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Best Free Software 05: Opera Web Browser

Opera web browser from http://www.opera.com, compared to Internet explorer and Mozilla Firefox is not known to many internet users, although it has been there for quite a while and has often pioneered features other browsers have subsequently adapted. It has always been one of the fastest and safest browsers around. Its features include:

  • page zooming
  • tabbed browsing
  • mouse gestures
  • an integrated download manager
  • built-in phishing and malware protection
  • SSL/TLS encryption when browsing HTTPS websites
  • ability to easily delete private data such as browsing history, cache and HTTP cookies
  • private browsing, enabling opening a new tab or window, whose data is not stored locally
  • ad blocking
  • BitTorrent client
  • web feed aggregator
  • fraud protection
  • lots of browser extentions

See http://www.opera.com/browser/features for more detailed information on its features.

Platforms

It is available for Windows, Linux & Mac OS X, FreeBSD i386, FreeBSD AMD64, Solaris SPARC, Solaris Intel operating systems.

Download

You can get the latest version from http://www.opera.com/browser/download/ (about 10MB). It’s available as a “portable” version, which can be installed on & run from a USB/flash drive from http://www.opera-usb.com/ or http://portableapps.com/apps/internet/opera_portable

Alternatives

It is a matter of life and death these days to use ONLY the latest version of whatever browser you choose for maximum security. Bad people will always create programs that will exploit any weakness, including that they may discover in web browsers to access your PC, for some reason, certainly not good ones. So it does not suffice to have an up-to-date anti-virus program. Here are more widely used browsers: