As a result of my FormData frustrations I thought I’d give TenFourFox a proper whirl and at the same time try FireFox 4 as my default on Windows (instead of Chrome) so I could also try out the synchronisation service.
Firefox 4 (in general)
- Out of the box i don’t think it looks as good as Chrome or Camino, etc, but thanks to the high level of customisation you can - after quite a bit of fiddling - get an ok result (one that uses less vertical space than Chrome, which is pretty good).
- However, it requires slightly different UI tweaks for each platform
- Tabs on top on OSX actually uses ever so slightly more vertical space!
- The biggest problem on Windows (for me) is the modal dialogue for proxy authentication, but only because I use Lastpass and so I can’t then get to the Lastpass button to get the password - (I have to launch a new browser window). In Chrome I don’t have this problem as the authentication dialog isn’t modal; although I used to have a whole bigger problem where opening new tabs would randomly lock up Chrome altogether until I figured out it was because I had “DNS Prefetching” (or “Predict network actions to improve page load performance” as it now seems to be called) checked, which must cause some hidden, impossible to get to, authentication dialog to appear in the background - we have very aggressive and annoying proxy authentication at work. It sucks.
- Other annoyance (minor) on Windows is that I’d set Chrome as PDF viewer instead of Acrobat and actually prefer this over launching Acrobat reader; I always have a browser window open so this is much quicker for me. I wish Firefox had the same.
Just out of interest I thought I’d see how TenFourFox performed at the Sunspider benchmark, since the developer is very clever and finished implementing nanojit for PPC.
|Camino||13558.8ms +/- 5.5%|
|TenFourFox||5667.5ms +/- 1.7%|
|Safari 5||10051.2ms +/- 11.5%|
|Webkit nightly||9637.7ms +/- 6.9%|
|Firefox 3.6 (equivalent to Camino)||926.8ms +/- 2.6%|
|Firefox 4 (equivalent to TenFourFox)||375.9ms +/- 1.0%|
|Safari 5||364.2ms +/- 2.8%|
|Webkit nightly||377.1ms +/- 1.4%|
|Internet Explorer 8||5245.8ms +/- 2.2%|