Well the good news is that Viewer 1 will be around as well as all the 3rd party alternatives like Phoenix, for as long as LL allow access. the bad news is that V2 really is going to be more important as time goes by, no matter how much you hate it.
I know what you're saying; Phoenix gives me inventory links, avatar physics, enhanced radar etc,etc but what if you could use something like Firestorm,based off V2 and like it ?
Consider this helpfull illustrative picture.
There are quite a few options that can be set in the Firestorm preferences to give it more of a viewer 1 look & feel.
As I like that Dark skin in Phoenix I'm fairly comfortable with the standard Firestorm skin but Metaharper is a good alternative.
If you want Firestorm to look more like the default V1 UI then the Starlight retro skin will give it the old camera look with the rest of the UI in the old blue colours with rounded buttons.
I hear from many of you that you really don't like avatar icons in local chat and IM's. well, yay, you can turn that off.
Now don't let the fact that I'm using the latest beta build put you off trying the following settings; if you don't have it yet it should be available in the next few days !
In preferences,starting with the general tab, untick Viewer UI hints if you don't like the big square popup appearing whenever you hover over a toolbar option.
Moving onto the chat tab, untick the 'show mini icons' option to make it more like V1, or, tick 'Remove chat headers' so all chat in nearby and IM's looks like V1 style.
Set incoming chat popups for IM's etc. to your own preference, I personally don't like IM chat appearing on my screen unless I have the chat window open.
At the top of the screen, where the navigation bar usually is on V2, right click for options to hide the search bar, navigation bar & favorites.Make sure that show location is ticked in top bar so it shows location the same way as V1.
Next we move down to the UI tab & set use pie menu (usually ticked by default in firestorm) and show script dialogs in top right so they no longer show up in the bottom right of the screen. (Incidentally, in the colours tab you can set the foreground and background colour how you like for scripted menu items and the pie menu) In the Firestorm tab is where you'll find the option to set vertical or horizontal tabs. Moving along the different options while still on the Firestorm tab, choose chat and set 'use console for chat popups instead of toasts (Viewer 1.x style) and also use full screen width for console.
Most of the other options in preferences such as keyword alerts and radar options are sinilar to Phoenix. One thing you might like to do though with the radar (People icon) and nearme tab is click on the gear icon at the bottom of the panel then choose to untick 'show minimap above radar'. Then you can resize the panel so it behaves more like it does in Phoenix.
In the build options, you are still unable to set a default texture the same way as in Phoenix but there are some options so that it doesn't show boring plywood (unless you're a plywood fan) Setting your own texture is planned for the future.
Hope this is of some use to you all. Have fun experimenting and discovering what firestorm has to offer. Each build makes it better.
Until next time,