Sunday, June 21, 2015

various chromium issues

You hate to have to use a browser as immense as Chromium. Installing a mainstream browser usually becomes inevitable however, and most of them are worse than Chromium.

What choice do we have but to use gigantic proprietary browsers when website designers are too lazy to create something that works well with lighter browsers? For example, light browsers like Dillo, NetSurf, and so on, have properly functioning cookie capacity, and NetSurf carries simple JavaScript and SSL, yet sites like Yahoo mail, or EBay will disallow access with mislabeled complaints that cookies are being "rejected", or even that correct passwords are "incorrect". These are the result of lazy website design. Anyway...

Here are some installation notes and the three main hassles I've experienced with Chromium (plus safety further down).

Three hassles

These are the big three:
  1. AMD GL settings
  2. Flash settings
  3. Sound settings
Additionally, be sure "gnome-icon-theme is installed. Note that the file ~/.config/chromium/Default/Preferences allows some settings; I the pepper-flash path can go in there, other things that would have to be added to a start-up line instead. Anything in the file is overwritten if the user signs-in to Chromium (not to various Google accounts).

1. AMD/GL settings

After # pacman -S chromium, the initial startup from command line is bound to throw similar errors to these, if you're running an AMD processor:
$ chromium
[6391:6391:0621/] Invalid url pattern: chrome://print/*
[6417:6417:0621/] InitializeSandbox() called with multiple threads in process gpu-process
[6417:6417:0621/] [GroupMarkerNotSet(!:D0CCF6C427020000]GL ERROR :GL_INVALID_OPERATION : glTexStorage2DEXT: <- error from previous GL command
The first fix is in Settings->Show Advanced Settings -> System. Deselect "Use hardware acceleration if available". I also deselect "Continue running background apps when Chromium is closed", but for other reasons). Now restart Chromium without the GPU:
$ chromium --disable-gpu [6391:6391:0621/] Invalid url pattern: chrome://print/*
The print error is probably not worth the trouble, since it's a complex flag issue.

2. Flash settings

The place to turn off Adobe flash and turn on Pepper Flash is inside chrome://plugins. At this point, it should happen automagically, since Google has unwisely allowed Adobe to partner in some way. What is identified as the flash player is not the flash player but PepperFlash if you've installed it. Still, PepperFlash must be downloaded separately, it's not yet apparently bundled.

3. Sound settings

Assuming you want ALSA and not that PulseAudio crap, then be sure to #pacman -S alsa-tools alsa-utils


  1. One site was suggesting removing the RLZ tag from omnibar/omnibox searches (omnibar/omnibox is the URL bar that has morphed into a search bar in Chromium). I don't consider it a threat, but it's good to understand it superficially. One explanation is here. If you don't want it, add another search engine option, calling it whatever you want, but a URL lacking "RLZ". For example:
    You can see this also provides 100 returns per page -- you may want less.

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