The Firefox-based web browser for Microsoft Windows, Android and Linux. 

Tech users have choices now, and more average consumers are taking advantage of the chance to customize their digital experiences. The days of limitations to the machines’ capabilities are pretty much gone, and assuming that atypical options are only for highly-skilled hacker-level users is over.

As such, there are a wide variety of operating systems and browsers, some of which come pre-installed and meet most users’ needs. For others, even some of the most casual tech users, the option to download a different setup means more choices and more capability from their tech.

We review Pale Moon, the Firefox-based web browser for Microsoft Windows, Android and Linux.

Optimized for modern processors, Pale Moon uses the Goanna optimized layout engine.

Despite all the press the major web browsers get – and the resulting market share they garner – there are countless other options for users to choose from. Pale Moon, a web browser which shares a common “fork” ancestor with Firefox’s code, offers users functionality and customization that isn’t often found with the typical Big Names.

Thousands of extensions and add-ons

For users who expect to call the shots a little when it comes to the hundreds of options for browsers, Pale Moon affords them full compatibility with Firefox’s thousands of extensions and add-ons. The interface is decidedly old school, but that’s one thing that a number of users have commented on positively.

According to the Pale Moon Project, some of the top features include:

  • Optimized for modern processors
  • Based on our own optimized layout engine (Goanna)
  • Safe: forked from mature Mozilla code and regularly updated
  • Secure: Additional security features and security-aware development
  • Supported by our user community, and fully non-profit
  • Familiar, efficient, fully customizable interface
  • Support for full themes: total freedom over any element’s design
  • Support for easily-created lightweight themes (skins)
  • Smooth and speedy page drawing and script processing
  • Increased stability: experience fewer browser crashes
  • Support for many Firefox extensions
  • Support for a growing number of Pale Moon exclusive extensions
  • Extensive and growing support for HTML5 and CSS3
  • Broad support for image formats: Supports WebP and JPEG-XR
  • Many customization and configuration options

Good, but not for everyone

Originally powered on a Gecko engine before shifting to Goranna, one of the few but main complaints from users is that not all websites are going to load with the same speed when using Pale Moon, and a few may not load at all. Considering that Pale Moon has actually fared well in head-to-head competitions for its small memory footprint while using multiple browsers, that could have more to do with how the website was coded than how the browser functions.

Be aware, Pale Moon might not be the browser for the family computer. It has shed some of the features that Firefox is known for, namely accessibility options and parental control parameters. If you don’t need those choices, Pale Moon makes up for the loss with speed and optimization.

To download and test drive Pale Moon, click here, but bear in mind that the developers have offered optimized builds for both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows. Some systems might not load the browser, and you’ll need to revert to another title.

We also list dozens of other great web browsers, including Firefox, Google Chrome, Opera, and Safari. You can download them all here on FileHippo