An alternative Web browsing solution based off of Firefox
Windows 8 / Windows 7 / Windows Vista / Windows XP / Windows 2000 / Windows ME / Windows 98 SE / Windows 98
CometBird is a free web browser that includes a number of modern features. It was created to be a lightweight alternative to larger browsers. CometBird is optimized for systems that have limited amounts of memory and disk space.
Installing CometBird is simple. The browser can import settings, passwords, bookmarks and other information from Internet Explorer and Chrome and can synchronize with Firefox through a separate option. It can also synchronize with browsers on mobile devices. CometBird automatically detects other browser add-ons previously installed and integrates them into the interface. CometBird is a viable lightweight replacement for more resource-intensive browsing applications.
CometBird has a familiar look and feel. It could easily be mistaken for Firefox or Chrome. The primary reason for this is that the same software code base used for Firefox (the Gecko engine) was used to create CometBird. This makes much of the core functionality exactly the same as Firefox and even Chrome. Users will be familiar with the tabbed main interface. Websites load into the main viewing area. New tabs can be opened with the small plus (+) sign along the top. The browser can easily handle dozens of open windows at the same time. Users can choose to have new windows open to the homepage or to a list of previously visited websites.
Most of the options in CometBird are the same as what are found in other browsers. There are options to enable and disable different security features. The appearance of the browser can be customized with background images. There are disk and memory management options. Clearing the cache, browsing history, and other data is very simple. The browser will automatically block pop-ups and allow users to define sites that are an exception to this feature. CometBird includes all the features and tools that would be expected for developers, including console access and console editors.
One of the unique features of CometBird is the media downloader. This is an integral part of the browser. Users can simply right-click on a media file in order to download it from a website. This includes embedded Flash or MP3 files. The browser will seamlessly save the file to the local system. It can even extract some files that other plug-ins cannot. CometBird does support add-ons and plug-ins to extend the capabilities of the browser. Most of the add-ons that are available just seem to be ports of the same ones available for Firefox and Chrome.
CometBird claims to be faster than other browsers. This all depends on what you are doing. Basic pages seem to load a little faster. Graphics and images do not always load quicker. The browser also has a few problems and delays rendering pages. It appears to have some issues when typing long paragraphs into text boxes since the text falls behind what is being typed. A security drawback of the browser is that it tries to store personal bookmarks and other items on a remote server instead of locally. Despite not offering anything particularly innovative or new, CometBird is a solid browser overall.
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