Friday, November 12, 2010

RockMelt,BlackSheep,Firesheep

What is RockMelt? Do We Need a Facebook Web Browser?

Yes, there’s a new web browser designed around the idea that you can share more, and share more quickly on Facebook and Twitter. That alone may turn some people away, depending on how much they value their privacy. However, after trying it for a short time, I can see how this browser could easily turn normal Facebook users into hyped up Uber-Facebook users.
RockMelt was founded by Eric Vishria and Tim Howes, and is backed by Netscape developer  Marc Andreessen.  It was released yesterday, mostly by invitation only. You can get a copy of this browser by visiting RockMelt.com and signing up via your Facebook ID.
After signing up late last night I received my invite and downloaded it. The install went fairly quick and here’s the first thing I saw … a Facebook login.
rockmelt-login
Yes, that’s right, it seems to be required. However, that makes sense.
It took me quite awhile to figure out most of the actions I could perform. If you open the “RockMelt” menu at the top right corner of the browser, and click the “Help” item, you’ll find help for a few basic tasks. Here’s the first thing you see there.
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As some of you have already noticed, RockMelt is built on top of Chromium, which is the basis for Google’s Chrome web browser. Those using Chrome now won’t have a hard time getting around in the browser.
Rather than go into too many details, I’ll show you the  RockMelt video preview. It’s very well done.

RockMelt video

Techie Buzz Verdict:
I tried it, I like it, and haven’t found any major bugs yet. If you are already using Google Chrome, and you’re in Facebook often, there’s no reason not to give RockMelt a try. You don’t have to make it your default browser, and it won’t do anything to your current web browsers.  Farmville works very well in Chrome and RockMelt.

BlackSheep Thwarts Firesheep Intruders

Firesheep, a  for snooping on  and  logins on open Wi-Fi connections caused quite a storm when it was released. It went on to show how insecure your computer could be.
BlackSheep Firesheep Protector
The exploit could snoop on unprotected Wi-Fi connections and retrieve login cookies for Twitter and Facebook, which could then be used to login to a users account and access their data. If you are using an open Wi-Fi connection, the first thing to do is to to secure your Wi-Fi connection. If you need help with it, read our earlier guides Wi-Fi Demystified I and Wi-Fi Demystified II.
BlackSheep is another  which is designed to combat Firesheep. BlackSheep drops fake session ID information on the wire and then monitors traffic to see if it has been hijacked. If BlackSheep finds that someone is snooping on you, it will display an alert as seen in the image above.
If you have a secure Wi-Fi connection, you have nothing to worry about, but if you don’t, the threat of Wi-Fi snooping by Firesheep is pretty high. You can circumnavigate the threat by using https instead of http while accessing the websites, but to be on the safer side, install the BlackSheep add-on too, which can be downloadedfrom here.

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