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Ubuntu To Look At Replacing Firefox With Chromium

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  • #61
    Originally posted by allenmaher View Post
    This is the domain of the tinfoil hat wearing people of the net. In tinfoil hat speak apologist is a mild form of derision. Don't take it personally, paranoia rules the forums.
    Matters of principle can't be accused to be paranoia.

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    • #62
      Firefox and cookieless tracking

      Originally posted by wargames View Post
      Hi Luke,

      That's good to know. My Firefox installation is reported as unique though. I think it has something to do with the fact that the browser is reporting the installed fonts (and their names) to the analyzing site. Why the hell do they allow that ? This makes cookieless tracking very easy as you said.
      You do have to futz with it a bit. You really need to use Panopticlick for this purpose, as they have a pretty good set of browser fingerprinting software to test against. Look at the data they return, and look for unusual values. Avoid using versions of Firefox that are too new or too old. Firefox 11 and earlier (Like Torbrowser uses) report their actual window size as the screen resolution. This will ALWAYS be unique except for the default opening size, so NEVER resize that window in Torbrowser! Later versions report total available screen resolution of only the monitor Firefox is on, use a common resolution only.

      Extensions don't seem to be a problem, but run either a common set of plugins or none at all. Be SURE to disable gnome-shell integration, cinnamon integration, etc! They are reported by Javascript used to fingerprint plugins, and greatly narrow down the range of possible browsers, often enough for Panopticlick's sample size to be too small to see more than once instance, thus you come up unique. For the same reason, if you use any plugins at all, you must install Flash (any version). If you cannot use Flash, disable all plugins,

      Do NOT install any uncommon fonts, and be sure to have all the usual ones installed. Most Ubuntu installs of any particular version all have the same fonts installed. Also, consider copying the user-agent from Torbrowser and setting Firefox in about:config to report it, you will strip out some identifying information, in my case enough to make the difference. This is it, it claims to be Windows.

      Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; rv:10.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/10.0

      Although Windows with a Totem video player is a giveaway that you use some form of Linux, so many people spoof useragents that that does not make my normal Firefox browser come up as unique. Standard I concern myself with is "enough for a search warrant."

      When it counts, use Torbrowser! You block anyone from logging your IP address, as well as coming up very common in Panopticlic due to anti-fingerprinting precautions taken by the Tor folks in setting up their custom version of Firefox. Mine comes up as one out of 9,180 with
      Javascript enabled, better than my normal install with it disabled.

      One last thing I always do is this: I copy my .mozilla directory into a ramdisk by a script and run from it. Same script cleans out the .macromedia flash cookie directory on closing. This way nobody can set a "supercookie" that won't be cleaned out on closing the browser and deleting it's directory from ram. In Torbrowser, which runs from it's own folder, no script is needed to do this, just drop a copy of the whole folder into /tmp and run from there.

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      • #63
        Originally posted by tancrackers View Post
        And boo hoo, it's on "by default." Is it really that hard to disable a simple, built-in option?
        When you find one such anti-feature enabled by default, it makes you ask, what else is enabled by default.

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        • #64
          Originally posted by smitty3268 View Post
          I could list a 100 ways firefox is better, but for lite use chromium might be the better choice and it almost certainly is for phone and tablet use right now. So this probably makes sense for Canonical.
          Take a minute or two to browse your phone or tablet over to ANY website that is render heavy. Watch chrome fall flat on its face and peg your CPU. Watch chrome become totally unresponsive. Watch chrome do the chunky scroll. Now try the same site on Firefox, watch it run fluid, smooth, and responsive. Chrom[e/ium] is absolutely trash on mobile. The only reason it is even marginally acceptable on desktop systems is because you have so much processing power than you don't notice just how horrible it actually is.

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          • #65
            Originally posted by RealNC View Post
            The code is there for all to see. If you find something in there that's spyware, feel free to report it.

            It uses Google services and servers for many jobs. They collect your data.

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            • #66
              All server records are subject to subpeona

              Originally posted by allenmaher View Post
              I read pharonix for news on exciting upcoming linux development... I read the forums when I want to laugh at the tinfoil hat crowd. Keep posting guys. Seriously, this should be bottled. Conspiracy lurking around every corner, they are reading my keystrokes, company-X (read Canonical most of the time) is out to subvert our goals and make money. Not that this post is the worst offender, by far.

              I would say relax, but I don't want to spoil my amusement.
              All server records are subject to subpeona! That means when you use computers for activities you want to deny the courts access to, you must take precautions against being tracked. Why do you think Tor exists? OK, I will give an example. Suppose someone makes a post a certain activist news site at which I am an editor, during a Republican Convention, and Secret Service doesn't like it. We don't log IP addresses, so prior raids to seize servers got nothing. With no third party embeds on the site, you can't back door IP log us by going to Youtube or Facebook. Now suppose someone uses Chromium and forgets to turn off the "search assistant" and similar items. Again, a subpeona to Google for all partial typings of our URL would get a list of about 2% all posters who used Chome or its varients. That's what Google logs. If you were on that list-and your typing matched the timestamp of the offending article, you might get cops with machine guns raiding your house. This happens in my scene, so it's not tinfoil hattery to take active measures to block it. This is why some activist news sites now recommend only the "tails" Tor-based live distro for high-security work. 2% doesn't sound like much, but statistically a 2% chance of 10 years in prison is an expeectation of 72 days behind bars!

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              • #67
                Originally posted by Ericg View Post
                Any specific reason for the sarcasm, Calinou? The Pentium 3 line especially was uncalled for. I care about ram usage because my laptop has soldered on ram so I'm locked at 4GB so I do have to care a out ram usage. and no I'd you're anything like me you have more than 5 tabs open. maybe I'm the exception but I frequently have 10+
                I still have the Eeepc 701 (with 2g of ram) which happens to use the Pentium M, a variant of p3 (running @630Mhz), with Xubuntu 12.04 and guess what browser... Firefox. It's not particularly slow, specially because of Adblock/Noscript/Ghostery.

                It helped me recently to browse forums and get info to recover an unrelated bios upgrade near disaster of my desktop machine. Never trust Asus (don't update when it works), their ezflash is crap (downgrades are blocked!) it was flashrom and linux who rescued it.

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                • #68
                  Originally posted by droidhacker View Post
                  Take a minute or two to browse your phone or tablet over to ANY website that is render heavy. Watch chrome fall flat on its face and peg your CPU. Watch chrome become totally unresponsive. Watch chrome do the chunky scroll. Now try the same site on Firefox, watch it run fluid, smooth, and responsive. Chrom[e/ium] is absolutely trash on mobile. The only reason it is even marginally acceptable on desktop systems is because you have so much processing power than you don't notice just how horrible it actually is.
                  This is so true, but there are a couple of factors that come into play here including screen size and resolution: the larger the screen and the higher the res, the more noticeable chrome's haggishness becomes. For this reason I can only use FF on my Tegra 2 tablet. Strangely orientation makes a difference too: scrolling is less choppy in landscape orientation. The latest Chrome beta for Android has gotten better than just a few months ago in this respect, but still terrible compared to FF for Android.

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                  • #69
                    Agreed. Firefox mobile is pretty much the best Android browser there is, for the last year or so.

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