[whatwg] Private browsing vs. Storage and Databases

Ian Fette (イアンフェッティ) ifette at google.com
Tue Apr 7 18:04:41 PDT 2009

2009/4/7 Jonas Sicking <jonas at sicking.cc>

> 2009/4/7 Ian Fette (イアンフェッティ) <ifette at google.com>:
> > In Chrome/Chromium, "incognito" mode is basically a new profile that is
> in
> > memory (plus or minus... the cache will never get written out to disk,
> > although of course the memory pages could get swapped out and hit the
> disk
> > that way...). The implication is that, for many of these features, things
> > could just naturally get handled. That is, whilst the session is active,
> > pages can still use a database / local storage / ... / and at the end of
> the
> > session, when that profile is deleted, things will go away. I personally
> > like that approach, as there may be legitimate reasons to want to use a
> > database even for just a single session. (Perhaps someone wants to edit a
> > spreadsheet and the spreadsheet app wants to use a database on the client
> as
> > a backing store for fast edits, I don't know...). I just don't like the
> idea
> > of saying "Sorry, incognito/private/... means a class of pages won't
> work"
> > if there's no reason it has to be that way.
> > In short, I would prefer something closest to Option 3. It lets pages
> just
> > work, but respects the privacy wishes of the user. (AppCache / persistent
> > workers are the one exception where I think Option3 doesn't apply and we
> > need to figure something out.)
> I do agree that there's still need for storing data while in private
> browsing mode. So I do think it makes a lot of sense for
> .sessionStorage to keep working.
> But I do have concerned about essentially telling a website that we'll
> store the requested data, only to drop it on the floor as soon as the
> user exits private browsing mode (or crashes).
> / Jonas

Doesn't the website have to handle that anyways? I mean, I assume that all
the browsers are going to allow users some way to "manage" this stuff, much
like cache/cookies - e.g. you have to assume that at some point in time the
user is going to blow you away. (Especially on mobile devices where space is
more of a premium...)

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