Barebone Web Surfing With Finch

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 13, 2008
Updated • Dec 15, 2012

We have featured some articles in the past that explained how to reduce the bandwidth usage while surfing the Internet which is important for users who have to cope with a monthly bandwidth limit and those who are stuck with slow Internet connections. (Reduce Opera Bandwidth Usage and Use The Opera Mini Browser On A PC are two that come to mind)

Finch tries to achieve a similar goal. The web service acts pretty much like a web proxy with the difference that bandwidth reduction and not anonymity is the top priority. Finch will not load CSS files, no images and no scripts. Stripping a website of most of its contents reduces its size tremendously. The size of the New York Times homepage is reduced by 94% when using Finch.

This method has some serious disadvantages though. Many websites become unusable. Finch does not support scripts which are required by some to function properly. Cookies are not supported as well which meaning logins won't function properly as well.

Finch works best on static websites or those that function without scripts and cookies. Running the website through Finch will reduce the bandwidth that is transferred which means a speed gain and reduction of the monthly transfer rate. It's on the other hand nothing for users who spend most of their time on social sites.

Update: Finch is no longer available. If you are in a situation where your Internet connection is slow, I suggest you use Opera with Turbo enabled to make the best out of the situation. If you do not want to do that, I'd suggest to disable plugins and elements like images so that they are not loaded when you browse the Internet. While it may deteriorate your browsing experience, you at least may notice a considerable speed bump doing so.


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  1. TheWindowsFix said on October 14, 2008 at 5:58 am

    The problem is today, almost every site is dynamic. We always need change.

    However, it is pretty cool and it definitely speeds up your browsing.

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