Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Netscape The Internet America Online Upgrades

AOL to Release Netscape 7.2 Based on Mozilla 1.7 447

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the aging-young-rebels dept.
securitas writes "ZDNet's Evan Hansen reports that AOL will release Netscape Navigator 7.2 based on Mozilla 1.7 code this summer. The update comes a year after version 7.1 and after Microsoft stopped standalone development in Internet Explorer. eWEEK's Matt Hicks offers analysis of the new Netscape release, citing studies that say while Microsoft has a 93.9% browser market share and 87% of business users use IE, 25% still use Netscape and 11% use Opera -- the math works because people use multiple browsers. Hicks asks the question 'Is the Netscape Browser Being Reborn or Just Stabilized?' Hicks interviews several people in the know including a former Netscape engineer, an industry analyst, and Opera Software CEO Jon von Tetzchner."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

AOL to Release Netscape 7.2 Based on Mozilla 1.7

Comments Filter:
  • Release Cycle (Score:2, Interesting)

    by BodyCount07 (260070)
    I'd rather see a year between releases than a buggy browser.
  • Of course (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bill_Royle (639563) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:27AM (#9275489)
    Competition is always good. My main issue with Netscape is simply that it's not promoted like it should be... it's the same issue I have with people buying fast cars, driving in the fast lane, and going 55.

    Not that Netscape's necessarily a Ferrari, but it's no Yugo, either.
    • Re:Of course (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      This makes this move possibly dangerous for OSS, because they could fuck up netscape, and then when people hear "mozilla is the core technology behind netscape" they will vomit.

      Firefox is good for this reason to keep the "brands" disabiguated.

      And hell, all we need is firefox, thunderbird, a standalone html editor (wasn't lindows working on one derrived from mozilla?.. got it http://www.nvu.com/ [nvu.com]) and xchat and you have a set of programs WAY more powerful than the mozilla suite. Put all the bookmark and set
      • Re:Of course (Score:2, Interesting)

        by fuzzix (700457)

        This makes this move possibly dangerous for OSS, because they could fuck up netscape, and then when people hear "mozilla is the core technology behind netscape" they will vomit.

        I've had this happen a few times... I've recommended moz to everyone I know but some of them immediately say "Ugh! This looks like Netscape!" No amount of "But popup blocking! But tabbed browsing!" is going to change their view that it's the same as the last time they saw Netscape (probably v4.7)
        No fault of the mozilla project,

      • The only problem I have with this is that Thunderbird doesn't support maildir format. There are a few other capabilities it lacks but maildir is the big one keeping me from using it.
    • Re:Of course (Score:4, Informative)

      by Zareste (761710) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:14AM (#9275644) Homepage
      I'm not sure where Netscape's strong-points are, but on a Mac (though things might be entirely different on Windows or others), it's one of the slowest browsers you can get, while IE for Mac goes much faster, and of course, Safari blazes past both of them with its RAM-based architecture (it doesn't waste time caching much of the web page to disk).

      Although I've found IE for Windows to be incredibly slow with Javascript. I guess it's the plug-in use that determine most of the speed.
  • Why? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by pracz (779590) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:29AM (#9275496) Journal
    Sincerely, anybody knows what's the advantage of Netscape over Mozilla?? I'm confused...
    • Re:Why? (Score:5, Funny)

      by Bill_Royle (639563) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:30AM (#9275500)
      With Netscape, you get AOL shortcuts on your desktop.

      Wait, you said advantage?
    • Re:Why? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by byolinux (535260) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:31AM (#9275505) Journal
      Netscape is a name that non-geeks have heard of.

      If you ask some clueless decision maker if it's okay to deploy Mozilla, you'll probably get turned down on the basis of "I've not heard of that" whereas people who've used the web for a while, will have heard of Netscape.

      My mother's heard of Netscape, she thinks she uses it every day, even though she actually uses Firefox.

      (Sorry mum!)
      • Re:Why? (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Billly Gates (198444)
        Actually most of them today would say "Netscape who"? Weren't they some sort of internet company?

        The older over 30+ remember them but its like talking about WordPerfect to MS-Office users. They will just give you strange looks.

        Sadly its viewed as dead which is correct. MS beat them via the distribution game. Netscape could not compete with something for free so they folded, got bought out and laid off their programmers while MS added feature after feature to IE.

        Sad really.

        • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

          by byolinux (535260) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:49AM (#9275756) Journal
          I remember them as a browser company I'm 22. I just asked a 15 year old, they remember them as abrowser company.

          I think you're underestimating the memories of people, perhaps. Either way, 'netscape' is a name people know; whether it's Coke or New Coke.

          Boycott Coke! [colombiaso...ity.org.uk]
    • Re:Why? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by SenseiLeNoir (699164)
      The advantage is hidden in some cases.

      Take my household for example, I have banned the use of Internet Explorer on all computers. Myself and my sister use Mozilla (Myself Firefox on my computer, my sister uses the suite on her computer).

      But my parents do not "understand" mozilla yet. They dont know it. But they still remember Netscape.

      I installed Netscape 7.1 on their computer, and set sensible default preferneces, and to be honest, they love it. Its my way of getting them to run mozilla whilst they are
  • I have to ask (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:29AM (#9275498)
    Why? What will Netscape 7.2 be that Mozilla 1.7 is not?
    • Re:I have to ask (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Oxide (92607) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:34AM (#9275516)
      Netscape has the commercial name and history that people and business know and trust.
      • I would not be too sure about that. I was a die hard netscape fan but versions 6-7 were just so bad, slow and unstable it put me off netscape completely.
      • and AOL backs it (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Creepy (93888)
        It may be slow and buggy (actually, 7.1 isn't that bad, IMO), but it's hard to push open source to businesses because they want someone to hold accountable.

        Market forces, on the other hand, have their own way of forcing good software in, regardless of origin. When you risk losing millions in contracts because you don't support Mozilla or Linux, the corporate penny pinchers start to take notice.
  • Why bother? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by welshsocialist (542986) <hoshie@mailinator.com> on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:33AM (#9275510) Homepage
    I'm glad AOL is doing this, but why bother? The Foundation (IMHO) is doing a great job in making Seamonkey, the Fox and the Bird, and Camino into products an end-user can appreciate and use.

    Sorry AOL, you lose. For four years you had the chance to make Netscape into a valued alternative to MSIE. You failed. Now, roll over, get lost, or die.
    • But if AOL died, I would have a hard time finding qualifying wives. You see, If she is an AOL user, DUMP HER! (unless she is good looking enough to compensate)

      -Grump
    • Re:Why bother? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Minna Kirai (624281) on Friday May 28, 2004 @07:18AM (#9276072)
      I'm glad AOL is doing this, but why bother?

      Uh, maybe because AOL owns ~25% of US home internet users? AOL is still a big gatekeeper for the internet. They have the power to force broad software changes, regardless of the relative quality of the particular software in question.

      Few users are sufficiently motivated or knowledgable to install Firefox on their own, but they'll have no choice but to sit through a 15 minute "Updating your AOL software" progress-bar.

      When AOL flips a switch to change their default browser from IE to something else, they'll suck down IE's dominance by 10% on the very first day. It won't kill IE, but it'll increase the pressure for website authors to write to W3C standards instead of Microsoft conventions. That can only be a good thing.
      • Re:Why bother? (Score:3, Insightful)

        by n-baxley (103975)
        Riiiight. And that AOL browser switch is going to happen any day now. Come on. We've been saying that for 6 years. It's not going to happen. AOL values having their logo on the Windows desktop too much. Especially now with broadband gaining ground and phone and cable companies actively promoting their access. It would have been great, but it's not going to happen.
  • by bcmm (768152) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:35AM (#9275519)
    I have an irritating suspicion that the dummies (read unknowing spam proxy, worm infected, has a hotmail account and uses a 1GB RAM machine for emails and surfing - in short the majority of lusers) will continue to use IE until they get whatever they get in Longhorn O$, even if all new websites display funny.(They just resist change. I know people who would switch to Linux if the different window decorations didn't scare them.)
    • by byolinux (535260) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:40AM (#9275532) Journal
      Dummies?

      I don't think it's really fair to put people down for not knowing stuff they shouldn't have to know.

      Computers have become a consumer product, but unlike other consumer devices (TVs, VCRs, Microwaves) they can actually fuck things up if they do something wrong, or something different...

      I think the idea of using a browser that didn't come with their computer probably scares a lot of people, much in the same way my friend's father wouldn't let him use 3rd party joysticks on his Atari VCS -- truely believed that anything different from the norm would break the unit; and he'd have to explain personally to Mr Atari why he DARED to break their lovely console.

      Maybe what we need is someone to write a piece of spyware for IE, that installs Firefox and Thunderbird, removes IE and Outlook Express and changes the Moz icons to keep everything familiar.
      • I am not really blaming people for not knowing things, but for being scared of change. If some people got their way, they would still be on windows 3.1, or something older. Also, on second thoughts there is some hope, becuase if AOL is really behind their version of Netscape, a lot of the same users will probably switch over. Not for the right reasons, but because AOL will say that the browser they pretend they make will be the only one that works with "the Internet", which they also seem to claim they mak
      • Computers have become a consumer product, but unlike other consumer devices (TVs, VCRs, Microwaves) they can actually fuck things up if they do something wrong, or something different...

        Computers are NOT consumer products no matter how much the industry would like to pretend they are. They are complex programmable machines. If people want a consumer product then they would've bought any of the various web terminals that tried to come to market in the late 1990's like WebTV. They all failed because peop

        • WebTv is still around as MSNTv. It is a profitable division of Microsoft. They are now beta testing a broadband version of MSNTv. This will eliminate one of the real problems with the appliance. The new units have many long desired feature such as USB support, etc.

          MSNTv is the ideal way to access the net for the totally inept. No virus or worms to worry about. While not everything that a PC will do can be done with MSNTv, surfing and email are easily done.

          Most WebTv owners believed and still do bel
        • by byolinux (535260) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:44AM (#9275745) Journal
          You're very wrong, and here's why...

          Computers *are* consumer devices now, or at least can be. Not all of them are, but then not all VCRs are too.

          Computers can be easy to use, people should certainly never need to build a computer from scratch, or reinstall their OS beyond putting a CD in the drive and turning the machine on, and as for systems programming - you're out of your mind. Perhaps you wish computers were some elitist, holier-than-thou priesthood, but I'm afraid you're wrong, wrong, wrong. WebTV failed because people want to do more than surf the web. They might have kids who want to do homework, or they may study themselves, or they might just enjoy exploring what a computer can do for them. So what if it breaks now and then? It should be easy enough for a user to restore.. perhaps we need machines with a read-only file system and all files to be store on a USB pendrive or something to assist this.

          You come across as arrogant, but not stupid, so forgive me; but when you say ignorant people shouldn't be using computers, you're right. Sadly, you're the ignorant one.
          • by johnnyb (4816) <jonathan@bartlettpublishing.com> on Friday May 28, 2004 @09:57AM (#9277230) Homepage
            "Computers can be easy to use, people should certainly never need to build a computer from scratch, or reinstall their OS beyond putting a CD in the drive and turning the machine on"

            You miss the point. For a PC to be a consumer device, the user should NEVER have to reinstall their OS, PERIOD. In fact, the concept of installing is completely foreign to the idea of a consumer device.

            For a PC to be a consumable device, they would have to build it like a game console:

            1) Have a cartridge/DVD system
            2) When a cartridge/DVD is not in the drive, it runs a small file manager which can't do much
            3) When you put your cartridge in the drive, that program takes over the whole computer.

            "So what if it breaks now and then?"

            Again, we're talking about a consumer device. Breaking is not something a consumer device should do. How many times have you had to re-install the operating system in your DVD player?

            I think the issue you're having with the parent poster is that you don't understand what classifies something as being a consumer device. Computers certainly aren't consumer devices.
    • Personally I don't have any problem using IE and waiting for the next thing in Longhorn. In fact most websites are already optimized for IE and while most of the users are also using IE, I don't see why new websites would NOT be optimized for IE too. On my machine I have both FireFox and IE but frankly, I don't see any point using FireFox and mostly use IE. At least the sites that I usually visit render equally in both, well, asides those who only render correctly in IE. Personally, I don't care for tabbed-
  • Call me crazy... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by T-Kir (597145) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:46AM (#9275557) Homepage

    ...but why do I get the feeling that MS might be letting IE development slide deliberately in this manner.

    They might be letting Mozilla and others gain a bit more ground so that in a couple of years, if the playing field became a little more level... then MS can play the "we've not got a monopoly on browsers" as extra leverage on governments/organisations who view them with more suspicion on this very issue (as well as other matters). It could be a more long term plan with them.

    Again just my 0.02 british pounds.

    • by pubjames (468013) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:09AM (#9275627)
      They might be letting Mozilla and others gain a bit more ground

      I doubt it. I think they've just stopped work on IE because they will have a completely new version in Longhorn. This new IE will include lots of new MS "standards", and they will really promote that heavily. They'll of course be competing with themselves again, trying to get people to move from the current IE to the new version, and so the more incentive people have to do that the better. In other words, it's actually in their interest to let the current version of IE slide so people will have more incentive to upgrade to the all new version in Longhorn.
    • I call you crazy (Score:5, Interesting)

      by RoLi (141856) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:52AM (#9275770)
      The only reason why Microsoft doesn't continue development is because they are happy with the status quo.

      Continue developing Internet Explorer would be BAD for Microsoft

      You know why?

      Because any change is a threat to the status quo.

      Because if IE7 can handle transparent PNGs and lots of sites start to use it, millions of IE6 users will upgrade. And when they upgrade there is the danger that they might upgrade to Mozilla and not IE7.

      The same goes for CSS2/3, SVG, etc.

      Developing IE is not in the interest of Microsoft, they would be stupid if they would do it at this time.

      But there are a couple of reasons why IE will lose its domination in the next couple of years: Linux is making inroads, Mac-users are switching to Safari, Playstation3 will probably run Mozilla and cellphones run Opera.

      • by Jedi Alec (258881)

        Because if IE7 can handle transparent PNGs and lots of sites start to use it, millions of IE6 users will upgrade. And when they upgrade there is the danger that they might upgrade to Mozilla and not IE7.

        You're kidding right? If IE7 were to be released it would be downloaded because the little popup thingy in the systray says so...and I'm pretty confident it won't inform the user of the alternative.
      • Re:I call you crazy (Score:3, Interesting)

        by sremick (91371)
        It might be a psychological thing too.

        Remember: many people get their understanding of how computers work from what Microsoft says. By no longer offering the web-browser as a separate component, they start to chip away at the mentality that the browser CAN be one. By offering IE6 separately, they were kind of saying, "Yes, there's this thing called the 'operating system', but then there's a thing you can add on separately called a 'web browser' for viewing the 'internet'". Now they can change that to, "The
      • Re:I call you crazy (Score:3, Interesting)

        by ThisIsFred (705426)
        Continue developing Internet Explorer would be BAD for Microsoft

        Ah, but Microsoft has already fooled you. Microsoft is pushing IE as a development component, and believe it or not, it is actually being used by developers the same way VB is used; It's a quick-and-dirty way to get an interface on software - with built-in ability to understand some common "Internet" protocols. Here's a short list of software that requires IE6 to run: Intuit Tax software, H&R Block TaxCut, Quickbooks Pro.

        It's not about
    • Re:Call me crazy... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by rixstep (611236) on Friday May 28, 2004 @06:13AM (#9275840) Homepage
      I'm surprised how many of you haven't done your homework. TP Jackson's writings, whether they represented the study of his associates or were his own insights, are remarkable. They are the basis for the DOJ court ruling against Microsoft.

      The browser was never the issue, and I am surprised there are any people who still after all these years don't get it. The materials were freely available at the DOJ website for all to read.

      Microsoft were against anyone intruding on their territory. Both Netscape and Sun threatened to do so with their technologies. Microsoft deliberately sabotaged the Sun Java standard (no other company signing the agreement ever did) and they did all they could to prevent Netscape from entering the PC marketplace.

      The danger with both technologies is cross-platform compatibility. Applications written for Netscape or with Java could easily be ported to other platforms. This would destroy Microsoft's dominance in the PC market.

      Gates tried to reason with Netscape, but they weren't interested. Gates' message to them was simple. He invited them to Redmond, and then told them point blank they should not enter the PC market. Netscape chose to disregard Bill Gates.

      The entire thing with Internet Explorer was only to destroy Netscape, but not to destroy the product - to destroy the company. They used pressure on OEMs, pressure on ISPs, pressure on everyone to not only get people to opt for the free Internet Explorer, but to make it increasingly difficult for people to even find download links for the Netscape browser. OEMs who showed too many downloads of Netscape - including IBM - risked losing their benefits contra Microsoft and had to make the download links to Netscape more obscure so as to not incur the wrath of WHG.

      Microsoft lost the trial but they won the battle. Netscape is no more, and Microsoft have already paid for Sun's funeral. The Internet Explorer browser is not interesting anymore, and it doesn't matter Mozilla is out there with a good product. Microsoft invested an estimated US$5 billion in its development without a thought ever of getting any of it back - it was for defensive purposes only.

      Today it's all DRM - browsers and the threats to the MS marketplace are in the rear view mirror. The browser is not essential.

      Some of you ought to go back to school before you begin speculating about what's going on.
      • Agreed but... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by einhverfr (238914)
        The browser is still important. I do not think that the war is over. We have simply been set back by a few years (or even decades). BTW I did read pretty much all the DoJ documents. They are important.

        Here are the points that one fails to appreciate:
        1) IE recently stopped supporting Netscape-style plugins, presumably because they felt that they were now the dominant power and that this was an added defensive measure.

        2) I still develop complex web apps using Javascript and HTML on the front-end and P
  • by anshil (302405) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:49AM (#9275563) Homepage
    Don't take me wrong I'm a mozilla fan and linux user.

    But honestly if I'm running windows, what real motiviation is there to download a replacement browser when IE is already installed, and works?

    I can't be mad at any secretary 'cause she uses IE instead of Mozilla/Netscape. Of course of political reasons she shouldn't, but practically?

    If you sell an operating system, you practically just have the ultimate power to drive any other software out of business by bundeling and installing it by default.
    • by barks (640793) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:56AM (#9275590) Homepage
      Besides the fact that Mozilla was the first on the scene to include an option to block out pop-ups (I haven't bother to check has IE included that option yet?) that alone should be a reason for people to download a separate browser.

      I laugh when I see a cheesy newbie ISP commercial that promotes "We have pop-up blocker technology!!!" Shit no kidding, so does my free Mozilla browser.
    • by TwistedSquare (650445) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:58AM (#9275598) Homepage
      Tabbed browsing and pop-up blocking? And your last line is what is causing a lot of these anti-monopolistic lawsuits against MS.
      • by Mr_Silver (213637) on Friday May 28, 2004 @06:13AM (#9275839)
        Tabbed browsing and pop-up blocking? And your last line is what is causing a lot of these anti-monopolistic lawsuits against MS.

        My office is full of non-techincal people. Looking around most people only have 1 (yes, one) IE window open. When I mention tabbed browsing, most people confirm my observations - that is, they only have one (and occasionally two) windows open. With cases like this, tabbed browsing could be seen as overkill to a problem that doesn't really exist (for them).

        With regards to pop-up windows, the next service pack will contain a pop-up blocker for windows, but most of the clueful people have google toolbar already installed which does that for you.

        Mozilla and it's tabbed browsing, mouse gestures, pop up blockers, type ahead find and the raft of other nifty features is great for the "power surfer" but I swear that based on the people in my office, it's not something they particulary need or feel the need to have enough to even go out and try.

        Note that i'm not saying these features are bad, they're very good, but the problem with adoption here is that a lot of people don't realise that the average Joe doesn't surf the web in a way that Mozilla would benifit him. If he only goes to a few websites then there is a chance he'll never see unwanted pop up adverts.

        I asked my mother about pop up adverts last month and she'd only ever come across one in the two years she'd been surfing the web. Granted, she wasn't surfing a very large number of sites - but it was difficult to sell a feature to her when she didn't really know why she needed it.

        • by cascadingstylesheet (140919) on Friday May 28, 2004 @07:13AM (#9276050)

          Mozilla and it's tabbed browsing, mouse gestures, pop up blockers, type ahead find and the raft of other nifty features is great for the "power surfer" but I swear that based on the people in my office, it's not something they particulary need or feel the need to have enough to even go out and try.

          Well, they don't know that it exists, or that it is even possible. They're not going to say "I want tabbed browsing", they're going to say (maybe, and only if you ask them or watch them surf) "I hate how I always lose my place, or accidentaly close my window. I hate how I can't easily check out search results without getting lost".

          I asked my mother about pop up adverts last month and she'd only ever come across one in the two years she'd been surfing the web. Granted, she wasn't surfing a very large number of sites - but it was difficult to sell a feature to her when she didn't really know why she needed it.

          You're mother is pretty unusual, then. Take most people on a tour of their favorite sites with popups blocked, and with the mozilla Adblock and Flashblock plugins, and watch their jaws drop.

      • I know IE users who don't want popup blocking and can't see why it's better than just using the task bar (strange? yes). And they'll probably have popup blocking from SP2 when Mozilla Firefox goes out of beta.
    • I guess thats the diffence between windows and Linux, to some extent in windows, you get a browser, a media player and various other stuff (it is actually impossible to install winXP without IE, WMP, MS instant messaging, OE, various other stuff. the IM can be turned off, but not uninstalled). In Linux, you don't get these installed automatically, but you can chose any other player/browser yourself. You can see this as freedom, or just as more hassle than accepting the bundled stuff.
      • if you've ever installed Red Hat, Mandrake, Suse, Fedora... or most desktop-oriented distributions, really... you'll know that a browser, video/audio players, IM, email, and various other useful applications are installed by default. you can use the bundled stuff, or you can (really) un-install it, or you can install something else.
      • by Feztaa (633745) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:38AM (#9275723) Homepage
        I think you've got that totally backwards.

        The problem is that when you buy windows and you get all that stuff bundled with it, all that stuff is made by microsoft. When you get a set of linux distro install CDs, it comes with 10 browsers, 20 mail clients, a few media players, 5 instant messaging clients, and a million other things. The problem isn't that nothing is bundled with linux, the problem is that EVERYTHING is bundled with linux. But that bundling isn't bad, because each program that gets bundled has it's own independant development community that is just a loose group of individuals, and isn't even commercial to begin with.

        When you install linux, the hassle isn't because you have to go find stuff yourself, the hassle is because everything is given to you and you have to choose what you want to use.

        The idea here is that when MS bundles MS's own media player into windows, you have no incentive to buy any other media players, so the media player market collapses because nobody ever uses anything but WMP anyway. When Mandrake bundles xine, that doesn't illegitimately control the market because a) you can easily remove xine, b) Mandrake doesn't get any benefit from you using xine or a competitor, and c) competing media players come with the system too, so nobody is being locked out.
      • Well you are assuming that the users control the monopoly on the product. What Microsoft bundling really does is this...
        When some one is developing a web page they (should at least try) to stay as platform independent as possible, but that isn't always possible. So what the developers has to figure out what can most people use. Well right now most people use windows, and everyone with Windows has IE installed. So what are they going to choose? Well they are going to make sure it loads fine in IE First t
    • by pubjames (468013) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:11AM (#9275633)
      But honestly if I'm running windows, what real motiviation is there to download a replacement browser when IE is already installed, and works?

      Security. I use Windows but I don't use IE or Outlook, because doing so considerably reduces my chances of security compromises.
      • by Ckwop (707653) * <Simon.Johnson@gmail.com> on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:50AM (#9275763) Homepage
        Except that's the problem.. IE is so deeply integrated into the operating system you have to use it somewhere. Help files being one example.. Various dialogs in XP use the html rendering engine from IE..

        Don't think that you can get away from having to download the IE6 security patches.. because you really do!

        I don't run linux personally.. but the lack of choice is annoying. I paid for XP pro and I should be able to remove components completely.

        I love Firefox, for example, but I ended up uninstalling it because IE annoyingly gets in the way.

        I don't feel as if I have much choice and that's annoying.

        Cheers,

        Simon.
        • and don't forget wonderful IE-only sites like
          windowsupdate.microsoft.com

          Steven v.
        • I don't run linux personally.. but the lack of choice is annoying. I paid for XP pro and I should be able to remove components completely.

          Sure you can hack up your copy of XP Pro to try to remove IE entirely. Some people do. But you mentioned yourself, IE is not just a web browser. It provides critical services to almost every application you'd want to run under Windows. Despite all the Slashbot sneering and jeering about the issue, it really is an integral part of Windows, and removing it makes the syste
    • by silentbozo (542534) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:17AM (#9275661) Journal
      Every once in a while, you have to wipe a Windows machine, for whatever reason (usually, because the registry is so bloated with crap, it's easier to start over fresh.) At work we just finished doing just that - installing a fresh copy of Win2K (patches galore to get it from SP2 to SP4, joy...) The first thing I did (after installing a firewall, antivirus software, THEN jacking the machine into the network to download updates) was to install Firefox and set it as the default browser. Then, just for good measure, I hid IE (you can't remove Explorer, but there is an option to hide the toolbar icon and desktop shortcuts.)

      Basically, Microsoft might have control over the machine after it ships from the factory, but only up to the point where it ends up in the local tech's hands. There, when you start customizing it for the end user, you can easily de-Microsoftize at the same time.

      I can't be mad at any secretary 'cause she uses IE instead of Mozilla/Netscape. Of course of political reasons she shouldn't, but practically?

      Well, if you use Firefox, you can be much more productive after customizing the browser interface, and tabs alone are a good reason to switch. There are some really nifty extensions for Firefox, like session save, where even if you have to quit the browser, upon relaunch it will re-open all of the browser windows that were up the last time you were running Firefox. Another great extension is Live HTTP Headers - I use that one quite a bit when debugging code from webservers that I administer.
      • Every once in a while, you have to wipe a Windows machine, for whatever reason (usually, because the registry is so bloated with crap, it's easier to start over fresh.) At work we just finished doing just that - installing a fresh copy of Win2K (patches galore to get it from SP2 to SP4, joy...) The first thing I did (after installing a firewall, antivirus software, THEN jacking the machine into the network to download updates) was to install Firefox and set it as the default browser. Then, just for good mea
    • by Flyboy Connor (741764) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:36AM (#9275716)
      Because IE is a big security hole, a lousy browser, and easily infected with all kinds of spyware.

      A fairly computer-savvy acquaintance of mine recently called me to his computer because his homepage was constantly reset to easybiz.net. Ad-aware couldn't do anything. He started rummaging in his registry and managed to make his IE completely unusable.

      So, how to solve this problem? Standard-Microsoft solution: uninstall IE? Ah, but there is the catch: you can not uninstall IE, it comes with the package. So, there is a choice: wiping the machine and start all over again, or, what I did: install Mozilla.

      I was a bit relieved to see that while the IE penetration is > 90%, alternate browsers have about half the market. Now I finally know that I, too, am considered to be an IE user. There is one website I need to visit which requires IE, so I use IE solely for that purpose. I think that for all those people that use an alternate browser, that alternate browser is actually their primary browser. So IE's influence is dimishing. No wonder if you realise what a piece of %$#@ it is.

      • Because IE is a big security hole, a lousy browser, and easily infected with all kinds of spyware.

        Remember Netscape Smart Download [grc.com] phoning home with all your download traffic? Don't bother with Netscape's latest version, stick with Mozilla or Firefox.
    • I suppose there's little incentive to TRY, but once persuaded to try, most people don't seem to go back to IE.

      Those that do stick with IE don't seem to do it because it's better (largely, there are exceptions) but because they think it's the internet. When I can be bothered I'll go and delete my father's IE and Outlook icons completely...

      "What's a web browser?"??? God help me!!
    • But honestly if I'm running windows, what real motiviation is there to download a replacement browser when IE is already installed, and works? I can't be mad at any secretary 'cause she uses IE instead of Mozilla/Netscape. Of course of political reasons she shouldn't, but practically?
      • Mozilla is using HTTP 1.1 pipelining which is faster for sites with lots of images, especially noticable over dialup
      • Tabs
      • No security holes
      • Numerous extensions that make life easier
    • But honestly if I'm running windows, what real motiviation is there to download a replacement browser when IE is already installed, and works?

      * I like having a pop-up blocker.
      * I like the regex-based content filtering of the adblock extension which eliminates almost all advertising, including flash animation.
      * I like tabbed browsing.
      * I like fast rendering.
      * I like the advanced bookmark, history and cookie handling.
      * I like the CTRL+K google search tab (which is also expandable to
  • The Great divide. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Willeh (768540) <rwillem@xs4all.nl> on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:49AM (#9275564)
    I think there is somewhat of a divide in the browsing market. On the one hand we have the swiss cheese solution, held reasonably firmly into place by a stream of FUD, corporate investments and scared PHB'S.

    Next we have the webdevelopers that only care about IE compatibility. Some may care about other browsers, but usually as an afterthought.

    Ofcourse this can be a right pain in the rear to fight this. The recent stream of exploits against various IE versions have started to create an anti- IE stance. What needs to be done is create the awareness that IE is unsafe, and now even abandoned by MS themselves until after their duke-nukem forever OS comes out. We(The people "in the know") must bring this our superiors attention that IE just isn't gonna cut it next year (or the year afterwards). It's not gonna be easy, but i'm sure we can have an impact.

  • by MrIrwin (761231) on Friday May 28, 2004 @04:54AM (#9275584) Journal
    Frankly I like Mozilla, and as it has now been my default browser for sometime I curse when I am forced to use infamiliar IE for certain websites.

    I use tab browsing a lot (the firefox style where the new tabs are opened in backround), and after a search on google or a /. header, I will launch tabs on all relevant links and then browse sideways accross them. Links that do not work (including IE only sites) get passed over.

    From the comments one hears around, it seems that a lot of people use mozilla type browsers in this way, and so will often pass over IE only sites even thougth they are included in the "93.7%". Webmasters will need to wake up to this.

    Less IE specific content (which is allready rare....I just checked and I have not launched IE for over a week) means more browser choice. And let's face it, why on earth should everbody like the same browser!

    • the firefox style where the new tabs are opened in backround

      That's not really "firefox style" tabs; the "Load links in background" option has been in Mozilla for a long time.
  • by osewa77 (603622) <`naijasms' `at' `gmail.com'> on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:04AM (#9275613) Homepage
    Firefox is the popular Mozilla Browser, because it follows windows and IE conventions (e.g. shortcuts) and is fast (not bloatware). It does not try to be anything except a browser. It is the best at what it does. I'd want to suggest that if Mozilla has a real future, it's with Firefox!
    ___________
    seun osewa [seunosewa.com]
    • by typhoonius (611834) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:33AM (#9275706) Homepage

      I'd want to suggest that if Mozilla has a real future, it's with Firefox!

      I'd want to suggest that while Mozilla has a future, Netscape doesn't. Not as anything but AOL's occasional bargaining chip, anyway. Netscape is only valuable to AOL because the brand name is well known, which can help them do things like, as the article says, maintain an internet portal. Or offer a low-price alternative to its own internet service. Or get a settlement with Microsoft. To do any of that, they need to keep the Netscape brand alive, and that's all this release is really for.

      Vanilla Mozilla is more stable and polished, which is probably more important to them than fancy new features at this point. Plus, the everything-but-the-kitchen-sink approach lets them tie in stuff like AIM more easily, and maybe the built-in mail client makes it an easier sell.

      As for Mozilla/Netscape/XPFE/SeaMonkey/whatever, it's more of a proof-of-concept for XUL, Gecko, and all those other Mozilla Project technologies than an end product. Firefox, Thunderbird, Camino, and the like are the end products. I wouldn't expect it to go away for a while, even as Firefox 1.0 looms on the horizon.

  • by Zog The Undeniable (632031) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:08AM (#9275626)
    The only thing that stops AOL dumping it altogether is the brand name and the portal, and those are fairly meaningless to people getting on the Internet within the last 5 years.

    There's no reason why we should be bothered though - Mozilla is a worthy replacement, much more reliable and functional, and the lines of evolution are clear. You could go from NS 4.7 to Mozilla 1.6 and feel right at home. Even the much-derided Mail and News (which I always preferred to the OE mess) is almost the same. When IE gets pop-up blocking I'm still not going back to it.

  • AOL blew it (Score:4, Interesting)

    by agwis (690872) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:13AM (#9275640)
    Netscape was my default browser until version 4.7 when things went horribly wrong. That version was very buggy and seemed like it was rushed out the door way too early, and I wonder if that was around the time AOL took over.

    I wasn't using linux back then and so I, like many others, began using IE. It was far better than Netscape then and I stayed with it for awhile. I gave Netscape another chance when version 6 came out but it too was very buggy. The only plus I found with it was that it had excellent CSS support and I believe that was the first version to have tabbed browsing...which I've become addicted too.

    That was when I discovered linux and switched to Mozilla, and Firebird (now Firefox). I've never turned back since. When Netscape 7.0 came out it didn't appear to have any new features that I remember but it did seem to clean up a lot of the bugs from version 6. At that point I realized that Netscape was a viable browser again but it was too late to win me back.

    AOL should have really began pushing version 7 to the masses. For IE users not yet exposed to the greatness of Mozilla (or even Opera) Netscape should have started gaining a lot of ground back from IE. With tabbed browsing, pop up blocking, integrated email client, better CSS support, and arguably faster rendering speed it blows IE out of the water. 25% market share against Microsoft is nothing to sneeze at either and they had the pontential to gain more.

    Now I don't know anyone at all that uses Netscape and whenever I'm asked to recommend a decent browser I suggest Firefox. AOL would do better to give up on Netscape and throw their support behind Mozilla instead.

    It's too bad really, because Netscape played a huge part in bringing the www to the masses. I'd like to see it do well again but since AOL messed everything up with it I don't hold a lot of stock in its future.

    -Pat
    • Now I don't know anyone at all that uses Netscape and whenever I'm asked to recommend a decent browser I suggest Firefox. AOL would do better to give up on Netscape and throw their support behind Mozilla instead.

      I have trouble understanding why anyone who's in the know still would use Netscape. It's now essentially the same browser as Mozilla having been forked from identical code.

      The only thing that it seems to add is a combination of the brand name, more product placement and advertising in t

  • The only problem i've ever had with mozilla is when ie sites load a ton of useless javascript and it freezes mozilla for a minute. i'm not too sure if this is common with other users though
  • Too little, too late.
  • Browser stats (Score:5, Interesting)

    by eliasen (566529) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:32AM (#9275703) Homepage
    Where do they get the stats that IE is 93% of the market? That's never what I see. Admittedly, if you have a bad site with broken HTML that only IE will display, IE will make up the majority of your browsers. Everyone else just goes away. It's a Catch-22. But if you have a site that is standards-compliant, and platform-neutral, the numbers are much, much better. Here are my stats from the past month:
    MS Internet Explorer 62.1 %
    Mozilla 10.9 %
    FireFox 9.3 %
    Opera 4.5 %
    Safari 2.9 %
    Netscape 2.8 %
    Unknown 2.2 %
    Galeon 1.6 %
    Konqueror 1.0 %
    Firebird (Old FireFox) 0.6 %
    Others 1.7 %
    • Re:Browser stats (Score:3, Interesting)

      by BenjyD (316700)
      Maybe you're right. Stats from my XHTML-strict site:

      MS Internet Explorer 56.4 %
      Mozilla 25.6 %
      Opera 5.4 %
      Netscape 4 %
      Safari 3.4 %
      Konqueror 1.7 %

      Personally, given that the site is an open-source software site, I find the greater than 50% share of IE depressing.
      • I use Avant Browser and it reports itself as MSIE - quiet rightly so too. Avant gives me all the blocking and tabbed features that we all love.

        I like to write web pages for the masses so I do need MSIE... The MSIE engine anyway.

        I still like open source. My favourite apps are all open. Don't be depressed about it. Life is too short.

        Today is burn Karma day. Anyone that says I'm agressive will get a smack in the mouth.
    • Re:Browser stats (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Malc (1751)
      I don't have access to them right now, but our Web Trends report looks nothing like that. IIRC, it places IE at 98-99%. Perhaps it's to do with your content more than anything, just as ours is more likely to attract Windows users.
      • BTW, talking of User-Agents, why am I seeing libwww-perl/5.76 from /. in the Apache logs of my personal website? It looks like a check for an open proxy or something. I don't think I've even provided a link to anything on my domain on /.! Are they scanning IPs addresses of people using their site...

        wolverine:/var/log/apache# grep slashdot access.log
        slashdot.org - - [24/May/2004:08:22:34 -0400] "GET http://slashdot.org/ok.txt HTTP/1.0" 404 200 "-" "libwww-perl/5.76" 0 ????.ca -
        slashdot.org - - [26/May/20

      • Re:Browser stats (Score:4, Informative)

        by lone_marauder (642787) on Friday May 28, 2004 @07:29AM (#9276124)
        My site's primary audience is users of Orbiter space flight simulator, which only runs on Windows. IE accounts for only about 87% of the browsers being used to reach the site. I've also noticed that IE's "market share" has been steadily declining over the past year or so. Whatever the absolute numbers, that trend is of considerable interest.
    • Re:Browser stats (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Aneurysm (680045) on Friday May 28, 2004 @05:50AM (#9275765)
      Surely you get a lot of hits from people seeing your webpage address advertised here on Slashdot with every post you make. This means that you're going to get a larger amount of "geeky" people who use all manner of weird and wonderful browsers. It's a slightly biased list of stats. I think the stats posted elsewhere in this discussion are from larger sites with a less biased user base.
    • Re:Browser stats (Score:3, Insightful)

      by WegianWarrior (649800)

      I'll hazard a guess... you're not running a mainstream website that atracts Joe Avrage *smiles*.

      It's also worth noting that, as the write up states, quite a few users has more than one browser installed - myself, I got four; IE (seldom used), Netscape 6.somethng (seldom used), Opera (my prefered choice) and Lynx (just for the fun of doing the web as pure text now and then). So yes, it's possible that 93% of the users has IE installed... which isn't the same as to say that each and everyone prefers it to t

    • Re:Browser stats (Score:5, Informative)

      by Jugalator (259273) on Friday May 28, 2004 @06:45AM (#9275932) Journal
      Your site is a niche site.

      Let's see what a site that's visited by a broader audience (with a site that *do* work for all modern browers) tell?

      - Browsers used to visit Google, April 2004 [google.com]
      - Operating systems used to visit Google, April 2004 [google.com]
      • Re:Browser stats (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Wylfing (144940) <brian@wyMOSCOWlfing.net minus city> on Friday May 28, 2004 @10:48AM (#9277689) Homepage Journal
        Yes, Google stats are very interesting. However, I can't help but feeling this is equivalent to looking at the largest 5 business in the U.S. and saying "That's what business are like." Small businesses are very different, and it would be absurd to ignore them as a market segment (roughly 50% of the U.S. economy). Likewise, small web sites make up a gigantic portion of the Internet, and it would be foolish to ignore their browser stats, which show IE has barely 60% of the pie.

        Just because titans like Google are visited primarily by IE does not mean the rest of the web is the same. If 20,000 sites getting 2,000 unique hits per day show that IE has 60% browsershare, that seems pretty meaningful to me, even though these are "niche" sites in your estimation.

    • Re:Browser stats (Score:4, Insightful)

      by timmyf2371 (586051) on Friday May 28, 2004 @07:18AM (#9276075)
      I think the workplace has a lot to do with this statistic.

      I'm a diehard FireFox user and always use it where possible.

      I am, however, in work for 8 hours a day where IE is the only browser we can use - and it's the same in a lot of offices.

  • As an Opera user, I have to say I'm impressed. I know that it's the best browser out there, but I didn't know so many others did too.
    • by Eventh (772331)
      As an Opera user, I have to say I'm impressed. I know that it's the best browser out there, but I didn't know so many others did too.


      Opera is default set to Identify as IE, so those stats are probably bigger in reality!

      I love opera, and most of those nice features mentioned in Mozilla, was available in Opera first!

  • by jellomizer (103300) * on Friday May 28, 2004 @06:38AM (#9275906)
    If you have one of those USB Key Chains put a copy of the latest stable version of Mozilla on it. Then when you go threw your daily travels with other people and you see a person who is having problems with Popups or Spyware on the system offer to install them Mozilla that should fix the problems. After you install it you ask them to use it by default, because if they don't then they will be getting those popup again. Show them a couple of the features such as the tabbed browsing and such so they feel like they have a better product not just a cheapo one that just block popups.
  • Netscape 8 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 28, 2004 @07:48AM (#9276223)
    While Netscape 7.2 is a welcome update, I think its unlikely to have any impact in the long run, nor would a future release of Netscape 8 based on Mozilla 2.0.

    What would be of interest is to base a new version of Netscape on the upcoming Firefox 1.0, which would give Netscape a serious contender for Internet Explorer's crown, if they were to give their full backing behind it.
  • by av8tors32 (602915) on Friday May 28, 2004 @07:56AM (#9276280)
    Yes I admit it. I one of those people who has always just used IE because it was there. Not even tabbed browsing got my attention. So what made me change?

    I just got a new laptop with one of those wide screens. With the resolution set to 1920x1200 (recommended) IE just does not render correctly. Websites with graphics just look like hell in IE at this resolution. I installed Firefox and the sites look great.

    Do I have something set wrong in IE or is this just one of the many short comings?

I am here by the will of the people and I won't leave until I get my raincoat back. - a slogan of the anarchists in Richard Kadrey's "Metrophage"

Working...