Firefox Phishing Exploit

Firefox has a built-in phishing filter that checks whether a site is blacklisted, and warns the user of the potential fraud and information theft a phishing site could do. It uses Google’s database or a downloaded list of sites according to the user’s preference.

What follows is a quote from The irc.mozilla.org QDB, which caught my attention. Not only because I understood it, but also because I’ve already done it. It talks about a certain exploit to Firefox’s phishing protection/filter system.

Someone nicknamed Hixie[1] stated:

woah

i think i just found a semi-serious issue with the phishing protection in firefox

i went to a site that triggered the warning

and my immediate reaction (without really thinking) was “oh i wonder why that is blocked, let’s have a look” and i immediately opened it _in IE_.

possibly the worst thing i could have done.

I just realized the gravity of the situation when I remembered doing the same mistake he just said a lot of times before. But, it came to me that there is just no workaround to curiosity.

Oh, wel— … Hmmm …

… But then again, there’s Linux.

Footnote:

  1. ^ I guess this is Ian Hickson, but I’m not so sure.

Firefox 3 Beta 1 Review

I’ve installed the new Firefox 3 Beta 1 on my Windows XP system back home. At first sight, nothing is so much noticeable about the new version. Only the bookmark button on the location bar is visibly different. But I’d share to you some features I’ve tried and liked, hoping you’d like them, too.

Firefox have been late to implement the following features that other browsers have already. Late as it may seem, Firefox integrated the best from three different competing browsers.

Resizer toolbar item
This nifty toolbar item lets you resize relative-width toolbar items (i.e., location bar, search bar, and flexible space) just like how Apple Safari lets you.
Full-page zoom
Images and objects now joins text when you resize just like in Opera and Windows Internet Explorer 7.
WaSP Acid2 Browser Test compliance
Now only Internet Explorer is the major browser left that doesn’t pass the test.

I’ve considered Mozilla Firefox the most innovative browser in the market since I’ve discovered it way back pre-1.0 versions. Here are some features as proof they are still leading the race:

Improved password saving
Instead of the usual dialog prompt that asks the user whether one wants to save the password before submitting the login information, Firefox 3 uses the notification bar so that the user could first confirm whether the password is correct (meaning successful login) before saving it.
Multiple text selections
Text could be now be selectively highlighted at the same time. Just hit Ctrl while doing selections using the left mouse button. Multiple copy-pasting and switching between windows isn’t necessary anymore. BTW, you still can’t deselect a portion even when using Ctrl, though.
Improved location bar autocompletion
Usually, autocompletion lets you type the first letters of the address and will try to fill in the rest (with or without the protocol and/or the www subdomain). Now, Firefox 3 tries to find all history entries using the rest of the address along with the title of the page. So, if you could remember just the specific page address, which is usually my case, or title, but not the domain, you could still find what you are looking for.
Resumable downloads
In Firefox 3, you could now resume paused downloads even when you quit Firefox, and it automatically continues downloads if the browser or system crashes.
Improved multiple opening of bookmarks in tabs
Bookmark folders feature an Open in Tabs option that now appends tabs instead of replacing all tabs on the current window, the behavior in previous versions. Take note the the current tab will be replaced by the first bookmark on the folder when using left-click, use middle-click to open everything on new tabs.

So, there you go—my preliminary review of the next-generation Firefox browser. Please note that this does not include the tons of other new features and improvements from the preceding versions, but only those I find most interesting.

If you’re still reluctant to try the beta, you may want to upgrade your current installation of Firefox to the latest stable security/bug-fix, version 2.0.0.10.

Firefox 3 Gran Paradiso Beta

Firefox 3, codename: Gran Paradiso, is the next generation browser from Mozilla based on the updated Gecko 1.9 layout engine. It includes many implementations of current, new and future standards, and is the first Gecko-based browser to be released to pass the Web Standards Project Acid2 browser test.

I’ve been waiting for this version’s release months ago. But since I haven’t much time understanding code, and trying to help determining bugs and fixes to trunk/development builds, I opted to wait for its more stable beta release. The only problem is that my computer is out of reach during weekdays.[1] Tough luck.

Hmm … since I just had my birthday, I really wish for someone to give me an ASUS Eee PC 8G that I could bring anywhere easily. I’d probably use it as a mobile blogging device and testing platform.

I know, I know—I already have the new shoes, new JavaScript and AJAX book, and new model cars, among others—but, I really want to have the subnotebook.

Anyways, I guess the review of the latest Firefox beta would just come later.[2] Just check out the Mozilla Developer News site for more info about the Firefox 3 beta release and how to download it.

Footnotes:

  1. ^ I’m currently using my cousin’s computer to blog this.
  2. ^ Probably this coming weekend or next week.

P.S.:

Thanks to those who greeted me before, during and after my birthday. Here’s some link love (in almost chronological order): Marisse, Mini, Marlon, Tracy, Ate Mayie, Mama, Papa, My Princess, Hershey, Monina, the rest of my classmates, Thea, Bro, Ruiza, Cheng, Peyt, Marj, Shari, Tito Andre and family, Karissa, Dindin, Emilio, Izia, Maple, Auds, Kuya Mike, Ate Lei, Ubuntu Forums, Martha, my uncles, aunts and cousins from QC, Bezy, and Lyka. Tell me if I forgot you, my SIM‘s message memory got wiped out accidentally, and my IM isn’t set to archive messages.

Show Off Your Desktop

Lexie had me tag myself for showing off her simple, albeit funny, desktop. I really want to do the meme, though I had a little difficulty picking which one out of four systems (or maybe every one) I use I should show, and from which systems I’d pick five of my favorite applications. I eventually decided to go exclusively for the best one (system).

The meme goes like this: Post a screen shot of your desktop, and list five of your favorite applications.

And, so, here’s my desktop:

My Ubuntu Desktop

The top five applications I currently can’t live without include:

  1. Mozilla Firefox: the best and most extensible Web browser there is. It even runs fast on Linux. Though Linux has inherent security features, the security Firefox gave me when I was still on Windows gave me more peace of mind while browsing the Web.

    Addons: ColorZilla, Download Statusbar, Foxmarks Bookmark Synchronizer, FxIF, Organize Status Bar, Screen grab!, SearchStatus, ShowIP, Web Developer

  2. GNOME Terminal: a command line interface for Ubuntu, which I use for almost anything not readily available on a GUI.

    Separate apps I run on terminal: SVN, GNU nano

  3. Rhythmbox: Ubuntu’s default music player. This app isn’t really full-featured, IMO. It lacks an equalizer and configurable global hotkeys,[1] among others. But, its readily available plugins that include a very good iPod support, and Last.fm scrobbling makes up for everything. Notably, iPods’ music content could be read and played without syncing.[2] And, it has LIRC support I am hoping to try someday.

    Plugins: Last.fm, iPod, Cover art

  4. Gaim (now Pidgin): a multi-protocol instant messenger. I usually like official IM clients more, but since I use the Yahoo! Messenger service the most often, and the official YM client for UN*X systems became abandonware,[3] and I use Google Talk as well, I opted for the default IM client on Ubuntu. Besides, Psychic Mode is bloody cool.

    Plugins: Buddy State Notification, Message Notification, Message Timestamp Formats, Psychic Mode

  5. µTorrent (with WebUI beta): OK, I cheated as this application runs on my Windows desktop. But, thanks to µTorrent’s very innovative WebUI, I could control it from my Ubuntu notebook as well. I could have used Wine (hat tip to my classmate Luis), but my high-capacity disk is on my desktop anyway.

Now, there’s some link love you don’t see here everyday. I tag everyone reading this who has a knack for showing off something. 😛

Footnotes:

  1. ^ for non-multimedia keyboards; Good thing I have multimedia playback keys on my notebook.
  2. ^ I sync with the official iTunes client on my Windows with the big hard drive, and I haven’t tried syncing on Ubuntu yet—or tried checking if it is at least possible.
  3. ^ Latest release for UN*X systems is version 1.0.4 dated September 2003, while the latest Windows release is version 8.1.0.419 dated 29 August 2007.

Safari 3 Beta for Windows

Last time when I was reviewing new releases of Windows Web browsers, I was hoping I could get my hands on a Mac—or at least the money to buy one—so I could review Safari as well. But, I don’t think I would be drooling for it any sooner. I was browsing my Live Bookmarks when I saw a post from WaSP announcing the release of Safari 3 Public Beta for Mac and Windows. Yes, you heard it right … Safari’s new public beta is made for Windows as well!

I don’t think I’d be switching from Mozilla Firefox, though, especially now that Firefox 3 is nearing its release. Besides, common shortcuts I use with Firefox don’t work with Safari such as tab switching [Ctrl+Tab], open new tab [Double-click on Tab Bar], and maybe many more[1] that it has to have some getting used to. But, as a Web developer, it sure is very convenient to have four major browsers—Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Apple Safari, and Windows Internet Explorer—on a single box for cross-browser testing.

Contrary to what Yuga said, I think Safari is fast. It loaded my home page’s Extended Live Archives and some other DOM scripts lag-free. But, the startup isn’t as fast as Opera’s still.

So if you will, you could download Safari 3 Public Beta from Apple.

  1. ^ I’ve only been using it for just about 30 minutes.