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Just Downloaded Firebird
WOW! What a great browser
Krapulator




msg:589337
 5:16 am on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

I've just downloaded Firebird and all I can say is WOW! Everything is right, the features are great, the css support and page rendering is impressive, the pop-up blocker is beautiful.

I've set it as my default browser (my first non-ms one ever)

 

Krapulator




msg:589338
 5:18 am on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

...forgot to mention the cool tabbed browsing!

robert adams




msg:589339
 5:52 am on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

See what ya been missing. Netscape/Mozilla has been good for a long time.

robert

jdMorgan




msg:589340
 6:01 am on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Check out the extensions for it too, but watch out for version support -- some support only old versions. See the pre-installed Firebird bookmarks to find the extensions.

Also, like other Mozilla-based browsers, you may want to set the file downloads.rdf (in your profiles) as read-only.

Jim

Krapulator




msg:589341
 10:14 am on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

>>you may want to set the file downloads.rdf (in your profiles) as read-only.

Please elaborate :)

lazerzubb




msg:589342
 10:29 am on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

>>forgot to mention the cool tabbed browsing!

Unpayable, this thing speeds up things to much it's incredible.

panoylis




msg:589343
 11:08 am on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

>>you may want to set the file downloads.rdf (in your profiles) as read-only.

>Please elaborate

The downloads.rdf holds your download clicks in rdf format :-)
you may see this list by Tools->Download Manager (Mozilla) You are able to delete them but if you set this file to "ro" will never be stored in the first place ...

Usefull when you don't like the browser "track" your downloads.

Hester




msg:589344
 12:27 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Thanks for that! I never knew about that one. I've deleted my list and set it to read-only. It appears to speed up downloads too! I'm not seeing a pause any more (obviously when Mozilla was updating the downloads file).

I've just downloaded Firebird and all I can say is WOW! Everything is right, the features are great, the css support and page rendering is impressive, the pop-up blocker is beautiful.

I've set it as my default browser (my first non-ms one ever)

As Morpheus says in The Matrix - "Welcome to the real world." Once you take off the Microsoft-only blinkers, it's amazing what else is on offer. I switched to Mozilla a while back, and when I come to use IE6 now, I can't believe how clunky it is - and those damn pop-ups!

Yeah, I know you can get extensions for IE to block ads and pop-ups, and Microsoft are planning to add a pop-up blocker in IE7, but why wait?

What I find with Mozilla - and continue to find - is a huge range of hidden tools, that make web surfing and page designing vastly improved. Firebird won't have most of these I guess, but they are available as extensions. Don't miss the DOM Inspector! (Edit live pages - see the results instantly - also view the attributes for the CSS, HTML, XML and Javascript on a page. Even see the 'computed values' that the browser has added to the page.)

Then there's text zoom - something IE can't do on pixel fonts - and neat things like being able to set a minimum font size - no more unreadable tiny fonts!

You can also edit several files in the program directory. There's tons of stuff in there, written openly in XML, CSS etc. In theory you could rewrite anything you didn't like. H1 headers too big? Make them smaller. Too big a gap in lists? And so on. The generic styling of a page is just a file in CSS.

Plus there's all those Mozilla-only CSS commands, such as rounded borders, outlines and opacity. Basically the Gecko engine handles a lot more CSS than IE anyway, so you can view pages using CSS Generated Content for instance. Visit a demo site like CSS Destroy [literarymoose.info] and marvel at what's now available to you!

TryAgain




msg:589345
 4:20 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

The downloads.rdf holds your download clicks in rdf format :-)
you may see this list by Tools->Download Manager (Mozilla) You are able to delete them but if you set this file to "ro" will never be stored in the first place ...

Usefull when you don't like the browser "track" your downloads.


Hold it.

Are you saying the browser is tracking it's users? In other words; spying?

hartlandcat




msg:589346
 6:04 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

No. Mozilla (Firebird) is open source, and is thus not spyware.

TryAgain




msg:589347
 6:06 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Ok so then why should I worry about this "downloads.rdf" file?

asquithea




msg:589348
 6:09 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Yes and no respectively. The downloads.rdf file is used to maintain a list of files in the download manager window (reworked in newer nightlies). By default, downloads are cleared from this file only when:

1) You choose Clean Up in the Download Manager
2) You choose Clear in the Privacy options dialog.
3) You change change the clearance settings from the default manual option in the Privacy options dialog.

The file itself is plainly visible in the profile, clearly labelled, human readable, and its contents visible in the GUI. I suppose Firebird is a bit over-enthusiastic about maintaining a history (a 9-day timeout or something would be sensible), but I wouldn't call it spying (which implies clandestine activity).

It's worth noting that Firebird is actually very good with Privacy settings -- there's a clear button for each set of records (history, downloads, passwords etc), and a Clear All option if you're the paranoid type.

(Some features may have changed or been added since the last release -- I'm using the 20031208 nightly build)

choster




msg:589349
 6:42 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Can I add a plug for the "Web Developer" extension by Chris Pederick? This is an extra toolbar that lets you view source, validate, resize the window to standard monitor sizes, view css (internal and imported), outline certain elements, change form POST to GET, and all sorts of other things I used to use bookmarklets for or have to hand-edit.

jdMorgan




msg:589350
 7:05 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Choster,

Yes: http://texturizer.net/firebird/extensions/#webdeveloper

---

Downloads.rdf:

Downloads.rdf is present in most or all of recent-version Netscape, Mozilla, and Phoenix/Firebird profiles. It simply keeps track of all URLs from which you have downloaded stuff, as part of the "Download Manager" functionality. Nothing is done with this data, it just sits there on the disk waiting in case you want to review it. The reason I disabled downloads.rdf by setting it to read-only was that I've been using Netscape for years, and my oldest Netscape profile had 180k of stuff in it - including the download URLs from when I upgraded it!

A collossal waste of disk space... I agree with asquithea -- it should have a configurable timeout, after which it goes back and flushes out all the old stuff. Otherwise, it just sits there taking up space and slowing things down.

Jim

txbakers




msg:589351
 8:29 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Plus there's all those Mozilla-only CSS commands, such as rounded borders, outlines and opacity

People have been dissing MS IE for years and years over their non-standard proprietary tags.

Now it seems people are happy about Mozilla-only attributes.

asquithea




msg:589352
 8:54 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Although use of Mozilla-specific tags will prevent validation (AFAIK), they do follow the W3C recommendations for naming of vendor-specific tags, whereas IE's extensions do not. Many of these tags were introduced to support Moz/Firebird's user interface, which is rendered by the layout engine itself. Use of rounded borders can be seen throughout the Firebird options dialog, for example.

It would certainly be hypocritical to complain about IE's tags whilst using Mozilla's extensions, but usability and graceful degredation are keywords here. Some of the tags are also fore-runners of a CSS3 equivalent (such as opacity), which allows reasonable experimentation on a live site with the expection that migration to (or parallel running of) completely standard CSS will be possible with minimal effort.

Incidently, Firebird's XUL interface allows interface tweaking with relatively little programming -- which has given rise to a nice body of themes and extensions even at this early stage of development. If there's a more extensible browser on the market, I haven't encountered it yet.

Nermin




msg:589353
 9:19 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

question

downloaded fire bird and everythings works fine and almoust everything makes sense :) but

how do you install flash in it

tried couple of times and it's not working :(

thanks

Nermin

asquithea




msg:589354
 9:29 pm on Dec 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Plugins are still a bit problematic on Firebird, partly because vendors haven't caught up yet, and partly because the ZIP file installation isn't sophisticated enough to add the necessary registry entries.

However, help is at hand in this FAQ document [plugindoc.mozdev.org].

This problem doesn't happen if you used the unofficial installer, or the official installer included with newer post-0.7 builds.

In general, I'd recommend the MozillaZine forums [forums.mozillazine.org] for Firebird support, feature requests, bug reports and discussion about the browser.

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