What Does Your User Agent Say About You?


A user agent is a computer program representing a person, for example, a browser in a Web context.

Besides a browser, a user agent could be a bot scraping webpages, a download manager, or another app accessing the Web. Along with each request they make to the server, browsers include a self-identifying User-Agent HTTP header called a user agent (UA) string. This string often identifies the browser, its version number, and its host operating system.

Spam bots, download managers, and some browsers often send a fake UA string to announce themselves as a different client. This is known as user agent spoofing.

The user agent string can be accessed with JavaScript on the client side using the navigator.userAgent property.

A typical user agent string looks like this: "Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Ubuntu; Linux x86_64; rv:35.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/35.0".


User Agent String

Browser Data

Change User Agent In Brave

James Lee
• Wednesday, 06 July, 2022
• 13 min read

If you ever wanted to make your web traffic seem like it was coming from a different browser–say, to trick a site that claims it’s incompatible with yours–you can. This allows you to request web pages intended for different browsers–or even different devices, like smartphones and tablets.



Click the menu button to the right of the “Console” tab at the bottom of the Developer Tools pane and select “Network Conditions” If you don’t see the console at the bottom, click the menu button in the top right corner of the Developer Tools pane–that’s the button just to the left of the “x”–and select “Show Console”.

On the Network conditions tab, uncheck “Select automatically” next to User agent. It only works while you have the Developer Tools pane open, and it only applies to the current tab.

To create the preference, right-click on the about:config page, point to New, and select String. This setting applies to every open tab and persists until you change it, even if you close and reopen Firefox.

To revert Firefox to the default user agent, right-click the “general.user agent.override” preference and select Reset. Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer have user agent switchers in their developer tools, and they’re nearly identical.

To open them, click the settings menu and select “F12 Developer Tools” or just press F12 on your keyboard. The developer tools will open in a separate pane at the bottom of the window.


You can find extensive lists of user agents on various websites, such as this one. It only applies to the current tab, and only while the F12 Developer Tools pane is open.

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In the early days of the internet, websites didn’t care what browser you used, because most pages were static. But today’s dynamic websites often adapt to the operating system, browser, or screen size your device uses.

An user agent is a string (line of text) that your browser sends to websites when you access them. User agents are important because sites can use them to modify the content they send to your browser.

For example, if you visit most modern sites in Internet Explorer 6, you’ll see a message that you need to upgrade your browser for proper compatibility. User agents also come into play when browsing on a mobile device, so websites know to show you the mobile-friendly version of a page.

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Open Chrome’s Developer Tools by right-clicking anywhere and choosing To inspect, hitting Ctrl + Shift + I, or by pressing F12. On the Network conditions tab, uncheck Select automatically and you can then choose a new user agent from the list.

This lets you easily switch your user agent, including setting certain sites to use a different agent all the time. Press F12 or right-click on an empty spot of the page and choose To inspect element to open the developer tools window.

You’ll need to enable the hidden Develop menu in Safari before you can change your user agent. While there’s no quick toggle to change your user agent in the mobile versions of Chrome and Safari, you can easily make websites think your phone is a computer.

On Safari for iOS, tap the AA button to the left of the address bar and choose Request Desktop Website. You’ll find the same option in Chrome for iPhone by tapping the Share button at the top-right, followed by scrolling down and choosing Request Desktop Site.

While swapping your agent can’t accommodate every possible real-world situation, it lets you get some basic testing done in a fraction of the time. Further, if backward compatibility is important for your site, swapping your user agent to IE 8 is a lot easier than installing a copy of ancient browsers manually.

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Browsing mobile versions of pages means you only get the basics and aren’t wasting data on multimedia or other large items. While not as common as it once was, sometimes you’ll come across websites that tell you Firefox doesn’t work with the page, or you must use Internet Explorer, or other similar warnings.

Some people explain that they use these services to get around sites that block entire operating systems. While there’s really no good reason for a site to block an entire OS, you could run into a page that complains about you using Linux.

If you’ve used Windows all your life, you can jump around some sites and see if they look any different when using Mac or Linux. Or change your user agent to an ancient version of Internet Explorer, then see how many sites still support it.

I haven’t found any indications of publishers actively blocking any of these browsers even on a small scale. I’ve found over 21 easily detectable characteristics which are unique to Brave, and it only took me half an hour to discover and test these.

I don’t believe there are any legitimate reason to fingerprint individual users. When they check their access logs, they’ll see that Brave has 0 users.

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The previous mechanism detected a special property of the window object. Brave doesn’t care much to maintain compatibility with the Web Platform and standards.

One of the weirder things it does is to remove specific URL query parameters from all requests. To detect Brave : From the client, send a request to a specially crafted URL (below).

Bsclifton changed the title Provide a Brave -specific Sergeant Provide a Brave -specific Sergeant for some sites Jan 10, 2020 Making statements based on opinion; back them up with references or personal experience.

While all phones come with pre-installed browsers, both Google Play and Apple App Store offer a number of alternative browsers, some focusing on speed and lightness, others on saving bandwidth and blocking ads, and an ever-increasing amount claiming to increase privacy and reduce a users' mobile digital footprint. Feel free to browse the stats for your local market using our Data Explorer tool.

Once you've downloaded the ISO, you can create an installation DVD or bootable USB flash drive. Downloading an ISO (disc image) with the Media Creation Tool is simple.

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There are two ways to download a Windows 10 ISO without the Media Creation Tool. Select and confirm the program and version you want to download, language and architecture (64-bit or 32-bit) and save the file to your device.

In Chrome, Chromium based Microsoft Edge, Vivaldi and Brave browsers the process to change the user agent is the same (see below for Opera). The title of the reloaded page should say “Download Windows 10 Disc Image (ISO file)”.

Select your version, either the previous or current Windows 10 build and your language. Click either 32-bit or 64-bit to start the download to your device (links on this page are valid for 24 hours from the time of creation).

Ctrl + Shift + I will open the developer tools in other Chromium based browsers as well. Ctrl + F12 won't open and close the developer tools in Opera.

The changes in the Sergeant will reset to the default (Windows) when Chromium based browsers are closed and re-opened. There are two ways to change the Sergeant in Firefox and Water fox, use an add-on or edit the about:config settings.


Either of these two add-ons work well and are easy to use; download and install them and an icon will appear in the address bar. The title of the page should say “Download Windows 10 Disc Image (ISO file)”.

If you're comfortable editing the about:config settings there are good directions here, including how to reset to the default when you're done. You'll need Sergeant strings for systems other than Windows, I like the ones here: List of User Agents.

After you choose a string, copy and paste it into the box in the about:config settings using the directions in the article and reload the Microsoft Windows 10 download page. It would be much easier if Microsoft supplied easily accessed links to Windows and Office versions (past and present) but since they don't, this is how you can download them for yourself.

Just wanted to start a search using Want (it's default for Vivaldi, is it?). Get redirected to a page instead that complains that the User Agent setting is way too verbose and wants me to wait one minute before I may reload.

Bad attitude of Want search page! Seems the deal with Vivaldi has already ended with them, they're suggesting to install Brave.

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Time to remove this search engine for good, not that it was ever useful to me anyway. In principle, they do have a point, excessive Sergeant settings can help to fingerprint installations.

So Vivaldi tam should think hard if they intend to keep a search engine in the list that isn't usable :o Oder_Pit Any site that blocks me without reason needs to die and being forgotten by the whole internet ASAP.

They block potential users, which will result in less ad revenue. But yeah, avoiding Want might be a good idea in any case.

Other Articles You Might Be Interested In

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05: Firefox Change User Agent Addon
06: Firefox Change User Agent Opera
07: Firefox Extension Change User Agent
08: Firefox Googlebot User Agent
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10: Firefox Plugin Change User Agent
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