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Private Browsing by PortableApps.com Questions

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trust
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Private Browsing by PortableApps.com Questions

- Can you tell me exactly what parameters are changed compared to default Firefox parameters? So I can replicate this profile by myself.

- Since I have the Private Browsing profile as well if I run the main Firefox I still get the Private Browsing icon for the browser. Kind of misleading. (Would be nice to run both profiles at the same time, though: https://portableapps.com/node/41420 )

- Is Firefox in any way, shape or form more secure or private in your opinion than Chrome? Would be interesting to see a Chrome version of a similar profile. (Esp. if I can run it simultaneously;)

- My concern or suggestion: send referrer header is turned on; not private. Though I know it can cause problems if it is turned off. Best option would be to send referrer only from the same domain but not from other domains. Hopefully you could follow; or I explain:

Ideal solution regarding referrers:

From Google (or other site) to site - do not rend referrer

From site.com/page1 to site.com/page2 - send referrer

Great idea anyways, thank you.

John T. Haller
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Multiple Profiles

As discussed multiple times, Firefox will only run multiple profiles at the same time grudgingly. You'll lose the ability to launch links from other apps no matter how you associate them. And it will leave things behind. This answer won't change. The same applies to Chrome.

Everything is included in the DefaultData\profile folder in the included prefs.js, etc, and detailed on the app homepage.

We have no plan to do a similar approach with Chrome. It's clunky enough when run portably as it is.

Google doesn't send referrers anymore since it's all HTTPS. Most search engines either already do this or will soon.

I prefer Firefox to Chrome if only for the fact that it defaults to a separate search box. Chrome sends every single character of every single URL you type to Google by default. The fact that Firefox is published by a non-profit that's committed to privacy and an open internet are huge points in its favor as well.

Turning off or faking referrer headers can break many sites. It may break downloads of apps from PortableApps.com at some point in the future as well.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

trust
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Thanks for your answer John,

Thanks for your answer John, everything is answered maybe expect the exact setting used in the Private Browsing profile to replicate?

And I don't quite understand after I installed the Private Browsing in a separate portable directory why the basic Firefox will show also this altered icon?

Thank you.

"Chrome sends every single character of every single URL you type to Google by default."
I have read quite a few articles on Chrome but not sure about this 'feature'. Does it mean even if I type something in the box - even before I press enter - it gets send to Google? Even if I changed my search engine? Even in Chromium? I am not sure about these.

Separate search box on Firefox: I care much more about a search query I can configure for myself than the box is separate or not. OK, its not the Firefox help section but I was unable to locate any info on how to fine-tune a search engine in Firefox so easily such as in Chrome with the %s parameter. I hate IP based localization.

For profit or nonprofit:
OK, this is more of a philosophical question, but when it came up, why not:
http://pebblestorm.com/2011/04/24/non-profits-wrong-reason/
(Aaron who? http://www.amazon.com/Predictable-Revenue-Business-Practices-Salesforce-... )
This one goes quite deep but definitely worth reading (slightly related):
http://www.kenwilber.com/Writings/PDF/RightBucks_GENERAL_b42000.pdf
(Ken who? http://www.salon.com/2008/04/28/ken_wilber/ )

(I am also more like a BSD guy than a Linux guy.)

(Btw. nice salary from your all your charitable donations:
"In the same year, it paid the corporation's chief executive, Mitchell Baker, more than $500,000 in salary and benefits. (She is also chairwoman of the foundation.)"
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/blog/2007/nov/12/youdotheworkmozil... )

I do not want to derail the technical discussion to philosophical, but the bottom line is this: I am not a big fan of Chrome or Firefox either as it is; would be much more interested in nice derivatives (or in the case of Chrome, the predecessor called ~ium). I heard Safari is also very nice if you are on a Mac.

John T. Haller
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Included

As I mentioned, the configuration settings for Private Browsing are included. Otherwise, it works the same as Second Profile except that it also switches the Firefox icon for you so you know you're running private. And, as always, it is NOT MEANT TO BE USED IN PARALLEL. When you start up another copy of Firefox Portable, you're actually just starting another window of Private Browsing.

Google Chrome is configured with a single search and URL box. You know how in Firefox when using the default Google search engine, it pops up suggestions of what you're typing to search for? It's sending every character to Google to do that. Or, if you use another search engine, it's sending it to them. Firefox doesn't do that within the URL bar. It just searches your local bookmarks and history to help suggest URLs. Google Chrome only has a single bar, so every character of every URL you type is sent to Google... even private internal URLs. Or to whatever search engine you configure if you have autocomplete enabled (also the default).

There is a big philosophical difference between Google and Mozilla. A lot of this comes down to profit vs non-profit. But also due to what their motivations are. Google's goal is to make money via advertising. That's their primary objective behind nearly all decisions. Mozilla's goal is to have an open web. Their goal isn't to win a browser war. They even branched off into Firefox OS so that the web wouldn't wind up completely closed off by the app-ization of the web on iOS and Android.

These days, there are only 4 browsers. In order of popularity worldwide: Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, Safari. Firefox is the only one that's distributed as a 100% open source package. Chrome includes closed source bits like Flash. IE and Safari are closed source. Yes, Safari mostly open sources their underlying browser engine, but nothing else. As IE and Safari are closed source and only worked on by a single company, they're less secure by design than Chrome or Firefox.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

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