Web Browsers Suck

Coming off the heels of IE, Firefox and Safari getting hacked at the recent Pwn conference this week, I have to sit back and wonder what has happened to the browsers out there. Why must they all be hunks of junk?

IE has more security holes than swiss cheese, we all know that. Even IE8 is turning into a security nightmare. Safari is, well, and apple product that is ok, but doesn’t seem to be fast enough, nor does it have great windows support. Chrome is a bland browser based off the firefox core (does Google not know how to program its own thing from scratch) that reall does not make it easy to keep track of my RSS feeds.

Then there is my beloved Firefox, which is becoming the bloated hunk of junk that it was never supposed to be. Seriously, I can open up to my iGoogle home page, and it takes forever to be able to do anything. At least IE I am able to start navigating within 30 seconds of opening the browser. Firefox takes 2 minutes minimum (yes I’ve timed it). Then there is the fact that it has a huge memory hole that just keeps sucking up memory for as long as you have it open. this is a major issue that the Firefox community needs to address, because when you have multiple programs open, and your web browser causes you to have to reboot, well, this becomes a pain for business.

I’ve tried opera, but wasn’t real impressed with it either. I don’t know, maybe I’m asking too much from a browser. Somewhat Secure, fast, and easy to use with a few nice features. Oh yeah, and you better be able to run the WOT addon.

And the pain of Automagical Updates

Before I get started let me say this, I believe in patching, and updating systems and software. It is essential to security fo a system.

That being said, there is something to be said about forcing updated software by calling it a high priority update. Yep, I’m talking about IE8 yet again. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve used it, and for general web browsing, it is ok, although a lot of sites still seem broken when using it.Some of it is because of the higher security settings built into IE8 the rest because a lot of sites are not optimized for IE8 yet.

The problem is that it is listed as a high priority update, and if you have a machine set to automatically install critical updates, it gets automatically installed on your machine. This is totally against the statement from Microsoft that IE8 is optional. The non-tech person does not know to check, nor is expected to know how to decline the installation of something like IE8. All of a sudden this is costing my clients money, due to the fact that they have to pay me to remove IE8 and then reinstall IE7 on their machine.

Yeah, its nice for my revenu, but it makes the IT world look bad overall. Clients jsut want things to work, and I can’t blame them on that. I just want things to work also. Microsoft doesn’t seem to care about anything except market share and money, and with more and more viable options coming out, they better start learning that reputation means everything, and properly working software is the way to get more market share and money.

Beta Testing practices

So here is a question for everyone, When you beta test software such as IE8 or Firefox 3.5, do you have a special machine to load them on, how long to you test them for, and what do you feel the best practices are?

I have been remiss in doing a lot of beta testing mostly because I don’t want to loose any access or break anything on my machines, so I fifugred I”d ask around so I can give better reviews on this blog.