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Installing Google Chrome on Fedora

Today I finally decided to drop using Firefox on my Linux systems and move to using the Google Chrome browser. I have been unhappy with Firefox for some time since design and marketing people seem to have taken control of the Firefox development process in the Firefox 3.5 days. The final straw for me was the recent EOL’ing of Firefox 4 after only a few months (I use a number of extensions that hook deep into Firefox) and the lack of websocket support (currently scheduled for Firefox 6). Much to my surprise I discovered that the Chrome browser is not

Firefox 4 Restartless Add-ons

Prior to Firefox 4, extensions (more commonly called add-ons) that modified or added to the browser user interface (UI) required one or more UI overlays which the browser loaded from the add-on and applied atop its own user interface. While this technology made creating add-ons that modified the Firefox UI relatively easy, it also meant that updating, installing, or disabling an extension required that Firefox had to be restarted. UI overlays for Firefox are written in XUL (pronounced “zool”), an XML-based markup language created by Mozilla for specifying user interfaces. XUL provides a number of largely platform independent widgets from

Using JavaScript Code Modules in Firefox 4 Add-Ons

The concept of a JavaScript code module in the Gecko layout engine was first introduced in Gecko 1.9. This post discusses how such code modules can be used to simplify preference and add-on management in Firefox 4 which uses Gecko 2.0 and JavaScript 1.8.5. It uses a simple Firefox add-on called HTML5toggle as an example of how to modify existing code to use Javascript code modules. A JavaScript code module is simply some JavaScript code located in a registered (well-known) location. JavaScript code modules are primarily used to share code between different privileged scopes. They can also be used to

Installing 64-bit Flash Plugin (Square) for Firefox on Fedora 13

The Adobe Flash Player is a very popular method for delivering rich web content. Native 32-bit Flash Player plugins for web browsers such as Firefox, Opera, Chrome and others have been available for a long time. Adobe had a preview 64-bit GNU/Linux Flash Player available but withdrew support for it back in June 2010 citing the need to make “significant architectural changes” and “security enhancements” to the player. Since then no native 64-bit Flash Player plugin has been available for GNU/Linux from Adobe. However, on September 15th 2010 they released a preview Flash Player named Square which included a native

HTML5 Canvas To PPM Serializer

Earlier this week I added support for saving images in Portable Pixel Map (PPM) format to a Firefox Add-on called WIPS which I wrote earlier this year. Why bother adding PPM support you may well ask? Well, the PPM format is probably one of the lowest common denominators amongst the image exchange formats that are in common use on Unix and GNU/Linux platforms. I wrote the PPM image serializer in Javascript so that it would be portable across all the platforms supported by Firefox. I could have called out to a shared library or DDL, for example netpbm‘s libnetpbm, but