Posted by jonathan at 7:46am EST on 12/03/2007
On some searches, Google automatically instructs your browser to start downloading the top search result before you click on it. If you click on top result, the destination page will load faster than before.
This part of Google is a special feature unique to Firefox and Mozilla browsers. Here’s how it works.
By default, the feature is turned on. But, if you’ve like to turn it off, such as I have recently to test and see how it impacts my browsing, this is how you do it.
- Type “about:config” the address bar.
- Scroll down to the setting “network.prefetch-next” and set the value to “False”.
With prefetching enabled, you may end up with cookies and web pages in your web browser’s cache from web sites that you did not click on since prefetching happens automatically when you view Google search results pages. You can delete these files by clearing your browser’s cache and cookies.
This is something that particularly scares me. I’m very surprised this hasn’t come up before as a security threat to the users of the web. Automatically accepting cookies for sites you haven’t visited is a pretty serious security issue in my mind.
Click here for more details on Results Prefetching.
Parts of this article have been taken directly from Google.com. See above link for reference.