Fri, Aug
30
2002

Trying Mozilla One More Time

Fri, Aug 30, 2002

I like rooting for the underdogs. In the World Cup of soccer, I always cheer for those teams who have never won before. I was really hoping that Senegal would go all the way, and Ireland is a perennial favourite. The same is true with computers. Tired of Microsoft’s monopolistic tendencies, I’ve already decided that my next computer system will be a Mac. And, for browsers, I really want Mozilla to do well so that it rises like a phoenix out of Netscape’s ashes.

Recently, Internet Explorer has been acting funny. There appears to be a proxy problem which forces my Explorer to take several minutes before loading up its first web page of the day. I thought I was the only one with this problem, but Rebecca encountered it as well.

No problem: I have more than one browser. Indeed, I tend to favour Opera. Opera is the fastest browser out there, although it’s far from perfect. It’s ad supported, for one thing, and it has some difficulty in reading javascript. You can not update your blog with it, for instance. Blogger simply will not support Opera (though they may in the future).

Which brings us back to Mozilla. Supported by one of the largest open source communities out there, Mozilla’s first release is very impressive, matching Internet Explorer very well feature for feature, and certainly for speed. But I myself have encountered several problems. There are some differences in how Mozilla reads certain web pages and, worst of all, version 1.0 had the alarming tendency of crashing my computer. I don’t know why, but my machine would freeze after I’d used Mozilla 1.0 for a long period of time. And sometimes, when I closed the program, the program would not exit gracefully.

But I hate Internet Explorer on principle, and now it seems to be trying to get back at me by being hideously slow. Opera is its usual reliable self, but key websites don’t support it. Mozilla has released version 1.1, however, which means that there is a chance that whatever was crashing my computer before has been fixed.

We shall see.

I have decided to download and install Mozilla one last time and give it a thorough run. I will log every complaint I have with it, and perhaps my comments will be useful in helping the Mozilla open source community fix the product. I honestly wish them the best of luck, but they have to do more to win my loyalty.


Complaint #1: the form to enter text on my blog at Blogger.com has been reduced to a thin line less than a line of text tall. Hopefully both Mozilla and Blogger have been notified and are working to fix this…

Complaint #2 (added 23:17): After closing Mozilla a few hours ago, reopening it caused my Explorer bar to freeze. The desktop still works, and I can alt-tab between programs, but damned if I can get the Start button to work.

Complaint #3 (added 23:45): After restarting my machine (it refused to shut down properly) everything worked fine with Mozilla and Outlook open until my machine spontaneously froze. It was a complete freeze: no amount of keyboard tricks would work. I couldn’t even shut down programs (although I was helpfully told that the Taskmon was no longer responding). Had to hit the reset button in order to fix the problem.


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