Forbes Raves About Mozilla Firebird

Wednesday February 4th, 2004

In the personal technology section of its website, Forbes magazine raves about Mozilla Firebird. The browser's tabbed browsing, popup blocking and integrated search are all given glowing reviews. "If, in its unfinished state, Firebird is this good," Forbes says, "perhaps Microsoft should be worried." Thanks to Darin Fisher for the link.

#27 Re: Re: Re: Installer v. Archive

by asa <>

Thursday February 5th, 2004 9:43 AM

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This is just silly. Uninstallers don't necessarily remove an application entirely either. I still have various registry keys and common files from several uninstalled programs. A good installer will but, really, who cares if it's uninstalled anyway? Why not just remove the shortcut from the desktop (not that you even have to worry about that with the zipped builds since they don't even create shortcuts)? How is it a "big problem" if a completely unskilled computer user thinks he's uninstalled it and he hasn't? a couple dozen MB of disk footprint? Oh, darn. 1/10th of 1% of my disk is gone. That completely breaks me!

I'm not saying you need to rush yourselves to show Mozilla Firebird to everybody you know starting today, though I don't really see the need to caution against it on uninstaller grounds. Firebird is a solid application. It's well ahead of any of the Netscape releases in functionality and maturity and it's more stable than some "6th generation" OS-integrated browsers that I test on from time to time.

I do recommend Firebird to just about everyone I know, including computer newbies. In the past I've sent some of them to the "unofficial installer" builds if I thought they'd struggle with the zips. Now I send them to the nightly branch 0.8 builds. Not one of the dozens of people I've sold on Firebird have said that it wasn't ready for primetime or complained about the lack of an uninstaller for the zipped builds. Just the opposite, even. I've had quite a few people say "wow, how refreshing to be able to just delete the folder and know that the browser files are all gone".

See, it's really only the advanced users who even care about keeping their system clean. Newbies who think shortcuts are applications don't know how and don't much care. So what if they've got files left around. As long as they're not executables that start up invisibly on boot and slow the system down (which Firebird isn't) then it doesn't impact them much.

You said that you've heard of people who think they've uninstalled a program by deleting its shortcut from the desktop. So have I. Those are the same people who wouldn't go to add/remove programs even if the app in question did have an uninstaller. They're just not worth thinking about from an uninstall standpoint. They won't "get it" either way. If there are any areas we need to be worried for those people, it's install rather than uninstall, and probably plugin install. Uninstall is so far down on the list of concerns I have about the Firebird experience for clueless computer users that I can't believe I've even typed this much about it.