Google Chrome 18 is working its way out to users' computers today after its release to the stable channel. As usual, the update brings a number of small feature and security enhancements to all users running the browser.

The new features both relate to graphics acceleration in the browser: it enables GPU-accelerated Canvas 2D to Windows and OS X users with supported GPUs. Canvas 2D is primarily used in games and had previously been implemented in software, but GPU acceleration for the feature had only been enabled in the beta channel. The other change takes a GPU accelerated feature, WebGL, and implements a software version for older computers via a product called Swiftshader. Software rendering is slower than GPU-accelerated rendering, naturally, but this at least extends basic functionality to users of unsupported and older configurations.

On the security side, there were nine bugs patched. While the specific exploits used against Chrome in this year's Pwnium competition had been fixed shortly after they were discovered, the new patches are the first of Google's efforts to harden the browser against similar exploits in the future.

Google Chrome can be downloaded here, and is compatible with Windows XP and higher, OS X 10.5 (Intel) and higher, and many Linux distributions.

Source: Google


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  • Chaser - Friday, March 30, 2012 - link

    I'm sold on Chrome. Love it. Simple. Has the main extensions that I used on Firefox. Works great for me.
  • mrbean1500 - Friday, March 30, 2012 - link

    I had issues when it was trying to update, so i had to do a reinstall of it...

    and is it just me or did they remove the bookmarks button? the one that you press that shows all your bookmarks in a list
  • V-Money - Saturday, March 31, 2012 - link

    I still have mine, but as far as I know the button is for excess bookmarks, i.e. the bookmarks go across the top and when you have more than 13 the button appears for the rest.
  • Watwatwat - Sunday, April 1, 2012 - link

    I just know they still need to bring back the ctrl b bookmarks page shortcut, I hate how they are deliberately being obnoxious by removing a basic feature for no good reason, and no even giving you the option of having it.
  • Cheesetogo - Saturday, April 7, 2012 - link

    Ctrl D doesn't work for you?
  • whiplash55 - Friday, March 30, 2012 - link

    Lately I've had a lot of Chrome issues. Of all things YouTube has issues playing videos, The other main issue is some sites take forever to load, especially eBay.
  • Paedric - Saturday, March 31, 2012 - link

    I've had some freeze since I upgraded.
    A tab simply freeze for about 30 seconds, then goes back to normal, while the rest is not affected.
    Anyone else having those?
  • slim142 - Saturday, March 31, 2012 - link

    Not a single problem in W7 x64

    I do have the Dev version in a laptop with WXP x86 and it sure does have many problems that still need to be fixed. I now understand why v19 is taking so long to become Beta. It has been the worse Dev release ever. Even sucked on my W7 x64 PC before I decided to downgrade to stable.
  • damianrobertjones - Saturday, March 31, 2012 - link

    Does Chrome still install services and then once you UN-install:
    - Leave the servers on your machine
    - Leave then set to automatic
    - Trash opening certain file extensions

    Great application... Love it.

  • Sivar - Saturday, March 31, 2012 - link

    Chrome still has the regression where middle-clicking a bookmark in a bookmark folder doesn't open the bookmark -- it clicks on whatever is underneath the folder. This was reported over a year ago. Annoying.
    Other than that, it is my favorite browser for the PC.

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