[Linux] Chromium browser is the privacy-focused version of Google Chrome

chromiumGoogle Chrome is becoming the worlds preferred internet browser at an alarming rate, and with advances in webkit, Mozilla is having a hard time  catching up. All this is well and good, but if you’re not a fan of Google’s privacy practices, but you love Chrome, Chromium might just be the best thing to happen to you. Chromium is the privacy-focused cousin of Google’s Chrome.

WHAT IS IT AND WHAT DOES IT DO

Main Functionality

Chromium is an open source, WebKit based browser that is closely related to Google’s own Chrome Browser. Chromium differentiates itself from Chrome by focusing privacy.

Pros

  • Much like Google Chrome, Chromium has the standard Chrome features (Pin tab, chrome apps, incognito mode, chrome extension support, paste and search, omnibar, taskbar download manager and the like)
  • The Chromium project is privacy driven, open source and anyone can commit and contribute to the project at any time
  • More stable than Chrome on Linux
  • Chromium removes some of the shady data collection features that regular Google Chrome has
  • Can be compiled for use on Windows (finding an installer is very rare though possible)
  • Gets all the new features that Chrome gets
  • Sometimes can use less memory than standard Chrome on Linux (varies system to system)

Cons

  • Since there isn’t a ton of people involved in the Chromium project, updates can sometimes lag behind (this hasn’t happened for a while)

Discussion

chromium2I am a firm believer that WebKit is the future. Most of the web is catered towards it, and the competition just isn’t as good. Since Chrome has come out I have been on and off towards it, and slowly I have adopted it over Firefox. As much as I love Chrome, this is a browser being made by a company that makes tons of money by gathering user data. That’s why I love Chromium.

The Chromium project respects my privacy as a user, and I know that they do. You see, Chromium is open source, so if I have concerns I can modify the code and change it to suit my needs. That is the beauty of open source.  I love Google’s innovations. They’ve got to be one of the most innovative companies of today, but I also get very worried about them. I haven’t used Google as my main search engine in 3 years, and Chromium has been my browser of choice for a long time. I still get to experience all of the new features that Chrome has to offer, without using Chrome. It’s a wonderful thing. It goes without saying that Chromium is a very great implementation of Chrome, and it really sh0ws. They’re basically indistinguishable when it comes to the surface, its just whats underneath that is different.

Since this is an open source project, and sometimes open source projects can lag a bit, the one problem I have with Chromium is that some times (this hasn’t happened in a long while) . Sometimes Chromium will lack an update. I don’t really have much of a problem with that because that just means that Chromium can be ultra stable. I’ve had more problems with Chrome on Linux than I’ve had with Chromium. They’re so similar yet totally different.

There is no way that I will ever switch from Chromium to regular Chrome or any other implementation. I even compiled it by hand for Windows. I’m that committed to it, and its a great browser.

CONCLUSION AND DOWNLOAD LINK

If you’re a Linux user and you love Google’s Chrome, but you worry about your searching and browsing data, please try Chromium. Chromium is literally just Chrome without the hooey. It’s a wonderful implementation on a popular browser, and one that is community based and open source.

Price: Free

Version reviewed:  25.0.1364.160 

Supported OS: Any Linux distro (Can be compiled for Windows; .exe installers exist but are rare)

Supported software repositories: Almost any Linux distro

Download size: 22,19 MB+ other dependancy packages that install with it

Is it portable? No

Chromium homepage

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13 comments

  1. bibberhai

    My conclusion: Instead of listening to your readers, you only try to get your own right. Your article is at least confusing…. probably because of misunderstanding the deeper base of the Chromium project. At least try to understand why it was confusing and even shows to be confusing for you.

  2. Derrik
    Author/Staff

    [@Sceleron] And it is privacy based. The Chromium project is open sourced, so not only is all code free do be modified under ‘community builds,’ but the simple fact that Google uses Chrome as it’s production base and the fact that Chromium has open code means that these ‘minor differences’ have lead towards a browser that is more privacy centric.

  3. Derrik
    Author/Staff

    [@Sceleron] Chromium is the open source project that Google draws it’s code from.

    This obviously means that Chrome and Chromium were released around the same time but the published source code was picked up by the Chromium project.

    “Google’s intention, as expressed in the developer documentation, was that Chromium would be the name of the open source project and that the final product name would be Chrome. However, other developers have taken the Chromium code and released versions under the Chromium name. These are listed under community builds.”

    As far as I know, Chromium is a community based project, though Google draws code from it.

    Chromium technically came first, but that does not mean that it was the father of Chrome.

    They’re virtually the same thing, so you saying ‘father of Chrome’ doesn’t make sense.

    Chrome and Chromium are the same thing with different code bases.

    “The browsers share the majority of code and features, though there are some minor differences.”

    Which backs up my ‘blah blah blah’ statement.

    So again, they’re cousins.

  4. Sceleron

    “Chromium is the privacy-focused cousin of Google’s Chrome”
    “Chromium is an open source browser that is closely related to Google’s own Chrome Browser”
    “Much like Google Chrome, Chromium has the standard Chrome features”
    etc-blah-blah, etc-blah-blah…

    My friend, you do not know what are you talking-writing about, do you?
    Chromium is not a simple privacy-focused Chrome-like browser (as readers can understand from your “article”), Chromium is the father (and the mother, too) for Google’s Chrome and for many other browsers.
    Please take a little time and read Wikipedia (at least).
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chromium_(web_browser)
    Before teaching others, learn for yourself, please.

  5. bibberhai

    As far as I learned Chromium is not a browser but a “browser project”.
    Just like others do, one can build a browser with the help of the project, while the project is the important open-source. That’s how all Chromium based browsers are created.

  6. bibberhai

    SRWare Iron: The browser of the future – based on the free Sourcecode “Chromium” – without any problems at privacy and security.
    Installers for Windows, Linux and Mac and you don’t like it that much.
    Maybe you can tell us why….

  7. bibberhai

    Reading this Derrik, it seemed to me that you are not aware of

    SRWare Iron

    SRWare

    Iron is made possible by the Iron open source project and other open source software.

    as far as I always understood this is The Chromium Browser and I already use it for years.

    If you never met this browser then please study it and write a review on it.