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Don't Click on the Blue E

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the who-needs-a-dept-line dept.

Internet Explorer 313

honestpuck writes "With an increasing number of people disenchanted with the flaws, bugs and security holes in the world's most popular web browser (still) switching to the current open source champion, Firefox, it would seem timely to release a volume titled Don't Click on the Blue E. The number of books on Firefox is increasing by leaps and bounds - so far I've read three, fortunately all have their place. Don't Click on the Blue E is O'Reilly's latest entry into the market. It is targeted at the absolute beginner. I found it to have the usual O'Reilly quality: well-written, well-edited and well-designed." Read on for the rest of Williams' review.

That said, it is not without flaws. I hate most of the first chapter and see it as a waste of space. 35 pages mainly of history (some of the Net, and some of browsers) is almost self-indulgent. Certainly almost all buyers would not miss the information if it was reduced to two or three pages in the introduction or first chapter. There is some useful reasoning to justify the shift from Internet Explorer to Firefox at the end, but the rest needs a good going over with the red pencil.

I also found that for a book titled Don't Click on the Blue E, there was not enough information of the "in IE you did it this way, and in Firefox you do it this way" type. The book is a good entry-level guide to Firefox but I would have hoped for more guidance for people switching from IE to Firefox.

I'm getting a little ahead of myself. First, it has to be said that O'Reilly have done away with their usual cover and given us a bright orange cover with a graphic of a fox about to bite a familiar icon composed of a blue 'e.' I like it, this is definitely an O'Reilly book targeted outside their usual technically savvy market and deserves a different cover style.

The book feels light, despite the 250 pages, and is split into only five chapters and two appendices. As you can imagine, each chapter is a huge chunk of information, but the light writing style combined with a look that is heavy on illustrations and sidebars make it an easy read. Once again, this is a departure from O'Reilly's usual style but well suited to the likely reader. I also thought that they had used a lower grade paper than usual, probably to keep the retail cost down. As this is not a reference book to be kept for years, I didn't see this as a flaw.

I've already mentioned the first chapter; the second is devoted to installing and configuring Firefox. This is full of useful information and good illustrations to explain how to set up the browser in detail. The third chapter is how to use and manage it, covering topics such as the toolbars, the search box and adding engines, the menus, tabbed browsing and pop up blocking. The fourth deals with the add ons - plugins, themes and extensions. The final chapter is a bit of a grab bag. Titled "Advanced Firefox," it covers such topics as Live Bookmarks and searching in pages. Each chapter has a well-researched and useful "Where to Learn More" section pointing to web sites with tools and information.

This is probably not a book for the average Slashdot reader. You may like to buy a copy so you can lend it to Uncle Bob or Aunt Susan after you spend another wasted afternoon cleaning the viruses and spyware out of their PC, but I doubt you'll want a copy for yourself. Taken as a whole this is a well-written, thorough book for the absolute beginner with one or two minor flaws. Despite the book's flaws I still find myself recommending it. If you would like a better look yourself, O'Reilly have their usual page of contents and two excerpts from the book.

I would recommend this book over Firefox and Thunderbird Garage for more serious readers. Garage has an occasional quirky tone that might annoy some -- for others it might be a benefit to learning. It also has a little more detail in some areas. Of course if you want a book that covers both applications, then Garage is the only book I've found. Don't Click on the Blue e is a good volume for a beginner who doesn't need the coverage of both Firefox and Thunderbird of the "Garage" book and would like a little more detail.


You can purchase Don't Click on the Blue e from bn.com. Slashdot welcomes readers' book reviews -- to see your own review here, read the book review guidelines, then visit the submission page.

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I for one do not welcome our advertising overlords (4, Insightful)

XorNand (517466) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006176)

This is probably not a book for the average Slashdot reader.
Sooo.. what's this doing on the front page then? Ahhhh... I see:
You can purchase Don't Click on the Blue e from bn.com [htp://service.bfast.com/bfast/click?bfmid=2181&so urceid=39391960&isbn=0596009399]
I dunno about the rest of you, but I don't go spending $20 buying 250-page, semi-technical books to toss at friends and family. I simply install Firefox and spend 5-minutes explaining why they should use it. Anyone "in the know" doesn't need this book and the people who should read it don't wander into that section of the bookstore. So again... what's the point?

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (2, Insightful)

SolusSD (680489) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006197)

Well even though (most) slashdot readers are beyond this book, we all have family members and friends that could use a little direction. think of this post like one of those "advice to parents" articles in your local newspaper. ;)

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (1)

Markus_UW (892365) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006287)

I dunno, sometimes I wonder about those AC's, what with their oft stupid and/or offensive remarks that they're always making.

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006300)

Agreed. But what about telling them that they can also use IE, becoz you can protect yourself. I have for years and still are. I also use Firefox (but IE loads faster and renders pagers better IMHO [Might not be by the standards, but still looks more crisp]) and still had virus attacks (forgot to turn off Java one day, but anti-virus caught it before any damage). I feel /. is one huge ad for Firefox no matter what. Mod me to whatever, but do know that some people can handle themselves with IE and other MS products.

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006502)

Loads faster? Yeah, because parts of it are loaded by system, before you can even click on the blue e. Firefox would load faster as well if you would preload all the shared objects e.g. at system start. This "it IE loads faster than FF" is all fake. IE only slows down the system before you have even startet IE. And what when you don't even want to surf the web? I prefer FF which gets loaded when I need it, and not because my system thinks it knows everything and all better than me!

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (2, Interesting)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006451)

254 Pages worht of advice? My god!! If they'd come up with a Firefox cheatsheet perhaps with a small section on the back on how to find more detailed information on the web.

Either you want to know the basics (ie no more than 50 pages worth but ideally 15-25 pages) or you want to know the details (ie 250-1500 pages worth) a 250 page for dummies book is far to much. Dummies should have to read that much, and it ends up being mostly fluf anyway.

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006421)

Why?????

1. Sell a buggy browser through a monopoly

2. Sell even more!

3. ???????

4. Profit!!!


In Soviet Russia, the internet browses you!

All your browsers are belong to us!!!

Hey, does this product come with free oral copulation?

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (2, Interesting)

MajorDick (735308) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006443)

I dono about YOU but I dont go buying books on Slashdot that are linked with an AFFILIATE ID so someone gets a kickback.
Kudos to whoever submitted the story, nothing like free advertising, and shame on the editor that published it with the Source ID in the querystring

Unless of course that is slashdots ID , in that case great part of submarine income on Slashdots part

Every penny counts ? No but the melt real nice with a benzomatic

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006572)

Unless of course that is slashdots ID

It is. Check out some of the other book reviews and you'll find the same numbers.

The real annoying ones are all of the Amazon-referral whores that post 5-10 messages claiming "Spend only $5 more at Amazon and get free shipping!"

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (1)

fireduck (197000) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006607)

Every slashdot book review has the book linked with an affiliate link, with the same source id. Presumably that's one method slashdot uses to generate income. (that, and ad-supported dupes.)

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (3, Insightful)

damiam (409504) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006529)

Book reviews != recommendations. A harsh review can be just as useful as a glowing one, if it helps you make a purchasing decision.

Re:I for one do not welcome our advertising overlo (2)

vasqzr (619165) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006566)

I dunno about the rest of you, but I don't go spending $20 buying 250-page, semi-technical books to toss at friends and family.

I actually did this for a family member who would call me twice a day after I gave them a computer.

I bought them a book on Firefox and a book on Windows XP. Now I don't waste my time on 'problems' like I can't find my music files or how do I a print a photo.

The Blue what? (4, Funny)

SIGALRM (784769) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006178)

t would seem timely to release a volume titled Don't Click on the Blue E
I too avoid the "Blue E", but what's with the Firefox logo? Is that Papa Smurf's head? A salamander feeding off a giant blueberry? Flipped upside-down it sorta looks like a redhead getting choked.

And what's that silly fox [mozilla.org] gumming, Lithuania?

Re:The Blue what? (1)

DanielNS84 (847393) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006225)

Indeed, I have to admit I find the logo a bit strange...it looks more like some crazy new form of anime than a fox.

Maybe it's both (1)

killmenow (184444) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006355)

it looks more like some crazy new form of anime than a fox.
It could be a 9-tail fox [narutofan.com] .

Re:The Blue what? (1)

Steve Embalmer (783552) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006267)

While I don't agree that it looks like Papa Smurf (he wears a hat), the icon really is odd, you're right.

Re:The Blue what? (4, Funny)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006314)

It's 69ing the world, can't you tell? It's basically an artist's representation of the give-take relationship that is the basis of the internet. This ying-yang philosophy is clearly shown, as while the silly fox slurps up Lithuanians, it firmly nestles Toronto in its crotch. It's art!

Click on the Pink one instead! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006203)

Seriously nice title, I like that along with...Moving from Windows to Linux, Kiss the Blue Screen of Death Goodbye!

Friends don't let friends.... (2, Funny)

mcsporran (832624) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006208)

Click on the Blue E.

Re:Friends don't let friends.... (2, Funny)

Donut2099 (153459) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006250)

its hard to install firefox on windows without clicking on the blue e

Re:Friends don't let friends.... (1)

damiangerous (218679) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006375)

Not at all. Windows still has command line ftp and Firefox can be found at: ftp.mozilla.org/pub/mozilla.org/firefox/releases/

Re:Friends don't let friends.... (1)

MynockGuano (164259) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006402)

ftp ftp.mozilla.org

Re:Friends don't let friends.... (2, Insightful)

JWW (79176) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006407)

No, its easy.

Step 1, put in Linux install disk...

Re:Friends don't let friends.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006428)

hmm... no

ftp ftp.mozilla.org
Name:Anonymous
Password: anything
ftp> cd pub
ftp> cd mozilla.org
ftp> cd firefox
ftp> cd releases
ftp> cd 1.0.4
ftp> cd win32
ftp> cd en-US
ftp> get Firefox\ Setup\ 1.0.4.exe

c'mon man, FTP isn't *that* hard (1)

overbom (461949) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006488)

ftp -a ftp.mozilla.org
bin
cd /net/ao16/lxmirror/ftp.mozilla.org/firefox/release s/1.0.4

um, okay. let me rephrase that: FTP isn't *that* hard for uhm, your average computer genius.

I tell all my friends to... (1)

Throwman (898079) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006387)

click on the M [maxthon.com] instead.

I tried.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006226)

I tried as much as the next fool to get away with the same thing...but I failed. Don't get stuck in the blue e loop like I did. You'll waste too many years fighting your own flattiness. Get FireFoxified!

Talk about flame bate... (-1, Flamebait)

DaHat (247651) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006227)

and this on a day when news(.com*) has a peice titled: A safe browser? No longer in the lexicon [com.com] .

Re:Talk about flame bate...Typo Alert (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006280)

Talk about flame bate...

Talk about a misspelling!

Maybe he's hoping not be modded FLAMEBAIT -1.

Re:Talk about flame bate...Typo Alert (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006447)

Aye, but you missed peice......

Maybe he won't get a piece of that moderation.

Re:Talk about flame bate...Typo Alert (1)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006507)

Talk about Spelling Nazi!

Maybe you're affraid of getting modded -1 offtopic

Re:Talk about flame bate... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006418)

That link is trash, reads like a MS Press release

So that's what they name it now (1)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006232)

Clicking the Blue E.

one small click for a man, one giant step back in the war on drugs.

e What? (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006235)

Good thing eBay uses a red "e".

faking users out (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006236)

I am and IT director at an ISP and when we build new laptops or desktops we deploy FireFox with the Blue E icon instead of the Firefox Icon. We even go so far as to make to the default page msn.c0m. They usually never notice.... :)

Re:faking users out (2, Insightful)

DaHat (247651) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006273)

Out of curiosity... what do you do in the off chance that a user complains that the internet isn't working right... like a website requiring ActiveX or claiming that their browser is not compatible?

Re:faking users out (3, Insightful)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006357)

I simply tell people the site is poorly programmed and (if it requires ActiveX) has no consideration for your security.

Look, Firefox has about 8%-9% of the browswer market now. In *any other business*, if you said you would deliberately design a store that would prevent 8%-9% of your potential customers from coming in, you would be fired on the spot for negligence.

Re:faking users out (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006506)

Churches are designed to keep gays out. That's way more than 8-9% of people. Can we fire all of the child molesting hypocrites that run the churches?

Re:faking users out (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006556)

No, Firefox has been downloaded a number of times equal to 8-9% of the browsing population. That's wildly different than saying 8-9% of people on the internet browse exclusively with Firefox and have no access to any other tool.

There is an extra cost associated with standards compliance, as opposed to "MS standards compliance". That cost varies wildly depending on the site, of course, but it's non-trivial for most businesses (even if it's simply because most "web developers" are from the MS school and those that know how to build to standards are more rare). If you went to your boss and told him you spent twice your budget to allow 8-9% of your customer base to access your site a tiny bit more conveniently you'd be the one fired on the spot. Remember, the people who have no access to IE at all is much, much smaller than than the people who simply prefer to use Firefox. Most people who use Firefox, when confronted with a site that doesn't work, simply shrug and maybe get mildly annoyed (though they expect it) and open IE. There's even a Firefox extension for that purpose.

Standards compliance is a good thing, but the business case doesn't always justify it. I've been there.

Re:faking users out (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006363)

yep, stuff like that.. some pages hosted on IIS webservers... now the developers notice right off..
for the most part real minor stuff and less of a headache for us

Re:faking users out (5, Insightful)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006581)

when we build new laptops or desktops we deploy FireFox with the Blue E icon instead of the Firefox Icon.

Every time I read one of these "I'm protecting the user by not telling them" posts I can't help but think you're doing a disservice to them, your business and the mozilla team.

My ISP, for example, makes sure on their pages that they prefer Firefox and encourage you to download it. Don't you think that's the more honest way to do things?

If I were a customer and found out you "tricked" me, as it were, you'd lose a customer.

Why would someone buy this book? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006243)

Seems retarded to waste money buying a book about an alternative web browser.

Is this an o'reilly book? (1)

gcnaddict (841664) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006245)

Wow, not bad. I know quite a few people who could use this (No one ever listens to me when I tell them to use firefox and avoid IE. Now theres a book on it... It might make a good birthday gift ^_^)

Re:Is this an o'reilly book? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006318)

d00d that's the crappiest. gift. evar.

I liked how (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006304)

They include a link to a website that you can purchase the book from, assuming of course you are using IE to read this review, then the book would be moot.

people don't change (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006308)

i used for some time to change the firefox icon to something more easily seen as "The Internet"
for my customers...

yes a big E icon.

How about.. (5, Funny)

llManDrakell (897726) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006309)

"Don't press the green power button" Would solve a lot more of the problems I have to fix than simply shying away from IE.

Re:How about.. (1)

xnderxnder (626189) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006372)

An old friend always had this expression on hand for such situations:

Pack it in a box, tape it up, and write "I'm too fucking stupid to own a computer" on it

sigh.. good times

Re:How about.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006480)

Well, There is probably a strong link between that green power button and having troubles on your system if you continue to use the "Blue E." :P

firefox is kinda worthless lately (1, Interesting)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006311)

I wish I knew what the problem was. I love Firefox and have been using it for a while, but lately it has been taking huge amount of cpu time, many times sitting at 99% till I kill it. The same thing is happening on my parents computer and I have no extensions installed.

Some sites like http://www.overclockers.com/ [overclockers.com] just locks the browser up. Firefox people, please fix this! Then I won't have to click on the blue e!

Re:firefox is kinda worthless lately (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006394)

That's exactly the guys we love: "ah, it eats cpu, hurry up and fix it you morons!".

For a start, you could file a bug report, telling what version and on which system you use firefox, send an strace or compile firefox with debug enabled. Maybe also a testcase would be fine.

But don't poke around on people, giving no information whatsoever about the problem, and yell "fix it"!

Asshole!

Re:firefox is kinda worthless lately (1)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006487)

I've already filled out a bug report. I didn't mean to come off as being mean or angry. I don't program and have no desire to but I know it's a lot of work.

Sorry if I came off as an asshole..

Re:firefox is kinda worthless lately (1)

fa2k (881632) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006600)

Maybe this is why people use closed & commercial software -- they have someone to bitch to when it fails -- without fear of being attacked back by the devs :| Commerical software has more to lose on angry customers than foss (?).

Re:firefox is kinda worthless lately (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006450)

Maybe it's a sign that you should lower your overclocked CPU speed just a tad.

Re:firefox is kinda worthless lately (1)

springbox (853816) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006518)

If you notice software acting strangely then you've either found a bug or something is horribly wrong with your computer. Going to overclockers.com I notice that the site loads just fine and only "eats" about 5% of the CPU's time on average.

Re:firefox is kinda worthless lately (1)

mrscorpio (265337) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006578)

I've had the same problem with Zone Alarm Pro. I have 1GB of RAM and my machine is on for days to weeks at a time. If I don't close it periodically, the memory usage goes up as high as 300! Anybody familiar with this problem, and/or what I can do to fix it?

Crap (0)

LemonBug (849115) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006313)

Maybe if it didn't take FireFox 10 times as long as IE to start up it wouldn't suck so bad. Opera is pretty quick though.

Re:Crap (2, Informative)

CountDoodu (897708) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006545)

"Maybe if it didn't take FireFox 10 times as long as IE to start up it wouldn't suck so bad. Opera is pretty quick though."

Try Pre-linking it. You can use XP's built in prefetcher. Simply right-click on the Firefox icon you use to start the browser. Add the text /Prefetch:1 to the end of the line in the target field.

e.g.

"C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe" /Prefetch:1

Re:Crap (1)

ballsmccoy (304705) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006561)

Try right clicking the shortcut, hit properties, then in the target line add the following to the end: /Prefetch:1

ex.
"C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe" /Prefetch:1

Should speed it right up

WTF? (-1, Offtopic)

Clockwurk (577966) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006317)

What the hell is wrong with you people? London has suffered the most horrific terrorist attacks in recent history [bbc.co.uk] and you people can only talk about Internet Explorer? Get some priorities!!!

Re:WTF? (0, Offtopic)

mcsporran (832624) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006352)

I'm in London, you insensitive clod...

Re:WTF? (0, Offtopic)

moonka (889094) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006410)

What's wrong with you? Instead of reading slashdot, if you care so much go do something about it. This is a place for technical discussion, thus, don't be surprised that that's what you will find here.

Re:WTF? (1)

Maow (620678) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006476)

What the hell is wrong with you people?

Nothing. What's wrong with you?

London has suffered the most horrific terrorist attacks in recent history and you people can only talk about Internet Explorer? Get some priorities!!!

So, fuck off and go read a world news site, and stay off the tech news site.

Sheesh.

Blue E (2, Funny)

z3r0w8 (664036) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006320)

I just rename the 'Blue E', 'Firefox download manager' and set the home page to the firefox download page.

More good advice... (0, Offtopic)

og_sh0x (520297) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006328)

...like "don't take the purple acid!"

Re:More good advice... (1)

boinger (4618) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006542)

it was brown.

Re:More good advice... (2, Funny)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006550)

(stoner voice on)
"Here take this." ...Fumbles around a second while other takes it...
"Ohh wait! don't take that."

"whoa man, you just ate more acid than I've ever seen anyone eat before in my life, man."

Anyone else think this is a little strange? (1)

gremlins (588904) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006333)

I mean I know there seems to be a book about everything but really how hard is it to use a browser. Now there are always tweaks and stuff that can make it better but I don't see how people are writing so many books about Mozilla stuff. I mean I even code various extensions for diffrent Mozilla projects (Firefox, Thunderbird, etc.) and I didn't even have to buy a book for that. I am also guessing that the books aren't covering developing details.

Re:Anyone else think this is a little strange? (2, Insightful)

springbox (853816) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006554)

I think it's because most people aren't aware of the alternative and this book was written to get them set up with the new (to them) browser.

Now you're just being paranoid. (1)

crovira (10242) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006565)

"just because your a schizophrenic doesn't mean people arn't really out to get you."

Not only that, but they aren't really there.

"There is a man that sits in the corner of my room.
No one else sees him.
When I tell them that there is a man that sits in the corner of my room, they beat me."
"We beat him".
"Oh go away.
You're not really there.
Don't come back another day.
Ple-ease." (Old, old song, 1968 or so.)

Site user statistics (2, Informative)

harmonica (29841) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006334)

People may be switching over to Firefox, but my site still has 55% IE users and 40% Mozilla and Firefox. And my site has primarily technical content, so I expect a higher percentage of IE on sites with content addressing the average web user.

Alternate title (4, Funny)

goodcow (654816) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006336)

Don't Click on the B&N Affiliate SPAM Link

Holy long-winded statment of the obvious! (2, Funny)

baggachipz (686602) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006341)

Why oh why should it take 254 pages to explain what the book title does in 6 words (5 and a letter)? If my mom (or yours for that matter, heh) asks for advice, I tell them where to get a good browser, they install it, and they run it. End of story. No need to spend twenty bucks and read a novel to figure it out.

In all honesty... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006364)

this book is almost too much.
I'm a network security engineer and I spend ALOT of time dealing with security from various perspectives. IE does have its definite faults -- BUT -- it is nowhere near as bad as people make it out to be if one has SP2 installed, firewall on, AND you are not surfing with administrative priveledges. I use IE daily and I NEVER have had an issue. I may be trained to know what's safe and not, but I have never been hijacked, never had spyware, and never had a virus on my home system.
Just my two cents.
Not advocating IE use, just making a point.

Re:In all honesty... (1)

llManDrakell (897726) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006420)

I 100% agree. A well configured IE browser is just as secure as Firefox. I never have any problems with IE, and where I work we get just as many PC's with problems that use Firefox and think that they are going to be perfectly safe on the internet thanks to all the hype. In most cases, an educated end user is the answer - not Firefox.

I need to write a book on how to tie shoes... (1)

Ravatar (891374) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006365)

The final chapter is a bit of a grab bag. Titled "Advanced Firefox," it covers such topics as Live Bookmarks and searching in pages. Each chapter has a well-researched and useful "Where to Learn More" section pointing to web sites with tools and information.

God knows that searching pages is an advanced topic. And if you can't catch onto the 1-click nature of live bookmarks, perhaps you should just keep using IE.

The problem of course (-1, Troll)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006373)

Is that Firefox is only slightly safer than IE and only as safe as the person using it.

XPI can still be malicious, just like ActiveX. The server whitelist helps, but for all those people who click "OK" on pesky dialogs just to see that really cool web page, no amount of blocks will prevent them from being infected.

Firefox does not allow users to run executables that are being downloaded. Yes, this is better than IE's option, but it doesn't make it any more foolproof.

Having a little countdown to enable buttons when prompted about installing extensions. Yes, better than IE. It won't help.

Besides, all that's needed is a single malicious bit of XPI to open the flood gates, much as ActiveX controls that would turn off security checks for the internet zone to allow more ActiveX controls to be installed without prompting.

And of course, one does not need to be an admin to turn a box into a spam zombie.

Firefox might be a better browser than IE in many respects, but it's not the silver bullet claimed by everyone. It doesn't matter how many blocks you put up, users will get around them. It doesn't matter if you patch your vulnerabilities "really fast", users will not patch.

Re:The problem of course (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006509)

You could alwasy use Opera.. while there are exploites for it.. most people can figure them out to use them or don't bother becuse well .. not many use it..

and ActiveX who needs that.. Opera doesn't know what to do with them..

hell it doens't seem to know what to do with half the pages you view

Re:The problem of course (0, Troll)

nanter (613346) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006623)

Am I the only one that finds the inability to run executables automatically after downloading extermely irritating?

I run into this all the time. I know exactly what I am downloading, and I have every intention of executing it once it's downloaded. So why can't I tell Firefox to execute when it asks me what I want done with the file? Why make me expend extra labor!

I understand the need to protect the n00bs from themselves, but can't this at least be an option configurable by those of us that think before saying "execute"?

</rant!>

Better not click on the orange fox or the red O (2, Insightful)

Fizzlewhiff (256410) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006379)

Better not click on any other browser icon either. If you need a book to show you how to use a browser then you are going to fall victim to spyware, malware, and other wares just as easily as the IE user would because you are now the security hole.

Blue E= firefox (1)

jwegy (775655) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006381)

on my parents computers. I also pointed blue E's towards firefox for a friend's wife. They have never said anything.

I know this could be wrong, but they way I see it is my parents use me for free computer help. I get less calls this way. As for the friend's wife, well he asked me to do it.

Re:Blue E= firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006453)

They might not have noticed.. I did the same thing at home, but my wife (no kidding) uses outlook as her web browser almost exclusively, and never really clicks on teh blue "E"

Safari, Opera Firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006383)

I recently bought a Mac Mini, and I've been using it increasingly more often than my intensely more powerful PC (an Athlon 64 @ 2.4 GHz, 2 GB of PC3200 DDR, and a Radeon X800 XT PE). After being a Firefox user from way before it was even called Firefox, I got fed up with it.

It's just too f***ing slow. Even on that PC, tweaked to shit, no spyware/other crap, with all useless services shut down, Firefox still spends ages coming out of swap after I've been playing a game for a while. *WHY?* Nothing else grinds my hard disk like Firefox does. With 2 GB of RAM, I can keep a 500 MB Photoshop process minimized, and bring it up with no grinding at all after quitting a 2-hour-long game of Battlefield 2.

And then there's the whole memory usage issue ... after about a week of Firefox uptime, the firefox.exe process is eating about 350 MB of physical memory and 400 MB of virtual memory with one tab open. WTF? I have one extension loaded. It's just pathetic.

Firefox is a slow, bloated, memory-leaking pig. I don't believe the Slashdot hype over Firefox. All of you Firefox fanboys are no better than Mac/Windows/Linux fanboys.

Needless to say, I eventually switched to Opera 8 on my Windows box, and I haven't even bothered to look for alternatives to Safari -- it's just a great browser.

Re:Safari, Opera Firefox (1)

billster0808 (739783) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006587)

And why exactly do you need firefox open for a week at a time? No matter how much ram/cpu you have, you should still reboot occasionally.

The blue E is the FIRST thing I delete (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006386)

...whenever I fix a customers computer. Off the desktop, and out of the menu.

I point out to them that now they use Firefox, so they don't need it.

I can always run it to get updates or whatever other "IE Only" shyte for them, if I absolutely have to.

Do your friends and family a favor - this same thing.

Later, we'll talk about deleting that "XP OS" as the next preventative measure...

You mean Enron? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006398)

I'd rather click on the Big O instead.

Great: Don't click on the Blue E (1)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006416)

Fantastic, I just went through all the trouble of skinning Firefox to look exactly like IE, and even changed the desktop icon to look like IE, so that my parents would quit launching IE instead of Firefox like I tell them, and now this book comes out. I just know as soon as my parents see the title while browsing for "helpful" computer books that I might be interested they'll never click on that damn E, and all my effort to stealth-install Firefox for them will have been wasted. I might as well shoot myself now.

I went ahead and clicket the blue E (1)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006425)

... all that happened was that I saw a list of about 30 old /. articles about web browsers. It didn't seem like such a big deal. Am I missing something?

Most popular? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006432)

IE is the most popular in the world?
I think we all know IE isn't "popular" by choice.
People just mindlessly used what was bundled.

YUO FAIL iT!? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006438)

a conscious s7and later seen in

I clicked on the Blue E (1)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006444)

And it took me here [slashdot.org] . I don't get it though, what's so bad about that that they have to write a whole book about it? Weird.

Wrong medium (1)

Iriel (810009) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006492)

For starters, while I won't slam this book without reading it, I think that it's come too late. Firefox has gained a good amount of momentum that its popularity will spread more by my next point:

Although this isn't a universal constant, I find that books like this are usually targeted at a group of people who generally don't buy any sort of computer books. It's like making a painting for the blind in a way, when the people who need to know this don't typically browse the computers and technology section at their local bookstore.

But wait! Hope is not lost. The momentum created by Firefox has spread enough in the past year or so that even non-geeks are getting to be pretty savvy with it. What happens then, is that the popularity of non-IE spreads by word of mouth. But while there are great books on the subject out there, a technology book just seems like a poor way to get the message to tech-illiterate.

In Soviet Russia... (0, Redundant)

mcwop (31034) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006519)

the Blue 'E' clicks you.

Can someone convince my IT folks to install something besides the Blue 'E'?

availiable to non-geeks (1)

Stevix (861756) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006537)

35 pages mainly of history (some of the Net, and some of browsers) is almost self-indulgent. Certainly almost all buyers would not miss the information if it was reduced to two or three pages in the introduction or first chapter.

I think it honestly needs more of this. This book should act as an opener for non-techs that dont know the issues about IE, and therefore probably little of the history of how and why microsoft's browser got to where it is today. although this is published by O'Reilly, it seems thay they want a book that is more availiable to the masses (althought probably didnt go far enough) Afterall , anyone who uses firefox knows anything this book says anyways, while joe book-reader will never but a tech book to learn about FF.

This books seems in limbo between an eye-opener techs can give to their grandma's to clearly explain the IE vs FF debacle, and a techinical guide, and in the end, doesnt seem to fit either nieche.

What we really need is a non-fiction book detailing more about the industry, with the overarching themes about the corperate politics behind the browsers. People dont understand 'activeX vunerabilities' nor care to, but look how interested people are in politics of big companies and their ethics. get it into the 'new non-fiction' section of bookstores opposed to the tech section in the back, and you can guarantee the 80% IE users with no knowlage of the situation at least hear about it

Scaled down to a 5 page pamphlet (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006543)

"The book feels light, despite the 250 pages..."
Hmmm....methinks this is a bit too long to capture the average net surfer's attention span. It sounds like most people could be provided the same pertinent information in a 5-page pamphlet:
Page 1 - A Condensed History of the Internet & Web Browsers
Page 2 - What is a website and how can it harm you?
Page 3 - How to surf safely and detect redirections and malware/spyware
Page 4 - Features of Firefox Security vs. Internet Explorer Security
Page 5 - Tips, tools and great free resources for surfing safely
Done! Saved hundreds of trees and managed to capture the average lazy human's full attention with a quick and easy read.
www.dontclickonthebluee.com (TBD)

Irrational Dislike of Firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13006547)

Is that annoying pre-load Mozilla image icon. I hate that thing so much. Can you disable it?

RE: Clicking the Blue E... (1)

Sabathius (566108) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006593)


If you use IE to get to the book, the Website should install Spyware on your computer...on principle.

Heh heh heh

I *love* Internet Explorer (0, Troll)

KennyP (724304) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006594)

OK - mod me troll if you must...

I like speed. Firefox and the entire Mozilla line of browsers are SLOW. Almost painfully so.
As Java is not a normal part of my working or play environment, it doesn't get loaded until needed.

IE just plain starts faster. I don't go to any sites that try to push malware on me, and I purge all accumulated "cooties" from all user directories upon shutdown.

Plus - IE makes me money when I fix other people's PCs.

Visualize Whirled P.'s

Does it tell me ANYTHING I can't find by going to (2, Insightful)

caffeinex36 (608768) | more than 9 years ago | (#13006598)

Does it tell me ANYTHING I can't find by going to the help menu?

I hate technical books that tell me less information than was initially provided in the "help" section.

in firefox (i just looked) there is even "for IE users" seperate section.
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