No WebGL in the Chrome dev channel — use Chromium instead

Alvaro Segura writes saying that it looks like they’ve switched off WebGL in the Chrome dev channel; I’ve just tried it out and found the same. A while back, Kenneth Russell recommended (on the public WebGL mailing list) that people using WebGL should use the Chromium nightly builds rather than the dev channel, and I guess this is further proof that he’s right :-) I’ll remove it from my how to get a WebGL browser page.

All of this Chrome/Chromium stuff can be a bit confusing, so here’s how they’re related as far as I understand it: Chromium is an open source web browser, based on the (also open source) WebKit web page rendering engine. A lot of the work that goes into Chromium comes from Google, but not all of it. Chrome is Google’s own build of Chromium, which adds Google-specific logos, plus an auto-update feature (which the “dev channel” is part of). So if you want the very latest stuff, you’re almost always better off going for Chromium.

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2 Responses to “No WebGL in the Chrome dev channel — use Chromium instead”

  1. WebGL-ish says:

    I confirm the same behaviour. The auto-update feature is a bad idea for the dev channel. It could be useful for day-to-day released versions, but taking into account that the dev channel can change so dramatically, it should be optional.

    In addition to this, it is impossible to downgrade to previous builds, so you must take it as it is and change to Chromium. Dev channel of Chrome is useless and it does not worth the effort if tomorrow they will change this API or that another function naming.

  2. giles says:

    I guess the problem is that the only real advantage Chrome has over Chromium is its easy installation, including the auto-update feature. So Chrome without auto-update would just be Chromium anyway… but yes, auto-update on a development version of the software seems like a bad idea, so that does seem to make the dev channel pretty pointless. I’m sticking with Chromium until WebGL is formally in the Chrome beta, I think.

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