Wednesday, December 2, 2015

No more Google Chrome support

Reportedly, Google will stop supporting Google Chrome on some platforms. What does this mean? For 32-bit Linux users, this could be bad news. For users of older operating systems, this could be bad news too.

That is why having a private company controlling a piece of software could create some trouble for some users. Private companies are companies which want to make a lot of money, or to save a lot of money. In my opinion, Google could save some money by this end of support.

The result is that Google appears to be more like Microsoft. Drop the support for Windows XP. Drop the support for Windows Vista. Drop the support for Windows 7. You could check the "support retired" information.

I remember "the web is the OS", which seemed unrealistic in the past. Now, we have concepts called "cloud" and "cloud computing" as people move or copy their data to servers.

Google dropping support for its Google Chrome is like ending the support for an OS. So soon?

Debian Wheezy was released on May 4th, 2013. Google is supposed to say goodbye to Chrome on Wheezy in March 2016. Oh, just about three years. What a revolution, in my mind!

Google appears to adopt the strategies Microsoft uses: Retire products as frequently as possible and force users to upgrade whatever has worked for them. See, Google Chrome on Android is updated quite frequently. A number of Google Chrome users complained that this web browser crashed upon the latest update.

Little One is one of those users, and commented, "You where small and elegant You've grow a lot since we met.NOW you are stock on my phone and use a fair amount of space but I can't remove you so therefore I will live and learn. No big deal when you have 12GBP of storage" (Original comments without my editing)

Has Google Chrome evolved to the better side of the world? Is there a "worst of the worst" software update competition going on?

Is the users' wish to keep things stable, old and useful unacceptable in this changing world?

Michael Backus is another Google Chrome on Android user, and commented, "Have always liked it. But there seems to be less customisation with each update Recently my frequently viewed pages have gone missing from both my nexus 9 and nexus 4. Do I need to revert back to an earlier version to get this back or is there options for this anywhere?" (Original comments without my editing)

Comments were retrieved on December 2nd, 2015. Microsoft like the term "downgrade rights". Microsoft says, "Downgrade and down-edition rights are an end-user right that Microsoft offers to customers for certain OEM products which meet the technical requirements for a Windows software downgrade."
Does Google provide some "downgrade rights" for the Chrome browser?

 "Interesting," I thought. Why would a user want to downgrade in the first place? Is the "old" software better than the "new" software? What functions went missing in the new version? What functions changed in the new version?

Should software changes be so frequent if you are a user who relies on that software for your critical work or life?

Okay, apart from Google Chrome, please consider using other web browsers.

Opera and Firefox seem to be viable alternatives.

Let's take a look. Firefox (Version 42.0) supports:

Windows XP SP2
Windows Server 2003 SP1
Windows Vista
Windows 7
Windows 8
Windows 10

, and on Linux,

GTK+ 2.18 or higher
GLib 2.22 or higher
Pango 1.14 or higher
X.Org 1.0 or higher (1.7 or higher is recommended)
libstdc++ 4.3 or higher

The Opera browser recommends:

Windows XP or later

Ubuntu 14.04 or later

Wikipedia tells me that Linux's desktop market share is still very small. It is estimated that less than three per cent of the web clients are on Ubuntu, Debian and other Linux operating systems (excluding Android). Google may be right in giving up some Linux versions. Android is more popular than these Linux systems.

Google Chrome's end of support may help us to rethink what should be the best practice in supporting the products.

Is the software's life supposed to be so short?

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