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How to win big market share for Opera Windows desktop browser (bookmarks, sync)

  • lem729 you have no idea about bookmarks, which is why I am still using Opera 12 & not these newer nonfunctional versions of Opera.

    Opera 12 has proper bookmarks, along with speed dial & Sessions which allow you to save & store multiple open tabs. I have about 50 different Sessions stored, each contain multiple bookmarks that open in their own tab with the click of the mouse on the individual Session name & create when saved. I also have about 4000 bookmarks, Firefox & IE can both handle that volume of bookmarks, the newer versions of Opera can't.

    The new Opera is focused on "users" who social network to sites like Facebook & really know nothing about security & personal privacy or even care. If they did they wouldn't be using Facebook & linking everything they do online. Opera shifted to this newer no-bookmark browser for a reason "profits"!

  • You can try Session Buddy if you move to Opera 20. You can also save and store multiple open tabs.

    That's how you would save and store new sessions in Opera 21. I am not saying those old sessions would transfer over, and that seems to be a major problem.

    When you say, Opera 21 cannot handle 4000 bookmarks, I don't think that is at all accurate. It can! What you are really saying, I think, is that it cannot handle what you have in Opera 12 -- 4000 bookmarks plus 50 saved sessions, without being a colossal headache for you. As for importing, I made clear in my initial post in this thread: "What Opera 21 could use is an import/export bookmarks manager, built into the basic browser." Now, I do understand that 4000 bookmarks is a huge undertaking. And because of your multiple sessions that you have saved, you are in a highly uncommon category. Is any product that doesn't not meet a near totally unusual need, such as yours, nonfunctional. I don't think so! And let me make clear, Opera 21 is not nonfunctional. It just may not be able to adequately deal -- for you -- with your rather unique 🙂 issue.

    If you want to transfer the bookmarks WITHOUT the sessions, I believe you could make the transfer, activating the Personal Bookmarks bar in Opera 20, getting a good bookmarks manager extension, like Neater Bookmarks in the Chrome store, using the Bookmarks Importer in Opera 21, and making full use of near infinite space in the Speed Dial, the bookmarks toolbar and Stash for storage and organization. I don't know how well organized your bookmarks are in folders, so it may not be easy. I'll be honest with you. I've never tried to import anywhere near that number of bookmarks.

    AS for Opera now being focused on Social Networks and Facebook, that's alot of hooey :))))) And let me make very clear: it's not at all what you aburdly call it, "a no-bookmarks browser." That's a duck, sir, that will not fly, a dog that will not hunt . . . Why, it's the emperor without any clothes. You can repeat something over and over again, and it doesn't make it truth. I can understand your rather unique situation. Best of luck to you!

  • Saving & storing a few urls in a Session isn't the issue. Sessions are just a nice way of saving things you are working on. Such as when you are researching a subject or issue & have 10 tabs open but need to go to work or bed. Then you just save those open tabs to a new session so you can open that Session again later. Sessions have no other purpose than that.

    Opera 12 like Firfox & IE can handle massive amounts of bookmarks without any problems at all. They do so because bookmarks are simple a saved url. I have never tried but imagine in Opera 12, Firefox & IE, one could have 1 million or more bookmarks without it causing any problems. Bookmarks are little more than a text file, each line being a single url.

    Opera 21 or any version of Opera after Opera 12 can't handle bookmarks. Opera doesn't want their web browser to handle bookmarks anymore & I told you why "Profits".

    Opera is making a great deal of money by forcing thier users to use search engines to reach websites. It's all about big data, getting people to rely on others rather than themselves. Everyone today is using search engines, linking all their social networking sites, having someone else remember their login credentials.

    Some of us are not interested in sharing our lives with the Googles of the world, we prefer anonimity. My personal privacy is critically important to me, I don't link anything, I don't have anyone else remember my login credentials.

    Funny thing is IE is the most anonymous browser. When I install Opera, Firefox & Chrome I have to spend hours running wireshark & netcat to capture all the IP addresses those browsers are "phoning home to" IE doesn't do that but the others all do. After installing Firefox a week ago I ended up adding over 200 IP addresses to my host file, to block my Internet connection from contacting those IP addresses. Those are IP addresses Firefox tries to connect to just by opening the program & without ever connecting to a website. Opera & Chrome do the same thing. Not just when you start the web browsers, even while surfing from website to website those browers are still phoning home.

    But you wouldn't know anything about that because you are just a user. Who like most everyone else is oblivous to just how much tracking & monitoring of our surfing habits are taking place & by who. And I won't even tell you about extensions, addons & those toolbars people keep installing on their computers & cell phones.

    Before you say I am being paranoid get yourself Wireshark & run it, see for yourself. Start Wireshark then open Opera without connecting to any websites & watch how many IP adresses Opera connects to before you ever do anything. Then if you want to do something about you need to learn how to use your host file, mine is blocking my computer from connecting to over 18,000 IP addresses. The host file is actually the only way to block connections to & from your computer. Web browser addons & adblocking software only block the display of ads, the connections to & from your computer still take place!

  • @islander5460
    I'm not sure what you mean by the Firefox speed dial that you looked at in the past being more customizable than Opera's. I've looked at Firefox on and off for years (as my no. 2 or 3, or 4 browser) and still can't find a speed dial I really think much of in Firefox and its extensions. Having a folder (if you choose), as Opera 21 for each speed dial position (with as many links as you want there) (and thumbnails) and the ability to keep adding speed dial positions is the ultimate in flexibility. Some of the Speed Dial extensions for other browsers offer you extra pages. For a while, I thought extra pages were the answer, but the more I look at Opera, it doesn't seem needed. On one Opera speed dial page, you can showcase more links than you can on ten speed dial pages in another browser's conventional speed dial (and with Opera you can at the end of a page, keep adding extensions and scroll down) (you then end up with a scrolling bar on the right hand side of the browser). It seems like you could keep going and going with the links and speed dial positions. No end to it? Now on customization with Opera you can adjust the number of columns, as well as the size of the thumbnails. If the thumbnails are smaller, you can get more of them in a limited area of space. In Opera, you can rearrange your speed dial links within a speed dial folder by dragging the thumbnail into the position that you want. You can move the speed dial folders around by dragging. You create a folder by dragging the thumbnail of a link on top of another. You can drag a link from the speed dial to the personal toolbar, and from the personal toolbar you can drag a bookmark to the speed dial and make a position there. And then with Opera, you have a slew of customization possibilities with wallpaper, using your own, taking Opera's, adding wallpaper from the internet with a right click. Initially, I hadn't fully digested the Opera Speed Dial (with folders). Upon reflection, I believe it is a "killer" feature, hugely customizable, and I don't think any competitor browser or extension to a browser right now is in the same ballpark.


    It's been some time since I used the FF extension, but I do remember it being very flexible, and could do everything you stated about Opera's speed dial. The best feature I liked was the speed dial page could have tabs, so opening a new tab for speed dial didn't feel like a wasted move. In effect, the speed dial page became a visual version of the bookmarks bar. I'm hoping Opera does the same thing someday, because speed dial tabs are very useful. But if not, if they could support folders within folders, I'd be more likely to use speed dial.

  • @lem729
    It's been some time since I used the FF extension, but I do remember it being very flexible, and could do everything you stated about Opera's speed dial.

    I'm sure it could not create a folder for each speed dial position -- if wanted. It's at least my understanding that that's a unique Opera breakthrough. 🙂 In Opera if you drag one speed dial thumbnail over another you have a folder of two for one position on the dial. And you can keep dragging and end up with a folder of 10 or more for ever position. I don't know if there's a limit. Also Opera's speed dial keeps going down (with a scrolling bar set up on the right, after a full page. You're right, though, the Opera speed dial doesn't go the extra step -- give you folders within folders. That you can get with the personal tool bar. But they complement each other. It doesn't have to be a choice -- the Speed Dial, or the bookmarks bar. The Speed Dial can be used for certain kinds of links -- the most used, the ones you want to highlight, etc. I'm not sure what you mean by a new tab for speed dial. Opera seems to do that, I can have speed dial going in any tab I want.

  • @lem729 I can drag one thumbnail over another to make a folder in FF using Superstart. It also allows one to customise the speeddial so you have transparent backgrounds with images (logos) of your choice if that's what you like, plus a few more options.

  • @dnsone

    You say, "Sessions are just a nice way of saving things you are working on. Such as when you are researching a subject or issue & have 10 tabs open but need to go to work or bed. Then you just save those open tabs to a new session so you can open that Session again later. Sessions have no other purpose than that." Okay, Session Buddy, the Chrome Extension, can do that.

    You insist on the misinformation campaign, when you repeat the same old same old . . . that, as you assert, "Opera 21 or any version of Opera after Opera 12 can't handle bookmarks. Opera doesn't want their web browser to handle bookmarks anymore." Wake up. Can't you smell the coffee brewing. It just ain't so! Opera 21 can handle more bookmarks than Opera 12. It is a bookmarks "giant," with its wondrous speed dial (with folders of links for each speed dial position, the personal bookmarks bar (that permits folders within folders within folders ad infinitum), stash, bookmark manager extensions, etc. Now I'm not talking about how well Opera 21 import. That's a different issue.

    You say, " Some of us are not interested in sharing our lives with the Googles of the world, we prefer anonimity. My personal privacy is critically important to me, I don't link anything, I don't have anyone else remember my login credentials." Okay, but I don't see on the extensions that work in Opera 12, major players like, "Disconnect,"

    or even ZenMate

    or AVG Privacy Fix.

    The approved privacy extensions for Opera 12, are much more limited than for Opera 21, and the ones you have, like Ghostery are extensions in Opera 21.

    You say, "Then if you want to do something about you need to learn how to use your host file, mine is blocking my computer from connecting to over 18,000 IP addresses. The host file is actually the only way to block connections to & from your computer. Web browser addons & adblocking software only block the display of ads, the connections to & from your computer still take place!"

    Now that sounds pretty good. Look, I used Opera 12 for years, and it's a fine browser. There's no reason you can't continue to make good use of it.

  • @rainspa

    They stole it from Opera 🙂 I'll add it to my Firefox and check it out. Thanks. This is one though where I would trust Opera more, since it's speed dial is built into its basic browser. I mean, who is Cyberscorpio? Will the next update of Firefox break his speed dial?

  • @lem729 "I'll add it to my Firefox and check it out." I thought you might. 🙂

  • @lem729 Firefox's Super Start add-on had folder option already in 2012. Should I apply your way of thinking and start a discussion who stole what?

  • @lem729
    I'm not sure what you mean by a new tab for speed dial. Opera seems to do that, I can have speed dial going in any tab I want.

    I only had to open one new browser tab to reach the speed dial, and within that single speed dial page you could have tabs (or Groups as the default name is for the tabs). I just installed it again so I could make this screenshot to show you:

    That feature was very convenient, and didn't require as many mouse actions as the current Opera setup. So if Opera could do that -OR- do folders within folders, I'd be more likely to use the speed dial. 🙂

    In any case, the bookmarks bar itself is enough for me. I don't really NEED a bookmark manager or any other functionality that other extensions could bring. As long as I can get to my websites with fewer mouse actions, I'm happy.

  • @fossadeidim

    I'm sure Super Start stole the speed dial from Opera. It's a given, Opera introduced the Speed Dial to the World in 2007. There was no speed dial before that. At least that's my understanding from reading reliable sources 🙂 like Wikipedia. So at a minimum Super Start stole the speed dial 🙂 -- as others did -- from Opera, which introduced this historic breakthough. Though, mind you, I don't use "stole," in the legal sense. But Opera was the first. You know, like Armstrong on the moon -- "one small step for a man, a giant leap for humanity" or something like that. For sure other followed. As for the folder option, prove it -- that Super Start had the speed dial (with folders of links in each speed dial position) functioning in 2012. All I hear is your assertion. The bottom line is that Opera is the first major browser to have a speed dial with folders that's an essential part of the functionality of the basic browser, not the result of an extension. I don't want to call it a "fly by night" extension (smile). That would be unkind.

  • Frustrated with new tab options in Firefox, hoping to emulate Opera's Speed Dial for Firefox's new tab, I just found Fast Dial, which I THINK may work for me. Building and maintaining the structure may be slower (less drag & drop, more right-click actions "add to Fast Dial", "Move", etc), but it supports folders and seems to offer precise control. Also, the structure is automatically reflected as a folder in the full bookmark hierarchy.

    The new tab extension I like best so far in Chrome is quite different, "Humble New Tab Page", which provides nice access to all bookmarks. I'll keep looking for Speed Dial alternatives there too, which I'll have to weigh against "Humble New Tab Page".

    Still considering browser options in search of the perfect one!

  • @wcolwell

    You'll never emulate Opera's speed dial. It's the best! But bonne chance!

  • @rainspa

    I looked at Superstart Speed Dial in Firefox. I much prefer the Opera 21 Speed Dial. While of course, I may be missing something, I did spend a good deal of time with that extension-Speed Dial, and here are some of my thoughts:

    (1) One issue is that in Superstart, you create a folder and when you have a limited number of links in the folder (2, 3, 4, etc.) there's far too much wasted space in the folder. Three link-items are swallowed in in a folder with tons of wasted empty space. And if you have more than three link-items in a folder, the thumbnail shows too small. By five five link-items they're miniscule, and bordering on worthless. Yes when you open the folders it looks okay, but really, even with just a folder view, it should look good. The display before you open the folder ought to be attractive (as they are in Opera 21). Before you open a folder is basically the home setting of the Speed Dial. If view is attractive, there is then an overall ambiance for the browser, that makes the user "smile."

    (2) Compact mode in Superstart is ludicrous, everything becomes so small.

    (3) Another problem is that in Superstart, you can't seem to adjust the size of the folders and make them smaller, other than by creating more columns, and when you do that the folders can become so small, and the thumbnails in them so tiny, the appearance is terrible. On the other hand, Opera gives you two different sizes for your site thumbnails and folders -- Big and Not big (with the ability to customize further in an advanced menu). You have choices. And when you create more columns, it doesn't change the size of the folders: all that happens is that the folders take up more of the real estate of the browser. The big and not big choices in Opera look good. And the thumbnails in them still look good.

    (4) The Opera Speed Dial has more abilities with adding photo art, that are meaningful to me. You can add to it, not only from photos on the computer (which Superstart is mostly limited to), but from an Opera website with a selection of beautiful art (some of which is superb for wallpaper), and also anywhere on the internet, where you see a jpg photo. In Opera 21, you can just right click on that jpg, and immediately incorporate it as a theme/background for your Speed Dial. I love the serendipity of that instant find. In Superstart, you would have to save the art to a folder in your computer, and then try to add it to the Speed Dial. And anything you have incorporated for a theme/background in Opera, it saves in a separate place, so that you have near instant access if you want it for the Speed Dial, just by right clicking on an empty space on the Speed Dial, and selecting Change Theme. In Superstart, what you have used in the past is not remembered. You have to go back to the folders (however buried they are in your computer) to hunt for the items you want.

    (5) In Opera, you can add Speed dial links/thumbnails or folders forever. I don't know if that option is at all there in Speed Dial. Can you add folders to the Speed Dial forever? If the feature is there, it's worthless, because without a search function (Control F doesn't work on the Speed Dial), it would be useless. You wouldn't be able to locate very well. Opera has a search engine on the speed dial page (a sort of looking glass that you click on), and can locate anything instantly, when you put in a search term.

    (6) Now in its folder view (that is, before the folder is opened) the Opera Speed Dial only shows a maximum of 4 thumbnails in a folder (if there are four or less links, you see thumbnails for all the links there) (If you open the folder all the thumbnails are there, whatever the number in attractive thumbnails), even if there eight items in the folder. I believe that the reason for that folder view limitation of what you see is that if it were showing all the thumbnails in a large folder, the thumbnails would be so small they'd be unattractive/aesthetically unappealing, worthless. Superstart shows all the thumbnails in the folder. That's a mistake particularly where the folder has a lot of items, because the appearance of thumbnails when there are many in the folder is tiny and therefore , in the folder view, quite poor. And the Folder swallows the thumbnails (when there are not that many items in a folder), leaving tons of wasted space. So you're damned if you do, and damned if you don't with the way the folder view in Superstart appears.

    (7) Opera 21 has other nice speed dial features. You can drag landmarks from the personal bookmarks toolbar to the Speed Dial, creating a Speed Dial item, AND ALSO the other way -- from the Speed Dial to the Personal Bookmarks toolbar, creating a bookmark there. Superstart doesn't seem to let you drag from the personal bookmarks toolbar to the speed dial, creating a speed dial item.

    (8) Opera permits 3-9 columns on the speed dial (though I've only been able to get 8 without customizing further). The layout in any of them up to the 8 columns that I've seen looks quite reasonable. The thumbnails are still pleasing to look at in a folder. In Superstart, with as the columns increase, the folders shrink in size correspondingly, and with anything more than 3 or 4 columns, thumbnails become so small, they border on increasingly ridiculous.

    (9) In Opera you can right click on any bookmark, and make it a speed dial item. That feature isn't there in Superstart.

    (10) The caption for the folders in Superstart is in relatively fine black, and against quite a few backgrounds, some of the captions become quickly unreadable. In Opera the caption for the folders is a thicker white, and I almost never have a problem seeing it. A white background that makes it harder to read is much less common than a dark background that makes the Superstart folder captions harder to read.

    (11) Yes, Superstart has a few extra pseudo-artsy features, (transparency, enabling background color, etc.) but they're not features I care that much about. I prefer having more options for easily being able to locate art. The Opera Speed Dial layout is really well-thought and gorgeous. While if I were using Firefox, I could use Superstart, it has many shortcomings, though maybe it's looking at it after seeing the wonderful Speed Dial in Opera 21, that so affects my view.

  • @rainspa & @lem729
    You should take a look at Fast Dial for Firefox though. I seem able to create the same structure of folders as in Opera's Speed Dial. I was able to adjust Opera's to 6 columns and 3 rows (by decreasing the thumbnail size by a pixel or so in Super User mode, and have been able to get Firefox's Fast Dial to also display 18.

    I wish the folders would show miniature thumbnails on them as with Opera's Speed Dial (so far I have only a plain folder look in Fast Dial).

    As mentioned before, the tools for building the structure are a little different, more right click menu-driven vs drag and drop, but reasonable nonetheless.

  • @wcolwell

    I'll look at it, but 2234 user reviews, and only an average rating of 3 stars 🙂 for Fast Dial. So as someone said somewhere (was it Hamlet?) :)) something's rotten in Denmark. Now why did the Bard pick on poor Denmark?

    I took a quick look. I'm too tired to think deeply. The Superstart speed dial wore me out. But at first blush, the Fast Dial looks awful! I can understand the mass of only 3 star reviews. It gives you these pre-created folders of a huge size that destroy the background you may have added.

    Be brave, wcolwell. You say at the beginning of this thread: "I suspect I'm a mainstream browser user." Don't worry about the mainstream view. Your nits about Opera -- sync and bookmark support (by which I assume you mean importing bookmarks into Opera) might be a problem for unsophisticated users, but not for you, and they pale in comparison with what you like about it. You can deal with the nits. Go with your gut! Opera has so many features I think you would love. And by the bye, Opera may not be the mainstream browser. IT CREATES THE MAINSTREAM BROWSER. Opera made tabbed browsing before the alleged mainstream knew what it was, and then everyone followed suit. Opera gave the world speed dial, the same . . . Forget the mainstream. Be ahead of the time. Be with the browser where the mainstream is made!!!!

  • @lem729

    Fast Dial does show 222k users though for what that's worth.

    I'd claim Fast Dial has a learning curve of 10-15 minutes to get productive in building what you want. That could easily generate some negative reviews I'd bet. It's all quite logical and efficient once you're up-to-speed though.

    In contrast, with Opera's Speed Dial, you can be immediately productive (zero learning curve, due to more intuitive drag & drop). Then it takes a few minutes to figure out how to squeeze more thumbnails into the page.

  • So many users, but they're not giving it good reviews. You have 2234 reviews, and they consider the speed dial very average. If all those others users (225K of them) liked it, they'd review it better. Often, people download the stuff and are counted is users. I think I've downloaded five speed dials on Firefox alone. Am I a user of them. No way. Superstart has a lot of users too. I looked at that speed dial and wasn't impressed, though at first blush, I think I'd prefer it to Fast Dial. 🙂 Though, I'll tell you, I haven't heretofore really found a speed dial I like in Firefox. And I like to have my backup browsers equipped and ready to go, so I do try the stuff. The difference with the Opera Speed Dial is that it has so many right touches. It's well-thought out, rather elegant! Is it a "killer" feature. Yeah, I still think so.

  • @wcolwell

    On the Opera 21 Speed Dial, I just discovered you can change the size of your folders (and the thumbnails) by just using the keyboard shortcuts + - (0 or 9 if advanced shortcuts are enabled)(6 returns you to the standard size), or hold down the cntrl key (and use the scrolling feature on your mouse). So if you have a portion of the wallpaper you don't want the folders to cover, just adjust the size of the folders a bit, and in certain cases it may help.

    Also, on the caption for the folder (remember how I mentioned in my post comparing the Opera 21 Speed Dial to the Speed Dial in Superstart (the Firefox extension) that the black caption for folders in Superstart's Speed Dial is often not viewable if the Wallpaper/cover art is black). I now see that the Opera folder caption changes color based on the selection of the wallpaper. If I have dark wallpaper, the caption for the folder is white. If I have very light whitish wallpaper, the caption for the folder is black. The Opera Speed Dial developers must have thought about readability of the folder captions, and built something into the Speed Dial to enhance it. It's a pretty good feature.