Uzbl: Web Browser for Linux

When, on one hand browsers like Firefox, Opera, Maxthon and Safari are boasting of new features, Uzbl, is a browser which dares to keep it simple. Uzbl is based on the Unix philosophy of

Write programs that do one thing and do it well. Write programs to work together. Write programs to handle text streams, because that is a universal interface.

Now if you have been using any browser other than Internet Explorer and Google Chrome, features must be a necessity for you. Uzbl is not totally marked by a lack of features. Based on the webkit engine, Uzbl forms the base for a totally customizable browser for programmers who can modify its behavior from the ground up. The Webkit engine also gives it a speed comparable to Google Chrome.

”]Uzbl-BrowserAlthough the browser lacks native support for tabs, a python shell has been developed which can contain multiple Uzbl windows. Uzbl instances can also be embedded into other applications using a GTK plug. Many users have trouble configuring Uzbl. So custom config files are also available. There are no modules for managing cookies, bookmarks and other browser features but all of them can be added with simple scripts. The browser navigation is also done through vim style key-bindings. There are two modes of operation just like vim: Command mode and Insert mode. All links open in a new page and all this keyboard talk does not mean we cannot use the mouse for navigation. All features provided by Firefox plugins can be added with external JavaScript support.

Techie Buzz Verdict

Uzbl is still in Alpha and is available only for Arch Linux. There are no .deb packages available as of now, but one can be developed by following the tutorial given here: Tommy Morgan’s Blog. The browser caters to all users, as developers can create new features and general users can demand for more features. The browser is fast and is good if you want to quickly visit a page. Else than that, Uzbl is a complete mess without any scripts or mods.

Techie Buzz Rating: 2.0/5 ( Average)

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Chinmoy Kanjilal

Chinmoy Kanjilal is a FOSS enthusiast and evangelist. He is passionate about Android. Security exploits turn him on and he loves to tinker with computer networks. He rants occasionally at You can connect with him on Twitter @ckandroid.