General Question

downtide's avatar

What's the best lightweight browser for a low-powered netbook?

Asked by downtide (23810points) June 23rd, 2012

I have a little netbook running Windows XP and the latest update of Firefox has somehow fouled up and it doesn’t work any more. I need an alternative that’s less of a memory-hog and uses up less hard-drive space. I have IE but I’d rather use something else if possible.

Please don’t suggest Chrome – I’m not prepared to tolerate Google’s privacy policy.

Does anyone know of/use anything else?

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9 Answers

Nullo's avatar

Dunno about “best”, but this minimalist browser is pretty lightweight.

Lunascape just looks cool, no word on its weight.

Threeteeth is billed as a lightweight browser.

Slimbrowser is supposed to be small and fast, and was in fact shipped with certain copies of Windows.

Of these I would go with Lunascape, but only because I like astronomy.

dabbler's avatar

I’ve had good experiences with Opera on hardware where other browsers bog down.

downtide's avatar

Thanks for the options. I’m trying Slim Browser now and it seems pretty good, faster than Firefox at least. I will definitely try Opera too: I used to use that years ago before I moved on to Firefox. Lunascape, I’m not so sure about: with all the fab features it’s got, it’s probably too heavy.

Buttonstc's avatar

For tech type people who love to customize their browsers to the inth degree, Opera is perfect and. takes up far less space than many others. Ive read so many good things about it.

My tech friend who built my first computer about 15 yrs. ago installed it and disabled Windows (which he told me to NEVER use.

I found it a bit difficult to adjust to because I’m not a tech savvy type and I migrated to Firefox. But if Ff didn’t work for me any longer I would def. go to Opera.

Nullo's avatar

I love and adore Opera, but it always seemed big and slow on my computer. Granted, that computer is about 7 years old.

downtide's avatar

I’m not tech-minded at all, and switching to something other than Windows is not an option for me. I need easy. Does that rule out Opera for me?

Vincentt's avatar

I’m not sure exactly how easy it is to install Chromium on Windows, but that is Google’s open source browser project on which it bases Chrome (which basically adds probably all the features you do not want to face).

There’s also Midori, a semi-popular browser on Linux that apparently also has a Windows version:!sha1!f97e5b6e6afd3fa21888b4b9a0d06047a50d3301

dabbler's avatar

Installing Opera on windows is easy. I had that on an XP box for a couple years. When I converted that to a Win7 box I installed Opera again. It is always very fast. I have InternetExplorer and Firefox and Chrome on the same box and when I compare them Opera is the fastest. I still use IE because it’s most compatible with remote-login for work. And I like the features of Firefox so that’s my main browser. I haven’t found a reason to like Chrome better than the others, it’s as good, but I resent some orientation to the Google ecosystem so I usually just avoid it.

The only issue I’ve had with Opera isn’t really Opera’s fault: sometimes a web site is InternetExplorer biased and uses non-standard (IE standard) HTML that doesn’t render well in standards-compliant Opera. Firefox has more accomodations for these code-farts, and fortunately they are a lot less common than they used to be. That is the Microsoft “standard” is much closer to the standards these days.

Buttonstc's avatar


I don’t think that Opera is necessarily ruled out for you. My comments were based upon a combination of my own experience using it and the common consensus of most knowledgeable opinions on browsers.

You might be perfectly comfortable with Opera. Everyone is different. And as imentioned, if I could not use FF for whatever reason, I would prefer Opera over any other because of how well constructed it is as well as secure and having a small footprint.

I’d say give it a try and see how you like it.

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