Featured Software
March 2017
by Dan Delong

Pale Moon - and some alternative browsers

Pale Moon is only one of a few browser names I've come across lately, i.e.; - those under development by independent teams. Many are purpose designed to be more secure, or faster, or pre-configured to match the taste of other types of users.

To my surprise, almost fifty browser choices are listed on The Windows Club a website.

One of them - Amaya - caught my eye, simply because it is both a browser and a code editor, able to handle CSS and slide show templates. It is no longer in development.

When development of Pale Moon started, it contained a lot of Firefox code. This is no longer the case. Most Firefox code has been stripped, or rewritten. Although this makes compatibility with a few addons and plug-ins impossible, most still function or will work with a work-around.

Pale Moon

Most notable, when taking a first look at Pale Moon, is the repopulated sets of iconized links on the home screen, making access to common sites quick and easy. My Canadian location yielded Canadian suggestions. Clicking on Start.me provide a list of hundreds of other suggestions for populating the home screen.

Pale Moon

Note the name of the default search engine - Duck Duck Go - noted for erasing search patterns after use. The quick links are grouped as to Social, Media, Resources, and Discovery. Developers also offer a fully developed, Thunderbird-derived, version of e-mail, called Fossamail.

As a community based project, those with programming skills are invited to earn pay for adding features and overcoming problems. A wide variety of themes and Pale Moon exclusive extensions are available. And the Bookmarks toolbar is visible by default, unlike the most recent versions of big name browsers. Downloading the 32-bit version ensures greater compatibility with Firefox plug-ins. I downloaded the 64-bit version, which brought this warning to the fore.

Pale Moon

Note about Firefox extensions!

Even though a good number of Firefox extensions will work in Pale Moon thanks to its Firefox extension compatibility mode, the two browsers are not the same, and you will have to carefully check your extensions if you come from Firefox. Some may not be compatible or available, and you should get an alternative, a compatible different version, or a Pale Moon specific extension instead. Please note that this includes some very popular extensions whose authors refused to support Pale Moon directly (for example: Adblock Plus users need to get Adblock Latitude instead). Known Incompatible Add-ons.

Adobe Flash vulnerabilties are of great concern to all browsers, including Pale Moon.

Flash Protected Mode tool

Important note: With Pale Moon 27 and later you possibly no longer need this tool -- in 32-bit versions you can enable or disable the Flash protected mode setting right from within the browser with the "Options" button on the Flash plug in in the Add-ons manager. Please check that first!

This simple tool was written as a quick way to switch Protected Mode in the Flash player off and on. If you are experiencing lots of crashes of Flash in Pale Moon, disabling protected mode in the flash player may help. Because Pale Moon itself already provides process isolation for plug-ins as a security measure, adding a second layer by Flash itself may make the plug-ins unstable on some systems.

System requirements:

Platform: Windows all

Version: March 3, 2017

Price: Free

Language: English, and many others

Download Size: a small set-up file (installer file is deleted after the install finishes)

Installed Size: 88 MB


Download Site: here.