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Opera 50 gets anti-Bitcoin mining tool, improved VPN service and more

NoCoin feature filters out cryptocurrency mining scripts from websites.

  • Published: January 5, 2018 11:50 AM IST
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Highlights

  • Opera 50 gets new anti-cryptocurrency mining tool called NoCoin.

  • NoCoin prevents websites from misusing your device for mining.

  • Other new features include Save as PDF, extended VR support, and improved VPN service.

Opera has announced the latest version of its browser for Windows, macOS, and Linux this week. Opera 50, which is also the milestone round edition, comes with a bunch of improvements and a new feature that keeps malicious websites leveraging your computer for bitcoin mining. The new feature, called NoCoin, works like a filter to help you block webpages that misuse your device.

Given the popularity of Bitcoin, the malpractice of ‘cryptojacking’ has also come into effect. It essentially targets unsuspecting users for their system’s processing capabilities to do cryptocurrency mining. Opera 50 aims to address this issue with its NoCoin feature that helps block such webpages that discreetly use cryptocurrency mining scripts.

Opera 50 is also claimed to be the only major browser with an integrated ad blocker, and have a built-in solution to keep miners from misuing your machine. In its blog, Opera explains the working of the NoCoin feature. To prevent the misuse of your computer’s processing power, you need to simply enable Opera’s ad blocker. If you want ads to be displayed, you can uncheck EasyList from the settings, and keep the NoCoin option checked. Doing so will protect your system from being used for mining purpose.

Other than the anti-mining tool, Opera 50 also brings extended VR360 support for Oculus and Chromecast. To enable Chromecast playback, you can go to Settings -> Browser -> User interface, and check ‘Enable Chromecast support’. Opera 50 can support casting for videos, tabs or your full desktop display.

For VR, the browser gets software decoding path support in the code, which means you no longer need to install any extensions to handle VR-related issues. The JavaScript-based detection helps automatically detect format for a selection of popular websites such as YouTube, Facebook or Vimeo for the proper playback mode. There is now a dedicated Exit VR button added to the browser. The ‘Turn off’ button in the Opera VR 360 Player will take the device to its native home screen.

With Opera 50 you can also save a page in PDF version for offline reading. To save a page as a PDF file, go to the O-Menu and select ‘Save Page as PDF.’ This will save the entire web page as a single PDF. You can also create a shortcut for this function under Settings -> Browser -> Shortcuts -> Configure Shortcuts.

Opera has also moved the browser VPN service to its own data centers, which is claimed to give better performance, scalability and balancing capabilities while keeping it a free and no-log service. It has also added a ‘local search’ feature to help improve the search quality in VPN service. By default, the Opera browser will now bypass the browser VPN when you use your native search engines, such as Google, Bing or Yandex. While these connections will be secure over Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), it will make your local IP visible to the search engines. To turn it off, you simply need to browse through a private mode.

  • Published Date: January 5, 2018 11:50 AM IST