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27 March 2013, 11:01

Web-based spell checking comes to Chrome 26

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Google Chrome

The latest stable release of Chrome, version 26, brings yet another web-based service to the browser; spell checking. The new "Ask Google for suggestions" feature has been added to the existing spell checking capabilities and, when enabled, allows the spell checker to consult Google Search's spelling checker for its suggestions.

This means it can make use of the grammar and homonym checking, knowledge of proper nouns and context-sensitive corrections that Google Search's checker is also capable of. Other enhancements refreshed dictionaries for all languages and added the ability to sync words added by the user to the dictionary between Chrome instances. The new features are available on Windows, Linux and Chrome OS. Mac OS X support is still being worked on.

On Windows, Google has added the ability to create multiple user profiles shortcuts on the desktop. This is a quick, though not secure, way of allowing users on a shared PC to have their own personalised instance of Chrome. On Mac and Linux, Chrome users should see improved performance when downloading pages with content from or links to many domains as DNS queries will now be made asynchronously.

On the security front, the most notable fixed bug – worthy of a $1000 bounty – was a high severity use-after-free bug in Web Audio. The other high severity bug, designated CVE-2013-0921, is described as "Ensure isolated web sites run in their own processes", which suggests there was some form of leakage within Chrome's process model. Four medium severity flaws, including a Linux-only hole from use-after-free with popup windows, and five low severity bugs were also fixed in the release. For those interested, a full list of all changes is available in the SVN change log.

Chrome 26 is being delivered as an automatic update to version 26.0.1410.3 on Windows, Mac, Linux and Chrome Frame. It is also available to download from Google. Chrome is free, proprietary software, built from Google's open source Chromium project.


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