My technology friends will probably laugh that it has taken me so long to make this switch: yesterday I finally began using the Google Chrome browser full-time. It was not without it's challenges, but worth it seeing that I was ready to throw Firefox (FF) "out the window" if that were even possible without throwing my awesome Sony Vaio VGN-Z laptop out with it.
See, ever since I upgraded to Windows 7 (which BTW I think is a great improvement over Vista and XP), anytime I would run Flash within FF, I would get stuttering video. Frustrating because there was plenty of CPU headroom and it shouldn't have mattered anyway because I have hardware video acceleration with my Flash supported video card. Never could figure out the problem. Searching the web produced many people with the same problem but no solution. Literally in forum after forum, someone would describe my exact problem and there would be zero, nada, zilch solutions. I only have empirical evidence, but I feel like FF is failing to keep up performance-wise with Chrome.
So, it was time to see if I could make the switch to Chrome because it did not exhibit the bad Flash behavior. I have attempted to use Chrome in the past, but I had become particularly accustomed to a number of FF add-ons and in particular my hyper-custom FF tab behavior provided by TabMix+. Control of tabs in vanilla Chrome was simply not going to cut it and extensions are so new, there isn't a very well developed eco-system of truly good extensions. In the past, to even attempt to get similar tab behavior in Chrome I had to install a ton of little, podunk, extensions and never could get the browser usable. Lucky for me that yesterday I found a modified version of Chrome called ChromePlus, which natively added much of the functionality that had previously been missing. I still had to install some of the podunk extensions to perfect my experience, but now I have a fully functional Chrome with working Flash and I don't miss FF at all.
For your amusement, here is a list of extensions I have added to ChromePlus to give me most of what I had with TabMix+:
- TabsPlus - Activates tabs in last used order (with several other useful options)
- New Tab Redirect - Sets a user-specified URL to load in new tabs
- NewTab - Open a link in a new tab easily with an icon on the link
- Tabs to the front - Brings newly created tabs to the foreground
And for completeness here are some of my other extensions if you would like to make the switch:
- Google Voice
- Docs PDF/PowerPoint Viewer
- Reader Plus
- RSS Subscription Extensions
- Secbrowsing - plugin version checker
- Session Manager
- Xmarks Bookmarks Sync