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10 May 2011, 10:14

Chrome 12 Beta brings Flash cookie protection

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Google Chrome Logo Less than two weeks after promoting version 11 to the WebKit-based browser's stable branch, the Google Chrome development team has released the first Chrome 12 beta, version 12.0.742.30. Previously only available in the Chrome developer channel (aka the Dev Channel), the Beta Channel release includes a number of new features, some of which are targeted at developers.

Aimed at early adopters and developers, Chrome 12 features support for hardware accelerated 3D CSS which allows web developers to apply 3D effects to page content using CSS. Users can now use the Omnibox to launch Chrome Web Apps and Sync has been integrated into the settings pages. Other changes include improved screen reader support for the blind or visually impaired, as well as a new warning dialog that appears when closing the browser using Command-Q on Mac OS X systems. As it has been discontinued, the Google Gears plug-in has been removed from Chrome 12 .

A number of security enhancements have also been made in Chrome 12. In addition to simply protecting users against malware and phishing websites, the beta further improves browser security by warning users before they download some types of malicious files, such as .exe files. The feature is essentially an extension of Google's Safe Browsing API, which involves querying an additional list of malicious download links.

Zoom In Chrome 12, users can access the Clear Browsing Data menu by clicking Wrench > Tools > Clear browsing data.
The beta branch now also allows users to do more than just delete cookies; they can now delete Adobe Flash Player Local Shared Objects (LSO), also known as "Flash cookies". Typically, unlike browser cookies, these Flash cookies cannot simply be disabled or deleted via browser settings. Further information about Flash cookie protection in Chrome can be found in a previous report.

Details about the beta can be found in a post on the Google Chrome Blog and in the release notes. Chrome 12.0.742.30 is available to download for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux from Alternatively, current beta channel users can use the built-in update function by clicking Tools, selecting About Google Chrome and clicking the Update button.

The latest stable release is Chrome 11 from late April, and added support for voice input via HTML.

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