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Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

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Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Old 08-03-18, 10:04 PM
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Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I was tempted to put this in the Firefox thread, but I didn't want to come across as a thread crap. I gave up on Firefox about a year ago when it just kept memory leaking on me and just being unbearably slow. I'm not a fan of the way Chrome tracks you, but it's just a better browser in my opinion. I don't think it would be great if there were no browser options though. I do use Edge and IE for some internal sites at work. Not sure if those will modernize any time soon, so I might still be using those browsers in a small way going forward.

Computerworld Article

It's increasingly becoming a Google Chrome online world, even for Mac users.

Microsoft's and Mozilla's browsers fell to new lows in July as users continued to switch to Google's behemoth, Chrome, which again looks unstoppable.

According to California-based analytics vendor Net Applications, Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE) and Edge dropped to a combined user share of 15.4% last month, down a whopping 3.8 percentage points from June. Meanwhile, Mozilla's Firefox cast off a much smaller two-tenths of a percentage point, recording a user share of 9.7%. Microsoft's July number was a record low in Computerworld's tracking of browser data, which began in 2005. Firefox's figure was its smallest user share since February 2006, when it was fighting for the scraps left by the then-dominant IE.

Net Applications calculates user share by detecting the agent strings of the browsers people use to visit its clients' websites. It then tallies the visitor sessions - which are effectively visits to the site, with multiple sessions possible daily - rather than count only users, as it once did. Net Applications primarily measures activity, although it does so differently than rival sources, which total page views.

Microsoft's and Mozilla's browser problems are not new: Both companies have watched their once-substantial user share shrink over the last decade.

A long downhill slide
Microsoft's troubles appeared more dire, as its IE and Edge have shown few signs of stanching their continued losses. With very few exceptions - notably in June, which in hindsight now looks to have been a miscount by Net Applications - IE and Edge have shed share month after month after month. Of the past 24 months, for example, IE and Edge lost share in 19. In the last year, the IE-and-Edge user share dropped by 6.8 percentage points, a 31% decline from the July 31, 2017 mark.

Firefox was in a leaky boat, too. July was the third consecutive month in which Mozilla's open-source browser posted a number under the 10% bar. In the past year, Firefox has lost 2.6 percentage points, or 21% of its July 31, 2017, user share.

Losses like Microsoft's and Mozilla's are unsustainable.

If the trends of the last 12 months continue and IE and Edge lose another 31% in the next year, they will account for just 10.6% of the world's browser user share by this time in 2019. If Firefox again drops by 21%, it will fall to 7.6% in the same period. (Because IE and Edge lost more than twice as much each of the last 12 months as Firefox, Microsoft's browsers will fall faster than Mozilla's under this forecasting model.)

Ironically, Firefox may have the best shot at beating that prediction. That's because Firefox survived a near-death experience relatively recently to bounce back to some degree. Two years ago this month, Net Applications reported that Firefox's user share had sunk to a record low of just 7.7%. But over the next year and two months, the browser clawed itself back to 13.1%. (Since October 2017, Firefox has lost share in all but one month.)

Microsoft's Internet Explorer - Edge was not yet around - had a come-back, too: IE climbed from a December 2011 flirtation with 50% to grow to 59.1% three years later. But IE, and then IE + Edge, have lost ground, first slowly, then more rapidly, since December 2014. In other words, Microsoft's browser slide has been on-going for more than three and a half years, significantly longer than Firefox's nine-month decline.

An ominous future for IE and Edge
The future of IE and Edge look nearly as ominous if the user share calculation considers their place within the Windows ecosystem, the only platform available to the browsers. According to Net Applications, IE and Edge accounted for 17.4% of the browsers that ran on Windows in July. (The 17.4% was larger than the 15.4% IE and Edge tallied overall because Windows does not power 100% of all PCs; in July, it ran 88.4% of the world's systems.) Darker clouds await, however. IE, already relegated to legacy status, will increasingly be disowned by commercial customers as they adopt Windows 10 and modernize the web apps and websites that now require them to support the old browser. That will leave Edge as the only competitive browser in Microsoft's arsenal.

And Edge remains a flop. In July, just 11.5% of all Windows 10 users relied on Edge, a record low for the long-struggling browser. To get an idea of Edge's loose hold on Windows 10, consider that the browser was being used by almost twice the percentage of 10's owners, 20.4%, only 12 months ago.

In the zero-sum browser battle, Microsoft's and Mozilla's losses became Google's gains: Chrome added nearly 4 percentage points to its user share in July, ending at 64.7%. The last time a browser owned that large a chunk of the world's browser market was in late 2009, when IE accounted for two-thirds of the total.

Calculations by Computerworld now put Chrome on a faster track to that same two-thirds dominance. Using the average monthly change over the past 12 months, Computerworld now expects Chrome to reach 66.7% or more in December and make it to 70% by August 2019.

The 12-month average for Microsoft's and Mozilla's browsers paints a different picture. IE and Edge will account for less than 12% of all user share by February 2019, then fall under 10% by May. Firefox will continue its decline as well, slipping below 9% in November and dipping under 8% in March 2019.

Elsewhere in Net Applications' data, the user share number for Apple's Safari fell for the third straight month, ending at 3.5%, its lowest since April 2017. Safari's share of all macOS-powered systems also dropped to 38.3% in July, reinforcing Computerworld's analysis last month that being an operating system's default browser no longer guarantees success.
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Old 08-04-18, 12:10 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Chrome and firefox are both culprits of memory hogging and both are working on new browser features and technologies up ahead to help remedy that:

https://www.cnet.com/google-amp/news...ging-websites/
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Old 08-04-18, 01:10 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I haven't touched Firefox in years, and no longer bother installing it. I use Chrome and occasionally Edge.
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Old 08-04-18, 08:57 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I won't use Chrome at all.

I'll use Brave instead, with almost all the security features turned on by default and ads turned off. (Brave is based on the Chromium source code, which is what Chrome also uses).

I only really use Brave for casual web surfing, on sites which generally don't require any logins/passwords. I'll use Firefox for sites which require logins/passwords.
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Old 08-04-18, 09:20 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I mostly use Chrome now. I used to use Firefox regularly until a few years ago. Aside from the memory spikes, I kept having a problem where images would not load. Tried multiple things/resets and nothing worked, or it came back. Earlier this year I wanted to try it because none of my other browsers were working for something (can't remember) and I happened on an article about the same issue and changed a setting and it starting working. But I still use Chrome.

I only use Edge to get bonus points for Bing Rewards. And, whenever I post a Youtube or Twitter post in DVDtalk, I have to use Edge. I get an error in Chrome.

IE is dead to me, and pretty sure it has just about reached End of Life. My wife's company still uses it and I'm always her first go to for computer issues. And whenever she has an issue with a website I tell her to copy the link and put it in Chrome and it usually works.
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Old 08-04-18, 07:01 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

If you have Facebook then Chrome is for you since clearly you don't value your privacy.
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Old 08-04-18, 09:08 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I wouldn't touch Chrome these days. I use Firefox with several privacy-related extensions and customized settings in about:config and it seems to work very well for me on Linux. I use Brave on my phone and have been meaning to try it on my PC.
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Old 08-05-18, 07:46 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Originally Posted by kefrank View Post
... and it seems to work very well for me on Linux.
(On a tangent).

I've been looking at moving back to Linux or one of the *BSDs (such as OpenBSD), now that Firefox hasn't had any need to use any proprietary plugins + addons. I haven't used Flash since the FF57 changeover, and the computer illiterates I live with seem to be accustomed to a Flash-free web.

The main reason I dropped Linux entirely back around 2001-2002, was largely to squelch all the complaints from all the computer illiterates in my life. They were constantly complaining about their dumb dog/cat videos not being able to play and other similar crap, due to particular proprietary video plugins not being available on Linux. In those days the only way I could eliminate all that nagging and headaches about cat/dog videos not functioning, was to go back to using M$ Windows.

Fast forward to the present, most of these proprietary plugins are now obsolete and have fallen by the wayside, and/or are being phased out completely (such as Flash). With this in mind, hopefully it shouldn't be a problem going back to Linux or OpenBSD.

As a start, I've been looking at putting Linux or OpenBSD onto a bootable flash drive.
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Old 08-05-18, 02:07 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

The world evolved.

Before, most people accessed the internet from work. The enterprise world was, and still is, dominated by Microsoft, so IE was the leader.
Nowadays most people access the internet through their mobile phones. And although Apple is popular in the USA, Android is king in the world. I think there are more Android devices in the USA too.

So, I think the dominance will only grow. Since every day the mobile market is growing.
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Old 08-05-18, 09:35 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Originally Posted by morriscroy View Post
As a start, I've been looking at putting Linux or OpenBSD onto a bootable flash drive.
Yeah, you can try out most Linux distros with a "live" thumb drive which is pretty nice.

On my laptop, I dual-boot Windows and PureOS, which is a variant of Debian Linux. I only boot into Windows when there's something I absolutely have to use Windows for which is increasingly rare.
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Old 08-06-18, 10:46 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Originally Posted by kefrank View Post
Yeah, you can try out most Linux distros with a "live" thumb drive which is pretty nice.

On my laptop, I dual-boot Windows and PureOS, which is a variant of Debian Linux. I only boot into Windows when there's something I absolutely have to use Windows for which is increasingly rare.
I'm somewhat 15+ years out of date in my Linux/BSD knowledge.

My final setup until I dropped Linux entirely, was using the Slackware distribution circa 2001. Up until the end, I was still using the fvwm window manager and starting Linux with either loadlin or a 3.5" floppy boot disc. (I used Lilo briefly, when I didn't live with any computer illiterates).

At one point back in the 1990s, I even tried a Linux distribution where just about everything was compiled from "scratch".

http://www.cs.unc.edu/~faith/bogus.html
http://linuxfinances.info/info/bogus.html
http://www.astro.umd.edu/~teuben/mail/0007.html
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Old 08-06-18, 05:29 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I'd even go a step further and say: If you value your security and privacy, use Linux. If you don't and / or "don't care" use Windows. Back in the day (1990s) I compiled Linux from "scratch" as well, and that was quite a learning experience. While I agree that that isn't necessary (or probably even possible) nowadays, there are some good and lean variants of Linux available. (I like Puppylinux and Absolute Linux).

As to browser, I never turn Javascript on and I'd never use flash, I disable IPv6 unless absolutely necessary, use a RAMdisk for all cookies, etc, and of course use common sense about which sites to visit. AdBlockers help, but completely disabling Javascript helps more, except for the sites like Google, Amazon, Youtube, and all the usual suspects which force you to turn it on.
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Old 08-07-18, 06:11 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Didn't take long to turn this thread from a discussion of browsers to Windows bashing. Would've liked to hear more from people about their browsers of choice and why.

My wife and I have been using Pale Moon (a FF variant) for the last few years, we like how PM has managed to evolve without all the bloat of FF/Chrome and the privacy concerns of Chrome. Maybe not as lean and fast as we might like and it's certainly a concern when sites like Citi don't want to support any but the 4 main browsers (fuck heads), but it's certainly faster than any of the other browsers we've tried.

I wish FF would return to their original concept of speed/performance and stop catering to the whims of the social media sheeple who want their browser to blow their collective noses and brush their teeth for them. Dump some of that bloat...

I've never liked the idea of Google tracking every move that I make and everything that I do with Chrome, accumulating data at my expense and for what?

Last edited by kd5; 08-07-18 at 06:17 AM.
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Old 08-08-18, 09:45 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Never used Pale Moon, thanks for the endorsement and report of satisfaction. I shall try it and see. I wonder about its possible lack of plug-in support, however...
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Old 08-09-18, 05:47 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Anybody else tried Comodo's IceDragon? It's based on Mozilla and seems more reliable than Firefox.
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Old 08-09-18, 11:18 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I like to play so often switch between, Firefox (with issues), Opera Browser and Vivaldi. This is on Win10 and Linux Mint systems. Haven't figured out why, at times and not always, signing on to eBay will essentially bring Firefox to its knees and even "stall" other tabs while doing so. Switch to Opera and no issues. I do believe it may be a combination of a couple Extensions I use but it's not consistent.
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Old 08-09-18, 11:57 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

i use Firefox when I choose a browser, MSIE when I have to use it (some things at work are IE only), Edge on my Xbox because that's what's there. (Not that I browse much on my Xbox).
About a year, year and a half ago FF was driving me crazy but it's been pretty much fine since then.
I'm used to Firefox, been using it a long time; didn't want to learn a new browser, plus Google already has enough of my information so I'm not going to jump through hoops to give them more.
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Old 08-09-18, 01:40 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Originally Posted by zyzzle View Post
Never used Pale Moon, thanks for the endorsement and report of satisfaction. I shall try it and see. I wonder about its possible lack of plug-in support, however...
Pale Moon's version of Adblock is called Adblock Latitude, been using that with the default uBlock Origin, been happy with the results. PM kind of distanced themselves from a lot of FF's plug-ins though. Might be a problem if you use a lot of them.
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Old 08-15-18, 03:01 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

If someone could help me out with a small chrome issue.

I've been doing my normal Ctrl-shift-T to clear my history daily when leaving work every day, but for some reason my Gmail has been signed in each morning when I come back into work, although all the rest of my history, usernames and passwords have been cleared and signed out, except Google/Gmail.

Thanks for any help!
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Old 12-05-18, 07:40 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

...There isn't going to be much browsers left.

Windows Central reports that Microsoft is planning to replace its Edge browser, which uses Microsoft's own EdgeHTML rendering engine and Chakra JavaScript engine, with a new browser built on Chromium, the open source counterpart to Google's Chrome. The new browser has the codename Anaheim.

The report is short on details. The easiest thing for Microsoft to do would be to use Chromium's code wholesale—the Blink rendering engine, the V8 JavaScript engine, and the Chrome user interface with the Google Account parts omitted—to produce something that looks, works, and feels almost identical to Chrome. Alternatively, Redmond could use Blink and V8 but wrap them in Edge's user interface (or some derivative thereof), to retain its own appearance. It might even be possible to do something weird, such as use Blink with the Chakra JavaScript engine. We'll have to wait and see.
https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2018...omments=1&vs=b

Bad news for Firefox if more people are going to use Chrome. : /
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Old 12-05-18, 09:06 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

RIP Firefox

Gone too soon.

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Old 12-06-18, 01:02 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I fucking hate Chrome.
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Old 12-06-18, 06:00 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

So, Microsoft kissing Google's ass now?
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Old 12-06-18, 07:38 AM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

I posted the same thing in the Windows thread the other day. I use Edge as my secondary browser behind Chrome, and I never had any major issues with it. I'll probably continue to use it after the change under the hood.
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Old 12-06-18, 12:44 PM
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Re: Top web browsers 2018: IE, Edge and Firefox return to the road of ruin

Official now.

https://blogs.windows.com/windowsexp...collaboration/

Today we’re announcing that we intend to adopt the Chromium open source project in the development of Microsoft Edge on the desktop to create better web compatibility for our customers and less fragmentation of the web for all web developers.

As part of this, we intend to become a significant contributor to the Chromium project, in a way that can make not just Microsoft Edge — but other browsers as well — better on both PCs and other devices.
Over the next year or so, we’ll be making a technology change that happens “under the hood” for Microsoft Edge, gradually over time, and developed in the open so those of you who are interested can follow along. The key aspects of this evolution in direction are:

1. We will move to a Chromium-compatible web platform for Microsoft Edge on the desktop. Our intent is to align the Microsoft Edge web platform simultaneously (a) with web standards and (b) with other Chromium-based browsers. This will deliver improved compatibility for everyone and create a simpler test-matrix for web developers.

2. Microsoft Edge will now be delivered and updated for all supported versions of Windows and on a more frequent cadence. We also expect this work to enable us to bring Microsoft Edge to other platforms like macOS. Improving the web-platform experience for both end users and developers requires that the web platform and the browser be consistently available to as many devices as possible. To accomplish this, we will evolve the browser code more broadly, so that our distribution model offers an updated Microsoft Edge experience + platform across all supported versions of Windows, while still maintaining the benefits of the browser’s close integration with Windows.

3. We will contribute web platform enhancements to make Chromium-based browsers better on Windows devices. Our philosophy of greater participation in Chromium open source will embrace contribution of beneficial new tech, consistent with some of the work we described above. We recognize that making the web better on Windows is good for our customers, partners and our business – and we intend to actively contribute to that end.
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