Sunday 06 February 2022
Web browsers are applications that allows you to view information displayed on web pages on the World Wide Web and local networks. By entering a URL (uniform resource locator), or web address, you can obtain information on practically any subject. HTTP is the common protocol for web browsers for displaying web pages, while there are other protocols you can access information, such as HTTPS, Gopher, FTP, and RTSP.
Firefox is the default browser for Ubuntu, which is one of the most popular for many other operating systems. With this already preinstalled and updated through the Ubuntu repositories, it is recommended only advanced users use the documentation to install newer versions.
Firefox provides many features that enhance the browsing experience:
- Conforms with current web standards
- Strong security standards when using HTTPS
- Blocks advertising pop-up windows
- Allows you to open multiple pages on the same window
- Perform searches on various web sites using the Search bar
- Supports add-ons and themes
There are other pages within Ubuntu Documentation you can use to enhance Firefox. These are:
Opera is a closed source browser that is used on several operating systems, mobile phones, PDAs, game consoles, and interactive television. Besides browsing the Internet, it has many other features:
- Supports email and chat accounts
- Display Widgets
- View Newsfeeds
Download files with a simple BitTorrent client
- Displays thumbnail images when hovering over pages
As of version 8.5, Opera became free of charge and its ad-banner was removed. You can either download and install the .deb package, or you can use the Ubuntu repositories.
Epiphany is a GNOME-based browser that is simple to use. It uses the Gecko layout engine, developed by Mozilla, and uses categorized bookmarks instead of the typical hierarchical folder system.
Iceweasel is the name of two independent projects rebranding Firefox. One is from Gnuzilla, which contains only free software, and does not use proprietary elements, such as artwork. The other is from Debian, which shares many similarities with Firefox.
There are many other alternative browsers you can install and use, such as:
- Konqueror - KDE-based browser which is also used as a file manager and document viewer.
- Dillo - small, fast browser suitable for older or smaller computer systems.
- Lynx - text-only browser and Gopher client that can be used inside a terminal or console. There are other variants of this, such as Links, Elinks, and w3m.