Firefox 13 will introduce silent updates

Last year, in an apparent display of one-upmanship, Mozilla decided to speed up Firefox’s release cycle dramatically. The result? We went from Firefox 4 to Firefox 11 in just under a year.

Trouble is, Firefox’s update mechanism still involves an old-fashioned installer, and being confronted with an update every six weeks can get a little tiresome. That is, happily, all about to change. Mozilla has announced that "silent updates" will be introduced in Firefox 13 later this year:

To cater to update fatigue, updates will now be downloaded and installed silently in the background. It means that startup and shutdown of the web browser won’t be affected by installation routines. Additionally, the What’s New page displayed after an update can now be displayed depending if there is important information needed to be displayed to the end user. Silent updates are currently planned to land in Firefox 13.

Chrome’s silent updating is one of the reasons I switched from Firefox a couple of years back. The convenience factor is pretty huge, so I’m happy to see Firefox heading down the same path.

Silent updates are a big deal for non-tech-savvy users, too—and not just from a security standpoint. In a perfect world, everybody would be running the latest version of their browser of choice, and web developers would be able to use the latest and greatest web technologies without worrying about backward-compatibility.

Comments closed
    • Ihmemies
    • 8 years ago

    My Firefox 11.0 looks exactly like my Firefox 3.0 looked like. Those who are talking BS about forced UI changes have no clue at all.

    • LoneWolf15
    • 8 years ago

    This will ensure I use the long-term release at work when it happens. There are numerous web-enabled apps we use to manage our client’s resources, and I can’t take the chance that an update will break things.

    It’s for this reason that I’d really prefer to control my update path. That, and I can wait to update until I’m sure it won’t break any extensions.

    • blitzy
    • 8 years ago

    that picture looks like a beaver with the firefox tail

    • Thresher
    • 8 years ago

    Pretty much guarantees that Mozilla will never be used on any equipment owned by my employer.

    • Entroper
    • 8 years ago

    [quote<]Chrome's silent updating is one of the reasons I switched from Firefox a couple of years back. The convenience factor is pretty huge, so I'm happy to see Firefox heading down the same path.[/quote<] Really? I mean, really? You're "fatigued" from seeing a notification and clicking "OK" once every 6 weeks?

    • can-a-tuna
    • 8 years ago

    Silent Killer.

    • entropy13
    • 8 years ago

    I hate silent updates. I can’t hear them when they’re coming and then *bam* they’re there.

    *ba dum tish*

      • Grigory
      • 8 years ago

      Don’t quit your dayjob.

    • Stargazer
    • 8 years ago

    [quote<]Last year, in an apparent display of one-upmanship, Mozilla decided to speed up Firefox's release cycle dramatically. The result? We went from Firefox 4 to Firefox 11 in just under a year. Trouble is, Firefox's update mechanism still involves an old-fashioned installer, and being confronted with an update every six weeks can get a little tiresome.[/quote<] These are two unrelated things. There have actually been *fewer* *updates* since Firefox shifted to the faster release cycle. Sure, the speed of new *major* versions have gone up considerably, but the number of point releases has also dropped, and the *total* number of updates/time has actually gone down. That people see the necessary interaction with updates themselves as a bigger problem now is probably mostly psychological. That said, I think that it's great that they're adding this, and will most likely be migrating my parents back to Firefox from Chrome when it starts taking effect.

      • Taddeusz
      • 8 years ago

      Seems to me they’re just playing the version game all over again. IMHO, the last few versions have been minor revisions at best but yet they are giving them major revision numbers. What’s the point?

        • Stargazer
        • 8 years ago

        That too seems to be mostly psychological.

        • Flatland_Spider
        • 8 years ago

        I think they just like breaking extensions. Granted, I’m on the beta channel, but that seems to be the biggest perk to the new version scheme.

    • sircharles32
    • 8 years ago

    I’m still awaiting an official 64-bit variant for Windows (not the beta software) and proper multi-core support (which in my opinion, is the greater need).

    I currently running Palemoon 64-bit, so like I said, waiting for multi-core support.

      • Deanjo
      • 8 years ago

      While I see that there is a want for a native 64-bit version, there is really no need for a 64-bit browser so far (unless you want FF to be able to start leaking even more memory).

        • sircharles32
        • 8 years ago

        My usage has memory constantly north of 3GB, just for the executable.
        When I was running the vanilla 32-bit version, it would become unusable and eventually crash.
        So, mine is a need, not a want.

          • Deanjo
          • 8 years ago

          If your usage is constantly north of 3GB in a browser you are suffering from a memory leak.

        • bcronce
        • 8 years ago

        64bit does have a few extra security features, but nothing really “great”.

        The extra registers could help increase efficiency a bit. Many encryption/compression algorithms can get major speed ups in native 64bit.

          • Deanjo
          • 8 years ago

          While comparatively the encryption/compression algorithms may see a major speed up you are talking a matter of milliseconds which the end user could not perceive as any difference in speed. The only real advantage is that a 64-bit compiled application has (talking in the realm of items like web browsers) is that it has a lot more special instruction set support then a 32-bit version does when it is compiled to support the lowest common supported instruction set across processors. 64-bit apps all can all have SSE2 support for example where compiling SSE2 on a 32-bit version may render it unable to run on some 32-bit processors as they don’t all have SSE2 support.

        • Tumbleweed
        • 8 years ago

        There is no reason a 64-bit browser would leak even worse than a 32-bit one. Waterfox, a 64-bit version of Firefox, in fact leaks FAR LESS memory than 32-bit Firefox. It takes up a bit more memory than 32-bit FF before FF starts leaking, but since it doesn’t seem to have a leak problem, it winds up using far less memory in practice. It’s also much snappier for those of us who keep lots of tabs open.

      • Neutronbeam
      • 8 years ago

      What about Waterfox? It synced all my bookmarks etc., from my 32-bit version and has worked fine– [url<]http://waterfoxproject.org/[/url<]

    • sweatshopking
    • 8 years ago

    wait, cyril, you [i<] changed your browser rather than click an update button like twice a year? [/i<] is it really that hard to do?

      • Deanjo
      • 8 years ago

      Of course if you were an IE user it would require 5 or 6 clicks and a reboot.

      • Jigar
      • 8 years ago

      Like i said before we need voting button for the news and article.

        • Palek
        • 8 years ago

        Why? Vocal members already have a perfectly functioning way of expressing their (dis)approval. All a thumbs up/down system would achieve is provide a way for fanbois/haters to rate “undesirable” articles/reviews down to oblivion.

          • dpaus
          • 8 years ago

          Personally, I’d love to see the thumbs feature modified in one small way: hovering your mouse over each thumb symbol would display a list of the usernames who had clicked on it.

            • Kurotetsu
            • 8 years ago

            So you know exactly who to call out and thus make the ensuing flame(s) more personal? Yeah, I can see why the admins wouldn’t want any of that. Its bad enough that that doesn’t stop the bigger trolls on this site, the ones who have come to the conclusion that getting thumbed down is some sort of badge of honor and/or are VERY VERY vocal about it when it happens. I don’t think adding a feature that makes it even easier to troll people is a good idea at all.

            • sweatshopking
            • 8 years ago

            THEN I’D TEACH ALL OF YOU BASTARDS A LESSON

            • crabjokeman
            • 8 years ago

            I GAVE YOU THE THUMBS DOWN (AND I TOO CAN USE CAPS LOCK FOR MAXIMUM ANNOYANCE).

          • VILLAIN_xx
          • 8 years ago

          Is that a bad thing to vote? I’m not even opposed to the articles and blogs getting their own vote system. You just have to include those number of “haters” into the expected number of votes and the loyal members of the site would gladly vote Up. Also, the problem you speak of already exists within the comments section as well. Some members on this site have a nemesis or a crowd of haters and even when they say something on topic they get voted down. I could have cared less to begin with the thumbs down/up system, its obvious now that some of us purposely say obnoxious things to see how many thumbs down they get. Perhaps the thumbs up system could be paired with making the undesirable comment “disappear” or resized down when it hits a certain amount of negatives? Yes, i think it can.

      • NeelyCam
      • 8 years ago

      “I want it all, and I want it [i<]now[/i<]"

      • Flying Fox
      • 8 years ago

      It went from 4 to 11 in a year, this should mean more than twice a year.

        • bcronce
        • 8 years ago

        FF’s new version system is only 1 year old. Cyril claimed he changed a “few” years back, which is when it was more like twice per year.

          • Stargazer
          • 8 years ago

          There were 20 updates for Firefox 3.0, 20 for Firefox 3.5, and 26 for Firefox 3.6.

          (FF 4, 5, 7, 8 and 9 had 2 each, and FF 6 and 10 had 3 each)

      • burntham77
      • 8 years ago

      Yeah, hold on a second. Firefox brings more usability to the table via add-ons than ANY other browser out there. It’s worth the extra few clicks now and then.

      Unlike Windows 8.

      • Cyril
      • 8 years ago

      I said it was one of the reasons, not the main reason. 😉

      And yes, as some people have already pointed out, Firefox 4 -> 11 in a year means more than two clicks.

        • sweatshopking
        • 8 years ago

        cyril, you know i love my hyperbole, but, bro, you crazy. imma stick with my opera, cause it’s the sex.

    • Vivaldi
    • 8 years ago

    $ sudo apt-get update

    [… wait 3 seconds …]

    $ sudo apt-get upgrade

    [… wait $arbitrary_time_determined_by_connection_provider seconds…]

    The result is *ALL* the software on my entire system has been instantly updated, on my own schedule, and it’s integrity: validated by a community of professionals.

    It’s time to take a play from the (GNU)/Linux playbook. It doesn’t get much more streamlined than what Mint / Ubuntu (Debian) have managed to pull off for their ecosystems. (The other “flavors” are quite good too.)

      • sweatshopking
      • 8 years ago

      nerd.

        • Vivaldi
        • 8 years ago

        To quote the great Jon Stewart, I believe the word you’re looking for is: expert.

        Obligatory:

        [url<]http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/wed-january-18-2012/ko-computer[/url<] Jump ahead to 3:28 minutes, although the entire thing is 100%, absolute gold.

      • Duck
      • 8 years ago

      Witchcraft! Be gone, heathen.

      • Madman
      • 8 years ago

      You can even do “gedit ~/.bashrc”, and create an alias for that.

      • Deanjo
      • 8 years ago

      Two commands? That’s twice the work of openSUSE.

      zypper up (or zypper dup).

        • Flatland_Spider
        • 8 years ago

        In Fedora:
        yum -y update

      • Alchemist07
      • 8 years ago

      but none of the latest windows software games work 😉

        • LauRoman
        • 8 years ago

        Those games don’t work on Mac OSX or Android or iOS or sometimes even older versions of Windows. Your point is exactly… what?

          • Deanjo
          • 8 years ago

          Hell half the time the brand new games do not run on the newest windows system until they have a crapload of patches applied to them.

        • Madman
        • 8 years ago

        I’m almost exclusively Ubuntu user for a year. And although games are one small issue, I am starting to realise that it’s not that bad, and I actually prefer Ubuntu over Windows. Few days back I caught myself with the idea that I need to install Windows on secondary partition of the laptop I recently brought. But I thought a little, and you know what, there was not a single reason why I have to or want to.

      • notfred
      • 8 years ago

      And you can set those up to run automatically every day as well.

      I’ve got an Ubuntu mirror on my fileserver that syncs every night and I run GigE. My wait is determined by the fileserver hard drive speed, not by my ISP connect speed.

      • zamb
      • 8 years ago

      Or better:
      $ sudo sh -c ‘apt-get update && apt-get upgrade’

      • Flatland_Spider
      • 8 years ago

      One small nit.

      apt-get update
      apt-get dist-upgrade

      apt-get [b<]dist-[/b<]upgrade will update all packges; apt-get upgrade will hold packages back.

    • PeterD
    • 8 years ago

    I hate silent updat’es.
    I want ot know what my pc is doing, especially if it does it online.

      • Ryhadar
      • 8 years ago

      This is my line of thinking as well. I hope we’ll have the option to opt-out of it.

        • Stargazer
        • 8 years ago

        Firefox is big on providing options, so I’d be surprised if we won’t get the option to opt out (though it’s possible it’ll require going into about:config).

          • Arclight
          • 8 years ago

          OPT OUT
          [url<]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oFVNbPuyrXk[/url<]

      • swiffer
      • 8 years ago

      Yeah, but my father hates manual updates. When he sits down to check his mail or read something online, the last thing he wants is for Firefox to stop him and tell him it has to update before he can do anything. Even if the update process is just a few buttons and a restart, he’s cursing and cancelling it.

      So I end up doing all his updates when I visit him, which isn’t as often as new patches are released to fix security holes.

      I welcome the silent updater with open arms.

        • Farting Bob
        • 8 years ago

        If they go the Chrome route you dont have to do anything. It will download when available then just update itself next time you restart the browser. That would be very nice.

      • The Wanderer
      • 8 years ago

      Agreed.

      Especially since the Firefox people seem to be taking the “major-version bump every six weeks” thing as license to make major UI changes whenever they want to – in ways which break functionality I find critical, and without the ability to revert to the old behavior easily (or necessarily at all).

      I’m still on Firefox 3.x. So is my workplace, except for a few computers which have been individually upgraded. I don’t like not getting security patches and other bug fixes, but the price of continuing to get them (the aforementioned UI changes) is too high for me to pay.

      Of course, I’m not going to see the automatic silent updates unless I upgrade to a current Firefox version first – but who’s to say there won’t be further changes down the line, which break things for other people just as badly as the 4.x ones broke things for me? It’s bad enough not having the option to decline those changes without accepting the security risk; to not even be notified of the changes before they happen, and thus not have the [i<]chance[/i<] to decline them even if I [i<]do[/i<] accept that risk, is worse. Automatic, silent updating does have definite advantages, some of which have been pointed out already; I do recognize, acknowledge and agree with them. It's just that there are serious disadvantages to it as well, as long as the developers are willing to make major UI and/or functionality changes without making them entirely optional.

        • BobbinThreadbare
        • 8 years ago

        I think ideally, Mozilla would have kept the old version system and bug fixes would be silently updated, but major version changes would ask you.

        • Stargazer
        • 8 years ago

        [quote<]Especially since the Firefox people seem to be taking the "major-version bump every six weeks" thing as license to make major UI changes whenever they want to - in ways which break functionality I find critical, and without the ability to revert to the old behavior easily (or necessarily at all).[/quote<] Could you give an example?

          • The Wanderer
          • 8 years ago

          Most of the changes in 4.x and later which I found problematic were more of the “minor but annoying” variety, though that annoyance factor itself was bad enough.

          The only ones I can think of offhand which rose to the level of deal-killers were the removal of the status bar (which, with a few tweaks, I think I may be able to get used to), the breaking of the indispensable BarTab add-on by incorporating only the less important parts of its functionality and claiming it was a “built-in BarTab” (which is at least partly the fault of the developer, who took that claim as cause to stop developing the add-on), and the breaking of the invaluable tabMinWidth about:config option (which came much more recently than 4.x).

          I also don’t like the removal of the drop-down history arrow, since the two built-in replacements (click and hold for one second to bring up the original history menu, or right-click to instantly bring up a similar but not identical menu) aren’t entirely satisfactory, and the only add-on I’ve found to bring back the original behavior takes up considerably more screen space. That may be more minor, though.

          I also find the removal of the ‘http://’ prefix in the URL bar to be an incredibly bad idea, and the only reason I don’t include it in the list of deal-breakers is that it’s easily corrected by an about:config preference.

          That’s mostly from my notes of “what’s changed in a bad way and how to fix it”, made the last time I tried upgrading. It’s been a few versions since then (I think that was FF7 or so), so there may be other problematic changes, and there could also be other problems I never noticed before reverting to my previous install.

            • Stargazer
            • 8 years ago

            The status bar was removed in Firefox 4.
            It seems like BarTab also stopped working with Firefox 4.
            tabMinWidth was apparently also removed in Firefox 4. (http://kb.mozillazine.org/Browser.tabs.tabMinWidth)
            The drop-down history arrow disappeared with Firefox 4.

            The only thing that you mention that was removed later is the removal of the http: prefix (FF7), but as you say that can be easily taken care of with an about:config setting.

            So, since these changes all happened with Firefox 4, I don’t see how they justify this claim:
            [quote<]Especially since the Firefox people seem to be taking the "major-version bump every six weeks" thing as license to make major UI changes whenever they want to - in ways which break functionality I find critical, and without the ability to revert to the old behavior easily (or necessarily at all).[/quote<] Are there any things that fit this description that have been changed *after* Firefox 4?

            • The Wanderer
            • 8 years ago

            Hmm. I could have sworn that the discussion I read about the removal of tabMinWidth came well after FF4, but possibly I just got the dates wrong.

            In that case, the answer is no, I don’t have any examples ready to mind. I think I have noticed such in the past, in Firefox new-version change lists, but since I haven’t been upgrading I haven’t paid close attention to such. However, it’s possible that I’m actually just extrapolating from the fact that they made such big changes with FF4 (at the beginning of the new-major-version-every-six-weeks scheme) to the expectation that they would continue on the pattern they had begun with; if so, that extrapolation may well not be correct.

            However, that’s also part of my problem with the “new major version every six weeks” scheme. Major changes, such as significant UI changes, are supposed to be reserved for new major versions; if you don’t want the changes, then you can monitor the work being done on the new major version, and you can register objections and/or plan a workaround in advance. However, when *every* release is a major version, such major changes can come at any time – and with the new major versions coming so often, it’s not remotely practical to monitor development on all of them just to see whether any undesirable changes are in the offing.

            Edit: Actually, I think some of my remembered problems came with the changes in Thunderbird 3, which while it isn’t part of Firefox is closely enough related that they may have some overlap in my head. Those problems were actually worse, in terms of their effect on my workflow and of how hard they are to disable or revert, and it’s possible that they had a disproportionate effect on what I thought about Firefox itself.

            • Stargazer
            • 8 years ago

            Agreed.

            When a major version bump indicates significant feature changes, you can directly tell if a new version is likely to have any major changes or not, and react accordingly (e.g. research what effect any significant changes might have before updating). When “all” updates bump the major version number, you no longer get this information from the version number, and must instead investigate each version directly (or run the risk of unwanted results).

            As far as I remember there haven’t been any major changes since FF4 *yet*, but it’s bound to happen eventually, and the version number (most likely) won’t give any indication of this.

            This means that the version number now holds less information than before. Instead, they could have used the same rapid release cycle as now, but used a different numbering scheme. For instance, FF5 could have been called FF4.1, FF6 could have been FF4.2, and so on. FF5 would then have been reserved for the next release with “major” changes. Personally, I would have preferred such a numbering system.

            I suppose FF4, FF5, FF6, … looks better though, and unfortunately form often seems to win out over function.

            • The Wanderer
            • 8 years ago

            Agreed; I’ve been saying much the same thing, whenever the subject comes up, for some time now.

            I could be okay, in theory, with a “major-version releases only” numbering scheme – though it does have some issues, particularly in the realm of security fixes.

            I have no problem at all, that I’m currently aware of, with a “rapid release cycle” development method.

            But using [i<]both of them at once[/i<], and especially [i<]switching to[/i<] both of them at once, is simply a bad idea. Unfortunately, the Mozilla developers (and/or admin/marketing people who make these decisions, if the developers aren't in charge of that) don't seem to agree - which is yet one more point against my willingness to trust their judgment in anything but actual code. (Some of the aforementioned UI changes, and the attitudes displayed towards them and to the objections to them in the relevant Bugzilla discussions, are most of the others.)

      • Bensam123
      • 8 years ago

      I’m going to disagree. I don’t want to know what my PC is doing all the time, because frankly a lot of tasks are trivial and not worth monitoring. We have computers in the first place to automate a lot of tasks so it saves us time.

      Being able to tell what your computer is doing if you really want to is different then being alerted to every little change on it and asking permission though.

        • The Wanderer
        • 8 years ago

        True, there’s no need to keep active track of what your computer is doing to keep things working.

        However, it [i<]is[/i<] important to keep track of what your computer is doing to [i<]change[/i<] things, and make them work differently. Updates which aren't intended to change functionality, or to change it only by fixing bugs, are one thing; it's still possible that you might not want them (if for example you don't trust the developers to have done enough testing yet, i.e. you don't want to install a new version until it's been out for a while), but by and large they aren't likely to cause any problems. However, updates which [i<]are[/i<] intended to change functionality are very much another matter - and there's no indication that this silent-update system will treat those any differently from the more seamless, easily ignorable updates. I can't speak for anyone else on the subject, but that's the primary reason why I would want to turn this off if I ever upgrade to a version which includes it. (Which I may - it looks like the UI changes which caused me problems may finally have fixes, now or in the near future.)

          • Bensam123
          • 8 years ago

          I guess that’s where the ideology is splitting off. On one hand you have people who are against change and you think you’re getting one package instead of a brand. On the other you have people who believe you’re actually getting a product, no matter what form it takes.

          If this had system wide ramifications, I think I’d agree. As in it breaks your system and makes it unusable. UI upgrades, changing things around, but offering the same functionality is quite a bit different. In this case it’s a web browser and you hold that it’s going to work regardless of what they do to it against their name, Mozilla in this case. If they ruin their browser or break it so it doesn’t work, then their brand name suffers. People will switch to Chrome or Opera (:D). At some level you have to trust the company doing things and if they ruin that trust, they pay for it in their own way. There are people on the other side of the software and they do understand this.

          Honestly, this is completely putting aside the mom’n’pop arguments everyone else is using and this particular perspective is coming from a power user. Most users aren’t going to care and if things break, they use something else. That said, there is usually a way to turn off automatic updates if it really irks you.

            • The Wanderer
            • 8 years ago

            The thing is, though, the UI is a fairly important part of the program. It’s all most people ever interact with, after all.

            One of the main reasons I switched to Firefox in the first place was its customizability, via various about:config options (not necessarily documented) and the availability of add-ons; I could make it work exactly the way I wanted it to. With the UI changes since 3.x, doing that has become notably harder, and in some cases potentially impossible.

            The UI I’ve set up in Firefox (and, to a greater and potentially more practical extent, Thunderbird) is exactly the way I want it for my workflow. Changing that UI requires me to either expend effort changing it back, or change my workflow. I shouldn’t have to do the former, and the latter is just backwards.

            Now, that said, I’ve got no objection to their making UI changes – as long as they A: make them optional, and B: turn them [i<]off[/i<] by default. Probably the single biggest UI change in the history of Web browsers, aside from the switch to graphical browsers from a purely text-mode style, is the addition of tabs. If memory serves, Firefox handled that one completely transparently; the most you had to do was uncheck the "open new windows in a new tab" and "always show the tab bar" checkboxes (of which I think the latter was off by default), and as long as you never hit Ctrl-T, you could keep on browsing with the same UI as you had used before. I think that's the right way to do it; default to "the same as always", and let people who want the new features turn them on. Nobody seems to do it that way nowadays, though, and from what I've seen, certainly the Firefox people don't.

            • Stargazer
            • 8 years ago

            [quote<]I think that's the right way to do it; default to "the same as always", and let people who want the new features turn them on. Nobody seems to do it that way nowadays, though, and from what I've seen, certainly the Firefox people don't.[/quote<] That doesn't work very well if you want to push for "progress" though.

            • The Wanderer
            • 8 years ago

            True enough.

            The argument in that case would be to make the new features as unobtrusive – or at least, and more importantly, as easily-disabled – as possible, so that people who don’t want them can avoid them without having to stick with the old, outdated version. That’s what was done with tabs, more or less, and they ended up taking over quite thoroughly just on their own merits; if the newest new feature really is as good as the developers think it is, it can probably succeed the same way as well.

            • Bensam123
            • 8 years ago

            Yeah, I agree about the allowing options point. Regardless of what they do, there should be a way for people to disable them (which is usually quite easy). Unless the software gets to the point where they have to actively keep up such options in order to make them work.

      • indeego
      • 8 years ago

      This is what event viewer is for, and in this case, scheduled tasks keeps a log for as well. You could even set an alert to notify you with a gadget with a link to the log files created during update.

      • clone
      • 8 years ago

      agreed, to be honest I’ve never been troubled when FireFox mentioned to me that it needed to close the browser in order to do an update.

      was nice to know it was being updated actually.

      no interest in silent updates but I expect that FF will offer an option to disable it, if not I’ll stop using it.

    • lycium
    • 8 years ago

    the last updates seemed pretty silent to me *rimshot*

    • colinstu
    • 8 years ago

    Wait. People still need to push buttons to update their web browser?

    • Bensam123
    • 8 years ago

    Opera has been doing this for awhile… not that anyone is actually interested in Opera. >>

      • sweatshopking
      • 8 years ago

      i love it 🙂

      • Neutronbeam
      • 8 years ago

      Using Opera on a netbook now to write this; uses much less resources than anything else I’ve tried on the netbook.

      • BoBzeBuilder
      • 8 years ago

      I gave Opera a try. It’s annoying, flash always lags.. why? Opening youtube videos is a pain. Been using FireFox ever since without any issues.

        • Bensam123
        • 8 years ago

        Click on the flash video to activate the control. It ‘lags’ initially so when you have 5 billion videos opening up all over you aren’t watching, some of which may be ads, your computer doesn’t grind to a halt.

      • Palek
      • 8 years ago

      How cruel of you to taunt the small but loyal group of Opera faithful… *cough* I’m one of them *cough*

        • Bensam123
        • 8 years ago

        Just getting them to represent… I’ve been using Opera since back when you had to pay for it. 😉

      • Flatland_Spider
      • 8 years ago

      They don’t on Linux. It’s still a manual upgrade.

      Provided you’re running the version from the Opera website and not a version from a repo.

        • sweatshopking
        • 8 years ago

        that’s cause linux sucks. i use it all the time, but it’s no windows.

          • Flatland_Spider
          • 8 years ago

          Opera sucks! 😛

          Opera could setup a yum or apt repo or setup their browser to self update, like Firefox does if you download it from Mozilla and unpack it in a place where you have write permissions, and that would solve the problem.

            • stdRaichu
            • 8 years ago

            At least for debian, they provide a repo with platform-standard .debs in it, so opera is updated along with everything else in your OS. As per my other post, the installation is already done on top of your running install so the next instance of opera that’s started will be the new one.

            I’ve also been using opera since it was paid-for software (since v5.12 in fact), and I’m one of those people who actually paid for it 🙂

          • Grigory
          • 8 years ago

          I never thought I would give you a thumbs up.

        • DrCR
        • 8 years ago

        That’s called a secured system. I get a chuckle out of the occasional popups from Firefox stating it could not update. (I have the update option turned off too). I’ll use sudo or su root if/when I want to update Firefox.

      • burntham77
      • 8 years ago

      I use it on my Android tablet. So… yeah, I guess that means I don’t use it.

    • Chrispy_
    • 8 years ago

    Nice.

    Computers, phones and Tablets need an update manager that you can schedule.
    When I launch any app, I want to use it. App launch is definitely [i<]not[/i<] the best time to interrupt me, download some stuff and sometimes restart the app or even my PC. People like Adobe that run update managers have no excuse. If you have a seperate update manager running in the background ALL THE DAMN TIME, then why wait until the MOST INCONVENIENT TIME to tell me that an update is required. Personally, I feel that Windows would really benefit from a patch manager module that apps can hook into. At a scheduled time, say 3am in the morning, it'll download and install updates for all the connected software, and reboot if necessary. How hard can it be, especially all the user has to do at the moment is click "Yes, I accept, and OK"

      • Game_boy
      • 8 years ago

      Linux package managers have done this for ages. It’s just because Windows software is commercial that they refuse to work with each other and put their applications in a reasonable format for fast updating. All these update managers are part of the branding and marketing.

        • Chrispy_
        • 8 years ago

        Well exactly. Half the comments on this thread are about how effortless and simple things are under the various Linux distros.

        It’s just a shame we have to put up with this tripe under Windows, and an even bigger shame that so much software doesn’t yet run on Linux.

        • stdRaichu
        • 8 years ago

        Techine nitpick: it’s not strictly down to windows’ commercial nature, it’s the way the file locking is implemented in windows – an architectural decision taken aeons ago. I’m sure pretty much every windows user has run into an issue where you’ve been unable to even read a file because windows has it opened somewhere else, let alone write to it. Cue hunting down the process which has it open or, if you’re really unlucky and it’s a system process hogging it, rebooting your machine.

        It’s this behaviour which means running parts of the OS can’t be replaced whilst the OS is running, so updates are installed to the filesystem (but not on top of the running progs) when the system is running, and are currently copied over the OS by a subset of windows called “MinWin”. Then the updated OS boots up as per usual.

        With UNIX filesystems however, all files and folders are just pointers to an inode. Let’s say /path/to/file points to inode 1337 and is opened by $application, but then is overwritten. The new /path/to/file is now pointing at inode 80085 and any new requests coming in will grab that file, but the running instance of $application still retains its pointing to /path/to/file at 1337 even though that file technically doesn’t exist any more. As soon as $application is closed, the filesystem sees that 1337 no longer has any active handles and is free to flag it as deleted. About the only thing that linux can’t do is replace and boot into the running kernel on the fly; you can do this in most other UNIXes or you can use the third-party ksplice to do it.

        Technically, MS could have ditched their behaviour years ago, but this would have broken backwards compatibility with a load of applications (especially those using flat file “databases”) that depend on this precise locking mechanism in order to function. Linux, and UNIX before it, have had their ability to read/write/delete almost anything on the fly since inception regardless of what’s being done with it by other stuff on the system. Hence the more-often-than-not truism “those who do not understand UNIX are doomed to re-invent it, poorly”.

        Disclaimer: windows and linux/UNIX sysadmin, no fanboyism intended. They both have their pros and cons but windows’ file locking has been the bane of half my career.

      • indeego
      • 8 years ago

      Ninite Pro.

        • Chrispy_
        • 8 years ago

        If only that didn’t cost $240 a year.
        NO THANK YOU.

          • indeego
          • 8 years ago

          OK then [url=https://ninite.com/updater/<]Ninite Updater[/url<]. Ninite Pro works on 100 machines so $2.40 a year. Just throwing out options, sheesh. Hater downvoters!

      • TheMonkeyKing
      • 8 years ago

      I see some applications push their updates into the Windows update manager in Win7. I have mine scheduled to update every Tuesday morning at 3 AM, if there are updates to be installed. I can see this being a requirement in Win8 though due to the emphasis on tablets.

        • Flatland_Spider
        • 8 years ago

        Microsoft applications get to use Windows update. Third party applications still have to roll their own, and this isn’t going to change for Win8.

      • jpostel
      • 8 years ago

      The only consumer product that I know of, that is even close to this is Secunia PSI. I have had pretty good success with it. The only things that fail regularly are browser-related updates (Flash, Java). I have not spent any time troubleshooting, but I suspect it’s because I often leave Firefox open and minimized, and therefore the updates fail to complete.

      [url<]http://secunia.com/vulnerability_scanning/personal/[/url<] Linux is very good at this already, and I think MacOS is getting better with App Store updates, but Windows is a free-for-all.

      • Bensam123
      • 8 years ago

      I’m pretty sure Windows would charge a fee for people to actually use such a thing as it would be seen as a ‘service’ rather then part of their OS that makes everything better. Similar to what they do with the Xbox marketplace and sort of like Windows driver validation. That in itself completely kills off this idea, which is quite unfortunate because I agree.

      That would take a lot of wind out of Steam though as a big selling point of their platform is always keeping things up to date. >>

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