Google Chrome Browser news, hacks, and discussion.

Google Chrome Review Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Tuesday, 09 September 2008 13:02
(SURFCHROME.COM) - It's been a full week since Google Chrome has been released so I thought I'd post a review.  The primary aspects of web browsing that Google brings to the table with this browser is the way it loads and manages memory.  When websites open, the graphics, javacript, CSS and HTML all have to load smoothly, otherwise the browser encounters problems.  If any component is slow loading or stalls, then the whole browser can crash.  With the other web browsers, if one page is having problems, it can take down the whole program and all other tabs.  Chrome has split up these processes into individual components. So if there is difficulties with flash, the browser can skip that part and continue loading the javascript, images and the rest of the content.  Modern operating systems run the same way. If one program crashes, the other applications will still function. Chrome is a browser that performs in the same manner.  In addition, Google Chrome also manages tabs separately. If one tab crashes, the rest of your open sites will remain accessible and unscathed.

Another advantage Chrome has is security. No other business understands the Internet like Google does. Because of this, they have the inside knowledge to block hazardous or malicious websites faster than anyone else. This helps safeguard visitors from websites that pose a risk.  It is also secure in bringing the Incognito Window which lessens the chance that those sharing the same computer may snoop in on your browsing habits.

Chrome also provides a more organized approach to the browsing experience with less clutter. Google borrows very heavily from Opera and Firefox, almost shamelessly, but it seems every new web browser is going to be seen as a recycled version of a previous browser anyway.  When I tested Google Chrome, it did a fairly decent job and was reasonably quick. There are many features missing, but how many other first version browsers do you know that have performed better than this.

Overall I'm impressed and potentially see Chrome being my default browser after developers start creating add-ons and plugins to replace those I've come to expect in Firefox.  I definitely recommend downloading the Chrome Browser if you're a Windows user.
Updating Google Chrome Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Monday, 08 September 2008 07:53

(SURFCHROME.COM) - So how do you update Google Chrome to the newest version available?  With Firefox and Internet Explorer, there are automatic updates that occur.  The software does updates automatically when you're connected to the Internet.  Google Chrome should perform automatic updates when you're connected to the Internet.  With Google Chrome, one can manually check for updates within the application but it's a bit hidden.  Click the Wrench at the top right corner and select About Google Chrome.  You'll see "Checking for updates" and if one is available you'll see "A new version of Google Chrome is available" along with a button that says "Update Now."  Read More below to see screen shots on what to expect.

Incognito Mode Forensics Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Sunday, 07 September 2008 08:39

chrome incognito mode(SURFCHROME.COM) - How Incognito is Incognito Mode?  When I first heard about the Incognito Window within the Google Chrome browser, I thought it was a brilliant idea.  Some even refer to it as Porn Mode.  When I told my friend Samarjit Bharadwaj (Sam) who works as a government contractor at a Fortune 500 Company, I could literally hear his eyes rolling in the back of his turban.  It was explained that hard drive data is never truly deleted.  The data is still there but Windows makes the file invisible and marks the space as available for rewriting.  Furthermore, for those familiar with forensics, usually data recovery is as simple as finding the location of the deleted files, highlighting the hidden files you want to recover, then pressing a button.  Yes, it's that simple.  If you wanted to make data truly unrecoverable, the Department of Defense (DOD) standard is overwriting the data with a minimum of 7 passes.  To be sure, Sam suggested throwing the hard disk drive at one of those electromagnets they use at junk yards then melting it in a crematorium furnace for several hours.

I had a challenge for Sam and rushed over to his house to test Incognito Mode.  I wanted him to surf the web in Google Chrome via an Incognito Window then attempt tracing his activities via any file recovery methods.  As an engineer, Sam was more accustomed to visiting schematics and mathematical probabilities but I pointed him over to a celebrity picture site.  Sam seemed to have growing interest in pursuing this little experiment as he viewed thumbnails and clicked through various paparazzi photographs of Lidsay Lohan, Natalie Portman and Megan Fox among others.  I literally had to restrain him from further browsing since I think we had enough data in browsing history, cache and cookies.  After closing the Incognito Window, we are led to believe by Google that all traces of cache, history and cookies are unrecoverable.

Graphic: Sam browsed through various thumbnails and pictures trying to build a cache full of images.

Click image to open!
Click image to open!
Click image to open!
Click image to open!

While Sam's work software is proprietary and probably classified, he did suggest a good program that performs equally well called PC Inspector File Recovery.  The results were truly startling and unexpected.  There was no trace of cached images, history nor cookies.  The forensics program could only find one deleted file from the cache directory dated two days previously on Sept 2,2008.  There were no deleted files for the date of testing on Sep 5, 2008. The data was hidden even better than Osama bin Laden.

Graphic: File location on hard drive where Google Chrome saves images and data while web browsing.

Click image to open!

Sam made the conclusion that Incognito Mode might use one technique that circumvents data recovery software.  If a program writes to Random Access Memory (RAM), then the data is never written to the hard drive (virtual memory) and therefore never has to be deleted.  So thanks to the dropping prices of RAM chips, a portion of the 2GB standard could easily be allocated to Google Chrome.  Sam wanted privacy as he prepared his shrimp masala with jasmine rice so I had to excuse myself.  Personally, I think he wanted more time to surf privately in Incognito Mode.

Graphic: First image (left) captured before browsing via Incognito.  Second image (right) captured after browsing via Incognito.

Click image to open!
Click image to open!

Easter Egg Screen Shots Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Saturday, 06 September 2008 08:34

easter eggs(SURFCHROME.COM) -  What are Easter Eggs in regards to the Google Chrome web browser?  Easter Eggs are hidden and often undocumented commands intentionally created by the developers that produce videos, information, images, sounds, or change in program behavior.  They are often hidden in the Help menu or an About tab of software yet Google Chrome has no respective menus.  So, where are the Easter Eggs?  Simply type the following commands into the address window.  For your viewing pleasure, we've added Google Chrome Screen Shots for the respective commands.


WW II: Google vs. Microsoft Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Friday, 05 September 2008 13:43
Google vs. Microsoft(SURFCHROME.COM) -  The battle lines have been drawn.  It's a browser war on a global scale unseen in previous generations.  It has images of World War II written all over it.  Microsoft Internet Explorer (Nazi Germany) was resilient and merciless in their global expansion.  Apple Safari (England) would never surrender against the onslaught while the Opera (French Resistance) just laid down their arms.  While difficult to defeat, Mozilla Firefox (Russia) had only minimal penetration and military success.  The sleeping giant Google Chrome (US) had awaken and entered late into the war with it's large economy.

Watching this war is exciting and well worth throwing some popcorn in the oven.  Last week, Microsoft launched the 8th rendition of Microsoft Internet Explorer in Beta which included an inPrivate mode which hurts target advertisers such as Google by preventing online tracking. Vice President Mike Zaneis of Interactive Advertising Bureau, pounded the table as quoted in the Washington Post, "It has the potential to undermine the economies on the Internet."

This was a mud sling right into the faces of Google who thrive off of advertisements.  Apparently, Google spies must have known Internet Explorer was headed in this direction and took steps this week to knock some steam out of Microsoft's stranglehold of the browser market with the introduction of Google Chrome.  Google has a tough fight ahead of them as Internet Explorer will be included in all Microsoft Operating Systems.
DOS Vulnerability Crashes All Chrome Tabs Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Thursday, 04 September 2008 06:26
Google Chrome Exploit(SURFCHROME.COM) - One of the Google Chrome browser's main selling points is the separate tab processes that won't crash the entire chrome browser.  Word from ZDnet speaks of Rishi Narang stating that he has proof of a concept that a denial of service vulnerability in Google Chrome can cause the entire browser to crash.  Narang at reports:

“An issue exists in how chrome behaves with undefined-handlers in chrome.dll version A crash can result without user interaction. When a user is made to visit a malicious link, which has an undefined handler followed by a ’special’ character, the chrome crashes with a Google Chrome message window “Whoa! Google Chrome has crashed. Restart now?”. It crashes on “int 3″ at 0×01002FF3 as an exception/trap, followed by “POP EBP” instruction when pointed out by the EIP register at 0×01002FF4.”

The more popular Google Chrome becomes, the more likely hackers will take advantage of any exploits available.  At this time with, cyber criminals are sitting on the fence since the new browser holds perhaps less than 1% share of the browser market as of the second day of release.
Google Retracts Terms of Service EULA Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Wednesday, 03 September 2008 20:37

EULA(SURFCHROME.COM) - Under pressure by privacy advocates, watchdogs and content producers, Google has modified Section 11 of their Terms of Service which previously gave Google "a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services."

According to Matt Cutt's blog, the Senior Product Counsel Rebecca Ward of Google stated, "In order to keep things simple for our users, we try to use the same set of legal terms (our Universal Terms of Service) for many of our products. Sometimes, as in the case of Google Chrome, this means that the legal terms for a specific product may include terms that don’t apply well to the use of that product. We are working quickly to remove language from Section 11 of the current Google Chrome terms of service. This change will apply retroactively to all users who have downloaded Google Chrome."

Section 11 now simply reads:

11. Content license from you

11.1 You retain copyright and any other rights you already hold in Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services.
Mock Google Cartoons Emerge Print E-mail
Written by chi   
Wednesday, 03 September 2008 12:52

google cartoon satire(SURFCHROME.COM) -   Have you read the comic strip style informational book yet? Do so, since it helps.  Perhaps, even print it out for the old fogies.  Google publicized the new Chrome Browser with a 38-page comic book full of all kinds of interesting information. Well, it had to happen.  The first batch of satirical cartoons have already emerged as web geeks try to translate Google messages in their own words.

Can you do better?  Submit your cartoons.  


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Visitor Stats

55.02% Chrome
27.52% Firefox
13.12% Internet Explorer
01.80% Safari
01.74% Opera
00.53% Mozilla

09/02/2008 to 11/08/2008


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