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Which browser should I use?

  • firefox

  • google chrome

  • Other, details below

  • stay with microsoft internet explorer


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mkadams001

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Since I use a Mac, I run Safari (version 4 public Beta) with no problems on most sites. For problem sites I use Firefox. When I work in windows I like Firefox.
 

cjl

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how big is your monitor CJL?. I have a 17" and there is only a slight ammount of grey area on the right. Firefox/windows xp
It's a 24" 1920x1200 monitor. For comparison, here's how the same page renders in IE8.

PemTech website IE8.jpg
 

MarkII

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I use ... with IE7 getting the most use and being my preferred browser. Mostly because it looks prettier than the others :rolleyes:. I installed the free IE7Pro add on, which gives IE similar functions to many Firefox addons, such as an ad/flash blocker (which I find easier and far more effective than Ad Block Plus) ...
Phil
I don't know how Microsoft accomplished that feat. With Adblock Plus on Firefox 3, I don't see ANY ads, period.

(With IE7 and the IE7Pro add-on, you see fewer than that? But of course! When IE crashes, you don't see any ... No, stop! I'm not going to go there... :rolleyes: )

All I had to do was install it (and Firefox did all of that, once I selected ABP from the Add-Ons website). And then to turn it on, all I had to do was pull down its menu on the icon bar, and select "Enable Adblock Plus." POOF! No more ads!

"Pretty" of course, is in the eye of the beholder. Different strokes for different folks. But I agree - IE's "aero" theme is indeed quite nice. My personal favorite, though, is the "Night Launch" theme for FF.

MarkII
 
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yankee42

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Why? So you can get stuck with Safari, which is nearly as bad as IE?

Forget it. Just get firefox :D
Ah, in denial of microsoft's curse , i pity you. Using microsoft is almost as bad as being a redsox (redsux?) fan.
 

cjl

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Ah, in denial of microsoft's curse , i pity you. Using microsoft is almost as bad as being a redsox (redsux?) fan.
I have to say, it was quite amusing when my professor crashed his mac while trying to run matlab. I have not had a crash or blue screen on my windows machine (in either Vista or the 7 release candidate or beta) in more than 6 months. Of course, IE is pretty much garbage (I won't argue with that, although 7 was better than 6 or 8), but their OS is actually pretty good (assuming, of course, that the user isn't a complete idiot). Linux isn't bad either, though I only use it occasionally due to program compatibility.
 
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m85476585

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It's a 24" 1920x1200 monitor. For comparison, here's how the same page renders in IE8.
Try pressing ctrl+0 (zero) in Firefox.

Matlab is the worst. It hasn't crashed my mac yet, but it does take a full minute to start up (the older version in the computer lab takes about 5 seconds), and it uses way too much RAM if I am running it on any real data.
 

cjl

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That's odd - matlab runs flawlessly (R2008b) on my Vista system, including about a 3 second startup.

As for ctrl-0, that just restores the zoom to default - it isn't a zoom issue. It's a page width issue.
 
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WiK

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I don't know how Microsoft accomplished that feat. With Adblock Plus on Firefox 3, I don't see ANY ads, period.

(With IE7 and the IE7Pro add-on, you see fewer than that? But of course! When IE crashes, you don't see any ... No, stop! I'm not going to go there... :rolleyes: )
Haha! Microsoft didn't accomplish any feat, seeing as IE7Pro is 3rd party ;). Maybe I've just got ABP set up badly, or using the wrong list, but on some sites a few ads still sneak through which I don't see when using IE. Either addon is still easily the *best* thing you can add to a browser though.
 

andytherocketeer

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Mostly because I'm lazy and IE is the"standard" that all web sites should run.
No - one of the HTML/CSS standards as documented by W3C is the standard that websites should run.

Maybe I've just got ABP set up badly, or using the wrong list, but on some sites a few ads still sneak through which I don't see when using IE. Either addon is still easily the *best* thing you can add to a browser though.
Not seen a single ad for ages. Even STW (which is renowned for it's overuse of epilepsy inducing ads) is totally ad free with AB+.

Agree that the very first thing to add to any browser should be the adblocker.
 

sunward

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I heard lots of nice things about google chrome and firefox, so I was going to try them both.

Went to install chrome first as there seems to be lots of cool features, and got an error. This is the result of windows xp. I am trying to avoid doing a complete re-install on my computer system.

I went to install Firefox, and it did install. I have been trying it for today, and so far happy.

It is much faster than IE. Much faster, and looked like IE8 in many ways. There is a couple of things I miss, but I haven't checked in seeing how to do things in firefox.

Time will tell.
 

Donaldsrockets

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Firefox is great, you'll love it. I use it myself along with the NoScript option.

About the only time I use IE is for updating Windows.

Sure, it hangs at times but what browser doesn't???;)

If you wanted to, since the registry cleaner portion of CCleaner urges you to back up the registry, you could try to restore the registry from the backup if you created one. Or you could always try System Restore.
 
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m85476585

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That's odd - matlab runs flawlessly (R2008b) on my Vista system, including about a 3 second startup.
I have R2008b too. I know it is faster on Windows, but I don't know how you are getting it to start in 3 seconds (or what I am doing wrong to make it start in a minute).

Part of the problem on Macs is that it has to start X11 and Java. X11 is a bit slow (and does not integrate well with the OS at all), and Java is really slow. If I start it in the command line with matlab -nojvm it will start in about 10 seconds, and if I use matlab -nodesktop it will take about 15 seconds. Both of these cause it not to load the whole IDE, though, so scripts have to be edited with a text editor.

I probably just need to reinstall my OS sometime since everything is getting slow. OS X automatically defragments files as long as there is enough free space on the disk, but I am down to less than 2% free (on a 320Gb disk!), so everything keeps getting slower.

Sorry about hijacking the thread.
 

cjl

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I have R2008b too. I know it is faster on Windows, but I don't know how you are getting it to start in 3 seconds (or what I am doing wrong to make it start in a minute).

Part of the problem on Macs is that it has to start X11 and Java. X11 is a bit slow (and does not integrate well with the OS at all), and Java is really slow. If I start it in the command line with matlab -nojvm it will start in about 10 seconds, and if I use matlab -nodesktop it will take about 15 seconds. Both of these cause it not to load the whole IDE, though, so scripts have to be edited with a text editor.

I probably just need to reinstall my OS sometime since everything is getting slow. OS X automatically defragments files as long as there is enough free space on the disk, but I am down to less than 2% free (on a 320Gb disk!), so everything keeps getting slower.

Sorry about hijacking the thread.
It helps that I have a really fast hard drive (2 WD 300GB Velociraptors in RAID 0) and 12 gigs of RAM. A decent chunk of the program is probably already cached in memory when I want to start it, and the rest can be read in almost no time.
 

WiK

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It helps that I have a really fast hard drive (2 WD 300GB Velociraptors in RAID 0) and 12 gigs of RAM.
I'm sorry, but what could you possibly need 12gb of RAM for?

(besides running Vista...)
 

Chrisn

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It helps that I have a really fast hard drive (2 WD 300GB Velociraptors in RAID 0) and 12 gigs of RAM. A decent chunk of the program is probably already cached in memory when I want to start it, and the rest can be read in almost no time.
But will it run Crysis?
 

jj94

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I used to use IE7, but it was getting slower and slower, to the point where I tried switching to Firefox. I don't know why, but it seemed like I was just too stubborn to switch over. Then I tried out Chrome back in October-ish and I loved it. It has a really clean look, and a nice user interface. It's very fast, possibly faster than Firefox.
 

Stymye

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I like google chrome , it's clean and fast
 

cjl

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I'm sorry, but what could you possibly need 12gb of RAM for?

(besides running Vista...)
Actually, right now I'm running the Windows 7 release candidate (I dual boot between it and Vista64, but I'm in Win7 most of the time). Right now, I'm only using 1.2 gigs with 13 tabs in FF open, as well as windows media player and excel. The reason I have 12 gigs has to do with Solidworks and Matlab (sometimes both at once). Interestingly enough, it also vastly speeds up chkdsk, which chews up all 12 gigs happily while running.

But will it run Crysis?
Heck yes. That's what the core i7 and pair of 4870x2s are for :D
 

Chrisn

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soldidworks2007 works fine on 512mb of ram, I usually have 10+ firefox tabs open most of which are youtube videos, along with a virtual machine of ubuntu running. 12gb of ram is over rated. (windows xp)
 

cjl

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How big are the models you have tried? I had a noticeable speedup from my old machine (3 gigs) to 12 gigs (solidworks 2009 - 07 and 08 don't work with Vista64) on some of my very large models. I'll admit it's overkill for the time being, but RAM is surprisingly cheap right now, and you can chew through a lot of it at times. I think my personal record when not running a program like chkdsk or a RAM benchmark is somewhere around 9.2 gigs in use. I can't remember what I was doing at the time though...
 

m85476585

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My laptop crashed as I was writing this. I guess it detected that I was criticizing it's OS, and it attempted to stop me. But I'm using my PC now, so I'm fine unless I say something bad about Microsoft.

As I was saying... I have 6gb of RAM in my Mac so I can run VMWare, Matlab, and Firefox at the same time without swapping to the disk.

Memory management in OS X isn't great, and it really works best only if you have lots of extra RAM. There are 4 "categories" of memory use - Free, Wired, Active, and Inactive. Free is obviously free. (here's where it crashed) Wired is (as far as I can tell) system memory or memory that is actively being used. Active is all the RAM used by open programs, but some of it really could be in swap without slowing anything down at all. Inactive is memory that was used (for example, if I close a program, it will stay in memory so it starts faster next time). When I start up VMWare and open a suspended VM, it needs to eat up a big chunk of memory. When I had 4gb, my Free ram would regularly be around 50mb, and inactive might be 2gb. Instead of dumping the inactive memory immediately, OS X seemed to swap it out to the disk as VMWare called for it, slowing everything down because now 2gb had to be read and written in different places at the same time. With 6gb, I usually have 2gb free so it isn't as slow (it's still slow, but I probably need to allocate less memory to each VM).

Matlab will use an almost unlimited amount of memory if it can. One time I was running an analysis function (provided by our professor as P-code, so I can't look at it or try to optimize it) on sound files. Instead of the 5 second voice clip, I wanted to try music. So I converted an MP3 to wav and imported it. When I ran the function, memory use immediately shot up to 2gb and it stopped with a memory error. Apparently the student version of Matlab on OS X is 32 bit only, so it is limited to 2gb. But the sound file I was analyzing was only about 20mb, and it was able to analyze much shorter files without using too much RAM. I don't understand why it tried to do it all at once when I could have split the file up into short clips and gotten the same result. Or course, seeing the source code would help a lot, but it's not just this one function. Other functions that I have written myself tend to have the same problem. I don't remember any specific examples, but I think most of them involve FFT.
 

cjl

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The student version for windows is also limited to 2GB only (a shame, really, because I have 12 gigs, and several files I have would work better with more memory). Solidworks has no such limitation. On a less productive note, Crysis has a native 64 bit executable, and that can chew through the memory rather nicely too :)
 
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sunward

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Firefox seems to be the winner.

Still couldn't install google chrome, but happy with firefox.

There are differences. The main one there is no "zones" as in IE, so security can be a little of a challenge. I also find it a little harder to customize.

But happy I changed.
 

troj

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There are differences. The main one there is no "zones" as in IE, so security can be a little of a challenge. I also find it a little harder to customize.
The zones are, in my opinion, one of the biggest problems with IE -- it develops a mind of its own and decides systems are in certain zones, regardless of what you tell it.

-Kevin
 

MarkII

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...I think my personal record when not running a program like chkdsk or a RAM benchmark is somewhere around 9.2 gigs in use. I can't remember what I was doing at the time though...
Editing a Word document, perhaps? :p

MarkII
 
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sunward

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The zones are, in my opinion, one of the biggest problems with IE -- it develops a mind of its own and decides systems are in certain zones, regardless of what you tell it.

-Kevin
It is a very useful tool to stop site from doing damage. I came across a few bad sites ( from searching) and I was able to place them in the restricted zone and not have to worry about going there again.
 

troj

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It is a very useful tool to stop site from doing damage. I came across a few bad sites ( from searching) and I was able to place them in the restricted zone and not have to worry about going there again.
Oh, when it works, it can do nicely on that.

The problem is when you're a developer and it decides that your test box is going to be in an untrusted zone, no matter what you tell it.

-Kevin
 

jcsalem

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As a web software developer, I use everything (Chrome, FF, IE and Safari).

My favorite (and default) is Chrome mostly due to its awesome speed especially with its just-in-time Javascript compiling. It also has the best default search bar around and I love the "tear-off" tabs. Don't know why people have had difficulty installing it. I've had no problems on multiple XP, Win2003 and Vista machines.

If a site doesn't work on Chrome then I'll use FF3. There are also a few great plugins that work on FF but not Chrome (specifically, RoboForm and FireBug).

I only use IE8 when I have to -- mostly for testing web sites.

Safari is fine -- it shares the same rendering code as Chrome -- but I don't use it much on Windows. It works great on my wife's iPhone (which she occassionally lets me borrow.)

In terms of what my customers use (mostly business users), it's IE hands down. Mostly IE7 today, then IE6 but IE8 is coming on strong. FF is 2nd and Chrome and Safari are a distant 3rd and 4th.

Jim
 
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cjl

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If you like fast javascript, have you tried the FF3.5 beta with the new javascript engine enabled?
 

jcsalem

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If you like fast javascript, have you tried the FF3.5 beta with the new javascript engine enabled?
Not yet. Though I've heard that 3.5 will bring it up to Chrome speeds.

Probably time to try it, it's probably been almost 6 months now since I've run a beta version of any browser!

How reliable are you finding FF 3.5? I've read it has some significant renderer changes. How compatible is it with current web sites?

Jim
 
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