

You know, interestingly enough, I've seen that behavior before on Slashdot, just never thought to narrow it down to a number of pixels before.

This is in Firefox (on Windows XP) but it's EXACTLY the same problem.

Odd, that.

Re:Long (relatively) user here. (1)

pwnies (1034518) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587032)

You know, it might be local to slashdot actually. I just tried it on gmail and it seems fine there.

Fix how it handles tabs (3, Insightful)

diamondsandrain (1628327) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586504)

Until Chrome fixes how it handles tabs I will never use it. I know it sounds like a minor quibble.... but it is practically unusable when you have more than a couple of tabs open. Firefox handles this the correct way by putting arrows at the ends of the tabs and allowing you to scroll across to the remaining tabs. Chrome handles this the wrong way by trying to squeeze all the tabs onto the window at the same time. It doesn't take very long before you get useless tab titles like "A...." and "D..." and you cannot tell which tab is which. I usually have at least 15 tabs open at any given time. This can swell to 30 or 40 at times. Of course, I gave up on Safari because when I tried it out there was no way to save the tabs so that they opened again when you restarted the browser. Another very simple thing that greatly affects my enjoyment of the browser. Maybe they have fixed that since.... I don't know.

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586624)

There are various Chrome extensions that change the behaviour of tabs. Have you tried any of them?

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

diamondsandrain (1628327) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586694)

Damn, Chromium is broken. I just realized that I reinstalled Slackware but I haven't set up the libraries the way chromium wants them set up yet. I will have to check on that later. I didn't realize there were extentions to change that behaviour. This might change everything. Unless they are not available in the chromium build. Chrome is only available on deb and rpm and the community supported page didn't list a Slackware version either. Funny enough, I thought Microsoft had the best implementation of tabs. When you open up a new tab it opens up right next to the tab that you opened it from. That way tabs that are from a similar source are all grouped together without having to fiddle with moving around tabs.

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586662)

Now that extensions are supported, there are a few out there that provide an alternative method. In general, they usually provide a button on the toolbar which, when clicked, opens a dropdown listing of your open tabs.

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

Anders (395) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586816)

Firefox handles this the correct way by putting arrows at the ends of the tabs and allowing you to scroll across to the remaining tabs.

No, actually the right way is to use vertical tabs, like Opera lets you do.

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

diamondsandrain (1628327) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586888)

Vertical tabs? How does that work? Seems like Opera is always ahead of the game anyway. Maybe I should be giving that a try. Last time I seriously gave opera a go was around version 4 I think.

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

AngelofDeath-02 (550129) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586870)

I never understood why one would want to have the tabs save when you close the browser. Perhaps someone could enlighten me? maybe provide a few cases where this might actually be useful?

Having a bunch of tabs when you start up the browser usually means things take longer to load, which slows me down when I only want to browse one page. Additionally when closing a browser, I close it because I'm done with whatever's in it. I think the main difference is usage. I use firefox windows as a sort of divider in addition to tabs. If I search for one thing, I'll have a FF window open and it'll contain all the tabs related to this, and another window with whatever else I'm doing. it seems like you don't.

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

EvanED (569694) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586966)

Additionally when closing a browser, I close it because I'm done with whatever's in it.

That's not always true. I close the browser because I need to reboot; I close the browser because I want to free up the memory; I close the browser because I want to shut off the computer; I 'close' the browser because it crashes; I close the browser because some plugin acts up (on Linux, I had "problems" with Flash after a few hours of use). In all of these cases, I am not done with whatever I had open, and will want to continue to use those tabs when I start it up again. What I almost never do is close the browser because I'm done with everything.

In addition, I basically have a browser basically persistently open, thus the startup time doesn't matter. (I suspect this could be a usage difference.)

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

diamondsandrain (1628327) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586992)

Its just like when KDE saves the programs that I have open so the same programs open up again when I restart KDE. Its a convenience thing. If I am going to spend the time opening up all the same programs/tabs again then I am going to be annoyed that they were all closed at the end of my last session. There are quite a few pages that I like to visit/refresh on a regular basis, including slashdot, and I wouldn't want to have to open up everything again every time the browser opens. Yes, there is a performance hit on startup but I take that as a small price to pay for everything just being there. Also, I keep open stuff that I deem not quite worthy of bookmarks that I still would like to see again. Kind of an, oh yeah, reminder that I have something to do associated with it. These things would be lost and I wouldn't likely remember them again. I realize that I could be bookmarking groups of tabs, but I like this better. You can still do that right?

Re:Fix how it handles tabs (1)

oatworm (969674) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587188)

I've used tab saving before when I want to shut my computer off for the night but I have some tabs open with information I want to re-visit the next morning. That way I can finish reading what I was looking through without changing my home page(s) over and over again.

chromium (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586506)

Use the chromium builds from the openSUSE:Contriib repository. It is compiled from source and uses many of the system libraries inistead of statically compiled ones. It also uses the system browser plugin directory and has no problem using flash. Also, chromium doesn't contain usage data gathering like chrome does.

oh noes! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586530)

You would think with all the cool shit on Linux it would be better than the Windows version. I'm sure it could have been done in ruby in like 1 hour.

It's a beta? (1)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586532)

Given how Chrome, at least on Linux, is doing everything it needs to do just fine (quite well actually) I always wonder why it's not an official release yet.

Re:It's a beta? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586820)

Well, for one, the javascript on eBay doesn't work worth a shit. I'm sure there are other sites that are the same way. As long as major sites are fundamentally broken, it's unlikely it'll come out of beta any time soon.

A Mixed Review For Google Chrome On Linux (1)

omar.sahal (687649) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586536)

I like it. I seem to be using it mostly know, even though firefox is installed on my system. There is one thing however, bookmarks, when I wanted to bookmark a page the UI was so simple (no file edit menus) that I did not know how to do it. Familiarity is one important tenant of user interface design.

Mostly good here. (3, Informative)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586572)

I'm running Chrome in Ubuntu under Gnome and Compiz, I have Adobe's flash installed from restricted and swfdec removed (was blocking Adobe's) and all the extensions I've tried work: Feedly, Chromed Bird, Adblock, and so on. The only thing I notice about Flash (it even plays video fine!) is that sometimes input events such as clicking on a button in a flash element will "fall through" and not do anything. Annoying when your trying to select another YouTube video after the current one has finished playing. Overall though, my opinion is that it is already in an excellent state and can only get better from here: in active development.

chrome on windows first (1)

poached (1123673) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586642)

Chrome has it's share of issues on Windows too.

Using Chrome dev 4.0+, slashdot scrolls very slowly when browsing with the weird slider bar at top (as guest). No problem in FF.

I also experienced several crashes, and it sorely needs a bookmark tree or side panel.

A lot of the extensions didn't work as advertised.

It's definitely a work in progress like it warned.

Getting Flash to Work (4, Informative)

Kelson (129150) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586666)

I had two systems, both 64-bit Fedora, that I tried Chrome on. On one, Flash worked fine from the moment I installed Chrome. On the other, Chrome didn't even notice the plugin existed. Flash (32-bit, wrapped with mozilla-plugin-config) worked just fine in Firefox on both computers. When I compared the two systems, it turned out that one was missing a symbolic link. The file is in /usr/lib64/mozilla/plugins-wrapped, but Chrome was looking in /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins.

Adding a symbolic link solved it.

More info: Getting Flash to work on Google Chrome for 64-bit Linux [hyperborea.org] .

Re:Getting Flash to Work (2, Informative)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586854)

I'm running openSUSE 11.2 64-bit. I installed the actual 64-bit Flash with 64-bit Chrome. It works well.

Re:Getting Flash to Work (2, Informative)

Hel Toupee (738061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586996)

Adobe has an 'Alpha' 64-bit Flash player out for Linux. It's kept up-to-date (well, sort of). I would consider it mid-Beta quality. Actually, it works just about as well as the 32bit official version, so, draw whatever conclusions you like. It's available on their 'Labs' section. Don't bother with the installer, it breaks things. Important things. Instead, just extract the .so and link it up yourself.

sticky font size and bookmarks (2, Insightful)

hogleg (1147911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586748)

its working pretty good for me on ubuntu 9.10. I would like to see it remember the font size of the page next time it opened, like it does in firefox. As it is now, upon opening the page will default to whatever the default is. I miss the ability to do keywords to my bookmarks too. I would think this would be easy to fix. Chrome can only get better as it goes forward.

Google Chrome is already a good browser. (1)

miffo.swe (547642) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586762)

I run Google Chrome 4.0.266.0 on Debian Lenny and my experiences so far has been very good. Plugins in general works just fine, even flash.

I really dont care for "integrated" apps. I want an application to do what its supposed to and do it well. The only thing important is to be able to export stuff in a readable open format. Chrome is by far the best browser i have ever used and the worst thing that could happen to it is if it becomes Gnome/KDE/windows-ified like firefox or konqueror.

Once enough people gets their eye on Google Chrome/Chromium i think both Firefox and IE is in for a ride. Especially on Linux since mozilla seems to view Linux as a sideshow project nowadays, atleast for a bystander. I mean, after this time shouldnt it atleast keep systemwide settings in /etc/firefox?

Chrome + Karmic or PCLinuxOS (1)

psbrogna (611644) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586824)

My experience with the latest version of Chrome on Ubuntu 9.10 & PCLinuxOS 2009 (.10?) has been an enjoyable one. I've had no problems with Flash and use an ad blocking extension & Firebug (which I like better than Firebug in Firebox). No need to beat the dead horse, but yes, it's sooo much more responsive than other browsers and the efficient use of screen real estate appeals to me as well.

RSS in Chrome (4, Insightful)

John Whitley (6067) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586852)

It's worth noting that RSS support is an extension for Chrome [google.com] , written by Google. It presents the usual RSS location bar icon, and is configurable:

The extension comes with 4 feed readers predefined (Google Reader, iGoogle, Bloglines and My Yahoo) but also allows you to add any web-based feed reader of your choice to the list.

No RSS-as-bookmark folders support, but I don't miss that as I vastly prefer a dedicated (desktop or webapp) RSS reader.

Works great for me on Linux. OS X users will need to grab a dev channel build for extensions support; the usual disclaimers about unreleased code apply. The recent Mac Chrome release doesn't have extensions turned on yet.

Re:RSS in Chrome (1)

John Whitley (6067) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587002)

Whups, forgot some key notes for would-be OS X extension users. You'll need a dev channel build and must invoke Chrome from the command line with flags to enable various behavior: --enable-extensions is what's needed here. See this Mac OS X Hints article [macosxhints.com] for other flags and a handy hack to make Chrome/Chromium start with the desired flags enabled via its app icon.

Re:RSS in Chrome (1)

eqisow (877574) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587084)

Perhaps I'm odd, but while I like my RSS reader, I prefer some things as live bookmarks. For example, Slashdot, xkcd, and other such sites where I at least look at most entries are in Akregator. However, I keep a few torrent feeds as well as an RSS for BIOS updates as live bookmarks.

wonder how the quality (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586872)

> I wonder how the quality of Google Chrome OS will be, especially if it's based on Linux and Google Chrome."

I don't wonder. It won't be based on any Linux - it'll be based on THE linux build which everything will have been developed for and tested against. How it works on $LINUX_DISTRO_193823 is neither here nor there.

Fedora 11 and Flash works here... (2, Informative)

Rick Richardson (87058) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586884)

Fedora 11 and Adobe Flash works here...

However, disabling IPV6 is not possible (unlike Firefox). So every access I wait for IPV6 DNS to timeout. It is really slow compared to Firefox.

OpenSUSE is NOT Linux (0, Troll)

viraltus (1102365) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586906)

In Ubuntu works great for example and the incompatibility with KDE is kinda a good thing.

Chromium daily PPA on Ubuntu wins (1)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 4 years ago | (#30586926)

I use the Chromium daily dev PPA [launchpad.net] on Ubuntu Karmic and it's great. I'm using it now. I use Firefox for work browsing and Chromium for personal.

how to enable flash (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30586950)

to use flash on linux create a plugins directory inside chrome install dir and copy the so library from firefox plugins dir, note that you should use 32 bit flash if install 32 bit chrome or 64 bit if it the case now modify the shortcut to chrome to run with --enable plugins it should run fine now.

It's faster (1)

British (51765) | more than 4 years ago | (#30587408)

On my older IBM Linux system I use as a server, Firefox is sluggish, and Chrome is plain 'ol fast. My only gripe is that the fonts are offset a bit too low, since I strayed from Ubuntu's default font settings. But with the speed being actually usable(no keyboard delays, etc), I'm more than happy with this over firefox.

Re:It's faster (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30587470)

You're running a browser on your server? o.O
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