There are so many different alternative Windows web-browsers out there, I won’t event begin to attempt to capture them all.
Instead, this post is my reference list of alternative web browsers I would be most likely to use in regular browsing sessions.
Each have their own benefits and drawbacks. Just depends what the need is.
Which Firefox is right for you -- 14, 15, 16 or 17? - BetaNews - Nick Peers rounds up differences in the current release, beta, alpha, and nightly builds.
Mozilla Firefox, Portable Edition - At this moment, I’ve pulled back a bit from my usage of the “nightly” builds and am back on the main current release level. This is a portable version great for running on your system directly or off a flash-drive.
Private Browsing - PortableApps.com - Take your standard release-level portable Firefox build, tweak the settings, add in a Flash blocker, disable plugins and local extensions, cram in a privacy-enhancer block-list, a separate profile, and a custom icon to remind you this isn’t your regular firefox, and you have a browser with your privacy in mind. Not this isn’t a “Tor” proxy supported build, though you could add that in if you wanted. It’s more to prevent tracks from being left behind on systems you use it on as well as keeping your browsing a little more directed-ad free. If you want a Tor-based browsing solution, check out the Tor Browser Bundle for one solution.
I hesitate to mention, but will anyway, there are also custom-builds of Firefox for x64 bit operation. I’ve used variants of these in the past, generally with no issues, but these are pretty much hard-core enthusiast builds; so don’t come crying to me if you break something or take your eye out with them; Waterfox and The Pale Moon Project. Check out these great posts about Waterfox to get some background if you are still interesting in running with scissors.
- Waterfox a 64-Bit Windows “Firefox” - Firefox Extension Guru's Blog
- WaterFox: A 64-bit Performance-Focused Version of Firefox - CyberNet News
Google Chrome Portable - PortableApps.com. Main release level public build…portable.
Iron Portable - PortableApps.com - Portable version of SRWare Iron browser. This is based on Chromium and removes some of the default “usage tracking” bits that could be a concern for users of the Chrome browser. Although I use Firefox for my primary web-browser, I use Iron Portable now for my general web-surfing; particularly when I am on media-rich/enhanced websites, YouTube, etc. More in this WindowsClub post.
Dragon Internet Browser – This is Comodo’s security modded version of the Chrome browser. Tweaks to offer additional privacy for Chrome users, verifies Domains and alerts on differences in SSL certificates, blocks some cookies and web-trackers, monitors and blocks browser downloading tacking for privacy.
Opera, Portable Edition - Opera. Portable. Enough said.
Maxthon Portable - PortableApps.com. This interesting build uses both the Trident and the Webkit rendering engines to ensure maximum single browser compatibility with web pages.