Two Things that Keep Me From Switching to Opera

Martin Brinkmann
Dec 23, 2009
Updated • Feb 7, 2017

The recent preview of Opera 10.50 has shown that the Opera development team is dedicated and willing to improve the web browser even if it does not get the attention that it deserves.

That speed increase coupled with other interesting features and options like Opera Turbo or Opera Unite make Opera a very attractive web browser which may help increase the browser's share of the browser market if the word gets out to the mass market.

There are two things that are keeping me from switching to Opera. I would like to outline those two below with the hope that these features get added eventually to the web browser:

1. Password Manager

Like every web browser Opera has a build in password manager. What it does not have is support for the excellent Last Pass service that has been ported to many web browsers. Last Pass is a password management service that makes it much easier to create and maintain accounts. Some of its features are a password generator, form profiles, online access to passwords and auto-login to websites.

Last Pass is currently supporting various web browsers including Firefox and Google Chrome. The only option to use it in Opera is the Last Pass bookmarklet which provides limited functionality as it only provides login or form filling support but not other features like generating passwords.

The developer's of Last Pass state that they would love to create a version of their service for the Opera web browser. The nature of the web browser, in particular the missing or limited browser SDK, makes it impossible at this point.

The build in password managers are no alternative at this point and the bookmarklet is not either. Opera Link provides data syncing but it is limited to Opera only. The benefit of Last Pass is that the stored passwords can be used with any web browser that is supported by Last Pass.

NoScript like functionality

The second feature that I do not want to miss anymore is provided by the NoScript Firefox add-on which turns of all scripts on any website by default. That's a security precaution as scripts are usually used to attack computers.

Opera has a feature to disable some scripts globally and per website. The problem here is that this would require lots of manual work. The only viable option would be to disable scripts globally and enable them on a per site basis.

NoScript on the other hand offers a finer handling. Opera's per site settings enable JavaScript, plugins, Flash or Java for the whole site and all scripts of that type that are executed on the website. NoScript can be used to enable a specific script (e.g. JavaScript) but block all other JavaScripts on a website.


I'd really like to switch. I'd might be able to either get used to the bookmarklet (with additional help of tools to generate secure passwords) or switch to Opera's build in password manager. It would be possible to sync the passwords across all Opera browsers but other web browsers would not be able to use those passwords then.

NoScript on the other hand is the real culprit. It does not look as if there will be an option in the near future that comes close to the functionality of NoScript.

I'm currently trading speed and reliability for support of these two extensions.

Are you thinking of switching to Opera as well? Or have you already switched? What's keeping you or why did you make the move?

Two Things that Keep Me From Switching to Opera
Article Name
Two Things that Keep Me From Switching to Opera
There are two things that keep me from switching to classic Opera as the main browser: a proper password manager, and NoScript-like functionality.
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  1. Doug said on March 11, 2010 at 6:36 pm

    I need LastPass …I do not care who is at fault …i would like to use Opera as my default browser but not until it supports LastPass

  2. dapxin said on January 29, 2010 at 4:35 pm

    is the implementation of noscript for opera.

    Dont know how fit it is to noscript as I dont use it, but the author is one of Opera’s userscript devs – he ll know what he s doing.

  3. anon said on January 17, 2010 at 10:32 pm

    I have several browser, but I have Opera as my main one, the rest are for development purposes and IE 8 for my Live accounts

    1. Reaction said on January 29, 2010 at 3:35 pm

      Only thing I miss is NoScript. If I get it, Opera will be my everyday browser.

      Until then FF it is.

  4. Beavis said on January 7, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    No Xmarks bookmarks, along with Last Pass, support is the main thing from keeping me from using Opera. I can’t synchronize my bookmarks among Opera and the other browsers.

  5. Daniel Hendrycks said on January 3, 2010 at 6:43 am

    Hi, Martin. Maybe you should post your requests in this forum, maybe it can be done.

    Then, if it is not possible, request it. (But please search the forum first)

  6. john said on December 25, 2009 at 6:48 pm

    I have used Opera for about two years now and I definitely like it for what it is, a browser. I have no need for extra addons like no-script or an online password repository. I do use a JS button to turn on/off javascripts from time to time.

    Another thing I like about Opera is how fast it starts while running under the supervision of Sandboxie as opposed to Firefox running sandboxed.

    1. Ralph Sokroi said on January 2, 2010 at 9:36 pm

      Opera blocks a lot of spam by default and with the key combination Ctrl+Enter its possible to automatically fill logon forms of websites with stored values.

    2. Ralph Sokroi said on January 2, 2010 at 8:57 pm

      I have installed 8 different web browsers on my system. Opera is my favorite one. I have encountered some rendering problems with it on some websites. Nevertheless the functionality and the ease of use as well as the innovations of this web browser convinced me.

  7. 0od00s said on December 25, 2009 at 3:42 am

    There is a unite service that provides most of the noscript functions (the ones related to javascript anyway) but it was developed for the previews and no update for the 10.10 final has come out yet.
    I personally couldn’t get it to work in the new version. It can block specific javascript per site and has an option to start with javascripts disabled.

    Here is the link

    If anybody has an account in myopera you can ask the author to update it for the new version.

    And there is a previous version that uses cookies to store settings, if you to not do any special tricks :) with your cookies you can use that one.

    And last and somewhat related by the same author is a tweak that allows for opera to block scripts with the content blocker

  8. dapxin said on December 25, 2009 at 3:42 am

    there’s something intricately sexy about using Opera….
    the more you have, the more you seek…:)

    1. Jean Chicoine said on December 25, 2009 at 1:05 pm

      Ah, at last, someone’s using the word “sexy” in relation to Opera!
      When I comment on Opera, I describe it as the fastest, the safest, the slimmest, the most complete, the most innovative and the sexiest browser.
      I’m glad to see that I’m not the only one to underline this particular trait of that browser.

  9. godjul said on December 25, 2009 at 3:32 am

    I’ve been using opera since late 2006 due to being stuck with a slow notebook back then and opera running much smoother on it then FF.

    By now, I’d consider myself an opera addict, really, I can’t live without its convencience. What I miss when forced to use FF/IE:
    -Smooth handling. Love single-key shortcuts, mouse gestures, right-left-click for forward/backwart, go-to-webadress (in background) and so many more thing.
    -opera mail client rocks. love to have mails opened as tabs
    -opera notes

    i better stop here rather than writing down all opera features.

    The thing I like most about opera is that even after several years of usage, I still discover neat features regularly, which always makes me smile.

  10. dapxin said on December 24, 2009 at 9:23 pm

    If you used Opera for long enough, you’d love it.

    Opera Mail is un-leavable once you get used to its –
    -automatic indexing + authomatic keyword search.

    wot – already implemented as userjs.
    noscript – already implemeted too as userjs. you just search the opera forums.

    – when you add mouse gestures to the mix and the speed + operaLink. Its internet heaven.

    1. crunchbang said on December 25, 2009 at 3:31 am

      Right on mate.
      And a bit more…

      -“Opera Talk” option allows you to control your browser behavior by voice.
      – Built-in-spell check that comes handy for non English speakers.
      – Simple way to open and close your bookmarks side bar with one click. (basic thing that’s missing for all other major browsers out there)
      – Security… etc.

      To discover real power of Opera, just type opera:config in it…;)

      Quality over quantity, this is how I see it.

  11. Adrian said on December 24, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    Are you thinking of switching to Opera as well? Or have you already switched? …. I already switched.

  12. Mohammed Sarhan said on December 24, 2009 at 10:33 am

    My favorite password manager is roboform
    till now not support opera
    hope this to change soon

  13. Antony said on December 24, 2009 at 5:43 am

    Opera had (I don’t know about this last release) some incompatibilities by correctly displaying certain web pages.
    One function I miss of it is the “save this session” so whatever I’m doing I can easily save the work.

    As someone already pointed every browser has good and bad things, Firefox’s best seems to be the huge archive of plugins though not all are compatible with your browser version.

    As per the topic, I might switch back to Opera :)

    1. Jean Chicoine said on December 24, 2009 at 11:13 am

      But Opera does have “save session” and “manage sessions” functions:

      1. Antony said on December 24, 2009 at 11:45 am

        I said “I miss it” because at the moment am using Firefox ;)

  14. voor said on December 24, 2009 at 12:31 am

    The last time I checked, Opera didn’t have SOCKS4/SOCKS5 proxy support, which I need. So I went with FF and never looked back.

    1. Saurabh said on January 23, 2010 at 9:51 pm

      Use Freecap along with Opera. Surely this can’t be a dealbreaker.

  15. 1101doc said on December 24, 2009 at 12:24 am

    have been using Opera for years. Went to it straight from IE6 and never looked back. It just keeps getting better. I can customize it like I want, move the toolbars around, put shourcuts anywhere, log in with one click, too much to go on about.

    The thing that is most often overlooked/not mentioned is that Opera is an internet suite program. Of course Chrome is faster. It’s just a browser. Opera continues to provide great performance with almost all of FF’s add-ons built in.

    As FF continues to push new versions, I drop a portable on my system and play with it for a while. I always go back to my Opera. I find that I spend more time figuring out how to use FF and deciding which add-ons I need (and how to use them) than I do actually browsing with it.

    If all you’ve ever used is IE, and you’d like to try an alternative browser, go Opera. You will not be disappointed.

  16. Dotan Cohen said on December 24, 2009 at 12:18 am

    All that is missing for me is a tab hierarchy down the side of the browser, like this Firefox addon provides:

  17. tuna said on December 24, 2009 at 12:10 am

    RSS handling/viewing blows. If I wanted to open a new page to view a feed I’d just as well open the originating source page. Ad blocking and script blocking for Opera turned out to be fairly simple operations. GIYF.

    Read a few years’ worth of requests and moans about Opera’s RSS display a couple months ago, have they fixed it yet?

  18. mr peter said on December 23, 2009 at 11:24 pm

    actually opera is more than a browser is a suite…

    mail, sync, opera turbo, unite…

    so not moving to opera because of the lack of a feature “add-on” it’s not enough, what about performance and innovation?

    sure some other browsers are doing quite well, but really not moving to opera because there is no support for a passwrod manager or an “add on” … a bit odd

  19. Rarst said on December 23, 2009 at 10:37 pm

    On passwords you are missing that they are not included in Opera Link and so are not synced between computers. I think developers are hesitant to include them because of current Opera Link mechanics – completely silent and background sync. So if they include passwords and your Opera account is compromised then someone would be able to leech your passwords without you ever knowing.

    PS what I like about Opera in general that it isn’t on crusade. Opera targets people who like it, not people who must be convinced to like it.

  20. Mike said on December 23, 2009 at 9:13 pm

    I made the switch years ago, and can’t find any reasons to switch back to Firefox.

    I’ve never tried NoScript, but from reading your article it seems to be as much a hassle to maintain as Opera’s built-in offering (namely the part where you mention being able to enable specific scripts on a site).
    I haven’t tried that password manager either, but again I find the built-in tool meets my needs quite splendidly. I suppose if I were more active in forums and the like, I would find a need for a tool to auto-generate & retain passwords.

    While I’m not making much use of features like Opera Unite, it’s things like the built-in Notes and syncing capabilities that keep me loving this browser. Plus being able to fully customize my keyboard shortcuts and mouse gestures – the real hook was probably this simple ability to interact with the browser exactly how I like.

  21. Wats said on December 23, 2009 at 9:08 pm

    I’d also like to switch to Opera, but there are some things that just don’t go with it.

    1. IE Tab. I use Outlook WebAccess on daily basis, and I really hate to switch to IE all the time. Firefox does that perfectly, even Chrome has appropriate extension (not as good tough).
    2. Gmail Notifier, in any form. I don’t want to use integrated Mail client, I just want a simple notification.
    3. Google Wave support.
    4. Search suggestions in address bar search field! It can’t be that hard?!
    5. Private browsing (OK, 10.50 takes care of that).
    6. Currently, not so fabulous JS performance (10.50 also solves that).
    7. Extensions like GreaseMonkey and others that allow permanent web page modifications (including embedded YouTube downloader for example, makes downloading videos sooo simple).

    Quite a lot, but I still have some hope. Firefox is so 20th century.

    1. Saurabh said on December 31, 2009 at 6:02 pm

      2.But I use mail client for the same reason(only for notification). It hardly adds to the memory. and you can open gmail or similar as soon as you see a notification.
      3.Ask Google to support Opera. People in the Opera forums report that the problem goes away just with masking as latest firefox.(Do not use Opera’s default masking as it masks as old version of Firefox) by using any user-agent-switching proxy.
      4.suggesting from typed search history is a feature in Opera 10.5. (try it if you do not understand what i meant )However Google suggestions is not available because it isn’t compatible with other search engines and then people complain that Chrome is watching what you type.
      5.6 You replied yourself.
      7. userjs is available in opera for long time.

  22. Emil said on December 23, 2009 at 6:09 pm

    I’ve already switched about two years ago ;)

    I first missed the FireFox Adblocker and IE compatibility, but I’ve now learned to live mostly without those. Though I keep using IE8 for sites that run better on it, since Opera has problems working on certain “complex” websites.

  23. DukislavSync said on December 23, 2009 at 5:41 pm
  24. kalmly said on December 23, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    Upgrading FF from 2.5 to 3.5 has proven that all my fears were solidly based. Now I have a slower browser that crashes at least once a day.

    :) Just as I finished that last sentence it crashed again! But gee, it was nice enough to return me to the exact same place. :)

    So, where was I? Oh yeah. Opera. Absolutely I am thinking of switching. Need I explain further?

  25. Paul said on December 23, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    Why cant last pass be implemented as a user script, smiler to a bookmarklet i guess?

    Opera doesn’t need add block it has a built in content blocker and with a decent list you will never see an add again.

    Firefox’s extensibility is what’s killing it, making it slow and unstable.
    IE 8 is almost better than it.

  26. SubgeniusD said on December 23, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    I use Opera most of the time (Windows/Linux) but need to switch over to FF (Rclick->Open with) somewhat frequently – but still tolerable. Most of these are for Opera/Linux:

    – internet radio stream players don’t work
    – PayPal checkout won’t work
    – Wachovia/Wells Fargo bank required IE or FF/Windows until recently, now FF/Linux but no Opera.
    – YouTube won’t allow account logins or registration(but no such issues with GoogleVideo)
    – Almost all embedded video clips won’t full screen – but will if open in YouTube

    Other odd quirks here and there including sites mis-rendering but that rarely happens these days.

    The login (formerly Wand) function is perfectly adequate for casual home users (like what? 95 percent?) who like myself manually enter strong passwords for banking and PayPal sites. Which is like a few seconds several times a week so what’s the big deal?

    I have the NoScript and Better Privacy and AdBlock FF extensions and do run FF more often on my Win 7 box but really don’t notice much of a difference from Opera except what a PITA NoScript is. Most scripting crap is on “high risk” sites anyway.

  27. hpearce said on December 23, 2009 at 3:06 pm

    your chance for a lastpass interface other than the bookmarklets already provided is small in my view and would hinge on Opera developing a FF-like extension sub-system.

    It is this subsystem that would surely be the greatest improvement to attract users. the widget and unite things are more like geek toys which Opera is in the habit of providing. but these tend not to be a a big attraction for the average user

  28. Eyad Salah said on December 23, 2009 at 2:31 pm

    Well, I think you can do AdBlocking for opera, manually as a user script. But what I find weird is the inability to import information from other browsers. It’s just like opera people are saying “Fresh start for non-opera users” And it’s really annoying.

    I tried searching their forums for a way to at least import Firefox saved password. I found hundreds of threads matching the title but it always end with the same complaint from some Opera expert “Firefox password manager is insecure and stores the passwords insecurely, But Opera encrypts your passwords and uses a secure manager”. I tried Opera @ least once a year for a couple of hours then had to switch back because of this.

    Oh and the ability to build your own custom version of a browser is really a big deal to me. Even if there are faster browsers. I don’t see myself switching from Firefox anytime soon

  29. punk rock said on December 23, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    opera is a really good browser, i use it from time to time
    what it needs is adblocker like firefox
    without adblock i’d never switch to opera

    1. WhatIsThis said on December 23, 2009 at 3:00 pm
    2. Chocobito said on December 23, 2009 at 2:47 pm

      Opera already have adblock funcionality, I you could use Adblock List and you never will see ads again.

      See this page for that:

  30. dan said on December 23, 2009 at 1:33 pm

    if i find replecement ,i switch for opera.One more REASON…”clear privacy when i close the browser”

  31. dan said on December 23, 2009 at 1:28 pm

    better privacy;wot;webmail notifier;adblock plus.those extension keep me away from opera.adblock plus i can replace with adsweep but rest…….

    1. WhatIsThis said on December 23, 2009 at 2:58 pm

      All of these are probably possible to do in Opera. Check out the Fanboy Adblock filter for Opera for example.

  32. WhatIsThis said on December 23, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    “Opera has a feature to disable some scripts globally and per website.”

    No, it enables or disables scripts per site.

    “NoScript can be used to enable a specific script (e.g. JavaScript) but block all other JavaScripts on a website.”

    Sounds like you could easily use Opera’s User JS for that.

    1. joseph Fairchild said on November 16, 2012 at 5:05 am

      I use LastPass on Opera and it seems to work quite wall, I would never remember all my pass words without it, and if I go to someone elses computer I can log into Last pass there and Ive got them, I even have safari on my computer also, and use LastPass there too, I also like the social side of Opera too.

    2. Saurabh said on December 23, 2009 at 7:21 pm

      Both Martin and you are meaning the same thing. Its a misunderstanding. Lastpass devs, if they had the wish, could easily have implemented functions like autofill and secure password generation via an userjs. If they could develop an bookmarklet, they should have nothing against userjs.

      1. Anon said on December 24, 2009 at 12:01 am

        LastPass bookmarklet is a first step but LastPass developers could have done more. I can see it is more of a limitation in LastPass than Opera. For example, I cannot make the login not expire. It will always ask me for the master password and there are just too many clicks to do.

        I blame this on LastPass.

    3. Martin said on December 23, 2009 at 1:04 pm

      But there is an option to disable scripts globally as well? Or to what are you referring with the no?

      1. Mr.Prayer said on December 23, 2009 at 9:17 pm

        Oh i think i missed this line:
        >NoScript can be used to enable a specific script (e.g. JavaScript) but block all other JavaScripts on a website.

        I don’t think that’s possible now.
        May be some external program/proxy have this functionality.

        On the other side i can provide my personal couple of arguments why i cant use firefox full-time:
        -There is no normal plugin for mouse gestures. They just suck.
        -Problems with plugins compability.
        -And i don’t like the way it renders pages 8)

        So there is no perfect browser.

      2. Martin said on December 23, 2009 at 4:09 pm

        Was not that what I said?

      3. Mr.Prayer said on December 23, 2009 at 3:08 pm

        Uncheck Preferences->Advanced->Content->Enable Javascript
        Then enable scripts per site.
        Is it what you asked?

        PS: i would recomend SuperGenPass bookmarklet as password generator.

      4. WhatIsThis said on December 23, 2009 at 2:56 pm

        @Martin, you can disable scripts globally, or on a per-site basis.

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