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06 Mar 12 Google fixes 14 Chrome bugs before hackathon


Google pushed out another update to its Chrome Web browser Sunday, fixing 14 holes three days before Chrome’s trial by fire in an annual hacking competition.

The latest version, 17.0.963.65, fixes errors with cursors, backgrounds and plug-ins not loading, as well as issues with copying and pasting text and using touch controls on websites, according to the official Chrome blog.

It also pushes out the latest version of Adobe Flash Player, which ought to restore functionality to the “Plants vs. Zombies” app that’s been unusable since the last Chrome update in mid-February.

As is customary with Chrome updates, Google will be paying the finder of each patched flaw $1,000. But this update brought added prizes — three of the four people who found the latest round of bugs have been so prolific recently that Google’s giving each of them an extra $10,000 just for being “awesome” and bringing “significant pain” to bugs.

“We have always reserved the right to arbitrarily reward sustained, extraordinary contributions. In this instance, we’re dropping a surprise bonus,” wrote Jason Kersey of the Chrome team on the blog posting. “We reserve the right to do so again and reserve the right to do so on a more regular basis!”

On Wednesday, several teams and individuals will begin the three-day Pwn2Own hackathon at the CanSecWest security conference in Vancouver, B.C., trying to crack the most recent versions of Apple’s Safari, Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft Internet Explorer. All will be running on fully patched versions of Windows 7 or Mac OS X 10.7 Lion.

Chrome has made it through the last two Pwn2Own contests unblemished.

© 2012 SecurityNewsDaily. All rights reserved

Article source: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/46633321/ns/technology_and_science-security/

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03 Mar 12 Web browser measurements changed and Google's Chrome rating suffers


Net Applications revised Web browser numbers has Chrome in third place.

Net Applications’ revised Web browser numbers has Chrome in third place.

After months of gaining Web browser market share, Google’s Chrome Web browser numbers have gone down according to Net Applications. It’s not however that Chrome has grown any less popular, it’s how Net Applications is measuring Web browser usage.

Google’s Web browser, starting with Chrome 13, uses a technique called ‘pre-rendering’ to speed up Web page loading. This pre-loads page or pages “while the user is typing in search queries in order to load that page faster when the user clicks on the associated search result link. Chrome pre-renders pages based on either HTTP headers inserted by the site creator or based on an algorithm that predicts the likelihood the user will click on the search result link.” Google started using this technique more aggressively in the latest version of the browser, Chrome 17.

This results in faster page loads for users, but Net Applications believes “this traffic varies significantly by browser and should not be included in the usage share for the browsers.” At this time, “Chrome is the only major desktop browser that currently has this feature, which creates un-viewed visits that should not be counted in Chrome’s usage share. However, the pages that are eventually viewed by the user should be treated normally. Therefore, “Within the sites in our network, pre-rendering in February 2012 accounted for 4.3% of Chrome’s daily unique visitors. These visits will now be excluded from Chrome’s desktop browser share.”

The bottom line is Chrome is still in third place, by Net Applications’ measurement. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer is still in first with 52.84% market share, but it’s also continuing to lose marketshare. IE is from 52.96% in January. Firefox kept second place position with 20.92%. After the penalty, Chrome is down to 18.90% from 18.94%. In short, even without the pre-rendering count, Chrome’s popularity is still climbing. As for the minor-league browsers, Safari move up to 5.24%, up from 4.90% and Opera also climbed up to 1.71%, from 1.67%.

So, no matter how you measure it, it still seems a sure bet that Chrome will take over second place from Firefox sometime in 2012. And, who knows, maybe even IE will fall to it in time. Indeed, according to another Web browser popularity measurement company, StatCounter, the latest version of Chrome is already the single most popular Web browser in the world.

Related Stories:

Review: Chrome 17, faster than ever, more secure than ever.

Google bets million bucks its Chrome Web browser can’t be busted

The BIG browser benchmark! Chrome 17 vs Opera 11 vs Firefox 10 vs IE9 vs Safari 5

Microsoft: IE 6 drops to below one percent in browser usage share in U.S.

Chrome keeps winning; Internet Explorer keeps falling

Article source: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/networking/web-browser-measurements-changed-and-googles-chrome-rating-suffers/2085

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29 Feb 12 Google bets million bucks its Chrome Web browser can't be busted


Google bets big that its Chrome Web browser can't be busted.

Google bets big that its Chrome Web browser can’t be busted.

Google is putting its money where its Chrome Web browser is. In a Chromium blog posting Chris Evans and Justin Schuh, two members of the Chrome security team, announced that Google will be offering ‘multiple rewards per category, up to the $1 million limit, on a first-come-first served basis’ for demonstrated security breaches of Chrome on Windows 7 .

That may be the safer bet than it sounds. Chrome, while not bullet-proof, is widely regarded as the more secure of the Web browsers. In CanSecWest Pwn2Own hacker contests, Chrome has never been broken.

In Google’s security challenge, which is not connected with 2012’s Pwn2Own competition, Google is looking for “full end-to-end exploits.” That way, “not only can we fix the bugs, but by studying the vulnerability and exploit techniques we can enhance our mitigations, automated testing, and sandboxing. This enables us to better protect our users.”

So, “To maximize our chances of receiving exploits this year, we’ve upped the ante. We will directly sponsor up to $1 million worth of rewards.” Here are the rule for the Chrome exploit competition:

$60,000 – “Full Chrome exploit”: Chrome / Win7 local OS user account persistence using only bugs in Chrome itself.

$40,000 – “Partial Chrome exploit”: Chrome / Win7 local OS user account persistence using at least one bug in Chrome itself, plus other bugs. For example, a WebKit bug combined with a Windows sandbox bug.

$20,000 – “Consolation reward, Flash / Windows / other”: Chrome / Win7 local OS user account persistence that does not use bugs in Chrome. For example, bugs in one or more of Flash, Windows or a driver. These exploits are not specific to Chrome and will be a threat to users of any web browser. Although not specifically Chrome’s issue, we’ve decided to offer consolation prizes because these findings still help us toward our mission of making the entire web safer.

All winners will also receive a Chromebook.

We will issue multiple rewards per category, up to the $1 million limit, on a first-come-first served basis. There is no splitting of winnings or “winner takes all.” We require each set of exploit bugs to be reliable, fully functional end to end, disjoint, of critical impact, present in the latest versions and genuinely “0-day,” i.e. not known to us or previously shared with third parties. Contestant’s exploits must be submitted to and judged by Google before being submitted anywhere else.

Gentleman, sharpen your hacking skills and get to work now!

Google will be running this content on its own at the CanSecWest security conference in Vancouver on March 7th to 9th, the Pwn2Own venue, but independently of the Pwn2Own contest. Google is doing this because .”We discovered that contestants are permitted to enter Pwn2Own without having to reveal full exploits (or even all of the bugs used!) to vendors. Full exploits have been handed over in previous years, but it’s an explicit non-requirement in this year’s contest, and that’s worrisome. We will therefore be running this alternative Chrome-specific reward program. It is designed to be attractive — not least because it stays aligned with user safety by requiring the full exploit to be submitted to us. We guarantee to send non-Chrome bugs to the appropriate vendor immediately.”

In a twitter note from the Pwn2Own contest organizer and sponsor, HP TippingPoint’s, Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) “To clarify, if a team demonstrates 0day at#Pwn2Own2012, but doesn’t end up as a winner, the vuln is still theirs and will not be reported.

The split between Google and SPI doesn’t appear to be hostile. Aaron Portnoy, Manager of the Security Research Team at TippingPoint Technologies who the man responsible for reverse engineering vulnerability submissions to ZDI, tweeted, “Nice to see over that after 5 years of the@Pwn2Own_Contest vendors are finally stepping up and offering big $ for vulns.

Still, while there has been a partings of the way, hackers will now have both Google’s million dollars to compete with and Pwn2Own’s own one-hundred-thousand plus worth of prizes to strive for. May the best hacker win!

Related Stories:

CanSecWest Pwn2Own hacker challenge gets a $105,000 makeover

Review: Chrome 17, faster than ever, more secure than ever.

Google working on strong password generator for Chrome

How do you use your browser’s ‘porn mode’?

Google Chrome gets another security makeover

Article source: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/networking/google-bets-million-bucks-its-chrome-web-browser-cant-be-busted/2069

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08 Feb 12 Chrome Web browser comes to Android phones, tablets



he Google Chrome logo is displayed at a store in London on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2011.

(CNN) — Android is finally getting Chromed out.

Google launched a beta version of Chrome for Android smartphones and tablets Tuesday, delivering a mobile version of the popular desktop web browser after a very long wait. Indeed, both Android and Chrome launched more than three years ago, and users have demanded unification ever since.

Why bemoan the long wait? Much like the company’s other products and services, the new Chrome app hooks wonderfully into the Google universe, giving those immersed in desktop Google apps even more incentive to choose Android as their mobile OS. So, naturally, we would hope — nay, expect — that Chrome would be the default browser for the Android OS.

But this hasn’t been the case. Android users have been forced to use a generic, stock browser (unceremoniously named “Browser”) that’s inferior to not only Chrome, but also other browsers available in the Android Market. Dolphin, anyone?

Google had a reason to take its time: It wanted to do Chrome for Android right.

“We didn’t want to just push out Chrome light,” said Sundar Pichai, senior vice president of Google Chrome, in an interview. “Our goal was to get all of Chrome onto Android.”

Which is exactly what Pichai and his team did. It’s a full version of the Chrome browser for Android, still performing as adroitly as ever without losing the features that come in the desktop version.

There are clear perks in using Chrome instead of other Android browsers. If you’re already a desktop Chrome user, your bookmarks will be synced across all your browser versions after signing into your Google account. Even cooler, if you’ve left pages open on your laptop at home, you can access those same open tabs from your mobile Chrome browser. Search terms you’ve entered on your desktop browser also carry over to Chrome for Android, saving precious time and screen tapping.

But most important of all, Chrome is fast. Really freaking fast. When typing in an address into the search bar, for instance, Chrome predicts what page you’re going to visit and starts loading it in the browser background. So by the time you’ve clicked “go,” most of the site has already loaded.

To be sure, the Chrome browser itself is nothing new. It’s been around since 2008, when Google first decided to take on Microsoft, Mozilla and others by casting its lot in the browser wars. The move proved to be a smart one: For nearly the past year and a half, Chrome has slowly increased market share, according to various browser analytics firms’ estimates.

In fact, Chrome actually surpassed Firefox, once the most popular alternative to the dominant Internet Explorer (which still holds about 50 percent of desktop browser share). After Tuesday’s debut for Android devices — of which there are more than 700,000 activations daily — Chrome’s adoption numbers will only escalate.

But the Chrome release raises a number of questions about the new browser app, and the relationship that the Android and Chrome teams have with one another. When the Chrome team first announced it was creating a Chrome-based operating system — later to be known as Chrome OS — it was difficult to resolve how the software wouldn’t come into conflict with Android. After all, Android is the premier operating system for all things mobile (smartphones, tablets). Except, that is, for Google’s version of the netbook: the Chromebook. So the question is, Which OS owns what? Is it Chrome for netbooks, and Android for everything else?

Pichai thinks there’s room enough for both operating systems. The Chrome OS, he says, can be seen “as a different computing paradigm.” It’s one that, “end-to-end, is fully based on the web.”

“Native mobile applications are thriving, but web apps are going to thrive as well,” Pichai said.

While it’s nice to see the two camps playing nicely in Tuesday’s release, it’s not without a caveat. As of Tuesday’s launch, Chrome for Android is only available for smartphones and tablets running Android version 4.0 (a.k.a. Ice Cream Sandwich). At this point, this includes just a handful of phones and tablets. And of course, it’s Chrome “beta” for Android, so don’t expect everything to work perfectly.

Still, Pichai is confident the Chrome team will drop the “beta” title sooner rather than later. “After announcing Chrome the first time, we took it out of beta in three months,” Pichai said. “I’d expect this to happen here in the near future.” And as it stands, after Chrome moves out of beta, the plan is for Chrome to take the place of Android’s default browser permanently.

If you’ve got Ice Cream Sandwich, head to the Android Market to download the app right now.

Subscribe to WIRED magazine for less than $1 an issue and get a FREE GIFT! Click here!

Copyright 2011 Wired.com.





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Article source: http://www.cnn.com/2012/02/07/tech/mobile/android-chrome/index.html?eref=rss_mostpopular

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03 Jan 12 Chrome, Firefox Engineers Defend Google, Mozilla Search Deal


Chrome, Firefox Engineers Defend Google, Mozilla Search Deal
(
Page 1 of 2 )

Engineers for
Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Mozilla’s desktop browser teams lashed out at media
reports that questioned the companies’ renewed deal to put Google search in the
Firefox browser toolbar.

Google and Mozilla renewed their deal to feature
Google as the default search provider for the Firefox toolbar Dec. 20. Google
pays Mozilla a portion of ad revenue generated from those searches.

Google and
Mozilla both declined to provide financial terms of the new arrangement due to
confidentiality agreements the companies inked. AllThingsDigital said the deal was worth $300 million a year for
at least the next three years, valuing the deal at $900 million.

This sum, if
true, is worth more than three times more on an annualized basis than the
previous arrangement Google and Mozilla forged, when Mozilla reported earning
nearly $100 million of its $123 million in 2010 revenue from its deal with
Google.

Google clearly
paid a premium to keep Mozilla from making Microsoft Bing or Yahoo its default
search provider. What makes the deal particularly intriguing is that Google’s
Chrome Web browser has made huge market-share gains in just three and a half
years since it launched, growing to 19 percent while Firefox has fallen under
22 percent, according to the latest Net Applications numbers.

TechCrunch
blogger-turned venture capitalist MG Siegler expressed surprise that Google would
pay that much money to fund a competitor: “One thing is certain: Google is
not paying Mozilla a billion dollars out of the kindness of their hearts. Doing
so would be irresponsible to their shareholders. Again, they’re paying all that
money to a competitor.”

This
sentiment, echoed by other journalists, elicited some commentary from key
Chrome and Firefox browser engineers.

Peter Kasting,
who Google hired to work on Firefox before the company built Chrome, argued
that Google is funding an open-source partner to help advance the Web, both in
introducing a faster browser and spurring browsers, such as Firefox, Microsoft
(NASDAQ:MSFT) Internet Explorer and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) Safari, to get better.

“It’s
completely irrelevant to this goal whether Chrome actually gains tons of users
or whether, instead, the Web advances because the other browser vendors step up
their game and produce far better browsers. Either way, the Web gets better.
Job done. The end,” Kasting wrote on Google+ Dec. 24.

“So it’s
very easy to see why Google would be willing to fund Mozilla: Like Google,
Mozilla is clearly committed to the betterment of the Web, and they’re spending
their resources to make a great, open-source Web browser.



Article source: http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Application-Development/Chrome-Firefox-Engineers-Defend-Google-Mozilla-Search-Deal-739999/

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28 Dec 11 Google+, Android, Chrome Top Google Products in 2011


As 2011 speeds to a close, it’s time to reflect on companies’ top products or achievements for the year. Google had a solid year on many fronts, carrying on its tradition with its search engine and expanding Android to be the dominant mobile platform for smartphones. The company also launched Google+, its belated answer to Facebook’s giant social network, and continued development on its popular Chrome Web browser. We should also applaud Google for its green efforts, and for its work in sprinkling artificial intelligence into driverless cars and in powering homes via its Android@Home initiative. eWEEK walks through some of the more successful products and moves the company made in 2011.

Article source: http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Cloud-Computing/Google-Android-Chrome-Top-Google-Products-in-2011-356735/

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23 Dec 11 Google Paying Mozilla $900M in Search Deal: ATD


The Christmas holiday isn’t the only thing Mozilla employees have to be cheerful about these days.

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is paying the software maker $300 million a year over the next three year to feature its search engine in its Firefox Web browser, AllThingsDigital learned Dec. 22.

If true, Mozilla will take in nearly three times as much in 2012 as it took in 2010, when nearly $100 million of its $123 million in revenues came from its previous search deal with Google.

AllThingsDigital said Mozilla was able to command such a handsome sum by including Google search rivals Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) in the bidding process for the coveted slot in Firefox, which has anywhere from 22 to 25 percent market share, or hundreds of millions of users worldwide.

Google and Mozilla declined to comment on the financial terms of the new agreement, which Mozilla announced Dec. 20 and confirmed was good for at least the next three years.

In the arrangement, Mozilla drives searches to Google.com from the search box in Firefox and Google pays Mozilla a portion of ad revenues generated from those searches.

The arrangement is certainly interesting because it’s not without some tension. Google launched its Chrome Web browser in September 2008, when Firefox was on its way to garnering 25 percent share by nibbling away at Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Internet Explorer share.

Chrome commands anywhere from 18 percent to 25 percent market share, depending on whether you believe the more conservative number from Net Applications, or the loftier number from StatCounter.

By tripling its revenue with Google’s search deal alone, Mozilla is the big winner in this deal. The company gets the cash to fund other projects beyond Firefox, which, while popular and steadily improving, is no longer growing.

Mozilla Messaging CEO David Ascher identified some of those projects as Boot2Gecko, a Firefox OS for smartphones; the identity-based BrowserID alternative to Facebook Connect and Google Account credentials; and Apps initiative, which is intended to help developers write programs that work on all devices.

Google wins on multiple fronts. One, it benefits from millions of searches driven by millions of Firefox users. Two, it keeps those searches away from Bing , which at only 15 percent market share is more desperate to have them.

Three, Google comes off as a benevolent benefactor, providing the majority of funds for a leading, fellow open-source Web browser with which it shares a lot of common interests.

Finally, Firefox and Chrome both win because together they account for anywhere from 40 to 50 percent market share, providing a nice pair of open-source alternatives to market leader Microsoft Internet Explorer, which has dominated the market for the last 15 years since stamping out Netscape.

 



Article source: http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Search-Engines/Google-Paying-Mozilla-900M-in-Search-Deal-ATD-890475/

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19 Dec 11 Google wants you to buy a Chromebook: Should you? (Review)


The Samsung Chromebook open and ready for work.

The Samsung Chromebook open and ready for work.

Judging from all those Chromebook ads you’ve been seeing pop up on every tech. Web site known to man. Google really, really wants you to buy a Chromebook. Should you?

I like my Samsung Chromebook, but it looks like not many people fell in love with these Chrome OS powered netbooks. So, Acer and Samsung have reduced their price from a high of $499 to $299 and Google started banging the advertising drum for Chromebooks. So, should you let the new price tempt you into getting one?

I say yes.. My Samsung Series 5 Chromebook, which I’ve been using for months now, is the perfect grab and go laptop. It’s weights just over three-pounds, the battery lasts for about ten hours, and the lightweight Linux desktop with a Chrome Web browser interface is all I need for work out of the office.

That said, the first generation of Chrome OS had its problems. On the other hand, since then Google has made numerous significant improvements to Chrome OS and almost every week sees new improvement to Chrome OS, the Chrome Web browser, and Google’s family of cloud-based applications that Chromebooks use in lieu of traditional desktop apps.

How to try ChromeOS without a Chromebook.

Rajen Sheth, Google’s group product manager for Chrome for Business. recently explained, “We’re not selling a device, we’re selling a new paradigm of Web-based computing.” Google’s long term goal is to the blur the difference between Web-based and local desktop applications so that both will work equally well for you. Google knows, however, that this will require a “mind shift.” So, is today’s Chromebook ready to shift your mind? Here’s where we are today.

Chromebook Hardware:

The Samsung Series 5 comes with a matte 12.1-inch display. It’s powered by an Intel Atom N570 dual-core CPU running at 1.66Ghz, has 2GBs of RAM, and a 16GB solid state drive (SSD). For graphics, it uses an Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 3150.

Sounds as slow as a 2009 vintage netbook doesn’t it? It’s not. All that hardware has to do is power a very thin-Linux operating system and run the Chrome Web browser on top of it. For those purposes, the processor is more than fast enough and 2GBs of memory is all you’ll need. Storage? Almost everything you do will be stored on the cloud. 16GB is more than enough.

On the netbook sized system’s left side you’ll find a headset/microphone jack, with a USB 2.0 port and a proprietary port for a VGA dongle hidden behind a plastic door. The second USB port and a SIM card slot hide behind plastic door on the right side. In the front you’ll find a card reader that can handle SD, SDHC, SDXC , or MMC cards. At the top of the display, it also has a Webcam. For networking it uses a 3G radio and 802.11n Wi-Fi. It doesn’t, however, have an Ethernet port.

There’s also no Bluetooth. I can live without an Ethernet port, but the lack of Bluetooth bugs me. The Samsung’s Webcam is fine, but I’d love to be able to make Google Voice calls from my Chromebook via my Motorola H17 Bluetooth headset.

On the other hand, the keyboard, while not back-lit, boasts large, well-spaced out keys. Although larger than most netbooks, many laptops have abysmal keyboards. I found the Samsung Series 5 keyboard to be the next best thing to my gold standard for keyboards: the Lenovo ThinkPad’s keyboards.

That said, the Chromebook keyboard is not your usual keyboards. It has no function keys and the delete key is also missing in action. Instead, it duplicates some of this functionality with keyboard shortcuts. To find out about ChromeOS’ keyboard shortcuts, use the keyboard combo “Ctrl-Alt-?” to open up a display that will show you all keyboard shortcuts.

The touchpad is good-sized and I was able to work with it without much trouble. I hate all touchpads though, so I replaced it with a mouse.

The touchpad is capable of multi-touch gesture. At this time, only two-finger scrolling, right button clicking, and drag and drop multi-touch are supported. To drag and drop, you use one finger to click on an item, then use a second finger to move the item to your intended location and then release both fingers to drop it.

The battery life is remarkably good. I’ve used my Chromebook constantly for up to ten plus hours and I’ve yet to bring it under 10% of remaining battery life. I’ve finally found a laptop that, provided my plane had Wi-Fi, I could use constantly over a trans-Atlantic flight.

I could actually keep it that long in my lap as well. The Samsung runs cooler than any other laptop or netbook I’ve ever used and at a bit over three-pounds it can sit there, or on a flimsy airplane table, all day.

Chromebook Software:

The Chromebook’s real strength is the Chrome Web browser and your Google account. Without a Google account, you can’t use a Chromebook. Yes, there is Linux underneath Chrome, but only the most hardcore of Linux hardware hackers are going to bother with it.

You don’t need to be online to use a Chromebook. You can save music, documents, video and what have you on the local SSD. It’s not ideal though. For example, while you can work with Gmail off-line, you still can’t use Google Docs off-line. Sure you can save and view your Google docs off-line but you can’t edit them. Google promised that we’d have the ability to edit Google documents and spreadsheets off-line back in August, but we’re still waiting for it to show up.

So, sure, Chromebook works hand-in-glove with such Google services as Gmail for e-mail,Google Docs for your office work, and Picasa for photos. And, you don’t have to use Google-based software as a service (SaaS) or cloud-services. For example, I’ve used Salesforce and Zoho applications with it. You can also always find more Chrome applications in the Chrome Web Store. But the bottom line is that the Chromebook works best, as promised, as an Internet, cloud-based device.

When you use it as intended, it works well. I can write this story, grab mail, video-conference with a plan using Google Talk or ooVoo and listen to music from my cloud-based Google Music library (http://www.zdnet.com/blog/networking/google-music-your-great-music-locker-in-the-cloud-review/1671).

Since the Chromebook first showed up, Google has made numerous improvements to the ChromeOS. The current stable version is Chrome version 16.0.912.63 and it’s a real improvement over the first version.

For example, it’s now easy to use virtual private networks (VPN)s with ChromeOS. If that is, you use L2TP over IPsec with PSK and L2TP over IPsec with certificate-based authentication. It still doesn’t support SSL VPNs, such as OpenVPN or proprietary VPN implementations, such as Cisco Anyconnect. I’d really like to see both supported.

It’s also faster than the last version and, thanks to its Chrome Web browser brother 15 release, ChromeOS has inherited its new tab and screen display. This makes it easier to jump from your favorite pages to your favorite applications and back again.

So, so long as you’re connected to the Internet, the Chromebook is great. But, ChromeOS still has trouble dealing with files on the SSD. For example, when I look at my local files I can view PDF documents and PNG images, but Chrome OS still doesn’t know what to make of Word document files, LibreOffice document files or zipped files. Come on! Google Docs can open both the first two and it’s 2011, what other operating system doesn’t know how to at least view the contents of a zipped archive?

Still, at least with the latest release, Google has made some process with local files. ChromeOS now suggests that that I upload it to Google Docs rather than give me an unknown file type error message. That’s nice, but what I really want is for Chrome OS to do is either open the file in Google Docs, which is what I’d expect it to do, or at least give me a choice to open it rather than ask me to do it by hand.

Curiously, with some file types, such as PNG. ChromeOS will both show me the file and give me the option of using the appropriate Google program: Picasa. Clearly, there’s still room for progress.

Still, while these problems are annoying, the bottom line is that Chromebooks aren’t meant to be used offline. They’re not meant to be yet another fat-client, ala Windows, desktop. They’re cloud-based desktops that just happen to use Linux as their foundation.

So is a Chromebook worth getting? Problems and all, I think so. It’s not going to replace my weighty Linux Mint 12-powered Lenovo ThinkPad R61 anytime soon, but it’s just what I need for when I need for run and work computing. Sure, I could use a tablet, but as nice as they are, when it comes to serious work I need a keyboard and for that I’ll take an inexpensive Chromebook any day of the week.

Related Stories:

Google exec discusses future for Google Apps, Chromebooks

Google: We don’t need Chrome OS, we want cloud login for PCs

Chromebooks Live!

Google’s Chrome operating system gets a much needed update

Chrome 15: The Best Browser keeps getting better (Review)

Article source: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/open-source/google-wants-you-to-buy-a-chromebook-should-you-review/10019

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17 Dec 11 Google fixes 15 Chrome flaws in version 16


Google rolled out an updated version of its Chrome Web browser this week, fixing several high-risk vulnerabilities that could leave out-of-date browsers susceptible to attack.

Released on Tuesday, Chrome 16 fixes 15 bugs, six of which Google, in a post on its Chrome blog, labeled high-risk, meaning a malicious party could gain unauthorized privileges on infected systems by spoofing the website address in the URL bar or via rigged PDF files.

Of the remaining bugs, seven were labeled medium-risk and two were classified as low-risk. As part the bug bounty-hunting program, Chrome paid outside researchers $6,000 for detecting and reporting eight of the flaws.

One of the most basic, but most important, ways to keep your computer free from viruses and malware is to run the most up-to-date version of your Web browser. In this case, if you use Chrome, click on the wrench icon in the top right corner of your browser, then select “About Google Chrome” to make sure you’re running version 16.0.912.63.

© 2011 SecurityNewsDaily. All rights reserved

Article source: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/45703067/ns/technology_and_science-security/

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17 Dec 11 Google fixes 15 Chrome flaws in version 16


Google rolled out an updated version of its Chrome Web browser this week, fixing several high-risk vulnerabilities that could leave out-of-date browsers susceptible to attack.

Released on Tuesday, Chrome 16 fixes 15 bugs, six of which Google, in a post on its Chrome blog, labeled high-risk, meaning a malicious party could gain unauthorized privileges on infected systems by spoofing the website address in the URL bar or via rigged PDF files.

Of the remaining bugs, seven were labeled medium-risk and two were classified as low-risk. As part the bug bounty-hunting program, Chrome paid outside researchers $6,000 for detecting and reporting eight of the flaws.

One of the most basic, but most important, ways to keep your computer free from viruses and malware is to run the most up-to-date version of your Web browser. In this case, if you use Chrome, click on the wrench icon in the top right corner of your browser, then select “About Google Chrome” to make sure you’re running version 16.0.912.63.

© 2011 SecurityNewsDaily. All rights reserved

Article source: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/45703067/ns/technology_and_science-security/

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