The Open-Source Waterfox Browser Delivers a Balance of Privacy and Usability for Power Users Such as Developers and Server Admins

The Open-Source Waterfox Browser Delivers a Balance of Privacy and Usability for Power Users Such as Developers and Server Admins

TL; DR: Waterfox, a 64-bit browser determined by Firefox, was built throughout 2011 to expand about Mozilla’s free and open-source world wide web platform. As one in the first 64-bit browsers offered, the speedy, open-source browser quickly gained a passionate following. Alex Kontos, your developer behind the undertaking, told us that right now, Waterfox is focused in providing power users the selection to run whichever extensions they really want, including add-ons that transform the functionality in the browser. In the potential, Alex hopes to build a central repository for builders to upload their tailor made Waterfox extensions, allowing the crooks to leverage even more solutions to make Waterfox their individual. 

Mozilla Firefox was a trendy open-source browser in 2011 while Alex Kontos, then a new 16-year-old student in Cyprus, began channeling his father’s desire for internet technology.

Alex ended up being particularly intrigued by Mozilla’s no cost and open ideals. But back then, despite an industrywide cross over between 32-bit and 64-bit precessing, the Firefox browser was only accessible in a 32-bit version.

Alex Kontos along with Waterfox logoAlex Kontos presented us the scoop in his plans for Waterfox.
Since 64-bit google chrome were faster and more secure, Alex took it upon himself to make Waterfox, a 64-bit browser determined by Mozilla’s free platform.

“I was really getting into the very idea of pushing computer components through overclocking, and I ended up being reading about people generating forks of Firefox, recompiling the code themselves to generate it faster, ” Alex instructed us. “But no one was conducting a 64-bit version. I thought I’d personally brush up on our skills and create one particular myself. ”

Alex accumulated Mozilla’s developer documents, created a practical solution, and posted the idea on Overclock. net, a trendy community of computer functionality enthusiasts. Within a 1 week, 50, 000 people got downloaded the browser. A feature in PCWorld further made it easier for attract users.

Waterfox soon became one of several first widely distributed 64-bit browsers online (Firefox did not release a 64-bit version of its web browser until December 2015).

Considering that its initial release, Alex has evolved Waterfox right browser not only devoted to speed, but also user-friendliness, creating to order, and security consciousness. Right now, the web browser remains a no cost and open option pertaining to power users — builders and server admins included — who want to surf the web his or her way.

From a Hobby to your University Project and Outside 

Alex continued to expand Waterfox as he pursued university studies in electronic engineering with the University of York.

“What My spouse and i learned there helped us evolve Waterfox, ” they said. “As my studies were going to an end, I approached the careers department with the university and said, ‘I have this software with loads of users worldwide — is there anything you can do with this? ’”

The department was thrilled to get involved. In May possibly 2014, Alex met while using Duke of York, whom granted him the Fight it out of York Young Small business owner Award. The annual award can be presented to students who may have created business or cultural enterprises that demonstrate cultural or commercial impact along with show clear growth probable.

Add onsAdd-ons can transform Waterfox right completely customized browser pertaining to power users like builders and server admins.
The university also made it easier for connect Alex with investors to put together a company around a new privacy-focused browser and google search.

“At the time, I was actually getting into the privacy element of things, even though previously — before Edward Snowden’s NSA revelations — solitude wasn’t as en vogue mainly because it is today, ” Alex explained. “I started a company with a number of investors, but there was absolutely no way to grow a solitude product. It was genuinely uncharted territory. ”

Investments inside privacy-focused browser and google search didn’t ultimately pan out and about, as it was almost impossible to monetize the solutions without infringing upon individual privacy. But the exercising did help Alex prepare a path forward pertaining to Waterfox.

A Middle Ground Between Firefox plus the Tor Browser

Alex ultimately found solutions to monetize Waterfox through organizing search partnerships. From May possibly to November 2015, Waterfox observed on Storm, a charity-based google search, before briefly switching for you to Ecosia. Waterfox now fails to Bing.

“Microsoft’s Bing is often a privacy-friendly search engine, though I wouldn’t declare it’s a privacy product the identical way as Startpage or DuckDuckGo. Bing features a digestible policy that has nothing too egregious within it — just what you’d expect for google search to return useful benefits. That’s why Mozilla got a partnership with them for countless years as well, ” they said. “Google is wonderful, but Microsoft actually cared with regards to launching a privacy-oriented google search as one of their focuses. ”

Today, Alex describes Waterfox as striking the optimal balance between privacy along with usability. He said users seeking the ultimate in security against network surveillance as well as traffic analysis should utilize the Tor Browser.

Your free solution features multilayer encryption, routinely blocks third-party trackers along with ads, prevents people via monitoring your browsing practices, and makes it difficult for users to get fingerprinted based on unit and browser information.

Themes allow users coming from all skill levels to convey a personal touch to his or her browsers.
“If you desire the be-all, end-all involving privacy, go with your Tor Browser, ” they said. “But sometimes, in case you go too private, you’ll see that the web sort of breaks plus the user experience is in a negative way affected. Waterfox is there to serve because middle ground where it’s privacy-conscious, and not a privacy tool. Your goal is balance. ”

Waterfox’s evening out act features telemetry eradication, plugin compatibility, customization functions, and limited data series. (The only data that Waterfox collects will be the user’s operating system and browser version in order that it can check for changes to various components). While combined, these features are intended to generate a browser that’s efficient along with respectful of users.

“I built it in terms that I’d want my web browser to be, ” Alex explained. “It’s the one I prefer, of course. It’s more about having the capacity to browse the modern world wide web without constantly worrying with regards to being tracked, but still being within limits of why is the web usable for many individuals. ”

Alex released another generation of the visitor, Waterfox G3. 0. only two, in December 2020. This newest version includes added support to the Unity/Global menu on Linux, a new simplified page print checkbox, along with an upgrade to Gecko 77. 6, among other capabilities and fixes.

A Position for Developers to Send out Extensions

On March 35, 2021, Waterfox will observe its official 10-year house warming. Moving forward, Alex’s goal should be to keep Waterfox as secure and privacy-centric as it can be while maintaining usability. The project’s Subreddit a brand new used for resolving troubles, but Alex said he’s always keen to debate the product with true users to inspire ongoing improvement.

And while Waterfox is already highly customizable via extension cables, Alex is aiming to generate a space where developers could distribute those extensions — particularly people who help modify the visitor drastically.

“You can do crazy things while using browser currently, but I would like to improve the user expertise so developers can upload their extensions to your central repository for others to view with a quick installing, ” he said. “I need it to be highly offered for users. Of study course, that’s easier said when compared with done, but I’m little by little making progress. ”

Stay tuned to the Waterfox blog for more info. Alex said there are actually big changes in recent months regarding new infrastructure and affiliates. These changes will in the long run help the browser as well as community of power consumers — from developers for you to server admins — develop and grow.