Replacing Firefox with Google Chrome

Vincent mailinglists at
Fri Jan 29 14:27:40 UTC 2010

On Thu, Jan 28, 2010 at 4:04 PM, Jim Campbell <jwcampbell at> wrote:

> Hi All,
> Thanks for your input, and for bringing some of these issues to our
> attention.  I'd like to try and summarize some of the issues and concerns
> that people have.
> On Wed, Jan 27, 2010 at 5:31 AM, Marko Oreskovic <markoresko at>wrote:
>> Vincent wrote:
>> > Also, Chrome extensions aren't yet as powerful, as the Adblock
>> > lookalikes for Chrome can't actually block ads from being loaded, just
>> > prevent them from being displayed. This exposes you to a lot more
>> > scrutiny from advertising companies.
>> Also +1 against Chrome as default anywhere.
>> I use Noscript extension for Firefox and Seamonkey and I mostly could
>> not survive without them with the degree of use I have. (Javascript and
>> flash abuse all over internet is very extensive)
>> Also there is Chromium instead of that Chrome that is Google-controlled.
>> I do not trust Chrome at all.
>> There are many things that Chrome is doing that ordinary browser should
>> not do, regarding user privacy, and is used and could be used to track
>> user on internet:
> I mentioned Google Chrome in the subject of my message, but at this point
> we would only be considering Chromium.  Relating to the article
> Marcos linked to above, I think this would have the following implications.
> Please consider these as comments on the issue, not advocacy of one browser
> over the other.
> - Client ID - I don't think this would be relevant, as we would be using an
> Ubuntu package.  I'd be glad to know if my thoughts here are incorrect.
> - Time Stamp - Same as above.
> - Suggest - May be an issue, although I think this behavior also occurs
> with the Firefox searchbar.  In a way, the address bar on Chromium is a big
> searchbar, though.
> - Alternate error pages - I'm not familiar with this issue.  The site says,
> "Depending on configuration . . . "  Can anyone explain if there is a
> setting for this?
> - Error reporting - This is user-configurable, but I will check the default
> setting for Chromium.
> - RLZ-tracking - Not sure if this would apply to Chromium, as it is an
> Ubuntu package, not direct from Google.  I'd be glad to know if this does
> apply to an Ubuntu Chromium package, though.
> - Google Updater - Not applicable to an Ubuntu Chromium package
> - URL-Tracker - It's unclear to me what the problem is here (i.e., I can't
> understand how they've phrased the issue).  It sounds like the google home
> page is opening?  But it is dependent on the configuration?  Can anyone else
> explain this?
> I'll make a few other notes.
> 1) I checked, and Ubuntu's deal with Yahoo will not impact Chromium (or any
> other browsers) in X/K/Ubuntu.  All other browsers will stay with their
> default searchbar configurations (as appropriate).  Of course, Chromium
> would default to a Google search, similar to most browsers.
> 2) With regards to translations, I checked the Chromium's packager, and he
> said that they would have to "bend" the Chromium package to get it
> translatable via Launchpad.  Thus, this remains an outstanding issue at this
> time, and there's no promise that this would be resolved in time for Lucid.
> 3) I agree about the less powerful adblock extensions, but how many people
> use these?  Is having them available going to impact the core set of Xubuntu
> users?  I am not saying that it absolutely will not impact the core set of
> Xubuntu users, I am just asking the question.  How many Xubuntu users rely
> on adblock?  If there is not a good adblock extension now, will a better
> adblock extension be possible down the road, or does Chromium's setup
> prevent something like this from working well?
> 4) Xubuntu does try to emphasize lightness where possible, and we strive to
> make Xubuntu usable on systems with less memory.  From the Xubuntu strategy
> document, "Xubuntu does not exclusively target users with low, modest, or
> high powered machines but instead targets the entire spectrum with a strong
> focus on enabling lower end machines. Xubuntu's extra responsiveness and
> speed, among other positive traits, can be appreciated by all users
> regardless of their hardware."  Chromium would have a clear advantage here,
> even compared to FF 3.6.
> 5) The issue of patented codecs brought up by Andrew Blomen is an
> interesting one.  I agree that we should encourage use of Free codecs where
> possible.
> What do people think?  Given all of this, I'm not so sure that Chromium is
> the best fit for Xubuntu, at least for now.  The translation issue is
> important to our users, and the codec issue is important to me.  The privacy
> issue seems important to some, but I tend to think that most anything we do
> on the internet can be tracked somehow (unless we use the extreme step of
> using Tor or something).  The smaller memory footprint provided by Chromium
> would be a "nice to have" feature, but we've survived using Firefox for a
> good while - using it for a LTS would probably be the best thing to do.
You forgot the UI consistency issue, which I personally consider pretty

Anyway, for as far as we can't already say this has been concluded, here's
another vote for not including it in the LTS. I also saw Lionel uploaded
Chromium to the Lucid archives so at least people can try it without having
to enable a PPA :)

> Jim
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