Choosing to go with better security and privacy
By Red Squirrel
What's nice about Mozilla is that it has a popup blocker. It's very simple. It blocks every single popup, and you get a notice on the bottom that one was blocked. So you don't have to block all the popups individually like with some blockers. You can unblock popups by domain, if for some reason you need a popup for something on a certain site.
Mozilla also comes with it's own email client which is very simple and more secure then Outlook/Express. But when you install Mozilla, you can choose to not install it, if all you want is the browser, that's the beauty of it. It's not bundled and you're not forced to use it.
Downloading with Mozilla is also way faster then with IE. With IE you're caped at around 50KB/sec if you're lucky, with Mozilla, it will use whatever your or the server's connection can support. I've seen it go at a few MB/sec at times!
Mozilla also supports skins, known as themes. The default is kind of ugly and looks like the very first Netscape, but you can easily change it to "modern" and it will look much nicer. You can also download themes from various sites by searching Google. I never tried, but it's fairly simple to make your own theme, which is great.
Mozilla.org also makes another browser called Firefox, which is basically a trimmed down version of Mozilla and probably better for those switching from IE, since it's actually very similar to IE in terms of where the options are and such. During the time Firefox was first created, and up to version 1.0, Microsoft has not updated Internet Explorer even once.
Now, another alternative is Opera. You can click here to get a screen shot of it.
You will immediately notice that it has ads. This is one of the only downsides of Opera. However, it seems that they switched to only using Google adsense ads, which are less annoying then what they used to use. I've seen porn ads, and even flash ads with sound before, but looks like they stopped that, which is very good. Otherwise it can get very annoying! To get rid of the ads, you have to pay. The price is not too bad, but to consider that Mozilla is free, it's best to go with Mozilla, but that is the user's opinion. Opera does have some features Mozilla does not have, and vice versa.
What's cool about Opera is that it has a feature to remember where you last browsed from where you left off. So you can set it so that instead of having a home page when you fire it up, it will go to the last page you were on. So when you close it just make sure you're not on a porn site. :) Like Mozilla, Opera also has a popup blocker and it's fairly simple to use it.
Personally I don't really notice a difference, but some say Opera is faster then Mozilla, and it is deemed to be the fastest browser on Earth, (after Firefox :P).
Like Mozilla, Opera is also very secure and will help you feel safer on the Internet. For the extra paranoid people, it also has an option to turn off referrer logging. I personally don't like that users have that ability, but hey, I'm a webmaster and stat fanatic so I need to know where my visitors come from. But the option is there, for those that are paranoid about privacy.
As long as it's not IE, it's a good choice. Also, some browser alternatives are actually based on IE, if this is the case, it is possible some security exploits are still there as well, so it's probably best to stick with Opera and Mozilla. But there are many other browsers and those are only the two mentioned because they seem to be the most popular. Here are a few links that might interest you:
Opera vs Mozilla forum thread
Why you should dump IE
Dump Internet Explorer for Firefox
So if you are using IE, hopefully you will consider to change. If not, your computer's data is at risk, your personal information is at risk, and your Internet experience is not as fast and great as it should! Also, have I mentioned that Internet Explorer has not been updated in years? The latest version is 6.0 which came out around year 2001. Get with the program! Time for you to switch to an alternative, where they actually update it more then once every 3 years. (Mozilla comes up with a new version almost every month!)
Also, while IE has many security flaws, it does not mean other browsers don't. But the main thing is, there are way less flaws in other browsers, and they get fixed much faster, without the need for patches, but rather actual updates. What's good about updates is that they happen a bit less often, but when they do happen, they are more convenient to install, they fix more, and they don't just patch, they replace, files and make sure problems are gone. Not only that, unlike windows update patching, you are the one that downloads the exe file so you know what's going on when you update.
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