Needing synchronized bookmarks and Firefox-based goodness wherever you go? Now you can have the best of both built into a single browser with CometBird.
Note: Use of the CometMarks web service with other browsers requires a separate exe file (link at bottom of article).
Here are some of the pre-installed features that set CometBird apart from Firefox:
- Quick Tab – Double click to close a current tab, double click in the open part of the Tab Bar to open a new tab, and a new tab button.
- Online Video Download – Easy downloading of online videos from any video website.
- Online Bookmarks – Synchronization of your bookmarks in different browsers (requires above mentioned exe file for Internet Explorer, etc.) and on different computers, easily manage your bookmarks anywhere and anytime through your online account.
- Software Update Check – Easily find and update with the latest versions for the software on your computer and see recommended software.
Setting Up CometBird
Once you have the install file downloaded, it is time to get things started. Please note that the whole group of install screenshots are shown so that you can see what options are available with the installation.
At this point you will need to select “Custom” if you want to make any personalized choices with the install.
As you can see, the install process is practically identical to Firefox in the choices that are available to you.
Once you have completed the install process, the first thing you will be asked about is importing settings.
After deciding what settings to import (or not import), the Main Window and CometMarks Settings Window (pictured below) will both open up at the same time. You can easily close the CometMarks Settings Window for the moment to familiarize yourself with the browser and its settings.
A quick look at the Options Window shows a setup identical to Firefox.
Here is where things begin to show an immediate difference. CometBird installs five add-ons with the browser during the install process. The addons installed are: BitComet Video Downloader, Browser UI Enhancement, CometMarks Bookmark Synchronizer, Ctrl-Tab, and Software Update Checker.
As a quick test to see if other add-ons would install without problems, ChromaTabs Plus and Flagfox were chosen. Both installed without problems and CometBird appears to be as add-on and theme friendly as Firefox.
Looking at the Menu Bar for CometBird, you will notice an addition that is not present in Firefox…the “Softwares Menu”. It will display a list of recommended software, a listing of software (and their version numbers) that it is able to recognize as already being present on your computer (shown under “Updated Softwares”), and then a side menu at the bottom for “Beta Versions”.
The other parts of the Menu Bar are nearly the same as Firefox. Once you have had an opportunity to become familiar with CometBird, it is time to see about setting up the Online Synchronization account with CometMarks. You can access the menu for CometMarks in two places…either through the “Tools Menu” or by right clicking on the CometMarks button in the lower right corner of your browser (the orange color shows that you are actively logged into your account).
Here you can see the “Word Translation”, “CometMarks Note”, and “CometMarks Settings” buttons showing as active. When you are logged in, your user account name will also display in the lower right corner.
This is the settings window for synchronizing your bookmarks with your online account. If you do not have an account, you can click on the “Create Account” link to get started.
If you are signing up for an account, this is the form and information required. It is all very straightforward and only takes moments to set up.
Note: Comet Passport will not process the account sign up if you have a dash in any of the information (i.e. user name or e-mail address) entered into the form. Underscores work fine though.
Once you have an account set up, this is what you will see in the browser window showing your online account. Note that along with your bookmarks, there is also a section for personal notes as well. Bookmark synchronization is set up to automatically synchronize your bookmarks every five minutes (very nice!).
Note: A point to keep in mind if you try to use your bookmarks directly from the online account window. Singular bookmarks open easily with a double click into a new tab, but bookmarks inside of folders are inaccessible for use.
Here is the “CometMarks Note” window that is accessed by clicking on the green tag button in the lower right corner of your browser.
One of the benefits of using CometBird is a reduced foot-print on your system resources as well.
Synchronizing with Other Installations of CometBird
So, you have CometBird set up on your home computer, but what about your computer at work or school? Not a problem! There is a portable version of CometBird available that works just like portable Firefox. Once you have your portable version set up (or a regular install on another computer) and go to synchronize your bookmarks, this is the window that will display after you have logged into your account.
You have three options: To merge all of your bookmarks (online account and in your browser), replace the bookmarks in your browser with the ones in your online account, or use the bookmarks in your browser to replace the ones in your online account. Choice is good!
Have fun and (peace of mind) with your synchronized bookmarks!
Note: CometBird’s current portable version is one release behind the regular install file.