MsGeek.Org v2.0

The ongoing saga of a woman in the process of reinvention.
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Sunday, May 08, 2005

Richie had not one, but two gigs yesterday so I had my hands full enough that blogging was the last of my priorities.

I'm on with Konqueror because apparently there are some serious vulnerabilities plus zero-day exploit code out for a Firefox bug. This is very depressing indeed.

It also goes to show that web browsers are one of the most difficult programs to code, apparently. Of all programs that seem to be across-the-board crashy, it seems like browsers are the worst culprits, and they have been for almost a decade. There is no such thing as a stable browser under MacOS 9.xx and below, even the WAMCom fork of Mozilla is a crashy pain in the butt. Both Firefox and Safari (Konqui's Mac sibling) are fairly stable under MacOS X, but they aren't perfect. Both Firefox and Konqueror have been known to segfault in Linux, as do other minor browsers save for the eternal Lynx. You can hammer on Lynx all day and nothing goes wrong, but it's kind of lacking in features, if you know what I mean. And of course, in the Windows environment, all bets are off. Even IE will crash or freeze on you if you try to do something funky.

The fix seems to be turning Javascript off in Firefox. Of course, that's a non-starter with most people because modern websites are so laden with Javascript, including Blogger/Blogspot and Gmail.

Hopefully this problem will be fixed soon. However, since the vulnerability seems to be one of those designed-in "it's not a bug, it's a feature" kind of vulnerabilities, it might be a tough nut to crack. Meanwhile I'll use Konqueror until it's fixed. Oh wait, Konqueror has problems of its own. Sigh.

Update, 3:30PM PDT: There is a temporary workaround in Firefox. Go into File|Preferences|Web Features and uncheck "Allow Web Sites to Install Software." This seems to work with every version. It's critical to do this in Windows but also do it if you are running Firefox on any platform whatsoever. Since the 'sploit is out, including code, it's only a matter of time when other versions of the 'sploit come out for other platforms. I'm back to happily running on Firefox. At least for now. Fix this quick, guys!