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#1 2013-08-24 18:36:35

Gradient
Member
Registered: 2013-05-19
Posts: 87

Your experience with console/text web browser?

Browsing the web via the console: is it a viable approach, given the modern web?

What text browsers do you use? What problems do you encounter when you browse the web through a console browser?

Last edited by Gradient (2013-08-24 21:13:26)

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#2 2013-08-24 19:04:11

progandy
Member
Registered: 2012-05-17
Posts: 2,146

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

If your reason is to avoid running an x server, then you should try out netsurf-fb (in the AUR) for the framebuffer. I sometimes use it, but I miss a keyboard-only mode.

Last edited by progandy (2013-08-24 19:09:18)

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#3 2013-08-25 17:30:25

MoonSwan
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From: Great White North
Registered: 2008-01-23
Posts: 873

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

I've used Lynx, elinks and links.  My experience is very limited; I've only used said browsers while installing a system or up to the point where I installed X on my laptop.  As a result, my exposure is mostly confined to the Arch wiki. 

That said, I found out pretty quickly I loved Lynx far more than the other two combined.  My reasoning behind this decision is simple:  Lynx has sane defaults, uses colour by default and is fairly easy to navigate.  Frankly, given the choice, I'd choose Lynx then elinks with links trailing in third.  elinks is useable but I found the key shortcuts not quite as inutitive nor easy to figure out (IE i got stuck looking for a "help" keyboard shortcut on links).

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I'm torn apart between worlds. Basically, using vim in a highly visual environment with a lot of mouse features feels like soldering a lose wire to a motherboard with a Zippo and a needle, while working with ANY TEXT AT ALL with a "modern GUI" text editor feels like joining the London Philharmonic Orchestra with a Fisher-Price Laugh and Learn Magical Musical Mirror.  --Awebb

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#4 2013-08-25 17:58:37

flipper T
Member
Registered: 2012-09-14
Posts: 419

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

elinks + a mouse is very usable

sudo systemctl enable gpm.service

ps don't forget that elinks is a tabbed browser with a hidden menu bar at the top of the screen,  bonus...with a mouse you also get a right-click menu

Last edited by flipper T (2013-08-25 18:11:10)


If I'm curt with you it's because time is a factor. I think fast, I talk fast and I need you guys to act fast if you wanna get out of this. So, pretty please... with sugar on top. Clean the [censored] car. -The Wolf

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#5 2013-08-25 18:11:25

2ManyDogs
Member
Registered: 2012-01-15
Posts: 1,634

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

flipper T wrote:

elinks + a mouse is very usable

w3m works well for me. So does "xlinks -g"

"usable" all depends on what you want to do.

Last edited by 2ManyDogs (2013-08-25 18:19:42)

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#6 2013-08-25 18:59:50

flipper T
Member
Registered: 2012-09-14
Posts: 419

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

By usable. I primarily mean these 2 things :

a) google searching "f@!king archlinux broke my X again !!!!!!!"

swiftly followed by

b) archlinux.org/forum posting of "I broke my X. Arch is wonderful. PEBKAC."


If I'm curt with you it's because time is a factor. I think fast, I talk fast and I need you guys to act fast if you wanna get out of this. So, pretty please... with sugar on top. Clean the [censored] car. -The Wolf

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#7 2013-08-26 05:12:22

EquivEx
Member
Registered: 2013-06-29
Posts: 27

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

flipper T wrote:

By usable. I primarily mean these 2 things :

a) google searching "f@!king archlinux broke my X again !!!!!!!"

swiftly followed by

b) archlinux.org/forum posting of "I broke my X. Arch is wonderful. PEBKAC."

I use w3m almost exclusively for both of these things.  Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe w3m is also an optional dependency for image previewing in ranger, so it's a nice two-for-one deal.

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#8 2013-08-26 05:19:35

WonderWoofy
Member
From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

You're wrong wink  Ranger has no optional deps.  But you can certainly use the image viewing functionality of w3m with ranger.  But then again, you can use really anything with image viewing functionality with ranger.

Now that I think about it, I do use a console browser for something.  I use w3m with mutt so that when I get html mail, I can (hopefully) still view it in text mode.

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#9 2013-08-26 05:26:38

EquivEx
Member
Registered: 2013-06-29
Posts: 27

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

Thanks for the clarification, it's late and I'm not well versed on w3m.. or ranger for that matter.

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#10 2013-08-26 05:47:29

progandy
Member
Registered: 2012-05-17
Posts: 2,146

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

WonderWoofy wrote:

You're wrong wink  Ranger has no optional deps.  But you can certainly use the image viewing functionality of w3m with ranger.  But then again, you can use really anything with image viewing functionality with ranger.

ranger has a special case for w3mimgdisplay to embed a real image preview instead of asciiart. in the rightmost column, that qualifies as optional dependency.

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#11 2013-08-26 11:18:56

Trilby
Forum Moderator
From: Massachusetts, USA
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 13,484
Website

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

After tinkering a lot with many tty web browsers, I use w3m exclusively for tty browsing.  As mentioned netsurf has a fb build which is phenomenal - it looks and works like a browser in X.

For html email I much prefer lynx to w3m though - I don't know why, but it just seems easier to read those in lynx.


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#12 2013-08-26 16:14:01

MrCode
Member
Registered: 2010-02-06
Posts: 373

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

Most of the time I just use w3m in a pty (xterm) for viewing online IRC logs (make of that what you will…).  It is very nice in a framebuffer tty, though, as it appears to be the only one (IME) that doesn't screw up the page layout significantly, as long as there aren't too many fancy "floating" elements, things that rely on Javascript, etc.

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#13 2013-08-26 22:22:34

n0stradamus
Member
Registered: 2010-11-08
Posts: 93
Website

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

I have tried text browsing once and only found very limited use for it. I appreciate stuff on the console
as its a lot faster than graphical solutions, but it kind of broke the web for me big_smile
If you are on the lookout for faster browsing, check out plugins for firefox like Vimperator,
giving you vim-like keybindings to browse with smile

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#14 2013-08-26 23:41:56

cfr
Member
From: Cymru
Registered: 2011-11-27
Posts: 5,661

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

At one point my internet access from home was exclusively via lynx. While this was a whole lot better than nothing, I cannot honestly say that I miss the experience. It works great for some sites but many are just not designed to be browsed that way sad.


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#15 2013-11-04 16:53:43

Throne777
Member
Registered: 2012-03-16
Posts: 61

Re: Your experience with console/text web browser?

I used Lynx, but, tbh, text-based browsers are fairly useless for daily web use; unless you pretty much spend the entire time on a bbs.
If you want a good half-way house, might I recommend dwb?


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