Google Chrome 100 won’t break the internet – but could change how you search it

Searching for a query in Google Chrome could soon get much easier, thanks to an upcoming feature that adds a sidebar as you browse the web.

With Google's Chrome web browser approaching version 100, we're already seeing some features that can help change the way you use the browser, such as improvements to closing tabs in Android, and it's likely that we may see other features appear as we approach the big release.

If you have multiple tabs open at once, this could be a great feature for searching as you browse. However, it looks like the sidebar will only show in one tab – it won't stay in the same place as you switch between different tabs.

However, this is still a feature in testing, so the sidebar could change before it appears in a final version of Google Chrome.


How do you enable the side search bar?

Google Chrome Canary showing how to enable Side Search

(Image credit: TechRadar)

As it stands, the sidebar isn't available in Google Chrome 99, but it is in the test version of Chrome, called Canary.

Go to chrome://flags when running Google Chrome Canary version 100, and you'll be brought to the flag page, where you can enable many features in testing.

In the search bar, type in 'Sidebar' and you'll be greeted with three options. Enable all of these, then close and open up the browser.

Search for a query and select the first result. A 'G' icon will appear alongside the address bar. Click on this, which will make the sidebar appear. You can then use this to search for anything else while you browse in the main window.

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Google Chrome 100 won’t break the internet – but could change how you search it

Searching for a query in Google Chrome could soon get much easier, thanks to an upcoming feature that adds a sidebar as you browse the web.

With Google's Chrome web browser approaching version 100, we're already seeing some features that can help change the way you use the browser, such as improvements to closing tabs in Android, and it's likely that we may see other features appear as we approach the big release.

If you have multiple tabs open at once, this could be a great feature for searching as you browse. However, it looks like the sidebar will only show in one tab – it won't stay in the same place as you switch between different tabs.

However, this is still a feature in testing, so the sidebar could change before it appears in a final version of Google Chrome.


How do you enable the side search bar?

Google Chrome Canary showing how to enable Side Search

(Image credit: TechRadar)

As it stands, the sidebar isn't available in Google Chrome 99, but it is in the test version of Chrome, called Canary.

Go to chrome://flags when running Google Chrome Canary version 100, and you'll be brought to the flag page, where you can enable many features in testing.

In the search bar, type in 'Sidebar' and you'll be greeted with three options. Enable all of these, then close and open up the browser.

Search for a query and select the first result. A 'G' icon will appear alongside the address bar. Click on this, which will make the sidebar appear. You can then use this to search for anything else while you browse in the main window.

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Firefox and Chrome 100 could break parts of the internet, Mozilla warns

Mozilla is giving a heads up to website developers that the upcoming three-digit versions of the popular internet browsers Firefox and Chrome might cause some websites to break.

In a Mozilla blog post by Karl Dubost, Chris Peterson, Ali Beyad, the company says the error might happen when browsers parse user-agent strings containing the three-digit version numbers. 

The user-agent string contains various information about the browser software, such as the name, or, crucially – version number and supported technologies. When websites receive this information, they modify their response based on the browser version and the technologies supported. 

Preparations and mitigations

When browsers made the jump from single-digit versions, to double-digit versions, some websites could not be displayed. 

However, this time around – both Mozilla and Google are preparing for the new versions (coming in early May and late March, respectively) in advance. Last August, Mozilla started experimenting to see if version 100 would break some websites, and Google soon followed. 

In fact, both developers found a few misbehaving websites, where “unsupported browser” messages would be displayed, or broken interfaces shown.

“Without a single specification to follow, different browsers have different formats for the User-Agent string, and site-specific User-Agent parsing. It’s possible that some parsing libraries may have hard-coded assumptions or bugs that don’t take into account three-digit major version numbers,” Mozilla says. 

“Many libraries improved the parsing logic when browsers moved to two-digit version numbers, so hitting the three-digit milestone is expected to cause fewer problems.”

If the companies fail to solve the issues by the release dates, they both have contingency plans: to freeze the user-agent at 99. Furthermore, Firefox will also be able to inject CSS and other similar overrides.

Mozilla has also urged website developers to test their websites for upcoming browsers, with the detailed steps available on the Mozilla blog here

Via: BleepingComputer

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Chrome 100 could break your website – but Google is on it

After launching back in 2008, Chrome will reach version 100 early next year but unfortunately this milestone will cause some websites to no longer work in Google's browser.

Although there are no major changes or revolutionary new features planned for Chrome 100, the search giant has been aware for some time that this major release will likely lead to problems for older websites. While Chrome 100 will release in March of next year, Google already began warning users and site owners about potential issues in a blog post published in November, saying:

“In the first half of 2022, Chrome will reach a three-digit major version number: 100! When browsers first reached version 10 many eons ago, lots of issues were discovered with User-Agent parsing libraries as the major version number went from one digit to two. Now that we are approaching version 100 in both Chrome and Firefox, with Edge not far behind, we want to detect possible issues related to three-digit version number early, so we are ready when it becomes a reality.”

When Chrome's major version number goes from two digits to three, websites developed with the web design kit Duda will no longer display correctly. Thankfully though, Google has a plan to avoid disrupting the web and the company has already begun contacting individual developers to warn them about the upcoming change.

User Agent string

In order for a website to know what browser and what version of it you're currently using, the site will check the User Agent string which is essentially a line of text that your browser attaches to every web connection it makes.

Here is an example of a User Agent string: “Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/96.0.4664.110 Safari/537.36”. At the end, you can see “Chrome/96.0.4664.110” which means we're running Chrome version 96. 

The problem with Duda resides in the fact that its developers chose to only read the first two digits so “Chrome/96” would be 96 while “Chrome/100” would be seen as 10 or version 10 to be more precise. To make matters worse, Duda automatically blocks any version of Chrome below version 40. For this reason, Chrome 100 will seen as Chrome 10 and will be automatically blocked by the web design kit, rendering websites built using it unreadable.

While Google has considered forcing the major version number to the minor version position and staying at 99 so “Chrome/100” would instead be “Chrome/99.100”, this is only a backup plan. Instead, the search giant has begun contacting individual developers to let them know about this issue before Chrome 100 is released. Google has also added a new flag to Chrome (#force-major-version-to-100) which developers can use to see whether or not their sites will be affected.

Although moving to version 100 has the potential to disrupt a lot of older sites, Google and Mozilla are working hard to address the issue before the rollouts of version 100 of both Chrome and Firefox next year .

We've also highlighted the best browser, best website builder and best web hosting 

Via 9To5Google

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