[Suggestion] Why I don't use web panels as they are now



  • I've never been much of a fan of web panels. I never used them when opera still had them, and I haven't used them since I switched to vivaldi. The reasons for this are many, but here are some of the easiest to fix:

    1. Every time I decide to give web panels yet another chance and add some social media, I often find myself browsing to another page rather quickly and then end up having to navigate all the way back to the page I want the panel to be. This is specially annoying when you want the default of the panel to be in a different branch of the directory tree than the one you are currently in, but even if it's the front page of the site, it still takes time to get back.
      How I would fix this: Add an option to set a default page for a panel and switch back to that URL every time the panel is opened, or the browser is started, or after the panel has been closed for 5 minutes (or maybe even let the user choose)
    2. Navigating panels is difficult. Specially when your use-cases require interaction, like having social media or a forum as a panel, you often need to reload a page to see a certain change, or quickly navigate to another page to do something and get back, and panels lack both a quick and easy way to reload the page and move forward and backward in the history. This wouldn't be as annoying if problem #1 wasn't a thing, but as it is now, this eats a lot of time and makes using panels slower than just opening something as a normal tab and closing it again.
    3. Size matters! Some pages work well as a thin strip, but lack certain functionality (for example, google+ removes a lot of functionalities in the "mobile" version, which is automatically activated if the browser "window" is below a certain width". This means that for certain actions I need to resize the panel width, do something, and size it down again, finding the optimal width that I had set up before. Life would be much easier if there was a button to temporarily resize a panel to 100% of the browser width (effectively making it as big as a normal tab) and then just sizing it down to panel width again. Maybe when the panel is "maximized" like this, the address bar could also change to display the address of the panel, and the buttons would also work on the panel instead of the page that is in the background, thus easily and elegantly fixing problem #2

    These were the main problems I have with web panels. I don't know if all these things would be as easy to implement as it seems to me, but the vivaldi team seems more than capable to make it happen and has been doing a great job so far, so I am sure it can be done.
    </rant>

    That being said, I wish a happy new year to all of you and specially to the people behind vivaldi. Thanks for giving us such a great browser! :)



  • @DarkWiiPlayer

    • Right-click on a web panel's icon and select Toolbars from the context menu to show all controls (back, forward, and reload) as well as the Home button.
    • Again right-click on the icon and choose Separate Width for panels that need more space. Your default width for other panels will remain the same as before.
    • Again, right-click on the icon, and from the Open in submenu, open it in a new tab if you need the full width version for some reason.


  • @Pesala

    • thanks
    • not what I mean
    • opens a new tab, doesn't resize the actual thing

  • Moderator

    @DarkWiiPlayer - panels are expandable to 2/3 the width of your web page display, no matter how wide your display is. At maximized size, this is enough for full function of most pages. If that's not enough, yes, you have to open it in a new tab at this time.

    Also, irrespective of width, you can still select whether to receive the mobile or desktop version of the page in the panel.


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