LBrowser != Firefox

It seems Freespire are doing the right thing after all by renaming their modified version of Firefox to something else. However, I still think there is some inconsistency in their branding. Linspire CEO Kevin Carmony claims that the browser is called Web Browser everywhere but for the actual file name. That is not entirely accurate, since LBrowser is also used to describe the product in the About window, which is where people usually look for product information. Furthermore, the upcoming splash screen just says “browser”, with a lower case b. To summarize, we have Web Browser, LBrowser, and browser, all powered by Firefox! :)

Naming issues aside, I haven’t yet found any improvements(1) in Web Browser (let’s call it that) compared to Firefox, but a few things made worse. For example, many shortcuts I use daily are changed. I can no longer middle-click on a tab to close it. I can no longer Ctrl+Tab to cycle through the opened tabs (that instead cycles between the virtual desktops). Maybe this is configurable somewhere, but it’s definitely a degraded initial experience compared to what I’m used to. There are some true bugs as well, such as a flickering mouse cursor, non-working link clicks, slow and lagging keyboard repeating, and a few misaligned pixels in the Gecko rendered output, but that’s probably expected in a beta (although I’ve never experienced problems like this in Ubuntu, beta or not). Maybe it’s KDE issues too. Coming from Gnome, I honestly don’t know.

I’m going to blog more about Freespire in general in the future, I just wanted to sort this out about LBrowser Web Browser.

(1): Ok, I have found one new feature, but I’m not sure if it’s an improvement. When you hover the mouse over a word, it becomes highlighted in yellow. If you click on it, a tiny (almost illegible) pop-up menu appears with a few somewhat confusing items, such as “Web”, and “News”. Appearantly, if you click on e.g. “Web”, a web search is performed on the highlighted word. It would have been much clearer what the menu item does if it had been labeled e.g. “Web search for [word]“, but the general idea is neat. I think it would fit much better in the normal context sensitive menu though. This yellow menu lookalike hack isn’t exactly accessible.

Update: Here’s a screenshot of the beast:

Screenshot of LBrowser

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11 thoughts on “LBrowser != Firefox

  1. tr

    Ctrl+Tab usually cycles between virtual desktops on most linux systems (at least KDE). Use Ctrl+PgUp and Ctrl+PgDown.

    Reply
  2. Randy

    Please publish screenshots of the Lbrowser/Lmail programs for those of us who do not have access to Freespire. Thanks.

    Reply
  3. Anonymous

    > I can no longer middle-click on a tab to close it.
    Neither can you in the official builds, as middlemouse.contentLoadURL is set to true in linux builds.

    > I can no longer Ctrl+Tab to cycle through the opened tabs (that instead cycles between the virtual desktops).
    This indicates a shortcut in the desktop/window manager, and not that something was changed in the browser.

    Reply
  4. Dao

    > “Web search for [word]”, but the general idea is neat.
    > I think it would fit much better in the normal context
    > sensitive menu though.

    Um, that’s part of Firefox.

    Reply
  5. David Tenser

    There really isn’t anything special to see. It looks like Firefox, with a different About box. The revamped Firefox logo is pretty slick though. I might upload a screenshot later.

    Reply
  6. David Tenser

    Anonymous, thanks for pointing this out. Appearantly, Ubuntu sets this property to false in their version. That makes more sense to me, but I guess it’s a matter of taste.

    Reply
  7. dolphinling

    That icon looks awfully like the firefox icon… certainly close enough to be considered both a derivative and confusing. IANAL, but I definitely think it violates the trademark agreement.

    (Also, I think it looks much more like a fox than a red panda. Firefox == red panda in animal terms.)

    Reply
  8. Asrail

    Folks, I think the Firefox logo was copyrights protected.
    I don’t think this logo is legal.

    Can someone contact the marketing or the legal departmente?
    The Linspire people got rights for doing it?

    Reply
  9. Luca

    Help me please…
    I just installed Firefox 2.0, and all of a sudden, my username/password isn't being inserted in the signon window (it always was before). I tried the usual suspects–I did not mistakenly tell FF not to remember the password for this site; and I also tried the remember password bookmarklet, but all to no avail–FF will not ask me to remember this password. What do I need to do to get around this?

    Reply
  10. Albert

    Please add firefox cookies/bad web sites immunization in next version!
    Firefox 2 cannot reject third party cookies!!!!!!!!

    Reply

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