Web Browser Grand Prix 9: The Linux Circuit
I've been wanting to return to Linux in the Web Browser Grand Prix for a long time. You may not remember, but Web Browser Grand Prix 2: The Top 5, Tested And Ranked had a follow-up article: Web Browser Grand Prix 2: Running The Linux Circuit. As a Linux user myself, many of the results from the Windows-based Web Browser Grand Prix didn't apply to me personally. As we saw in the Mac OS X editions of the series, the same Web browser can perform very differently on other operating systems.
Today, we're running the Web Browser Grand Prix on Ubuntu 11.10 alongside Windows 7 Ultimate.
If you caught our recent review and cross-platform benchmarks of Ubuntu 11.10, you saw that Ubuntu won most of the tests, especially in segments where it simply cannot compete, like gaming. We received a lot of comments to the effect that Ubuntu is viable as an operating system for users who only require Internet access, light productivity, and casual gaming. Today we fill in the blanks on Ubuntu's Internet performance compared to Windows 7.
Recent News & Events
01/24/12: Opera updates from 11.60 to 11.61
01/31/12: Firefox 10 is released
02/08/12: Chrome 17 is released
02/09/12: Microsoft accidentally gives life to rumors of LG working on a ChromeOS device.
02/11/12: To date, Google has paid out over $410 000 in bounties for Chrome bugs.
02/12/12: Firefox updates from 10.0 to 10.0.1
02/14/12: Mozilla affirms it is creating a Windows 8 Metro interface for Firefox.
02/15/12: Chrome updates from 17.0.963.45 to 17.0.963.56
02/15/12: Having only taken the number two spot in Web browser market share from Firefox a few months ago, StatCounter predicts Google Chrome will overtake Internet Explorer to become number one by the end of March.
Now that we're all caught up, let's recount the previous Web Browser Grand Prix champions and get to know the five contenders.
Also, AMD driver support in linux is poor compared to Nvidia.
For future Linux articles, can you use a Dx11 based Nvidia GPU?
It does well in HTML5 benches but 99% of the websites use primarily CSS and JS and HTML3, in which Firefox does poorly.
Even without hardware acceleration, it keeps up with the competition,
When that beast launches, it will kill FF/IE and most probably chrome too.
Moreover, the only driver enabled for hardware acceleration on Linux is the Nvidia driver: according to Mozilla (and verified by yours truly on AMD and Intel hardware), most display drivers in Linux suck when it comes to 2D rendering - ouch. Note that Mozilla and Google could add shims to circumvent those bugs, but they don't -not worth the effort, especially when driver makers could fix their bugs rather easily, leaving the browsers broken yet again.
I find Opera 12 really nice too. It can run with Opera 11.61. Opera 12 has a silver icon & 11.61 has its classic red. I like Firefox & Epiphany too.
Its a shame Safari and IE are not truly cross-platform.
i think that the HTML5 scores should be weighed by a factor of the percent of top40 sites that use HTML5.
This way actual importance of HTML5 can be judged in real world.
On Windows I feel that IE9 works really well for me, although Chrome is the speed demon! FF 4+ lost their appeal for me.
Internet Explorer has 64bits builds on Win7, and Firefox has "almost" a 64bits browser on Windows too: Waterfox, which is a semi-official Firefox for 64bits Windows. Waterfox in particular claims huge improvements over base 32bits install, I would like to see how that translates into real-world.
Not sure about availability of 64bits editions of other browsers on Windows.
Here are my wishes:
-clearly mention if the 32bits or 64bits version of the browser is used
-where applicable and relevant, test with both 32bits and 64bits variants. I would like to see IE and FF split into 32 and 64 variants on Win for example.
I personally migrated from FF to WF on my machines 3 weeks ago and find it noticeably faster in everyday use. WF is now my main browser.