GNOME Web is in alpha.43

Hello to anyone interested in GNOME Web project. It’s in alpha.43 and it’s still early days, but it looks promising as far as web extensions support for Firefox and Chrome add-ons.

Here is the GNOME Web developer’s blog page

I’m on Gnome 42.2, so could I install it, or do I need to be on alpha.43 GNOME? Woud it be better to spin up a VM with the alpha 43 GNOME? I’m impatient, but I am sick of these browser wars and maybe this is the ONE.

For firefox syncers you can already log in through your firefox account with the current browser, but having the ability to build PWAs, promised cross platform web extension support, built in ad blocker, and minimalist design, I am definitely keeping an eye on it.

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Doesn’t look like much fun to me. I’m more on the privacy-focused side. Also, Java-Script kills privacy, imo.

And then, there’s this Gnome and Plasma move, commercializing open source where they can.

Where’s this gonna lead?

You could install GNOME OS Nightly in gnome-boxes to try out the latest build of GNOME.
Please note it is not a “complete” OS. It is just to showcase GNOME desktop and its applications.

Or you could install GNOME Web 43-alpha as flatpak.

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Since the flatpak install failed, I will take your first suggestion.

What do you think of the development direction of GNOME Web ?

I think they are trying to head in that direction.

May I ask how you did it?

Honestly, I haven’t been following the development of GNOME Web that closely but I certainly think that the recent development is a step in the right direction and with these added functionalities it will finally hit a chord with many users.

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Sure, Scroll down to how to try.

Make sure to create a folder “web_extensions” under ~/.var/app/org.gnome.Epiphany.Devel/data/epiphany (if not present) before running the commands.

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists gnome-nightly
flatpak install gnome-nightly org.gnome.Epiphany.Devel
flatpak run org.gnome.Epiphany.Devel set org.gnome.Epiphany.web:/org/gnome/epiphany/web/ enable-web extensions true

These are the developer’s instructions, which are similar but not identical.

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists gnome-nightly
flatpak install gnome-nightly org.gnome.Epiphany.Devel
flatpak run --command=gsettings org.gnome.Epiphany.Devel set org.gnome.Epiphany.web:/org/gnome/epiphany/web/ enable-webextensions true

Due to a temporary bug you need to run this:

mkdir -p ~/.var/app/org.gnome.Epiphany.Devel/data/epiphany/web_extensions/

Maybe I messed up the formatting, as the site where I got it from like lots of gif ads and they put them in the worst places.

I almost dismissed Epiphany after seeing poor reviews, unpatched security flaws, but they were mostly about it not being finished and not having functionality of ordinary browsers. I like minimal too, but it’s a bit too slimmed down for now. After reading up on the project I got a bit more interested in itn, when they announced cross-browser extension support. It was enough to try it for a few days, since I sync with Firefox. Anyway, we will soon see. Gnome does not have the greatest documentation, but I see the board have recently created some paid positions for documenters :thinking:


Nice post!
Thanks for sharing the info on installation and your thoughts on GNOME Web!

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Here is Gnome 43 and beyond

If you have some problem with youtube videos use this flag to run epiphany correctly.


I installed arch today on a vm and had to use it to play videos on youtube, I already knew this FLAG because I have it installed on fedora rawhide, I don’t know how it behaves with flatpak, I use it in native packages.
It’s a webkit bug that has already been fixed.

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GNOME Web 42.2 has no problem rendering Youtube, but thanks for heads up when I try 43 on VM. I will be trying Flatpak next.

If you are interested in trying out the extension support in Flatpak

flatpak run --command=gsettings org.gnome.Epiphany.Devel set org.gnome.Epiphany.web:/org/gnome/epiphany/web/ enable-webextensions true

It will update to the latest commit from there.

So, it’s been more stable than I would normally expect from early alphas. The main browsing features are already there. WebExtension is now fully implemented. It is certainly minimal design, and I see they are more interested in keeping the design/aethsetics in line with other Gnome packages, rather than following the crowd.

The development team is small, but dedicated. I see Redhat is there contributing code, particularly when it’s somethng their corporate base will benefit from. I think this is a good thing for the browser.

I am just along for the ride right now, and there have not been too many bumps in the road…

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