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2009-06-09-uzbl browser

Recently I have found uzbl while trying to look a vimperator(firefox) replacement that didn't waste so much resources and be as slow as firefox has gotten. Well we will have firefox 3.5 that would solve several of these issues and even then I will keep using uzbl for my main browsing needs.

Uzbl is another webkit based browser that is as small and usable as I like my applications, pretty much like Awesome it requires a fair amount of configuration but when you're finished no other browser will match the user friendliness of uzbl for you.

Basically everything can be tailored and there's no UI wasting space in your monitor, that's one of the reasons I used vimperator for firefox in first place. While keeping the config file in a clean text file that you can version control and share like I'm going to do now.

Deepspawn's Uzbl Config

Well when you compare my configuration file against the default you see few differences, first I recreated some of the qmarks I had on vimperator, gor for Arcs90 readability bookmarklet, goi for ImgFave, got for google translator, as you see I use delicious as my bookmarking system and it works great with uzbl you can see how I did that wil the b and B bindings.

But then I decided to create a "speeddial" I just gave that name, it's just an html generated page with some links that I fast access using f.

Deepspawn Uzbl Python Speed-dial

Well that python script will generate a good looking (for me) home page that I access using goh, but that page is generated every 15mins in a cronjob

*/15 * * * * /home/deepspawn/bin/speedial > /home/deepspawn/.local/share/uzbl/speeddial.html

One thing I miss a lot from firefox is adblock plus, I think getting it to work with uzbl would be nice but impossible at the moment, for now I use polipo proxy with one of the adblock filter list arranged so polipo can use it.

There are few things that doesn't work for me out of the box on uzbl, the first is open links in a new instance using the middle button, I solved that by using this small patch in the uzbl.c source: mid.patch.

The second one is open a new window with the F* binding but that requires a webkit knowledge or maybe a patch beyond the documentation of webkit-gtk and for now it's simply impossible. The javascript window.open function will not work for a while.

The third, and probably the most asked question in the #uzbl rooms at freenode, is cookies handling, I use the cookies.py that you now can find in the git repos and it somewhat works with a lot of domains but at the moment I'm having issues with myopenid cookies, and google hosted mail accounts.

Finally there's an annoying bug when you type multi-byte characters, like ç,á.é while in command mode and you try to erase them they make uzbl to segfault and leave the fifo file undeleted, if by chance( which seems to be a lot) a new uzbl instance gets the same xorg window id as the crashed uzbl it would leave the new uzbl without an fifo and most of the bindings of my configuration unusable. So if I notice uzb crashing I have to go and remove the fifos by hand.

Well that's all, it's highly experimental and while it has almost replaced firefox, I still launch firefox for few sites.

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© 2008-2012 Carlos A. Perilla deepspawn at valkertown dot org | Based on original design by Andreas Viklund