How to Find the Version of a Browser

How to Find the Version of a Browser

Anytime you need tech support on your computer, you’ll be asked “what kind of machine are you using?” or “what’s the version of your browser?” This is not information an everyday computer user needs to know, but when it comes to fixing problems, it’s essential. It’s like an Apple genius needing to know the generation of your iPad.

Upgrades to software applications happen so frequently it’s difficult to give a static list of instructions on any software feature before it changes again. That’s why, when teaching my beginning computer students, I outline basic computer navigation, icons, and features so they can always find their way around or at least know what to search for.

Menus and Gears

Most browsers are replacing or hiding the drop-down menu navigation that used to appear at the top of the browser.

The text menu bar in Firefox.

Today these text menus are being replaced with menu icons.

menu-icons-01

An icon of 3 vertical dots or 3 parallel lines is a universal standard used by apps to indicate a navigation or feature menu.

Gear icon for the Settings menu

The Gear icon is the standard for a settings menu. If you can’t find a Menu icon, look for the Gear instead.

Of course, apps try to differentiate themselves from their competitors and each will have its own quirks, despite universal standards.

How to Find Your Browser Version

CHROME

QUIRK: The biggest issue with finding the version number of Chrome is, as soon as you click the ‘About’ option, Chrome starts an update immediately! Therefore, you don’t know exactly what version of Chrome you were using prior to clicking. But, there is a work-around if you want it.

The Work Around

1. Click the Menu icon in the top right of the browser. The menu options will open.

In the Chrome menu roll the cursor over the Help option

2. Roll your cursor over the “Help” option in the menu. An additional ‘fly-out’ menu will appear.

Rolling over the Help option expands the Help fly-out

 

3. Click “Report an Issue…” in the ‘fly-out’ menu. The “tell us what is happening” window opens.

Report an Issue window with the system information link

4. Click the “system information” link to the right of the “Send” checkbox. The “System information preview” pop-up opens.

The Chrome system information window shows the current Chrome version number

5. The first item listed on the “System information preview” pop-up is “CHROME VERSION.” The numbers to the right are what you’re looking for!

The Normal Way (without the work-around)

1. Click the Menu icon in the top right of the browser.
The menu options will open.

Select Settings in the Chrome menu

2. Click the “Settings” option in the menu.
The current tab in the Chrome browser will load the Settings page.

The Chrome Settings web page

3. In the navigation options in the left column, click “About.”
The “About” page will load.

4. Look for the line that says, “Version.” The numbers to the right are the browser version.

FIREFOX

If you don't see a menu bar in Firefox, right click in the header and select it.

QUIRK: Firefox still has the old style text menu at the top of the browser. If you don’t see it, it’s because it’s hidden. Move your cursor into a space in the top of the browser that is blank (not a tab, not an icon). Right-click and a menu will pop up. Select “menu bar.”

1. Click the Menu icon in the top right of the browser. The menu options will open.

In the Firefox menu is the Help icno (round question mark)

2. Click the round ‘Help’ icon (question mark) at the bottom of the menu. The Help menu slides over the current menu.

The Firefox Help menu

3. At the bottom of the Help menu select “About Firefox.” The “About” pop-up window opens.

The About Firefox pop-up window

4. The version number appears directly below the giant “Firefox” header.

INTERNET EXPLORER

If you don't see the text menu in IE, right click in the header and select it.

QUIRK: Like Firefox, IE still has the old style text menu at the top of the browser. If you don’t see it, it’s because it’s hidden. Move your cursor into a space in the top of the browser that is blank (not a tab, not an icon). Right-click and a menu will pop up. Select “Menu bar.”

1. Click the Gear icon in the top right of the browser. The Settings menu will open.

In the settings menu select About Internet Explorer

2. Click “About Internet Explorer” in the settings menu. The “About Internet Explorer” pop-up will open.

The Internet Explorer About pop-up

3. The version number appears directly below the large “Internet Explorer” header.

SAFARI

QUIRK: Safari still has the old-style text menu across the top of the browser app. This makes it easy to find the version.

1. Click “Safari” in the menu bar at the top of the browser. The Safari options will appear.

Click the Safari Menu to expand

2. Click “About Safari.” The “About Safari” pop-up will open.

The Safari About pop-up

3. The version number appears directly below the “Safari” header on the pop-up.

I’ll Give You a Topic

What’s the worst customer support experience you’ve ever had?

Rhonda has a BS in Mathematics and Computer Science and is a self-taught graphic designer. She considers herself a geek*wildcard because she has a little bit of experience in everything.

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