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A recent update to the LastPass extension for the Google Chrome web browser completely broke nearly every function in a lovely intermittent way. The LastPass forum didn't seem interested in my issue, so I wondered about using another web browser instead.

I had heard some good things about the Opera browser, being light and fast, so I thought I would give it a go. I installed it and set it as my new default browser. In order to test something properly, you have to go all in.

LastPass##

The good news was that the LastPass for Opera extension works flawlessly. Even better than it did on Google Chrome (there was always some bugginess). It seems rock solid now. That was my main objective completed. But what about all the other Google services?

Google services##

They all seem very good. Opera definitely seems faster than Chrome. The one issue I’ve found so far is in Gmail, if you have a dark theme, the buttons at the top of the page are unreadable. Hopefully this bug gets fixed soon (people have been discussing it on the Opera forum at least). For now my solution is to use a light Gmail theme. Not ideal, but good enough.

Another issue with Opera is that I had to install Flash on my PC again. I had previously removed Flash and relied on the version of Flash that’s built into Chrome. I will now have to watch out for updates to Flash. Maybe Opera will take over the management of Flash at a later date.

Discover##

 
![Screenshot of Discover feature](/content/images/2013/Dec/opera_discover.png)

I quite like the Discover section on the New Tab page in Opera. It’s basically a nice way to browse news stories. You can customise what to see and looks very nice.

Closing thoughts##

Overall it’s been a good experience so far. I’ll continue to use Opera and update this post with further thoughts.

If you have any opinions about the Opera browser, please do comment below. Thanks.

Update: 18 Jan 2014##

I’m reasonably happy with the Opera browser. The only problem I’ve found is with video playback, which regularly freezes up. Very annoying. I keep launching an IE window to watch video. I might try to investigate further why LastPass is broken in Chrome. Maybe a fresh user on this computer would help?