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Old 06. Sep 2013, 10:15 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Return of Epic Browser

The all new Epic Browser has been released. Earlier it was based on Firefox, and the new Epic Browser is based on Chromium.

http://www.epicbrowser.com/

It really looks interesting though.

The main focus of Epic Browser this time around seems to be on privacy. The browser is stripped of almost everything related to privacy... no address bar suggestions, no URL checks, no auto translate, no reporting of even errors, ID and tracking of Chromium has been removed... and many more such features.

Haven't installed and run it yet, so can't report on how it performs, or runs.

But it really looks interesting now. Maybe it will catch the interest of many people because of the kind of privacy it offers.
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Old 07. Sep 2013, 05:26 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Was just reading the FAQ, and I had noticed this yesterday too on the site, but was not sure about it... it seems that Epic does not allow add-ons, or extensions at all. They do it because they believe that extensions are major cause of privacy leaks.

I think they are restricting it too much. While focus on privacy is great, but not allowing extensions will restrict the browser a lot. It will only make it a secondary browser, if users do get around to use it. Users might use it as a secondary browser, only when they really need it for high privacy browsing.

Maybe users won't get around to use it at all because of this restriction

Also seems like they are providing an online installer. Another negative, atleast for me.
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Old 07. Sep 2013, 07:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I've been trying it out today..
First off it took Last Pass and OneTab which are both chrome ext.
Second..it's a little too restrictive for me.. Doesn't hold the cookies I need..
Like auto login for yahoo and more
I know this is the purpose and maybe I'll keep trying it out but until I can find the settings or they add them..(can't find them)..It will stay as one of my many secondary browsers..
So far I'm liking the New Opera 16..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anupam View Post
Was just reading the FAQ, and I had noticed this yesterday too on the site, but was not sure about it... it seems that Epic does not allow add-ons, or extensions at all. They do it because they believe that extensions are major cause of privacy leaks.

I think they are restricting it too much. While focus on privacy is great, but not allowing extensions will restrict the browser a lot. It will only make it a secondary browser, if users do get around to use it. Users might use it as a secondary browser, only when they really need it for high privacy browsing.

Maybe users won't get around to use it at all because of this restriction

Also seems like they are providing an online installer. Another negative, atleast for me.
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Old 07. Sep 2013, 08:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm a bit curious as to who Epic is aimed at really.

People who know a little about internet privacy probably already have a browser that they're happy with and that allows them to pick and choose when and where privacy measures are implemented - configurable privacy, if you like - as well as allowing those add-ons that are wanted.

People who don't know anything about internet privacy won't I think understand what Epic are trying to do, and will just be annoyed by the lack of auto-log in, browsing history etc.

Must admit the on-line installer has put me off even trying it out, so I can't actually say anything about it.
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Old 07. Sep 2013, 10:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Or people who know all about internet privacy and see Epic as redundant and limited flexibility
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Old 07. Sep 2013, 10:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks for your feedback and thoughts on the browser .

I downloaded and installed it on my laptop today, but I have done it while running Toolwiz TimeFreeze, because I want to try it out and see how it behaves, without actually installing it on the real system.

First off, the online installer, put me off. This is something I do not like. I want to be able to have a setup, with the freedom to install the software whenever I want. An online installer takes that away.

On installation, Epic installs a startup entry for Epic Update. I found two other entries for Epic Update in the Scheduled Tasks too. Again something which I do not like, unnecessary startup or scheduled tasks entries. No option to disable auto update.

The online installer and auto update is the same behavior with Google Chrome too, and it's one of the big reasons, amongst others, because of which I have never used Google Chrome.

On running Epic Browser, it shows a new tab page, with startup tiles. Epic Search and Learn more about Epic, are the two already pinned tiles there. I right-clicked and deleted them.

Although it says on their site that the auto suggest is turned off, but I did not found that to be the case. When I started typing, words were indeed suggested to me as I typed. And when I typed in letters for Google and Facebook, these sites were shown as autocomplete. This is something contradictory to what they post on their site. Not good.

There is only Epic Search integrated in the browser. There is no option to add another search engine in the browser. Understandable, since much revenue of Epic is meant to come from Epic Search, as stated on their website. But, not providing an option for people to add another search engine is something which users will not like definitely.

I noticed that by default, Epic Browser opens pages in https. I tried to open Google, and by it automatically opened encrypted.google.com in https. This is good in terms of security.

Cookies handling might be a problem with this browser. By default, it blocks third party cookies. I faced problem when I logged into Gizmo's site and forum, and when I tried to reply, I found that I had been logged out, and had to log in to the forum again. A problem which I never faced on Firefox. Definitely a cookie handling problem.

Although, from what I see, this can be changed. CASD, you can change the cookie behavior from the settings. In Settings, under Privacy, click on "Content settings...". Under Cookies, you can click on "Manage exceptions".

Under Settings, Extensions tab is shown, but when you click on it, you are presented with a text that extensions are not allowed.

When you click on the Control Panel of Epic Browser, or whatever that is called, to get access to the menu of the browser, you won't see the Extensions menu under Tools, which is present in Chrome based browsers.

Yet, I found out, that extensions can be installed. Thanks to CASD for posting about it, otherwise I would never have tried it.

I opened the Chrome extensions page manually, and there, I tried to installed WOT. It was installed successfully. But, it does not show under Extensions. I closed the browser and restarted it, thinking that maybe the extension will disappear, but the extension remains installed. It still does not show under Extensions though. Strange. A bug maybe? Or, something left for users to find out themselves? In case you install an extension, I am not sure if you can configure its options, since you won't be able to access that extension, from Extensions menu. Weird behavior.

Otherwise, the browser, looks and feels like other Chrome based browsers, and the pages open fast too, as expected.
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Old 07. Sep 2013, 10:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sicknero View Post
I'm a bit curious as to who Epic is aimed at really.
I think the main focus is put on privacy, since their thinking is that more and more people will be interested in such a browser, because of the NSA and prism issue.

But the way the browser is designed, I think it will appeal more to the people who are obsessed with privacy, or paranoid about their privacy.

It still raises some questions for me though. First, only Epic Search being offered in the browser. Well, they may argue that Epic Search does not collect data, but still, how does one put trust into them, and take their word for it, when even big and respected ones like Google have failed with the trust of people?

Another thing is the auto suggestion which was supposed to be off, but still works as posted above. This is contradictory to what their site says.

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Originally Posted by sicknero View Post
People who don't know anything about internet privacy won't I think understand what Epic are trying to do, and will just be annoyed by the lack of auto-log in, browsing history etc.
I agree with this.

First, there's the issue of search engine. Next, no ability to install extensions will definitely put people off.

I find the focus on privacy good, but I feel it's too much restrictive. So much restrictive that it might put people off. Add to that, there is no flexibility in it.

Lets take for example, a simple ad blocking extension. Without an ad blocking extension, all the ads on the sites are visible. So, while you are protecting privacy with the browser, but by denying extensions, the users are being exposed to ads, and their security, as well as privacy is being compromised. I wouldn't want to use a browser without ad blocking, in present times.

What about not being able to install NoScript like extension?

That's really too restrictive. Also, I think that even with these restrictions, there will still be some privacy which will be leaked on the internet. There's no stopping it. So, some compromise has to be made somewhere.

In it's present state, I think Epic Browser will just remain a secondary browser, and never get to compete with big leagues, like Firefox, Chrome and others.

Even if it does get used, it will be by people either obsessed, or paranoid with privacy. Even they won't like its restrictions.

And if later on, Epic decides to be a little flexible, well, it will be just like any other Chrome based browser out there.

I personally will not be using this browser, not as secondary, and definitely not as a main browser.
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Old 07. Sep 2013, 10:32 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anupam View Post
Lets take for example, a simple ad blocking extension. Without an ad blocking extension, all the ads on the sites are visible. So, while you are protecting privacy with the browser, but by denying extensions, the users are being exposed to ads, and their security, as well as privacy is being compromised. I wouldn't want to use a browser without ad blocking, in present times.
OK, I will take this back.

I decided to open a few sites to see if the ads show or not.
Turns out, I was wrong. The ads are being blocked by default. I didn't see ads on the sites. Also, trackers are being blocked on the sites too, and when the page loads, for a brief time, the browser shows how many trackers were blocked. These can be seen by clicking on the Umbrella icon too.

This is something quite good actually. The ads as well as trackers are being blocked, by default. So, there is no need for ad blocking extensions, or extensions like Ghostery.

That's commendable. But then the question arises, what to do if somehow a change in settings of these are required, in case we want to allow ads for one site, or, manage blocked trackers, if some site gets broken of it.

I forgot to mention about the Umbrella icon in the browser. When clicked, it shows a sort of a small menu, dealing with various settings related to security and privacy, like cookies, plugins, trackers, etc. And these settings can be quickly changed from here. A nice touch.

So, well, the browser does have some good features, like ad blocking, trackers blocking, and https on sites, by default. This should definitely appeal to some.
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Old 08. Sep 2013, 03:38 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anupam View Post
Was just reading the FAQ, and I had noticed this yesterday too on the site, but was not sure about it... it seems that Epic does not allow add-ons, or extensions at all. They do it because they believe that extensions are major cause of privacy leaks.

I think they are restricting it too much. While focus on privacy is great, but not allowing extensions will restrict the browser a lot. It will only make it a secondary browser, if users do get around to use it. Users might use it as a secondary browser, only when they really need it for high privacy browsing.

Maybe users won't get around to use it at all because of this restriction

Also seems like they are providing an online installer. Another negative, atleast for me.
I believe they are trying to make it like Wipeout! browser. That's just about it, and does Epic save history on exit? I don't think so. It's another one of those privacy oriented browsers, not suitable for functionality.

And yes extensions have some effect on privacy, which is why they are disabled in private mode of browsers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anupam View Post
I noticed that by default, Epic Browser opens pages in https. I tried to open Google, and by it automatically opened encrypted.google.com in https. This is good in terms of security.
I believe all modern browsers does it this way.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anupam View Post

Lets take for example, a simple ad blocking extension. Without an ad blocking extension, all the ads on the sites are visible. So, while you are protecting privacy with the browser, but by denying extensions, the users are being exposed to ads, and their security, as well as privacy is being compromised. I wouldn't want to use a browser without ad blocking, in present times.
Epic has an integrated ad-blocker
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Last edited by George.J; 08. Sep 2013 at 03:47 AM.
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Old 08. Sep 2013, 06:53 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George.J View Post
I believe all modern browsers does it this way.
Nope, not all modern browsers open all sites in https.

In Firefox, Google does open with https, but I think it does that on all browsers, and is a setting from Google itself.

But, other sites on Firefox do not open in https by default. Like Gizmo's site, it opens as http in Firefox, whereas in Epic Browser, it opens as https.

On Firefox, to achieve this functionality of opening all sites in https is done by the use of the add-on "https everywhere".
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