Opera 20 not compatible with Yahoo Answers

  • Visited Yahoo Answers and got this message:

    "Yahoo Answers is not optimized for your browser.

    Please note that Yahoo Answers is not optimized for this browser. Some features may not be available or work well."

    Has anyone else seen this?

  • Yes. It's purely browser sniffing on Yahoo!'s side. I can't see any real issues after dismissing that alert.

    The correct description would be "Yahoo Answers purposely not compatible with Opera 20".

  • Interesting. I've used Opera since 1999, not as my default but quite often. But since installing and seriously considering 20 as my default, I seem to be hearing a lot about apparent prejudice against Opera by various companies -- especially Google. Has this been the case all along, or only since Opera went to Blink?

  • Unfortunately it has been the case all long.

    This issue became so serious that Opera has been forced to develop patches to sites themselves because the web developers refuse to remove the browser sniffing that blocks Opera users or breaks the site or some functions of it only in Opera(!).
    If Opera don't do it, naive users stop using Opera because they think the problems they have with websites is Opera's fault(!).

    If you go to your Opera profile folder and open the file called browser.js you'll see it's a file designed to apply patches to sites so they'll work in Opera.
    In Opera 12 this file contains a lot more patches and it's accompanied by "override_download.ini" which is a file that defines a list of sites/domains where Opera is forced to mask its UA-String as another browser so its users aren't blocked from using them successfully.

    It's a total shame for those web developers working at Yahoo, Google (which current browser.js is almost dedicated to patch their websites, without even adding the most recent issue with Google Search), etc.

    http://www.opera.com/docs/browserjs/
    http://web.archive.org/web/20130329072708/http://my.opera.com/sitepatching/blog/
    http://web.archive.org/web/20130409021953/http://my.opera.com/community/openweb/

  • wow... that's so incredibly wrong of them. It's 2014, things like this are so unnecessary.

  • This issue has always been hard for me to follow. By browser sniffing, you mean they have site configured so it can sense if Opera is browsing it, and then roadblocks are set up, soecifically to give Opera a hard time on the site. Who is trying to block Opera? Google? Others? Which others? If Opera has such a small market, share, why would Google or any others, let's say, want to block Opera. Wouldn't they rather go after Firefox, which has a much larger market share?

  • Visited Yahoo Answers and got this message:
    "Yahoo Answers is not optimized for your browser.
    Please note that Yahoo Answers is not optimized for this browser. Some features may not be available or work well."
    Has anyone else seen this?

    Dont worry about it, If you've even used the old Opera, you'd know there are sites that kiss the ass of Firefox, Chrome and IE, they code thier sites for only those browsers, youll get that not optimized message even if you use old Opera, I just tried it on the bedroom computer that still has Opera 16 on it,, yahoo answers will work perfectly well in Opera, Change your user agent and you wont get that message. This isnt anything new.

  • This issue has always been hard for me to follow. By browser sniffing, you mean they have site configured so it can sense if Opera is browsing it, and then roadblocks are set up, soecifically to give Opera a hard time on the site. Who is trying to block Opera? ... If Opera has such a small market, share, why would Google or any others, let's say, want to block Opera. Wouldn't they rather go after Firefox, which has a much larger market share?

    There are two approaches to 'sniffing'... one is to seek and detect a limited number of 'acceptable' browser brands and generally code the site for compatibility with them, blocking everything else. The other way is to specifically and actively sniff for a particular brand of browser and apply "special" code to it - one kind of "special" code being to block it from the site, other kinds of "special" code being to supply such a browser with radically limited site code (which breaks just certain site functions for that browser brand). Usually, the user-agent data string automatically sent out by the browser when making the site connection is sniffed, although there are other 'deeper' sniffing methods involving JavaScript that can block even a faked user-agent string.

    As to why it's done, one argument is that it's to assure the site works correctly for its visitors, limiting access to only those browsers which the site developers have coded/tested the site against. There is a cost associated with making sure the site works with different browsers; and various browsers themselves are being constantly changed and upgraded, so the site's testing (and its costs) presumably are open-ended if the site wants to remain compliant. So there is a natural temptation to bound the site upkeep costs by bounding the number of browser brands the site is coded/tested to work with. Of course, if the site simply didn't sniff at all, those non-tested browsers would probably mostly work OK for most things... however, the site elements that failed to work would result in user feedback to the site's support staff, and the cost of dealing with that would be in the site's lap. So it's simpler for them just to block the site for the non-coded/tested browser brands. Or at least so the reasoning goes...

  • Thank you, @Blackbird71. What you're saying is that in your view it's not an effort to get at Opera, though @islander5460 in his post referred to "apparent prejudice against Opera by various companies -- especially Google". His reference to prejudice was what had me puzzling. I mean, Google -- it's been my understanding" pays to have a Google Search engine on the Opera Screen Dial Page, so you would think they have a financial interest in Opera doing relaitvely well -- having more hits, so the Google Search Engine is used. Otherwise why pay Opera for this feature. Unless it's just a hedge payment 😉 -- if Opera does well and steals our users, at least our search engine will be used.

    What you're suggesting, I think, is that it's not related to prejudice or an effort to "get" Opera, but rather is because site developers are trying to limit maintenance costs for sites they develop. It's easier to just set up the site for a limited number of browsers. And I guess that's where having a leading market share helps. I was naive 😉 and thought there were simply coding (html or whatever now) standards, and that what was necessary was for the site to meet them, and for the browser to do so also. I guess that's just the ideal world. On the other hand we are talking about Yahoo Answers not working with Opera. Yahoo is a major player. So are we to take it then that Yahoo is just trying to save costs in maintenance? Perhaps they can get away with this with browsers with a smaller market share. If they did it to Firefox, there would be more of a fury to pay from their users.

  • I'm no longer getting the compatability popup using opera 20 so maybe they fixed it

  • Did you clear all Yahoo cookies before trying it? For me, once the cookies are cleared, the popup comes back. But as mentioned before, there doesn't seem to be any issues with using the site anyway, so I'm not worrying about it now.

  • What you're suggesting, I think, is that it's not related to prejudice or an effort to "get" Opera, but rather is because site developers are trying to limit maintenance costs for sites they develop. It's easier to just set up the site for a limited number of browsers. And I guess that's where having a leading market share helps. I was naive 😉 and thought there were simply coding (html or whatever now) standards, and that what was necessary was for the site to meet them, and for the browser to do so also. I guess that's just the ideal world. On the other hand we are talking about Yahoo Answers not working with Opera. Yahoo is a major player. So are we to take it then that Yahoo is just trying to save costs in maintenance? Perhaps they can get away with this with browsers with a smaller market share. If they did it to Firefox, there would be more of a fury to pay from their users.

    Its not the developers. Its the business group. They allocate money for projects. I worked for Chase bank, home banking, and many of us personally used Opera. But we were directed not to QA test with the Opera browser due to its low user base. Lately, using Opera 20, I've been getting the following:

    Your browser may not give you the best experience when you're on Chase.com.

    We recommend that you use any of the following browsers: Internet Explorer 8 or higher, Firefox 14 or higher, Safari 5.0 or higher, and Chrome 26 or higher.

    https://chaseonline.chase.com/Logon.aspx?fromLoc=ALL&LOB=COLLogon

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