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Old 28. Jan 2015, 06:15 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Vivaldi Browser - technical preview

The former Opera CEO has come up with a new browser. Their homepage:

Played around a bit with their tech preview version and it does resemble Opera. Quite fast. Hope they get addons support. This browser too uses the Chromium (Blink) rendering engine. Looks promising. If it offers customization and addon support like Firefox, then it would be great.

Time to wait and watch whether it will succeed.

Note: this is a technical preview version... not even an alpha or beta, so it is not intended for general usage. Please keep that in mind when you download and use it. Not intended for general usage.

Last edited by Anupam; 28. Jan 2015 at 12:21 PM. Reason: Inserted Note.
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 07:26 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Deya was trying to post this yesterday but fell foul of our security filter. Finally, I've managed to get a connection and can post it on his behalf:

Vivaldi Browser - Technical Preview

I'm using the new Vivaldi browser, which at the moment is just a Technical Preview - not even an Alpha or Beta yet - so take note of that if you decide to try it.

That said, it runs fine for me so far, no crashes or anything, although there are bound to be a few glitches which, if I come across any, I'll post here.

The browser is Chromium / Webkit based. It's a 35MB download - and is 266 MB installed.

Similar to Opera - speed dial, menu button etc. But there is also a side panel which contains bookmarks, mail, contacts, downloads and notes, same as the 'old style' Opera. Mail doesn't work as yet, but will follow in future releases.

Best thing I can do is post a couple of links to reviews of the browser so you can read them yourself and hopefully form more of an opinion as to whether it might suit your needs.

For a first release, it's a good browser. Plenty of features to try out, settings are there, but slightly basic as yet. Tabs are interesting, colours change according to site etc, and you can also position them where it suits you best - top, left, right, or bottom.

You can close or open the side panel via a button at bottom left - in the status bar, and there's also a button to block images and also a content blocker, which blocks ads quite well.

No extensions as yet, but they're coming. Mouse gestures are built in. You can edit and add search engines - DDG and Startpage are there already. I've added a DDG URL so I get WOT ratings in results and set that to default. Bit quirky but it works.

Vivaldi was founded by Jon von Tetzchner, the ex CEO of Opera Software. They started the Vivaldi community last year, after Opera did away with Opera community - and now they've released a browser to accompany it.

I think this browser will be one to watch - it's available for Windows, Mac and Linux. I don't think these are the kind of guys who are going to mess about when it comes to developing the browser, so expect frequent updates.

I must say, it's good to have Notes built into the browser. I've missed that in Opera. And those who miss the Mail feature may want to take a look at this when it arrives in future releases.

A couple of links - reviews;

... search around and I'm sure you'll find more.

If you want to try it, as I said, it works well. No real problems so far for me. I'm just using it and finding my way around it. It's fast, but not not mega fast, and one or two sites may load slowly. Use 'advanced' during the install and check only the boxes you want - 'Set as Default' .... download location etc. But it installs and runs fine, no problem.

This browser just might put the cat amongst the pigeons, certainly for Opera. It's aimed at power users, the people Opera have alienated since they launched their new style browser. Should be interesting to see where this goes.
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 09:47 AM   #3 (permalink)
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it looks promising,
but: will wait until it has integrated eMail capabilities,
- like the old Opera did have. ..
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 10:10 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the link, I'll definitely keep an eye on this too

Maxthon has been my main choice for some time now but it still falls short of what I'd really like to see in a minimal browser.
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 12:18 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks to deya, came to know about Vivaldi yesterday, and from the screenshot on its site, it looked quite interesting. Downloaded and installed it, and have used it briefly.

I initially thought that this browser must be based on a different engine, but was surprised to know that it uses the Blink engine, that Chrome, and Opera use. Disappointing a bit, but well, guess Blink is the trend nowadays.

I noticed the striking similarity in interface between Vivaldi and Opera. Opera have made their browser different from other Chrome/Blink based browsers in terms of interface. Vivaldi have done the same, and the interface looks similar to Opera. When you open the browser, the basic look is the same as that of Opera, with Speed Dial, and its squared icon showing, like in Opera. The sites too are placed the same. If you remove all the sites, the big "Plus" sign too is the same. Opera places Speed Dial, Bookmars and Discover towards the bottom of that page, whereas, Vivaldi places Speed Dial, Bookmarks and History towards the top.. easily noticeable than Opera.

I think this similarity is intentional, to give Opera competition.

I find Opera's interface a bit clearer, probably because Vivaldi by default uses black, and Opera uses a light background.

Once past the interface though, Vivaldi is different from Opera.

Vivaldi has a side panel, which has icons for bookmarks, mail, contacts, downloads and notes.

Initially, I thought the panel will remain like that, and I was disappointed, but later found out, that the panel will close, by clicking on the Show Panel button towards the bottom. I have a faulty mouse, so probably, it did not work before, but, clicking that button, the panel goes away.

Also, in the settings, there is a panel toggle option, which when checked will show a very thin strip with a small arrow, clicking which will also close and open the panel. However, the panel won't disappear completely with that. The thin strip will keep showing, although it won't be noticeable, and won't come in the way. Don't know why they have this option, because even when you select that option, the Show Panel icon is still there.

There is also a Settings icon towards the bottom of the panel, which gives a quick access to the Settings, when the panel is showing.

I find the Settings menu of Vivaldi quite organized, clean, and different... better than Opera, which looks like the rest of the Chrome based browsers. Settings can be shown all at once, which is the default, or can be seen by category.

Had a problem setting the home page though. On most browsers, I keep about:blank as the homepage, and it works well on all browsers, but Vivaldi does not support it. Browsers, like Opera, provide the option to have their start page, with speed dial showing, as the homepage, but Vivaldi again, does not have that option. Strange. Maybe they will provide more options later.

Not much customization currently, but tab position can be changed. Panel can be shown on left or right hand side, and Vivaldi button can be changed with the traditional horizontal menu.

Not many settings currently, but might increase as the browser is developed further, but presently, it looks quite organized, and is quite simple, and not as confusing as the settings in the Chrome based browsers.

The browser has no ad blocker presently, and also was not able to block popups. So, even if you like using the browser, and is fairly stable, these things will be a bother.

One thing which annoyed me, was that I could not get a site to open, by just writing its name, and then trying to open it by pressing Ctrl + Enter, which puts the www and com, and opens the site. Basic operation, but does not work.

Some sites open up pretty fast, but some sites opened up terribly slow. Hope it will improve on this aspect. It is a technical preview, so cannot expect much.

I really liked the feature that when you open a site, and switch to its tab, the tab and the browser icons will change color depending on the major color of that site. Looks quite good. Would have been better if the tabs kept showing that color when it wasn't active, so it would be easy to differentiate between opened sites. Still, a good feature.

There is a trash icon on the tab bar, towards the right, which can be used to open sites that have been closed. Didn't see an empty trash option though.

There are many pre-loaded bookmarks that majority may like. I personally did not.

The bookmarks panel works as a quick access to bookmarks. For more detailed view and operations, the bookmark icon on the start page should be used.

One thing I did not find in the Settings, and neither in the Menu, was for clearing the browsing data. I found it under History on the start page. They should make this available from Settings, or under the Menu. Perhaps they will, later on.

For a technical preview, the browser seems to behave quite well, and is fairly stable. It did crash though, when I tried to open the Rediff site, which opens a pop-up. I had deliberately opened the site, to check for pop-up blocking, and the browser crashed. Had to kill the various processes from Task Manager. Even after starting the browser after that, it tried to open the same tabs as before, and crashed again. Had to again kill it from task manager, and it opened fine on second attempt.

Strangely, the first time it happened, I had Opera open, and I saw opera crash reporter process in task manager, even though Opera had not crashed. Makes me wonder why.

Overall, the browser looks good, and is a very interesting browser. It will be really interesting to see how it develops over time. Considering that many features are planned for later releases, which users will want to see, it can prove to be more popular than Opera. And if it does that, Opera will have to step up on their development, otherwise this browser is going to be a strong competition for Opera. People already seem very interested in it.

Must say, the name, and the logo too are interesting than Opera .
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 12:27 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks for that, MC ..... much appreciated

Like many other Opera users, I've been kind of searching for something that has the previous Opera feel to it. I've come close, but ultimately that browser has proved to be illusive for so many reasons. With this, Vivaldi, I actually feel like I may have found it. To me, it feels more like Opera than Opera itself - if that makes sense.

Still like and use the latest Opera, so in no way am I criticising it. It's a good browser. But there are still things missing, that shouldn't be. Maybe this link explains it more;

Obviously this technical preview of Vivaldi is just giving people a taster of what's to come, but right from the start it feels like I could migrate over to it. Something that new Opera never gave the feel of at first.

I have no doubt that Vivaldi will succeed in the areas where Opera falls short.
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 12:37 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Anupam, ... just seen your post. Good points and observations. There is a content blocker which you activate from the status bar, next to image blocker. Check the top box and it will block ads, although you have to enable it after each start of the browser. It re-sets itself to off on closing the browser at the moment - at least it does for me.
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 12:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks deya. Good observation by you. I had not noticed that. Yes, for me too, it resets after each restart. I hope they will work on it, and will make these things more accessible. Have to make users aware of it. Enabling the content blocker however, worked fine in blocking ads.

Another thing that I wanted to mention before... quite a coincidence that Vivaldi has a note taker similar to Spartan. Was going to be a unique thing for Spartan, but now it's available in Vivaldi too. Other browsers may follow suit if this feature takes off.

And I think the tab stacking was idea of Firefox? It wasn't successful with Firefox though.

Oh, and also, tab preview works well in Vivaldi.
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 01:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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There appears to a healthy forum, but please note that their servers in Iceland are running very slowly!
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Old 28. Jan 2015, 01:52 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I like the idea of a built in content/ad blocker, as opposed to an extension. Messing about with the filters, there's something mildly pleasing about reading on online newspaper in grayscale, black and white or whatever. The page actions button is a nice touch, I think.

Notes, I've missed in Opera. They've taken it a step further here with the screen capture feature and I like the idea of that as well. I've not used Spartan so can't comment there, but interesting that it's along similar lines. It's a useful tool to have and Opera dropped the ball when they did away with notes.

Tab stacking, if I'm not mistaken was also a feature in the old Opera. Dunno about Firefox but it has been used before. Some will find it useful - and I like the way the tabs change colour for each site in Vivaldi. This is to be a feature of the new Yandex browser - and tabs at the bottom. Surprising how many people prefer the option to have tabs at the bottom of the browser.

Early days, but very promising. Innovation. Good to see.
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