back to article Vivaldi browser to perform a symphony of ad and tracker blocking with version 3.0

Chromium-based browser maker Vivaldi might have stirred a hornets' nest thanks to inbuilt ad blocking for both its desktop and mobile incarnations of version 3.0. The release is a big one, evidenced by the jump to 3.0, and builds in both tracker and ad blockers as well as the usual array of configuration options for which the …

  1. IGotOut Silver badge

    I'll have to give it a go on Android.

    .already have it on desktop.

    Have to switch from DuckDuckGo to Startpage though. The formers results are to US centric.

    1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge

      Re: I'll have to give it a go on Android.

      You can set your country in DDG if you want, that should give you more relevant results.

      1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

        Re: I'll have to give it a go on Android.

        I'd be keen to learn how to set a country of origin for DDG - I've been looking for some time without success, though I felt it ought to be doable.

        1. cdegroot

          Nothing new...

          For me, the country selector is right there next to the safesearch and time settings. https://pasteboard.co/J4Zud1R.png for visuals

          1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

            Re: Nothing new...

            Thanks; I was looking for that, but for some reason my default DDG view didn't show anything other than the search bar (which is, to be fair, rather nice.) However, I chanced to go to the homepage and there it was.

      2. Glenturret Single Malt

        Re: I'll have to give it a go on Android.

        It should but, in practise, I have not found it to be very good when looking for UK-based returns.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: I'll have to give it a go on Android.

      Startpage might not be a good choice.

      1. Claverhouse Silver badge

        To Protect and Serve

        Interesting.

        Brilliant example of the American Government Model of the naming of parts --- minus the cutesy acronyms --- Privacy One *, wherein the demonstrated label is the exact opposite of the purpose.

        .

        * Owned by Start1, an advertising gang.

      2. e^iπ+1=0

        Startpage might not be a good choice.

        So long, startpage, and thanks for all the fish.

    3. Chewi
      Thumb Up

      Re: I'll have to give it a go on Android.

      I've got that say that even though I'd long enjoyed the desktop version, I was very sceptical about the Android version when it first appeared. Surely it couldn't be faster than Lightning, which is simply a light wrapper around Android's built-in WebView. I don't know how they did it but it really is and it's a joy to use. The bookmark syncing is particularly useful too.

    4. JDPower

      Re: I'll have to give it a go on Android.

      Um, installing an ad and tracker blocking browser, then changing default search to Startpage seems a slightly bizarre choice

  2. jonha
    Thumb Up

    If my trusty Pale Moon fails me...

    I do almost everything with PM but the odd site won't work (eg WebRTC stuff). After looking into many chromium-based browsers over the years I have settled on Vivaldi and I have not regretted it. It's very configurable and the one extension I need (uBlock origin) runs well. Whether I can retire uBlock with this release remains to be seen. YMMV.

    1. Dave K Silver badge

      Re: If my trusty Pale Moon fails me...

      Same here, Pale Moon for 95% of stuff, Vivaldi on the occasions where a site breaks in Pale Moon, or where it just runs like crap with a none-Chromium engine (ie, Google Maps). Also got an extension for Pale Moon that allows it to send a site direct to Vivaldi if required.

      1. KorndogDev

        Re: If my trusty Pale Moon fails me...

        Try changing user agent to Firefox or Chrome, it's worked for me. Nothing that's based on Chrome/Chromium is acceptable, uses way too much resources. PaleMoon with 500 open tabs takes 9GB of RAM and keeps running rock solid for weeks (on Linux of course).

  3. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Linux

    I'll be watching out for this

    Now if the Adslingers were even half-way reasonable none of this would be necessary, but unless that happens it's full nuclear here.

    Apart from a a few tightly selected web sites.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I'll be watching out for this

      Gresham's Law in action.

      When there was one commercial TV channel in the UK, space was very expensive (Lew Grade's "licence to print money") which meant ads were extremely high quality, and a trip across the Atlantic to where ads were utter shite made it very obvious.

      Now there's almost infinite advertising capacity, lowest common denominator doesn't even begin to describe it.

      Much was when newspapers had large circulations and were quite good, compared to now when any old rubbish goes because the cost of entry is more or less zero, and there's no editor with the proprietor breathing down his neck about circulation.

      You just have to compare The Times from the 1960s with now.

      The US First Amendment combined with corporatism: Making everything rubbish since Reagan.

      1. GBE

        Re: I'll be watching out for this

        When there was one commercial TV channel in the UK, space was very expensive (Lew Grade's "licence to print money") which meant ads were extremely high quality, and a trip across the Atlantic to where ads were utter shite made it very obvious.

        I haven't heard of it for a couple years, but it used to be "a thing" in the USA to pay money to sit in a theater (AKA cinema) for an hour or so to watch the best of the year's British TV ads.

        Here in the US, a DVR and a "skip 30s" button is vital for mental survival...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          DVR and a "skip 30s" button

          Too much hassle. An 'Amazon' type download is easier - no advertisements to skip.

          Our TV aerial was knocked sideways in a storm a decade or so ago. Not missed.

          Live news can still be good; often streamable.

      2. STOP_FORTH Silver badge
        Headmaster

        Re: I'll be watching out for this

        Lord Thomson said it first.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I'll be watching out for this

          Actually Thomson said Scottish Television had "a permit to print money", whereas Lord Grade referred to "a licence to print money". Though you can say this for Thomson, my father was pleasantly surprised when he bought The Times and didn't ruin it. Until it printed a full page nude in an advert, his secretary saw it and promptly passed it round the office. The Telegraph never did such things (harrumph).

  4. Fazal Majid

    Vivaldi is great

    I’ve been using it for years now as my primary browser, with uBlock Origin, uMatrix and Privacy Badger.

    1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Vivaldi is great

      Same here, it has the best vertical tab implementation of any browser.

      1. Def Silver badge

        Re: Vivaldi is great

        The Tree Tabs (I don't remember the exact name) extension for Firefox was better, but it's impossible to enable it now without also having the standard tabs across the top of the window. Which is monumentally retarded.

        Vivaldi's side tabs are ok, but still quite annoying at times. (Trying to actually find the single pixel line to stack a tab is irritating as hell, and the whole concept of tab stacking leaves much to be desired - especially when you're trying to find a tab again.)

        1. techulture

          Re: Vivaldi is great

          Agreed. Tab stacks are hard to crate and very slow to access. Tree style tabs was much superior.

        2. eldakka Silver badge
          Boffin

          Re: Vivaldi is great

          but it's impossible to enable it now without also having the standard tabs across the top of the window.

          Not true, you can remove the tabs across the top, although it's not a simple toggle option in the Firefox Settings UI.

          Sorry about the formatting, below is an unformatted copy/paste of my notes I made for myself on how to do it after some research:

          FIREFOX

          =======

          If using Tree Style Tabs and want to get rid of top tab bar, (after enable about:config toolkit.legacyUserProfileCustomizations.stylesheets true)

          put the following in <profile directory>/chrome/userChrome.css:

          #tabbrowser-tabs {

          visibility: collapse !important;

          }

          #titlebar {

          margin-bottom: -34px !important;

          }

          #titlebar-buttonbox {

          height: 32px !important;

          }

          #nav-bar {

          margin-right: 180px;

          }

          #main-window[sizemode="maximized"] #nav-bar {

          margin-right: 138px;

          }

          To test "live" without updating the userChrome.css, enable the options about:config OR in developer tools (F12) (press the '...' button on the right and select Settings)

          Advanced Settings:

          (ticked) Enable browser chrome and add-on debugginr toolboxes

          (ticked) Enable remote debugging

          about:config equivalent to above

          devtools.chrome.enabled = true

          devtools.debugger.remote-enabled = true

          Then open the Browser Toolbox (CTRL+ALT+SHFT+I or Tools -> Web Developer -> Browser Toolbox).

          In the "{} Style Editor" tab, you can add a new stylesheet ('+') and type in the styles above (or others) to test.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Vivaldi is great

        Gave it a spin on Android. If only there would be a setting to keep whatever tab/bookmarks/status bars in place.

        Personally, I don't care what is where on the screen but it has to stay in place.

        Being epileptic, I hate things flashing in and out of view the moment I want to scroll.

    2. chivo243 Silver badge

      Re: Vivaldi is great

      I used it for a while, I'm very happy with Brave and FF at the moment. I will have to throw Vivaldi in the mix and see which is better these days.

  5. Long John Silver
    Pirate

    How is Vivaldi funded?

    Please would somebody explain Vivaldi's business model?

    Visiting the Vivaldi website reveals it having employees on a seemingly co-operative basis. That raises the question of how Vivaldi raises income.

    Vivaldi uses a corpus of open source software and produces software of its own. It is unclear whether the entirety of Vivaldi code is open source or otherwise viewable under a more restrictive regimen.

    1. Tony W

      Re: How is Vivaldi funded?

      https://vivaldi.com/blog/vivaldi-business-model/

      1. Long John Silver
        Pirate

        Re: How is Vivaldi funded?

        Thank you

  6. This post has been deleted by its author

  7. chivo243 Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Websites and ads

    I hate ads, but I too get why they are needed. But until a website can guarantee that the ads are just that, and no additional payloads, just keep blocking, just keep blocking...

    So, website owners, listen up! Your site\biz will be better served if you vetted your ad agencies, and their IT arm. Just because a service works and gets you customers doesn't mean it is good for us...

    1. Drew Scriver Silver badge

      Re: Websites and ads

      "But until a website can guarantee that the ads are just that, and no additional payloads, just keep blocking, just keep blocking..."

      Here's the litmus test: a company's willingness to suck the ads into their systems so they can serve the entire page (including ads) from their own servers.

      Speaking as a content delivery engineer with 20+ years experience in that field, that's not that hard to do technically.

      Curiously, though, companies tend to be opposed to that approach since they don't trust the ad providers (and rightfully so, I might add). So why would we?

      As an added bonus, once ads are fully embedded it will be exceedingly difficult to block them. The ball is in their court as far as I am concerned.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Websites and ads

        El Reg does do this if you've got an adblocker. They listened!

        1. Drew Scriver Silver badge

          Re: Websites and ads

          I wasn't aware of El Reg's option for this and I'm pleasantly surprised.

          However, it does appear that they're still using a third party to host the ads rather than embedding them.

          1. e^iπ+1=0

            El Reg ads

            C'mon, how about locally hosted elreg/bogroll.jpg or similar - I would not block that.

            No gifs, however, please.

            I'm deliberately running our local bogroll stash low - below 3 rolls currently. I predict a modest downturn in prices soon, and am considering hoarding around 6 rolls.

            A locally hosted ad on elreg might convince me where to buy - no tracking, naturally.

            Got to go now - need a crap / full of shit / important message from an SEO to catch up with.

            1. teebie

              Re: El Reg ads

              I don't think this will work.

              The thing about loo roll is, over a long scale the overall demand is steady, so there is no incentive for the manufacturers to change how much they are making.

              Food goes off, so the amount used in a year increases if it is panic bought. Hand sanitiser and masks get used more in a panic, but people don't fundamentally alter their bum output based on a respiratory disease.

  8. Mr Dogshit

    It's not bad

    But it's not Opera 12. Sniff.

    1. Martipar
      Unhappy

      Re: It's not bad

      I agree, Opera has had built in ad blocking for ages - It's new FB messenger sidebar is excellent and adequate compensation for the removal of their email client.

      1. AK565

        Re: It's not bad

        You're referring to Opera Blink, I assume?

    2. AK565

      Re: It's not bad

      For those of us who are a bit slow, you mean Opera with Presto?

  9. Nila

    Opera is just better IMHO.

  10. Mark Jan

    Clear Data on Exit?

    I've used Vivaldi on desktop for ages and Opera on mobile. Just downloaded Vivaldi Android but the one thing that seems to be immediately missing is the great Opera feature of being able to delete all stored data on exit.

    1. Joe Drunk

      Re: Clear Data on Exit?

      I have yet to find an Android Chromium-based browser that clears browsing data on exit - they all require manually clearly from privacy options or incognito mode. The closest I could find was a chrome flag #clear-older-browsing-data which will clear all browsing data older than 30 days.

      Anyway if any of you Regtards are really interested in a good Chromium browser on Android with good ad blocking I suggest giving Bromite a test drive. I've compared it with Brave and Kiwi and found it to block practically every ad even in Youtube videos. Maybe that's why it's not available in Google Play store.

      https://www.bromite.org/

  11. Drew Scriver Silver badge

    Fingerprinting?

    Does Vivaldi thwart fingerprinting? I'm much more worried about that than I am about cookies. Tracking cookies are easy to block. Fingerprinting is much, much harder to circumvent.

  12. Blackjack Silver badge

    Both the desktop and mobile version need work

    For example when you Bookmark something in the mobile version, the title ends being the link url unless you type the name yourself.

    The desktop version lacks an easy access to reset settings to default or at least I haven't found it.

    And there are other things but those two are the ones I was most annoyed it.

    I think I will keep using Icecat for now.

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