Friday, August 12, 2011

Google Toolbar for Firefox 5 is no more

Oh dear! Just found out that Google Toolbar will no longer support for Firefox 5 and beyond. There were some handy tools in it that I really liked such as the Google Search Box, Page Rank, Bookmarks and the New Tab Page and to a lesser extent the Sidewiki. Looks like I will have to migrate to other alternatives. Although I can force compatibility on Firefox 5 (most features worked except New Tab Page) eventually some components will not work due to changes in the APIs structure.

Yeah, sure I was really late in finding out about the discontinuation as I was rather busy lately. The announcement was made sometime at the end of July 2011:

First of all, we’d like to thank all of our loyal users of Google Toolbar for Firefox. We deeply appreciate all of the feedback over the years that helped to make the product so useful. As we all know, over the past few years, there has been a tremendous amount of innovation in the browser space. For Firefox users, many features that were once offered by Google Toolbar for Firefox are now already built right into the browser. Therefore, while Google Toolbar for Firefox works on versions up to and including Firefox 4 only, it will not be supported on Firefox 5 and future versions. Please see our Help Center for additional details.

So that's it. The end of the road. Google said there are better alternatives and some of their Google Toolbar features could be found within Firefox itself. Oh, really? But I suppose with no more support from Google, there would be a lot of programmer creating their own equivalent version.

I guess I will just have to do without Google Toolbar and look for alternatives.

Let's see now:

For Google New Page Tab, I will have to go for New Tab King. This has a lot of extra features and a makes for a very interesting alternative.

Page Rank, I will be using SEO Quake and/or WebRank. These two not only provide the Page Rank, but a host of other info including Alexa ranking, inbound links for Yahoo and Bing plus many, many more.

Google Bookmarks, I will just have to migrate all my bookmarks to Xmarks. Initially I was using Delicious, but Yahoo sold the company and the new management was still reorganizing it. It took me a while to figure how to force compatibility to make it work in Firefox 5, but eventually I found a very good alternative which was Xmarks. It has cross browser compatibility thereby all my bookmarks could be sync with IE, FireFox and Chrome. Still haven't figured out for Opera though. And from there found out about LastPass, which was a cross browser password manager. Really superb!

As for the Google search box, I guess I will use the Firefox build in search box and set it to Google search.

And for SideWiki, well I wasn't really using it anyway, so it probably won't bother me if I don't use it. Still I would like to keep an eye on what people comment especially on my own websites. Also some people use it for promoting their own website, so it would be good to have an alternative to it. So far I don't know any equivalent alternatives, but no hurry for now.

Looks like this year, there are a lot of shaking and stirring in the internet world!


Anonymous said...

Might as well just use Opera's built in BOOKMARKS, bookmarks bar, typed history, speed dial, notes, custom search engines, content blocker settings and PASSWORDS syncing.

Anonymous said...

download the instantfox plugin. I am a huge fan of the google searchbar but I can honestly admit that this toolbar is more customizable and easier to work with. Let's say you wanted to search for cameras. Basically if you want to do a google search, in the toolbar you would type "G camera" The G signifies a Google search and then the keyword is what will be searched. Extremely fast and allows you the option to customize it.