Category Archives: chromium

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No, Google Hasn’t Killed Chromecast Support in Chromium Linux Builds

linux chromecastThis week a horde of angry, pitchfork-waving readers descended upon the e-mail inbox of both OMG! sites, demanding to know why we weren’t writing about the “shocking evil” Google is waging against the open-source community. SHOCKING EVIL, PEOPLE. Firstly, Saturday is my (one) day off every week. It has been for the entire seven and a half years I’ve been doing […]

This post, No, Google Hasn’t Killed Chromecast Support in Chromium Linux Builds, was written by Joey-Elijah Sneddon and first appeared on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Developers Continue Debate on Default Browser for 13.10

firefox1The debate as to which web browser will come installed by default on Ubuntu 13.10 continues. 

Discussion on switching from the current default ‘Firefox’ to the webkit-based* ‘Chromium’ were first raised at the Virtual Ubuntu Developer Summit (vUDS) back in May.

Continuing that discussion in a post to the Ubuntu Desktop Mailing List Canonical’s Jason Warner writes:

“In the past few weeks I’ve seen quite a few articles and comments on the possible switch, and in light of those I’d like to focus this discussion a few ways.

1. This is NOT about which browser is better.
2. This is NOT about which browser has more features or X, Y or Z feature.
3. Openness and freedom are still part of our core values. However I’d rather not turn this thread into a “who is more open/free” debate.

What is important, and ultimately should be the deciding factor, is the common end user experience. Which browser, in the common case, will be the best for the general end user?”

Quality, stability and user experience as highlighted by Warner as important points for consideration.

So Which?

We conducted a vote a while back. The results gave a win for those who favoured Firefox as default (57%) compared those who favoured Chromium (43%).

Slim split, and hardly decisive.

Psrt of the rationale that started talk on switching was that idea that more people are using Chrome(ium) than Firefox in general.

Judging by visits to this site from Linux users for the last 30 days Firefox still rules the roost with 50.9% to Chrome’s (including Chromium) 46.8%.  Opera and minor webkit using browser (Web, Midori, Rekonq) make up the remaining scraps.

Is Firefox winning because it has the convenience factor of being pre-installed? Could be. What this stat certainly shows is that almost 50% of users go out of their way to use something that isn’t the default.

Bottom Line

As of yet no decision has been taken, but Warner himself states that he is ‘still leaning towards Chromium’.

Of course, the bottom line is that it doesn’t really matter which browser comes by default. Both will remain available to install from the Ubuntu Software Centre (albeit Chromium has, up until recently, been poorly maintained).

*Now a webkit fork

The post Developers Continue Debate on Default Browser for 13.10 appeared first on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Chromium Likely to Replace Firefox As Default Browser in Ubuntu 13.10

chromium logo

Saucy Salamander Could Ship with Chromium

Ubuntu 13.10 is hoping to ship with Chromium as the default web-browser in place of Mozilla Firefox.

In a discussion on the subject at the current Ubuntu Developer Summit developers expressed broad support for the change, saying that they are “leaning towards” supporting such a switch.

Ubuntu ‘s Desktop Manager, Jason Warner, who says the switch ‘feels like the right decision for the general user’, shared the main rationale behind it:

  • Google Chrome has ‘leapfrogged’ Firefox in usage
  • There is ‘clear demand’ for it from users; supplying Chromium would meet expectations
  • Switching to webkit-based browser offers consistency across convergent platforms

Warner stressed that updated versions of Firefox will remain readily available to install from the Ubuntu Software Center.

‘Concerns Addressed’

The session also saw developers tackle concerns and complaints that have prevented Chromium becoming the default browser in the past. Security, PC support, user-preferences, and methods of delivering updated packages were all touched upon.

One commonly raised ‘issue’ is that of extensions, or rather lack thereof, available the open-source browser in comparison to Firefox. Chad Miller, maintainer of Chromium in Ubuntu, explained that the Chrome Webstore offers a massive choice already, adding that “if it’s recent code, it’s almost certain someone has built it for Chrome.”

Switching to Chromium will also allow Unity Web Apps to take advantage of a proper ‘Chromeless’ state rather than the Firefox insistence on them opening in a new tab.

Sadly for those using PowerPC versions of Ubuntu Chromium’s V8 rendering engine is not available, meaning Firefox would have to ship in its place.

A final decision on whether to default to Chromium will be taken following further consultation with the Ubuntu community in the coming weeks.

Key Points:

  • Developers debating switch to Chromium
  • Chormium ‘more popular’ than Firefox, as well as more performant
  • Switch would create ‘consistency’ between Ubuntu Touch & Ubuntu desktop as both use Webkit
  • Unity Web Apps will be able to use Chromium ‘Chromeless’ mode
  • Stable releases of Chromium will be released as they’re available, much like Firefox
  • Firefox will remain updated and available to install from Software Center
  • Final decision to be taken after feedback with community

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