Saturday, June 21, 2008

Eee PC diary 1 - Firefox or Opera?

Currently, I'm using my Asus Eee PC mainly for web-surfing. The built-in Firefox 2 browser is great, but a few niggles remain.

  1. The zoom function zooms text instead of zoom entire page
  2. It's quite a memory hog, especially after a few tabs are opened

With the official launch of Firefox 3, I'm considering the upgrade, but the level of work required is a bit daunting to a Linux newbie like me.

So I tried out Opera instead, which incidentally also recently upgraded to version 9.50. The installation is simpler (compared to Firefox 3) but it didn't go smoothly for me at the first try.

Some issues faced while following the wiki entry

  1. The command to change directory didn't work (not sure why)
  2. So I installed it from my SDHC card instead
  3. Then, the command for installing didn't work
  4. typing in [sudo dpkg -i opera_9.50] didn't work
  5. After a quick google to find out how to use dpkg, I tried [sudo dpkg --install "full file name"] instead and it worked

So what's the verdict? With just 1 hour of testing, some quick plus and minus points


  1. Full page zoom (great for 1024 pixel width webpages)
  2. Smart address bar is similar to Firefox 3's Awesome bar, which is great
  3. It seems to be more efficient in memory usage (compared with Firefox 2)


  1. No support for Google Notebook (it does have its own Notes function)
  2. The "Fit to page width" function didn't work on all webpages

I will continue to try out Opera. Perhaps Opera can be used for casual surfing, and Firefox 2 used when I need to use the Google toolbar or Google Notebook functions (Haven't tried the Opera widgets yet, maybe there's an alternative toolbar available)


  1. This post was first done in Opera 9.50 on the Eee PC, and then finished in Firefox 3 on my main PC (my bookmarks on Eee PC tweaks were stored in Google Notebook)
  2. Shortcut key for opening Opera (Ctrl+Alt+N)

No comments: