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Google Starts Blocking Extensions Not In the Chrome Web Store

Soulskill posted about 4 months ago | from the protecting-you-from-yourself dept.

Chrome 225

An anonymous reader writes "Google has begun blocking local Chrome extensions to protect Windows users. This means that as of today, extensions can be installed in Chrome for Windows only if they're hosted on the Chrome Web Store. Furthermore, Google says extensions that were previously installed 'may be automatically disabled and cannot be re-enabled or re-installed until they're hosted in the Chrome Web Store.' The company didn't specify what exactly qualifies the "may" clause, though we expect it may make exceptions for certain popular extensions for a limited time. Google is asking developers to reach out to it if they run into problems or if they 'think an extension was disabled incorrectly.'"

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Java? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104351)

Does this include Java?

Re:Java? (2)

Desler (1608317) | about 4 months ago | (#47104365)

Java isn't an extension.

So what.. we block google chrome and plus and gmai (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105459)

To hell with google.

LOL (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104353)

But Google is against walled gardens! Do no evil!!

LOL the fangirls must enjoy being buttfucked by Google almost as much as Macfags/iFags do by Apple

Re:LOL (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104431)

Yes.. google loves their effeminate hand flapping and lisps..

Re: LOL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104535)

Highly cerebral response. Try not to reproduce please.

Re: LOL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104683)

Hit too close to home?

Re:LOL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104907)

Another Scroogling so soon?

You Microsofties are just too predictable.

Re:LOL (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105173)

There is no problem. Chrome is for the clueless and they should be shielded from external extensions. The tech savvy all use Chromium, which has no such restriction.

Welcome to your new walled garden (5, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 4 months ago | (#47104373)

It's only going to get worse as more and more "platforms" get tied to some company curated web store.
No thanks!

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (5, Insightful)

pitchpipe (708843) | about 4 months ago | (#47104467)

It's only going to get worse as more and more "platforms" get tied to some company curated web store.

HA! Pretty soon they'll have your desktop acting just like a smart phone: no privacy what-so-ever with every app knowing when you take a shit to when your SO is ovulating.

No fucking thanks indeed!

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (4, Informative)

ozmanjusri (601766) | about 4 months ago | (#47104941)

No fucking thanks indeed!

Or you could just not use Windows.

And if that's not an option, you could use the dev channel version of Chrome to sideload anything you want. Or use Chromium instead. You're not locked into the App store unless you want to be,

Look, you can spin it any way you want, but his is pretty obviously a step to protect non-technical Chrome users from malware. It's not aimed at people who have the know-how to manage their own plugins/apps.

Re: Welcome to your new walled garden (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105179)

I should not use windows to avoid google's bullshit? How about I stop using chrome until they turn it back into a browser?

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1, Interesting)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about 4 months ago | (#47105415)

Look, you can spin it any way you want, but his is pretty obviously a step to protect non-technical Chrome users from malware. It's not aimed at people who have the know-how to manage their own plugins/apps.

Oh come on. This is obviously phase 2 of google's plan to consolidate its hold on the internet. Note that if the extensions are in the chrome store then all the data flows through google, which is all they want anyway.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (2)

Quick Reply (688867) | about 4 months ago | (#47104483)

Chromium is open source so if you don't like it, fork you own copy and get whatever useless toolbars that install without permission that you want.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (2, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 4 months ago | (#47104579)

Chromium is open source so if you don't like it, fork you own copy and get whatever useless toolbars that install without permission that you want.

You let me know when Chromium gets bundled with Android cell phones or Chromebook laptops.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (4, Insightful)

swillden (191260) | about 4 months ago | (#47104785)

Chromium is open source so if you don't like it, fork you own copy and get whatever useless toolbars that install without permission that you want.

You let me know when Chromium gets bundled with Android cell phones or Chromebook laptops.

Nicely done... you slipped that word "bundled" in there, because obviously that's not going to happen; Google will provide the normal Chrome builds. Users that want to can install Chromium themselves, of course, and in fact Google even provides instructions on how to do it, as well as all of the source code.

And you also slyly ignored the fact that the just-announced news doesn't affect Android or Chromebook, only Windows. Maybe Chrome for Android will eventually get the same policy, but it's likely that the superior security architecture of ChromeOS will make it unnecessary on Chromebooks.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

Col. Klink (retired) (11632) | about 4 months ago | (#47104881)

Chrome for Android doesn't have an app store, or even extensions for that matter.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

swillden (191260) | about 4 months ago | (#47105243)

Chrome for Android doesn't have an app store, or even extensions for that matter.

Yeah, that's why I said maybe it will get the same policy, when it gets extensions and an App Store.

Re: Welcome to your new walled garden (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105205)

Go shill for your bosses somewhere else. How can you point to this being windows only as a good thing? Clearly because of the "superior architecture" of the web browser turned OS.

If the MS employees got on here and talked shit like you we'd burn them to the ground. You are fucking worse than any of them.

Re: Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

swillden (191260) | about 4 months ago | (#47105233)

Haven't got any actual counterarguments, I see.

Re: Welcome to your new walled garden (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105281)

You work for a corrupt anticompetitive leach. Moves like this are clearly predatory disguised behind bullshit assertions like your own. "Hey use my awesome superior platform and we will stop fucking you over!"

  You are either a deranged kool aid drinker or full of shit. My guess is the latter.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

Quick Reply (688867) | about 4 months ago | (#47105025)

Chrome/Chromium doesn't have extensions on Android so that platform is not applicable to this move.
Chromebook laptops can be unlocked and replaced with Chromium builds.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104619)

Why would a toolbar install without permission? In Firefox I have to explicitly allow extensions. Is that a Chromium feature?
And why would anyone want to run a browser from Google? Isn't it bad enough with all the other shit from Google? Would you use a car from Google if you got it for free but had to get fucked in the ass by a Google employee twice a week too?

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104649)

I've had extensions that have appeared in Firefox without any explicit dialog about clicking on them... and these were first tier companies. On my VM that I use for Web browsing, I've had dodgy extensions pop up like Conduit's (the result was a shareware .DMG decoder for Windows... it was clean, but the website it came from repackaged it with an installed that bundled with "extras".

Chrome already has leapfrogged Firefox by having a virtual machine to isolate add-ons that are easily compromised (or just replacing the most often hacked with functionally identical ones.) Having add-ons which are not present in the Marketplace not allowed is a nice touch and adds to security. This doesn't mean that Acrobat and gpg go away... it just means that they are accessible from a secure, clean source.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

sqlrob (173498) | about 4 months ago | (#47104699)

What secure, clean source? [arstechnica.com]

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104707)

The thing is, this is a defense against two things that are highly prevalent right now:
a) Bullshit toolbars and crapware that are installed into browsers without permission (including various ANTIVIRUS PRODUCTS)
b) Bullshit toolbars and crapware that are installed by "sponsorware" crapware like Vuze, uTorrent, Java, and a half billion "downloader" programs

The walled garden itself should be pretty tiny, any asshat who installs crap into their browser, knows what they are doing, or you'd think they would. The truth is a lot of the crap that gets loaded onto a desktop PC is loaded by the OEM, and crap loaded by the browser is also loaded by software provided by the OEM.

Java needs to just die, nobody uses on the desktop unless they absolutely must, and even then those programs come with their own JRE because no PC has come with Java preloaded since Windows XP.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

mysidia (191772) | about 4 months ago | (#47105307)

It might not be as big a defense, as you think

b) Bullshit toolbars and crapware that are installed by "sponsorware" crapware

Seems like a minor tweak to bundle in with the crapware: Chromium or an altered chrome binary and altered versions of all major browsers; change user's default browser to the 'crapware' one, and disable updates ---- or rather, make them auto-update from the crapware vendor with new crapware.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104713)

Would you use a car from Google if you got it for free but had to get fucked in the ass by a Google employee twice a week too?

Most of the Google fangirls would. Even as their asses were being torn and bloodied they'd ask for more.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

Quick Reply (688867) | about 4 months ago | (#47105035)

On both Firefox and Chrome, the efforts to require permission to install an extension can be bypassed if the installer has local access to manually tell the config files that it has been 'approved' even when it has not, and this is quite prevalent.

Of course it's not going to affect technical folk who avoid installation of spyware to begin with, but this is a sensible security step for the masses.

Re: Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about 4 months ago | (#47105195)

Is that going to continue to work if they are disabling the installed extensions retroactively? If it's not part of the update process now, it could be down the road.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (2)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about 4 months ago | (#47105419)

Chromium is open source so if you don't like it, fork you own copy and get whatever useless toolbars that install without permission that you want.

don't be a fuck twit. how will you side load extensions when there are no extensions to install? no sane programmer will make a new windows extension that doesn't go through the chrome store.

Re:Welcome to your new walled garden (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105231)

I'm working on turning the DRM on it's ear.

Just like a package manager on Linux, we can allow additional trusted sources. That way you can have competition between app stores.

I'm working on a game that utilizes such system. Modders can self sign their mods, or sign mods for other modders. The "official" game DLC is signed by the main trusted game developer cert installed in the game, and community approved mods are signed and can be listed in the game or on a website. The mod hosting protocol and server is an additional module of the private server system. It the same way that approved private servers can be listed in the official server list, so can the game mods.

However, players can choose to trust a self signed modder cert and thus ensure updates to their mods are not tampered with (just like game updates). They can also trust 3rd party mod distribution servers, just as they can add 3rd party "private servers" to the trust graph. That way if the main game servers ever go down, the players and modders will always be able to use the content they got.

Allowing modders to charge for mods is a goal, but it's a cluster fsck. So, I'm toying around with just adding a bitcoin client in the game, and perhaps have "tips" for new DLC instead of payments. The main goal is to allow the mods who spend hour after hour producing gorgeous maps and experiences can make money for their effort. Official DLC in most games is too expensive, and the fans themselves can create more and better content for far less, why not let them compete for sales?

Point being: Walled Gardens don't have to be evil. What's evil is having only ONE walled garden. It's only greed that makes Apple, Google, Microsoft, Sony, etc. behave anti-competitively. Linked Lists Exist! There's no reason users shouldn't be able to add trusted sources in this day and age. I would actually like the FTC to step in and bust some heads. 3rd party sources can be signed just like Linux package management.

IMO, This is anti-competitive behavior from Google. Allow us to run our own Chrome Web Stores, you anti-capitalistic fucks. Then I'll chance creating a Chrome Web App: When I'm not beholden to one company to distribute my product to my consumers. I'd have to be a damn fool to allow another business to dictate my business's future. Open up, you'll get more devs and thus more users. See how that works?

A Pox on Google! (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104399)

I refuse to use Google search, maps, cloud, G-mail or anything of theirs. I strongly object to entries in their terms of service and this is the only way that i can express my displeasure with them. Try to find an e-mail address that a live human will read at Google.

Re: A Pox on Google! (4, Interesting)

postbigbang (761081) | about 4 months ago | (#47104659)

You're not alone, but then again, neither are they. The new world order is to host your own store, and reap the rewards, control your clientele, and do so in the superficial PR mechanism of controlling bad stuff, where the actual motive is more like: profit and gleaning market trends.

Altruism is NOT Google's business model.

Re: A Pox on Google! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105249)

So what mobile phone do you use? Apple iPhone? Apple is the same if not considerably WORSE than Google in pretty much every aspect of end user privacy and "doing evil". So.. that leaves you with.. what? Windows Phone? Dear god I hope you're not stupid enough to use Windows Phone... so that leaves... Blackberry? The Ubuntu Touch phone OS isn't ready yet. You use an old Nokia running Symbian?

Re: A Pox on Google! (1)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about 4 months ago | (#47105441)

Apple is the same if not considerably WORSE than Google in pretty much every aspect of end user privacy

I'm calling you out on this. For one, apple is BETTER than google in pretty much every aspect of end user privacy. It doesn't earn billions of dollars from tracking everything that people do and search for. Can you provide any examples to support your point?

Dealbreaker (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104401)

The extension I used to correct their staunch adherence to the idiocy that is mapping backspace to the browser back button is unhosted, so... bye.

Re:Dealbreaker (1)

iMadeGhostzilla (1851560) | about 4 months ago | (#47104673)

From my side, POP3 account checker. Gmail sucks when it comes to POP3 accounts and this extension fixes it. That extension (which I paid for, $5) is the reason why I stayed with Gmail. If it's disabled, bye.

Re:Dealbreaker (1)

Ksevio (865461) | about 4 months ago | (#47104679)

That's a pretty standard mapping. Makes sense - BACK/BACKspace

Data loss due to accidental navigation (4, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47104755)

So how do I unambiguously indicate to a web browser that I want to delete only one character from a text area, not have the entire message be destroyed because I accidentally navigated away from the page?

Re:Data loss due to accidental navigation (4, Insightful)

scottbomb (1290580) | about 4 months ago | (#47104809)

Use Firefox. They have the same idiocy (mapping back to backspace - which I can't stand either) but at least you can turn it off. Almost nothing in Chrome is customizable. Why it has such a large following is beyong me.

Re:Data loss due to accidental navigation (1)

Microlith (54737) | about 4 months ago | (#47104833)

Except that in Firefox, when your focus is a text box the backspace key will not attempt to take you to a previous page. I am also extremely skeptical that Chrome does this.

In turn due to accidental focus loss (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47104849)

So how do I unambiguously indicate to a web browser that I want the backspace key's focus to remain in a text area? I often accidentally bump my laptop's trackpad with my palm. Or a script may execute on the page that focuses another element. Or I may reach for the letter q or the number 1 and press Tab instead.

Re:In turn due to accidental focus loss (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104947)

Sounds like user error to me.

Re:In turn due to accidental focus loss (2)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47104989)

If an application's design encourages user error, the application's design is at fault.

Re:Data loss due to accidental navigation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105467)

Use Firefox. They have the same idiocy (mapping back to backspace - which I can't stand either) but at least you can turn it off. Almost nothing in Chrome is customizable. Why it has such a large following is beyong me.

Angry birds.

Seriously. People see Chrome as a casual gaming platform...one of the reasons people continue to use Facebook too.

Re:Data loss due to accidental navigation (1)

mysidia (191772) | about 4 months ago | (#47105319)

Use the left arrow key to move the cursor left one unit, then press DEL, instead of backspace.

[*]I am not a big fan of backspace being abused as a navigational command, either. It is not the intended use of the key, and sometimes causes accidental loss of partially drafted text.

Re:Dealbreaker (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105177)

I just hit backspace on Chrome, and went to the previous page (Slashdot frontpage), so I guess you don't need that extension?

Re:Dealbreaker (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105199)

Oh, sorry, that's exactly what you *don't* want. My bad - just woke up & no coffee....

Re:Dealbreaker (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105259)

I tried it... doesn't do anything for me. I hit Backspace 100 times in a row... stayed right where I was. WTF are you guys doing? I've never had Backspace take me back in any browser.

Analysis beyond g00gle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104407)

I don't need an extension.

yeah whatever (5, Interesting)

epyT-R (613989) | about 4 months ago | (#47104411)

The claim of protection is just the public plausible deniability excuse.. The real reason is to force people to use their stupid 'app store.'

Re:yeah whatever (5, Insightful)

_xeno_ (155264) | about 4 months ago | (#47104671)

Also to get rid of troublesome extensions like Adblock Plus. I seem to recall Google kicking Adblock Plus from the Google Play store [eff.org] , which while not the same thing as the Chrome Web Store, does seem a bit worrying.

Granted the reasoning used in that case (it "interfered with the operation of other apps") likely wouldn't apply to Chrome but it's the primary reason I want to be able to install extensions from non-Google "blessed" sources: I don't trust Google not to be evil.

Re:yeah whatever (1)

swillden (191260) | about 4 months ago | (#47104811)

Also to get rid of troublesome extensions like Adblock Plus.

Oh, really [google.com] ? It's also worth pointing out that AdBlock Plus by default doesn't block Google ads.

Re:yeah whatever (1, Informative)

Mashiki (184564) | about 4 months ago | (#47104963)

Really? It seems to be blocking google served ads just fine on chromium for me.

Re:yeah whatever (1)

swillden (191260) | about 4 months ago | (#47105239)

My mistake. It used to be that AdBlock Plus defaulted to not blocking Google text ads. It looks like the default is to block, now, though it is still optional.

Re:yeah whatever (5, Informative)

verylargeprime (3668387) | about 4 months ago | (#47105077)

Nope. You're wrong.

Browser hijacking is a major problem within Chrome and other browsers, and side-loaded extensions are by far the most common vector for hijacking. Firefox and IE have the same problem. Short of making extension APIs totally useless for developers, this is the best approach anyone's come up with. Third-party anti-malware vendors are unreliable in this regard because it's very difficult (with good and often sufficiently gnarly legal reasons) to get them to classify any given extension as clearly being malware. This gives Google a necessary choke-point through which to filter unsavory extensions.

While you seem to believe this desire for control is driven by a nefarious, greedy plan to herd all the sheeple into a walled garden [diabolical laughter] with "plausible deniability," it's actually driven by a desire to not have users fucking hate Chrome because some dipshit is making millions of dollars injecting toolbars into browsers and sucking up volumes of sensitive and often personally identifiable information with no (or ill-begotten) user consent.

Though I don't see it mentioned in either of the links, it should be noted that this constraint only affects Windows stable (and I believe beta) channels. If you want to run Windows Chrome and you know you can handle yourself without being hijacked, just run dev channel. It's usually pretty stable.

Source: I'm a full-time Chrome developer at Google.

Re:yeah whatever (1)

nullchar (446050) | about 4 months ago | (#47105247)

I was wondering how, as a developer, one could load their own extension into a Windows Chrome build when I read the summary.

I assumed some developer mode within normal Chrome would allow non-store extensions to be added. Interesting if you need an entirely separate install to test your own extensions on Windows.

Problem with antivirus (2)

Todd Knarr (15451) | about 4 months ago | (#47104417)

Kaspersky AV installs it's extensions in Chrome, and frankly I a) don't want to depend on the Chrome Store for them since I can only trust them if they come directly from Kaspersky and b) don't want them disabled since I installed Kaspersky specifically for this purpose. I can see refusing to enable local extensions until the user confirms they ought to be there, but Chrome isn't the only source of browser components on my computer.

Re:Problem with antivirus (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104489)

I have a different problem with anti-virus. Kaspersky AV backdoors some shitty plugin that makes chrome hang and doesn't tell me about it until I'm nearly tearing my hair out.

Re:Problem with antivirus (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about 4 months ago | (#47104675)

I hit this with KIS and Kaspersky never even responded to the ticket I opened. I'm sure they're scratching their heads about it now but anyway back to Firefox for now.

Re:Problem with antivirus (2)

verylargeprime (3668387) | about 4 months ago | (#47105127)

If Chrome asked for user consent, malware vendors would just fake user consent.

Re:Problem with antivirus (1)

mysidia (191772) | about 4 months ago | (#47105401)

Kaspersky AV installs it's extensions in Chrome, and frankly I a) don't want to depend on the Chrome Store for them since I can only trust them if they come directly from Kaspersky

That's nice. But it's what Google trusts that matters. Google only trusts the Kaspersky plugin of highly questionable value that may actually be exposing you to multiple additional severe security risks without offering much additional protection -- enough to be enabled in Chrome now, if the app came directly from the app store.

If the app came directly from Kaspersky... well, sorry, that's just not trustworthy enough. How do you think you know the original came from Kaspersky anyways, and wasn't actually modified using MITM techniques? :)

b) don't want them disabled since I installed Kaspersky specifically for this purpose.

Well. It's happening; unless you deployed the extension using the Enterprise policy method, or to a dev version of the browser.

Kaspersky doesn't get a gold pass exempting them from all the rules ---- they apparently didn't pay much attention to the effective date of Google's warning that developers must use the Chrome web store for extensions: if they were still distributing files directly.

well, it's kind of necessary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104427)

Thanks Google, a few weeks ago I had some problems and ended up re-installing Chrome... only then did it notify me that some stealth 3rd party extension ended up causing some issues :-/ now it looks like they'll be more pro-active about possible browser hi-jack threats.

Still, I wished they enabled me to allow some manually, just in case I want something they don't approve of at some point.

Old (4, Informative)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47104455)

This was announced six months ago [slashdot.org] . Unpacked extensions will still run.

Re:Old (2)

Virtucon (127420) | about 4 months ago | (#47104689)

True, old news but no, unless it comes from their blessed store or points to their blessed store you can't http://www.chromium.org/develo... [chromium.org]

"You can still load unpacked extensions" (3, Informative)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47104779)

From the link you posted: "You can still load unpacked extensions in developer mode on Windows."

What about Chromium and other derivatives? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104457)

Like SRWare Iron? I'm using only one extension that's not on the web store, but even then I didn't want to part with it: http://www.overbits.net/chrome/youtube/

Some notes (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104465)

This only affects Windows Stable-channel Chrome. Linux, Mac, ChromeOS, Chromium builds, and/or any non-Stable Chrome release are not affected by this policy. This is them trying to get rid of all those stupid extensions that hijack your default tab and search settings.

FUCK GOOGLE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104485)

Fuck the fucking fuckers.

Re:FUCK GOOGLE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104549)

high fiving mother fuckers who name their grand prize monster trucks.

Fork or patch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104497)

So do we want to fork it, or maintain out of tree patches?

This policy is clearly preventing the user from doing something useful. Chrome is open source: we can fix this.

I wonder what this means for extension developers? It seems like the need to be able to install non released versions locally. Either they broke that (oops...) or there is still some way. Either way, this seems intentionally anti user and anti dev. I'd rather support users and developers than supporting google....

Re:Fork or patch? (3, Informative)

Todd Knarr (15451) | about 4 months ago | (#47104515)

They say developers will still be able to install locally. My guess is that if you enable developer mode (checkbox in the extensions page) you can still use local extensions like always.

Good! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104585)

I help fix computers for friends and family and the amount of incredible crapware that gets installed into browsers "by itself" is staggering. NONE of that is ever wanted.
Firefox had this problem first, and I'd say it was the only reason why most of them moved to Chrome.
Now Chrome is just as bad.

It is good for everyone I know, including me.

Userscripts? (1)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 4 months ago | (#47104605)

Okay, how do I get userscripts working? I used to be able to just click on a link, then the restricted that, so I had to download them and drag them into the extensions window, but now even that isn't possible, it seems. What's the recommended method for getting them to work? Honest question.

Re:Userscripts? (1)

Morgon (27979) | about 4 months ago | (#47104915)

Try TamperMonkey [tampermonkey.net] . A little more bloated than native Userscript handling, but it does work.

This is not new news. (5, Interesting)

Virtucon (127420) | about 4 months ago | (#47104653)

For those of us on the Dev channel for Chrome hit this in February. [google.com] It's definitely a fucked up decision by the Chrome team and has led to a lot of folks ripping out Chrome in favor of something else. The claim made by the devs is that it's safer if the extensions come out of their web store and would eliminate malicious activity from extensions. They obviously didn't want to fix the browser [chromium.org] to alert the user when malicious extensions are installed or provide a sysadmin set of functions necessary to install necessary, safe extensions. Of course we all know it's another fucking walled garden take-over by Google. I've already recommended to clients that they don't use Chrome and have removed it from a little over 4000 systems thus far. Personally Google is fucking the user community on this one, so fuck Google.

... so go back to Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104751)

And so we leave the walled garden to go back to the Apple ecosystem where we're safe....

Re:This is not new news. (0, Troll)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about 4 months ago | (#47104799)

its funny that intelligent people would even THINK to try a google product that is a binary, running on their pc.

really - how dumb do you have to be to trust the 'do nothing but evil' company? I could understand the AOL crowd not knowing any better, but techies? wow. just wow. techies trusting a google binary that runs on their own hardware. amazing.

firefox has jumped the shark, but its still not the level of control the google wants over you.

if you willingly take google into your home, you get what you deserve. maybe after enough bruises and trouble, enough people will shun google.

That sort of depends on how you define PC (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47104977)

its funny that intelligent people would even THINK to try a google product that is a binary, running on their pc.

That depends on whether you consider a phone or tablet running Android OS to be a personal computer. True, the vast majority of devices are not "Lenovo compatible PCs" because they have non-x86 CPUs. But they are still personal computers in a sense.

Re:This is not new news. (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 4 months ago | (#47104985)

You could just switch on developer mode and your unpacked local extensions will continue to work.

Re:This is not new news. (3, Insightful)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about 4 months ago | (#47105277)

this time.

its not the step that's the problem; its the journey.

you google fans; you really can't see where the end journey is headed? no one knows where it will end, but you can, at least, see the *direction* its going, yeah? how can that not bother you?

Re:This is not new news. (1)

fuzznutz (789413) | about 4 months ago | (#47105431)

Paranoid much? It's a browser. There are lots of browsers to choose from. If the destination of your "journey" is somewhere you don't like, pick another browser. I'll do the same.

As for me, I have spent countless hours lately cleaning up machines with search protect, conduit, ask, and all the other shitware that loads itself up when some unsuspecting user installs some free program from CNET and gets all their tag-along goodies. I recently cleaned up a brand new Windows 8 laptop that was only 1 week old which had become totally unresponsive. This is a good thing as far as I am concerned.

Time to archive the almost up to date version. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104661)

Or abandon Chrome. Easier, but whatever. I actually vaguely enjoy watching company's shoot there own software in the foot. An acquired taste undoubtedly, but after SO many times having to see it....

The only scary thought is that once again, it won't matter in the slightest.

Dev Version (1)

BenJeremy (181303) | about 4 months ago | (#47104685)

Time to get the dev version. They've already had the annoying habit of nagging me everytime I started the browser to "Disable developer mode extensions" and now they pull this crap.

Developer Mode still can install (4, Informative)

Formorian (1111751) | about 4 months ago | (#47104693)

The article clearly states that you can still do this with developer mode. To me this is non story. They trying to stop the malware stuff for 90% of users.

The rest of us can still do what we want. Or anyone else that can manage to click a single check mark.

Re:Developer Mode still can install (2)

vux984 (928602) | about 4 months ago | (#47105331)

They trying to stop the malware stuff for 90% of users.

There are plenty of actual solutions for that.

a) Block the extensions that don't come through the app store, but let the user enable them one by one -- without scary 'developer mode' (and opening up the floodgates)

b) Reputation systems -- allow 'reputable' extensions; revert to a) above for the rest. Google and the AV vendors don't want to get their hands dirty classifying useless shit nobody wants as the useless shit nobody wants, fine let the 'community' handle the reputation.

And for anyone who really wants it, they can manually enable it.

Firefox FTW! (1)

xfizik (3491039) | about 4 months ago | (#47104695)

Thank you for giving me yet another reason to stick with Firefox. Not that I needed one...

Re:Firefox FTW! (1)

scottbomb (1290580) | about 4 months ago | (#47104839)

Yep. Firefox is far superior to Chrome. You can customize almost anything in Firefox and nothing in Chrome.

Re:Firefox FTW! (1)

Dagger2 (1177377) | about 4 months ago | (#47105043)

Because the plan totally isn't to do something pretty similar [google.com] in Firefox.

Re:Firefox FTW! (1)

xfizik (3491039) | about 4 months ago | (#47105275)

There are such fundamental differences between Firefox/Mozilla and Chrome/Google that I simply trust Mozilla to do the right thing whereas the times of Google's "do not be evil" are long gone.

Reminds me of the "Outlook Email Security Update" (1)

yuhong (1378501) | about 4 months ago | (#47104759)

Remember the "Outlook Email Security Update" from mid-2000 with the pop-ups asking to approve programs sending mail or gathering data from your address book and why it was so difficult to disable?

What does it take to publish in Chrome Web Store? (1)

MouseTheLuckyDog (2752443) | about 4 months ago | (#47104871)

Aside from following rules like no spam and no child pornography, if your extension is free they charge you a $5 developer regisstration fee.

So it seems to me to distribute by the Chrome eb Store is not that big an inconvenience,

Re:What does it take to publish in Chrome Web Stor (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47105271)

They can block extensions they don't like for instance youtube ripper or ad blocker.

Store it in my butt (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47104877)

Anyone hosting the cloudtobutt extension on there?

Butt Strife and Fox McButt (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47105269)

Cloud-to-Butt is on the Chrome Web Store [google.com] . I installed the Firefox version of Cloud-to-Butt for a while for stools and giggles. But I'm not so sure what the ESRB would think of character names like Butt Strife and Fox McButt. And I just reverted someone's accidental vandalism on TV Tropes that mentioned Butty with a Chance of Meatballs.

I currently install and maintain multiple browsers (1)

mmell (832646) | about 4 months ago | (#47105001)

On my Win box, IE, Chrome, FF and Opera. I keep 'em all current and updated.

The default browser - well, that all depends on which one is working the way I want it to at any given time. It's been Chrome for a while, but the instant that changes so will my default browser. For now, the few extensions I have installed all seem to be working correctly. If that changes, FF is ready in the bullpen. Strangely enough, IE is ready to go in at need. Opera is mostly around as a reminder that a swiss army knife may do a hundred things, but it probably isn't the best tool for doing any of them (although it does do better on the acid tests than IE).

My Linux workstation generally is limited to Chrome and FF. Haven't had any real troubles with either one, although Chrome is the goto browser with FF relegated to any pages which Chrome pukes on, a situation I haven't seen in a long while.

Developers? (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 4 months ago | (#47105309)

So how do I develop extensions?
Also, how do I run the custom extensions that are used in our company and should not be publically available?
How about extensions that are installed with some hardware, like the one that makes Dymo labelwriters accessible from JavaScript?

Re:Developers? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 4 months ago | (#47105437)

you get the developer version. or chromium.

but anyhow, this is along the biz reasoning why they started chrome originally. when they started, the most popular browsers were looking like they were going to ship with adblocker extensions by default... and boom google comes up with funding for a browser of their own.

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