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As it was forewarned last week, Internet Explorer 8, 9, and 10 are retired as of today; Microsoft will be focusing on Internet Explorer 11 and its Edge browser going forward.
You can still use the old browsers of course, but you'll be vulnerable to viruses and the like, and be nagged by Microsoft to update. Head here to download Internet Explorer 11 or Edge, or update through your browser (older versions may not let you, though).
Microsoft is finally retiring old versions of Internet Explorer (IE) this month. As of January 12, IE 8, 9, and 10 will kick the bucket, ceasing to receive updates or official support, thereby leaving you in the cold and vulnerable to viruses and such, but allowing developers to further focus on newer technology. IE 11 will still be on the menu for the foreseeable future, and then of course there's Edge.
If you are an old fogey determined to not upgrade or just don't even know how (if you're on this website, this probably isn't you, but hey), the company encourages you to do so to get the benefit of "improved security, increased performance, better backward compatibility, and support for the web standards that power today's websites and services." A final update for the aging browsers will nag you to do so, as well.
For some, Donald's Trump's antics in this presidential race were amusing for awhile but have since become rather annoying. If you're of the same mind, the "Trump Filter" Google Chrome extension claims to wipe the man from your browser entirely and "make America great again."
If you just wish to see less of him, there are three filter levels that accommodate "how much you want to avoid the Donald".
Hit the source to download Trump Filter.
Mozilla has just launched A-Frame, an open-source framework that uses HTML5 instead of WebGL. This means A-Frame is compatible across iPhones, Google Cardboard devices, the Oculus Rift DK2, and Android support "coming soon".
If you didn't line up for a midnight screening for Star Wars: The Force Awakens and are having to wait a some time before catching the action for yourself, this spoiler blocking Google Chrome extension might just be a life saver.
Aptly named 'Force block', this free extension allows you to scan all pages or add certain websites to a whitelist, as seen with normal extensions. Coming in at a tiny size of 582KiB and seeing a December 15 update that looked at improving pattern matching logic, this simple extension will come into use for many die-hard fans not yet able to experience the mastery of Star Wars for themselves..
If you're looking for an alternative to this heavily-publicized version you can also check out this competing extension, claiming to do exactly the same things. If you're super worried, maybe you can run both!
At long last, Mozilla is publicly offering a 64-bit version of its Firefox browser. Available for Windows users on 64-bit versions of Windows 7 or above, it's said to offer increased performance.
The downside is reduced plugin support, but the company says it's moving away from plugins anyhow and toward developing key features previously offered by plugins in-house, so this all part of the plan.
Google is on a mission to help you save on data usage when using Chrome to browse on your Android: its Data Saver mode has been updated to now save up to 70 percent by neglecting to load most images. This is handy when you're running a slow connection or just want to save on data. Once the page -- minus images -- is loaded, you can choose to load all or select images.
The update is only available in India and Indonesia for the time being, but more countries will see it in the coming months.
Firefox is available to Apple users everywhere as of this week. You can grab it now via the App Store anywhere in the world.
If you're new to the browser or are just wondering what will be familiar to you, expect syncing (history, tabs, passwords, bookmarks), Private Browsing, visual tab management, and of course, search suggestions. Mozilla says it's going full on with iOS development, so more features will come soon.
Head here to download Firefox for iOS.
Firefox 42.0 releases today, a major version that brings with it some significant changes and feature additions.
The big one is Tracking Protection when Private Browsing. As Mozilla puts it, "We first added Private Browsing to Firefox to give you control over your privacy locally by not saving your browser history and cookies when you close a private window. However, when you browse the Web, you can unknowingly share information about yourself with third parties that are separate from the site you're actually visiting, even in Private Browsing mode on any browser. Until today." Note that Firefox already offered the "Do Not Track" feature for normal browsing -- it's unclear how this is different if at all from Tracking Protection.
Microsoft's Edge browser has a lot going for it, but it is missing a component many consider key to the modern browser: add-ons (or extensions, plugins -- whatever you want to call them). It's been stated support for them would come in 2015, but that's now officially been delayed to next year.
Today Microsoft released this statement on the matter: "We're committed to providing customers with a personalized web experience, which is why bringing extensions to Microsoft Edge continues to be a high priority. We're actively working to develop a secure extension model to make the safest and most reliable browser for our customers, and look forward to sharing more in a future Windows 10 update in 2016."
Edge, like every other browser, hasn't seen much use compared to the ever-dominant Chrome. This delay, necessary though it may be, further hurts Edge's chance of becoming a significant force in the crowded browser market. On the bright side, Insiders will get to try out add-ons before they go public, though when exactly is not yet known.