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Ubuntu 14.04 LTS to get Native Netflix support

In a recent discussion with Ubuntu developers, it seems that Netflix will soon work natively on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS in the Google Chrome browser.

This has become possible because of the development of the HTML5 player.

The only prerequisite is for the NSS security package to be upgraded to at least version 3.17. This is planned to occur in the next couple of weeks as a standard security enhancement.

At the moment it is possible to watch Netflix on Linux, but only if you adjust the User-Agent string in Google Chrome.

Update 23rd September 2014

I can now confirm that the NSS package has been updated to version 3.17 and that Netflix is now working in Google Chrome.

References

https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-devel-discuss/2014-September/015050.html

http://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2014/09/netflix-linux-html5-nss-change-request

https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-devel-discuss/2014-September/015051.html

 

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Lucid changes default Firefox search provider to Yahoo!

It has come to light that in the next release of Ubuntu (Lucid), the default search provider in Firefox will change to Yahoo!

My first thought on this matter was to shout Noooooo!!!!

This might have been a little extreme, but not expected on my part. I don’t like it when things that I like, change. Especially when it is my default search provider. I am quite fond of the Google search and I want it to stay.

After my trauma had subsided, I thought about it for a moment. Why shouldn’t companies  make money in this way. It was only last week that we heard that Bing was going to be the default search provider on the iPhone after a deal with Microsoft. The change in Ubuntu is not vastly dissimilar. I am sure that the extra cash will be welcomed by Canonical.

I wonder what the future has in store? How many more distributions will change their default search for some cold hard cash.

Opera 10.5 pre-alpha review

A couple of days ago Opera released a new labs version of their Opera browser.

I was incredibly eager to try the latest version of Opera’s browser. For quite a long time I have been using Opera 10 as my primary browser. It may not be the fasted browser out there, but it does a good job, is very stable and comes feature packed. It is also one of the few browsers that scores a perfect 100/100 on the Acid 3 test.

Opera 10.5 Running on Windows 7

What’s New

  • There is a new JavaScript engine called Carakan. This said to be 7x faster than the Futhark engine in Opera 10.10.
  • The Vega graphics engine now handles everything that appears on screen. Vega also supports hardware acceleration.
  • Opera 10.5 visually integrates better with the operating system. This means that in Windows 7 there is support for Aero Peek and Jump lists. The theme is similar to that of Google Chrome, so as to reduce the amount of space wasted to menus and buttons. For the Mac the browser has been re-written on Cocoa, and supports multi-touch gestures.
  • Private browsing is now supported within Opera as in many other browsers. However something different from other browsers, is the ability to have private tabs.
  • Non-Modal dialog boxes. This allows you to switch tabs or windows while the dialog is still displayed.
  • Better HTML 5 support.

Issues (This is a pre-alpha browser so it is understandable)

  • Opera Unite is disabled by default.
  • No Linux version.
  • Creating hyper links on this article in WordPress did not work (CSS pop-ups).
  • Opera Link does not work.
  • Memory usage is very high.
  • Random Crashes.

Conclusion

I know this is an unstable development build, so should not be relied on for everyday use. It is however a great show case for what is to come in the not too distant future. This browser has more features than any other, except maybe for the number of extensions of Firefox.

Opera has come a long way. It doesn’t have a particularly large market share at the moment. I do wonder if it can compete with the might of Microsoft, Google and Mozilla. Only time will tell.