When it comes to Web browsers on the desktop, Linux users are faced with an embarrassment of riches with plenty of alternatives to choose from. For those who are looking for a screaming fast browsing experience and can do without the graphics, Linux offers a number of text-based browsers. (I'll mention these briefly at the end of the chapter.)
In the graphical world where most people spend their browsing time, the hottest and coolest browser of the day is Firefox, and it just happens to be the default browser found in Ubuntu Linux. Before Firefox made its appearance a short while ago, everyone assumed that the browser world belonged to the browser from Redmond, the security-problem-plagued Internet Explorer. As I write this, Internet Explorer has dipped to below 90 percent of the browser market share in North America and below 80 percent in Europe. This is quite the feat considering that Internet Explorer commanded something around 95 percent of the market before Firefox. Better security and advanced features have drawn millions of users away from Microsoft's browser. Firefox is an exciting program and I'll show you how it works in this chapter.