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22 May 2009, 09:27

Google Chrome 2.0 released

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Eight months after Google's Chrome web browser was originally launched, Google has announced the release of version 2 of Chrome. Chrome is a web browser based on Apple’s open source WebKit browser application framework. The stable 2.0 release comes just two months after the first 2.0 beta was made available and includes several improvements, new features and over 300 bug fixes.

According to Google, the release is 30 per cent faster than Chrome 1.0 thanks to a new version of WebKit and recent updates to the V8 JavaScript engine. Chrome's New Tab Page now offers users the ability to remove thumbnails in order to hide "embarrassing" sites from the Most Visited section. A new Full Screen Mode, which other browsers, such as Internet Explorer and Firefox, have had for some time, has been added that allows users to hide the title bar and the rest of the browser by pressing F11. Chrome 2.0 now includes a form autofill function that will show previously entered form information when filling out similar form fields.

Google Chrome 2.0 is available to download in over 50 different Languages for Windows XP SP2 and Vista and a short introduction video is available. Users that currently have Chrome installed can use the built-in update function by clicking Tools, selecting About Google Chrome and clicking the Update button.

Accessing the download page from a Linux machine will automatically re-direct to a Chrome for Linux page with the message - "Google Chrome for Linux is in development and a team of engineers is working hard to bring it to you as soon as possible." Prospective users are invited to enter their email for notification when the Linux version is available. A similar page appears for Mac users. However a Linux and OS X port of Chromium is available from CodeWeavers called CrossOver Chromium. According to the CodeWeavers Q&A the port is based on Developer Build 21 and has no update facilities. It was built as a demonstration of what Wine can do, so it should not be used as a main browser.

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