The firefox browser doomed?

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luntrus
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The firefox browser doomed?

Post by luntrus » Wed Jan 20, 2010 9:56 pm

My dear forum friends,

The future for the Firefox browser looks rather grim, sitting between IE that seems here to stay and the irresistible stamina and rise of GoogleChrome Firefox, the favorite browser of a while ago, will go down in history not to be remembered anymore.
The writing on the wall was there that lead to above conclusions: the slowed release of Fx 3.6,
the discontinuing of Fx 3.7 and a complete restructuring of the whole development process with a complete overhaul to bring in all the developments of a myriad of extensions on what always has been a weak architectural model where the updates will come in the form of many patches and minor updates, a job that was even too much to perform without hiccups for the MS software giant with all their resources in IE, will seal the fate of the Mozilla browser.

This will mean a certain formula for disaster....conflicting hotfixes and surfacepacks without certainty how and what it will work out on the underlying platform leaves the Fx developers with empty hands - the browser is no longer part of a sound strategic plan, but fully depends on the good will and the enthusiasm of many members in the Fx community (but has not this always been the case?)

We have seen it coming, dear forum users, the Mozilla browser seemed doomed from the day GoogleChrome revealed their plans to come up with their new browser - their Google partner, Firefox, at once was left out in the cold, standing alone..
While GoogleChrome is steaming ahead urging Internet Explorer out of its update cycle to come to terms with a more active renewal policy for BlueE, Firefox will be more and more to play to the role of the smaller in-between "underdog".

If GoogleChrome had adopted the NoScript extension (cannot be done at the moment) and brought it into their browser as by default or as an extension, luntrus would not have looked back to old Fx once. The protection of NoScript in the Mozilla browser is the only and valid reason I haven't left the once very popular browser and jumped ship alltogether as a beta-tester and bug-filer. From the smaller cousin, Flock, we haven't heard for quite some time now, not clear if they will not even continue as a GoogleChrome 2.0 Web browser variant, FlockChrome. Time will tell, folks, but you do not have to agree with me of course, but time will tell...

luntrus aka polonus
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by Alan Baxter » Thu Jan 21, 2010 5:59 am

It looks like you're echoing Why Firefox is doomed | Windows - InfoWorld, luntrus. I think the link you provided in the Avast forum gives a sufficient rebuttal: Why Firefox Is Hardly Doomed – GigaOM. We're all doomed, of course, but is Firefox's fate really something to be concerned about now? Do you own Mozilla stock? Are you developing something which depends on Firefox being around much longer? It just sounds like sensationalism to me.

Nothing lasts forever, but I'll continue to use Firefox until something better comes along. So far I haven't seen anything that comes close or even plans to. As long as Firefox remains more customizable, secure, and easy to use than the "competition", I don't see myself or a significant number of other users abandoning it.
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by computerfreaker » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:27 am

Not going to happen, IMHO.

* Firefox has a huge, stable user community. Sure, MS has a bunch of fanboys, but not much else; I haven't seen any kind of forum for Chrome, although I haven't looked. Even if Firefox was officially discontinued, open-source equivalents such as IceCat would probably keep growing.

* Firefox has thousands of addons, including NoScript and ad-blockers; Chrome doesn't have any such thing and probably won't. Users who don't want to see ads will stay with Fx or have to put up with a piece of garbage that Chrome tries to pass off as an "ad-blocker".

* Firefox vulns/issues get fixed *way* faster than IE ever has. Chrome, AFAIK, is too new to have had any major exploits (although I seem to recall Mozilla finding a major problem in Chrome?) so there's no way to tell how fast Google would mobilize to fix one.

* Firefox 3.6 (due tomorrow, incidentally) is supposed to fix some of the stability & speed issues people have reported.

* Call me a Firefox fanboy if you like, but I hold that Firefox's features are superior to their IE/Chrome equivalents. GUI, for example. Chrome has almost no GUI, and IE's tends to get screwy (especially in fullscreen mode). Firefox has a nice GUI with just the right mix of space efficiency and room to move.
Bit off-topic: I'll be thoroughly irritated if Mozilla makes the Firefox UI more Chrome-like in Fx 4. I've seen mockups of Fx 4, and I absolutely hate all the cramping that's supposed to be there.

Anyway, even if Microsoft or Google could somehow pull down Mozilla, Firefox would survive at least another 10 years and probably longer. Just MHO, and only time will tell, but I'm pretty confident on this one.
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by Alan Baxter » Thu Jan 21, 2010 5:45 pm

Good points, computerfreaker. My experience has been that most people have switched to Firefox because it's more secure than IE. Most of the few users I know use Firefox without using any add-ons or even changing its options. Firefox works great right out of the box for them. A friend turned me on to Firefox when it went 1.0. I appreciated the extra features it had that IE didn't and especially its extensibility. If I recall correctly, the Adblock extension sealed the deal for me. (Starting with AdSubtract version 1, I had a paid version of it on IE.) I'm also grateful that Firefox caused MS to get on the stick with IE improvements. All of the current IE7 and IE8 users benefit from Firefox's emergence. This browser competition has been great! Although I'm perfectly happy with Firefox -- I was content with IE5 -- if/when someone comes up with something even better, I'll be happy to use that.

Google Chrome will benefit from the ubiquitous advertising Google will be able to pile on everyone who uses Google for anything. Firefox won't be able to match that.

luntrus wrote:The protection of NoScript in the Mozilla browser is the only and valid reason I haven't left the once very popular browser and jumped ship alltogether as a beta-tester and bug-filer.

I hadn't realized you were so unhappy with Firefox, luntrus. I hope Google Chrome can come up with something that will make you completely happy with it. I doubt Firefox is going to turn into something you like again.
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luntrus
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by luntrus » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:15 pm

Hi Alan Baxter and Computerfreaker,

No, I think you both misinterpreted me. I echoed what I found on this issue from an article in a Dutch security forum and added some personal views there. The main reason to post it at the avast webforums and here is that I was anxious about how this community here would react and what their relation to Frankenfox is.
Yes, my dear friends, there are a lot of things and features that bind me to Firefox and Flock. I am not really that unhappy. Firefox and Flock are browsers where one could keep a finger to the pulse, evaluate the code, fire up bugs and report leaks etc. Chrome is a fast browser but also has a lot of disadvantages, the upgrading and patches are stealth, well I see them coming down with Immunet Protect cloud av, but what goes on under the hood is not a community thing as with Fx. I have GoogleChrome with Silentio (the ever returning Google privacy concerns won't go away somehow)Firebug , ABP+, Click&Clean, WOT, BubbleTranslate, inbuilt Gears (compare with Prism), but I miss NoScript of all things, RequestPolicy, Ghostery (there is no webbug tracker in Chrome), etc. etc.
As I have seen Fx 3.7 will load differently and I expect the sandboxing will eventually also come to the open source browser. GoogleChrome and SRWare's Iron are both built on open software, but it is quite another concept than Fx.
I think that Giorgio Maone has finally understood perfectly that browser = OS and malcoded script is the royal road to a compromised OS.
Also the patch cyclus, I haven't found the" burning edge" for GoogleChrome or IE8 and probably will never find it.
And as Alan Baxter hints out at is, that we will never hear probably about the weak sides of GoogleChrome from the developing team, whereas with Fx test-pilots, they will fuzz that browser from all sides to make improvements. Now you probably understand my position a bit better, but to know more about issues one has to "lure" a little. I hope you all understand my motives and the way I work to get the facts lined out for me personally and all other users that want to learn about in-browser security,

luntrus
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by GµårÐïåñ » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:27 pm

I was intent to say nothing on the subject but given the direction Fx has taken and the way it is being developed and the way its going, it has become less reliable and it has lost the promise of being the better browser. The only thing keeping Fx viable right now in my opinion is the presence of excellent addons like NoScript and alike. So there is a very real potential for its failure and that's something that sooner or later everyone needs to acknowledge or they are just burying their heads in the sand. The writing is on the wall, or more the performance of Fx, it has been declining for a while now, there is no saying otherwise to that.
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by luntrus » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:03 pm

Hi GµårÐïåñ,

What you say here is more or less the essence of what I have felt also. And while this is your opinion I value it even more, you have quite an authority on these issues, well for me anyway. GoogleChrome isn't a complete browser, it is a concept of a browser, but a lot is missing there to make it a tweakable and extension rich one. The cream custard is there but they have forgotten about the raspberry sauce so to speak.

I slightly got the feeling that the development of Fx is stalling somehow, those taking it further have lost direction.
Maybe they have arrived at a cross-roads and have to make decisions as where to go - copying from other browsers is not the way, they have been strongest where they have made their own brilliant improvements. It would be dreadful if Fx would go the way the Fock browser went. I agree with you I haven't heard Fx's swan-song yet, but it sure needs a U-turn,

luntrus
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by Alan Baxter » Fri Jan 22, 2010 4:15 am

luntrus wrote:Now you probably understand my position a bit better, but to know more about issues one has to "lure" a little. I hope you all understand my motives and the way I work to get the facts lined out for me personally and all other users that want to learn about in-browser security,

And a good job of luring it was, luntrus! You got me to post twice on the subject here. Keep up the good work. You've probably noticed I didn't reply to the Avast forum post. Here is sufficient and we don't have an IE or GC fanboy noise.
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by computerfreaker » Fri Jan 22, 2010 4:44 am

luntrus wrote:GoogleChrome isn't a complete browser, it is a concept of a browser, but a lot is missing there to make it a tweakable and extension rich one. The cream custard is there but they have forgotten about the raspberry sauce so to speak.

They haven't forgotten - it's deliberately omitted. Google has always released free stuff and then supported it with ads galore; Chrome and Chrome OS are going to be the same way. With Chrome OS, which I have not (and will not) used, I wouldn't be surprised if desktop popups were a part of life. And for once the "spyware" is the OS itself. Talk about irony...

luntrus wrote:I slightly got the feeling that the development of Fx is stalling somehow, those taking it further have lost direction.
Maybe they have arrived at a cross-roads and have to make decisions as where to go - copying from other browsers is not the way, they have been strongest where they have made their own brilliant improvements.

Thank you for expressing what I couldn't find the words to.
My complaint about the Fx GUI is probably just the tip of the iceberg; the proposed 4.0 GUI is heavily copied from Chrome, IMHO, and I absolutely hate it. So far, I haven't seen Firefox playing copycat too much, but that could change if Chrome starts nipping the fox's tail.

luntrus wrote:It would be dreadful if Fx would go the way the Fock browser went. I agree with you I haven't heard Fx's swan-song yet, but it sure needs a U-turn

I'm not familiar with Flock; perhaps you could enlighten me a bit?
I have to disagree about Firefox needing a U-turn. Yes, it needs a turn, but IMHO it's just a right (90 degrees) turn. IMHO, Fx has started leaving the path of success but hasn't gotten too far from it.

As always, just my 2¢...

Cheers!

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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by Davezilla » Sat Apr 17, 2010 11:53 am

I think Firefox is going to be around for quite a long time. It still has a huge fanbase. I just hope in the next updates they get around to fixing this bug in it & SeaMonkey so I can finally use my My Yahoo! page. LOL :lol:
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by dhouwn » Mon Apr 19, 2010 2:03 pm

Firefox has its issues.
Very old and limited code at some places (8192 objects cache bug), over-engineered code in some places (quite recently they removed some performance-wise negligible 'optimisations' in form of a cache which sped-up shutdown by 90%, also there are many places where you may find assembler code), a legacy of strange architecture- and design-wise decisions in the past which they now try to revert.

Nonetheless, since the development is very active, old bugs are being fixed constantly, code is being rewritten (e.g. for the cache issue there are some plans on either taking some code from Chromium or fully rewriting the cache code) and interesting new features and technologies are being implemented (out-of-process plugins, hardware acceleration, …).
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by Davezilla » Sat Apr 24, 2010 5:57 pm

Firefox looks a lot better if you apply Frank's beautiful Aluminium Kai 2 theme though! I'm glad I downloaded this, it gives Firefox some real class & is exquisite to look at. I know it's very subjective but I never liked the overall default Firefox #3 skin or Goofy-fox look as I always tend to think of it as being. KaiRo's Early Blue theme is really nice on SeaMonkey as well. De gustibus non est disputandum I suppose.
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GµårÐïåñ
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by GµårÐïåñ » Sun Apr 25, 2010 9:18 pm

I can't believe you put Fx and class in the same sentence, its like saying Army intelligence, its an idiotic oxymoron, but to each their own. To all those who say Fx will be fine and accuse others of being "fanboys" are being Fx fanboys themselves, no? The fact is that Fx had potential and they let it go to their head and it WILL fail and go away or become something of a footnote like AOL, who is still around but not really a competitor in anything and if you all remember, they tried and tried like hell.

So Fx WILL die, the question is only what becomes the final nail in their coffin and how long before it happens. I find Chrome to be just as bad and a desperate attempt for Google to be something more than a search engine, and that will fail too at some point like Netscape did and even Opera is hanging on by a thread. But the key to Opera's success was not being "community" based like Fx and actually owning their code and maintaining vigilantly. Unless Fx grows a pair and takes responsibility for their code and not rely on others to do it for them, it will fail. The day Chrome, with all its faults and the fact that I hate Google's lets shove crap down people's throat even if they don't want to see it, has a legitimate and complete support for NoScript, I will dump Fx without a moment's hesitation and never look back.

Even now, I have my own custom version of "chrome" based on the Chromium base code and have developed my own likes into it and the only thing its missing is NoScript and if/when that day comes, it will be perfect and since I am maintaining my own code, updates and enhancements, I know what I am getting and don't have to worry about someone in the "community" screwing the pooch and exposing everyone to a problem before hands off people like AMO "testers" and "verifiers", which is a joke and has been proven repeatedly, decide to get off their ass and do something. Anyway, just saying my piece and not trying to start anything, so refrain from get belligerent, its just my opinion and everyone's entitled to theirs.
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by Davezilla » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:58 pm

GµårÐïåñ wrote:I can't believe you put Fx and class in the same sentence,


Ermmm...I was really trying to describe Frank's theme & the way it looks, I believe my actual words were 'it gives Firefox some real class & is exquisite to look at'.

GµårÐïåñ wrote: Anyway, just saying my piece and not trying to start anything, so refrain from get belligerent, its just my opinion and everyone's entitled to theirs.


OK, I tend to prefer SeaMonkey myself but hasn't Firefox had a billion downloads? I like SRWare Iron as well. ;)
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Re: The firefox browser doomed?

Post by dhouwn » Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:55 am

GµårÐïåñ wrote:Unless Fx grows a pair and takes responsibility for their code and not rely on others to do it for them, it will fail.
You mean more indoor devs and less open source? Well, it's not as if the Mozilla folks would just let any patch into their repository…

GµårÐïåñ wrote:The day Chrome, with all its faults and the fact that I hate Google's lets shove crap down people's throat even if they don't want to see it
Where is the connection between Google Chrome and Google's behaviour elsewhere?

GµårÐïåñ wrote:Even now, I have my own custom version of "chrome" based on the Chromium base code and have developed my own likes into it
Interesting, mind sharing more information with us?

GµårÐïåñ wrote:I know what I am getting and don't have to worry about someone in the "community" screwing the pooch and exposing everyone to a problem before hands off people like AMO "testers" and "verifiers", which is a joke and has been proven repeatedly, decide to get off their ass and do something.
Oh, so you where talking about extensions before?

Davezilla wrote:I like SRWare Iron as well. ;)
http://neugierig.org/software/chromium/notes/2009/12/iron.html
Also, I there's another Chrome fork called "Chrome Plus" (wonder how long it will take Google to enforce their trademark)
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