Coffeehouse Thread

44 posts

Firefox WTF

Back to Forum: Coffeehouse
  • User profile image
    Cornelius Ellsonpeter

    Okay, I decided to try a different browser last night. Firefox! First impression: what a sloooooow start up time. What's up with that? I've seen Adobe reader start faster than that, and I always thought that was slow. And I have a fast machine!

    Second impression: Where's the advantage over IE? It looks similar, and although I haven't played with the tabs functionality yet.

    I'm just trying to figure out what people think is so great about it. Is it the relative lack of browser attacks or what? It feels like a beta product. I wish I could say "Firefox. Now that's a smokin' browser!" Instead I feel like saying "Firefox. WTF?" btw, wtf = what's the fuss?

  • User profile image
    Tom Servo

    Internet Explorer starts faster because its DLLs are already in memory. Closing Firefox and restarting it is fast as hell, too.

    And you get a great tabbing system and an extension system with lots of available extensions. If I were to go back to IE, I'd instantly miss AdBlock Plus, Stylish, DOM Inspector and SA Last Read.

  • User profile image
    Angus

    If I was to revert to IE 6.x I would miss many of Firefox's features; the tabbing is great, I know IE 7 has tabs, but not being able to move the menus around is a massive let down. The extensions that you can have for Firefox are just great, I don't use any yet, but it is good to know that you could get one if you needed it.

    My main annoyance at Firefox is that you cannot change the icons of the items in the "Bookmark Bar" as you can with IE 6.x, however, this is a very small problem and I can live with it.

    Angus Higgins

  • User profile image
    Harlequin

    IE can have add-on's, what's the difference between the IE add-ons and the FireFox ones?

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    Harlequin wrote:
    IE can have add-on's, what's the difference between the IE add-ons and the FireFox ones?

    The Firefox add-ons are easier to find, and there seem to be more of them.

  • User profile image
    Angus

    Harlequin wrote:
    IE can have add-on's, what's the difference between the IE add-ons and the FireFox ones?


    I don't know, where are these IE add-ons, is there a specific place, I have never used them before?

    I thought Firefox add-ons were easy to get to as they are in one place.

    Angus Higgins

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Angus wrote:
    Harlequin wrote:IE can have add-on's, what's the difference between the IE add-ons and the FireFox ones?


    I don't know, where are these IE add-ons, is there a specific place, I have never used them before?

    I thought Firefox add-ons were easy to get to as they are in one place.


    IE's add-ons are available from the oh-so-capitalist "Windows Marketplace", Firefox extensions are available from the COMMUNIST! Mozilla Extensions site. Go Tools > Extensions > Get More Extensions.

  • User profile image
    wikka
  • User profile image
    JParrish

    Well.. since you asked here, without maybe reading some of the thousands of write ups about what the advantages are I will point some things out.

    1. Hit Ctrl+F when you are looking for something and just start typing what word it is you are looking for.. Firefox very quickly jumps you to the word, if you want all occurences of what you have typed press Ctrl+Enter and you will notice Firefox highlights all occurences for you.

    2. Download manager. Firefox keeps track of the downloads that are in progress as well as those that have finished in a simple window. It's very helpful for locating files that you saved and cannot recall where. It also provides pause / resume functionality.

    3. Download actions. Firefox gives you a nice level of control for how it handles certain content types that are opened from the browser. For instance, if you are tired of having Adobe Acrobat Reader load everytime you click a PDF link without realizing it was a PDF, Firefox can change the behavior so that you are prompted to save the file rather than wait for it to load up in the reader.

    4. The extension support is nice. IE has add-ons, but it seems the only people that really jump onto that bandwagon are the adware authors. I use adblock (very nice, can even block swf files), and Live HTTP Headers.

    5. Live bookmarks.. the RSS based bookmarks are nice if for instance, you want to be able to have a live bookmark folder that lists the feed from Channel 9.

    6. Tabs! You mentioned this, but it was the PRIMARY reason I switched to start with. I could not live without them. The ability to read an article, ctrl+click links that are interesting and continue reading while they load in the background is just too needed for me.

    Granted, IE 7 is bringing alot of features in play, but IE 7 is not a shipped product and Firefox has had many of the features for well over a year.

  • User profile image
    RandyRants

    It's  funny... most of the features on this thread are the reasons why I've felt no need to switch from IE6.

    Tabs?  The MDI metaphore died in the 90s and should stay there.  Gimmie multiple windows to Alt-Tab through (and the process isolation that comes with it for when Acrobat dies) and I'm happy.  In fact, if I go to IE7, I'm going to first want to know how to get rid of the tabs.  Hate'm.

    Download manager?  In a word: Ugh.  IBM always tries to make me use theirs on their site.  Adobe has one too.  Other companies have had them in the past.  How can people lose files that they download: if I'm so careless to download things and forget where I put them, I don't think I'm qualified to download applications. Cool

    Bookmarks?  I don't mind the .URL format - I missed the old Netscape styles when I moved to IE3 but have since gotten past that... nice to see that FF is storing them as RSS but I don't see what that would get me long term.  Even if they exported as OPML... I dunno, I might be missing it.

    The Find sounds nice - I didn't know about that bit.  Sounds really nice, but not enough to switch over.

    I also have to question this: "Firefox has had many of the features for well over a year." - if that's supposed to mean that it's more solid code b/c it's been hardened, cool.  If that's supposed to mean that theirs is better b/c they were first, I'm throwing a flag - Mosiac rendered HTML before any of these, but that doesn't make it better Big Smile

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    RandyRants wrote:
    Bookmarks?  I don't mind the .URL format - I missed the old Netscape styles when I moved to IE3 but have since gotten past that... nice to see that FF is storing them as RSS but I don't see what that would get me long term. 

    Firefox doesn't store bookmarks as RSS. Live bookmarks means you can add an RSS feed to your bookmarks which will create a submenu containing the items in the RSS feed, updated automatically.

  • User profile image
    balupton

    Why use firefox... because it follows standards.

    You have no idea how much pain webdevelopers go through to get advanced pages to work in IE.

    IE should be illegal.

  • User profile image
    staceyw

    Cornelius Ellsonpeter wrote:
    Okay, I decided to try a different browser last night. Firefox! First impression: what a sloooooow start up time. What's up with that? I've seen Adobe reader start faster than that, and I always thought that was slow. And I have a fast machine!

    Second impression: Where's the advantage over IE? It looks similar, and although I haven't played with the tabs functionality yet.

    I'm just trying to figure out what people think is so great about it. Is it the relative lack of browser attacks or what? It feels like a beta product. I wish I could say "Firefox. Now that's a smokin' browser!" Instead I feel like saying "Firefox. WTF?" btw, wtf = what's the fuss?


    I had the same experience.  I tried Firefox once and did not find anything great.  In fact, it did not display some sites correctly at that time (probably fixed).  However,  any perceived goodness was not enouph to change from IE.  IE is on every box, so if you get used to FF, then when your on another machine your confused.  I use IE7 now and works fine.  Still has a few issues, but seems to work well for a beta.  I will stick with IE as FF does not give me incremental benifit - it would just be a change for change sake. 

  • User profile image
    Maurits

    First, good-on-you for trying Firefox.

    If you like IE better than Firefox, by all means use IE.

    As I see it, the question is not "Why should I use Firefox", nor is it "Why should I use Internet Explorer", but "Why should I be limited to any particular browser?"

  • User profile image
    JParrish

    I agree with the above.. it really doesn't matter what browser you use if it works for you. Hell, if you like lynx then use that. The features I posted were reasons that I choose to run FireFox vs. IE.

    A couple things I wanted to include after the fact. In the address bar type "about:config" and hit enter. You should see an interface similar to regedit, that exposes the hundreds of properties that can be tweaked from within the browser.

    Also, alot of people seem not to know about the "dict <word>" feature of the address bar. I often stumble across a word that I am not sure of the meaning, so I copy the word, hit Ctl+T to open a new tab and enter dict and paste the word. That navigates me directly to an answers.com page with the definition, thesaurus entries, etc.

  • User profile image
    suryad

    Firefox is definitely a great piece of software. I am on the other hand partial to Maxthon as a browser because it works on top of the IE engine and it starups up near instantaneously, has RSS, tabbed browsing, and addons just like Firefox does. I dont like the way Firefox looks that much and Maxthon is just a 2 mb download and is brilliantly simple to use. I have a widescreen laptop @ 1920 x 1200 so I can leave the sidebar open with my RSS feeds while browsing other pages. It is great! The builin ad blocker is such a blessing! I love it! Honestly I used to hate going to certain websites because of popups that IE would miss but now surfing is so pleasant. Maxthon is almost as good as Firefox I would say. Maybe the IE 7 team should check Maxthon out! Smiley

  • User profile image
    Cybermagell​an

    Yeah I used to be a Firefox groupie, and a Linux groupie...both are at the point where they are nice...and will work...to a degree and then need to do more or there is a page you NEED to use that needs to have IE OR there is something that needs an application that HAS to have Windows and CAN'T be ran in WINE...

    That being said since then I've gone to Flock and then back to Firefox, then to IE7, then Firefox, and now I'm on AOL Explorer. Not to get off on a tangent but if you know XML, XHTML, and JS then you can make AOL Explorer do anything you want it to do basically. I'm pretty happy with that...of course IE based but with popup blocking, etc it's "almost" as secure as Firefox.

    Firefox is nice however it's UI doesn't quite appeal to me at the moment.

  • User profile image
    Cornelius Ellsonpeter

    Cybermagellan wrote:
    Yeah I used to be a Firefox groupie, and a Linux groupie...both are at the point where they are nice...and will work...to a degree and then need to do more or there is a page you NEED to use that needs to have IE OR there is something that needs an application that HAS to have Windows and CAN'T be ran in WINE...
    How does Firefox render IE-only elements (not ActiveX controls...or does it handle those?)...? Could they implement IE-specific functions or would that get them in trouble?

Comments closed

Comments have been closed since this content was published more than 30 days ago, but if you'd like to continue the conversation, please create a new thread in our Forums, or Contact Us and let us know.