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Mozilla The Internet

A First Look at Netscape 7 714

David_Bloom writes: "PC-WORLD has released an article giving a rundown of the just-released Preview Release 1 of Netscape 7. An especially interesting feature in this new version is tabbed browsing, which allows you to have multiple web pages open at once in one window, which you can view using a tab-based MDI."
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A First Look at Netscape 7

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  • by dimer0 ( 461593 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:20PM (#3567286)
    Am I dunk, or haven't I been using tabbed browsing in Mozilla now since version .5? ..

    Could somone enlighten me on why someone would ever want to use Netscape again? .. What added functionality does it provide over Mozilla 1.0/pr2 (build 2002051206) --

    OH CRAP! Tomorrow I'm going to get the infamous "Your copy of Mozilla is so-and-so days old. Time to update!".. Can't wait!

    • "Am I dunk, or haven't I been using tabbed browsing in Mozilla now since version .5? .. "

      No, it was added sometime in 0.9.x.

      Btw one of the symptoms of drunkenness is inability to spell ;-)

      [Let the CmdrTaco spelling jokes commence... ;-]

    • Re:Tabbed browsing? (Score:2, Informative)

      by damiam ( 409504 )
      Yep, you're drunk. Tabbed browsing was added to Mozilla in (IIRC) the 0.9.7 release. It definitly wasn't 0.5, especially since there never was a Mozilla 0.5 release.
    • Re:Tabbed browsing? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Aanallein ( 556209 )
      What added functionality does it provide over Mozilla 1.0/pr2 (build 2002051206)
      As seen in the release notes [] and the marketing talk about the features [], netscape 7 includes an integrated icq/aim, favicons in quite a few places where Mozilla has diabled them again, a nifty icon in the status bar showing if cookies are being used by sites, and some older stuff over Mozilla like a spell-checker.
      IMO nothing worth switching for, but it does make Netscape 7 a good choice for your average end user.
    • Take your pick of Mozilla or Netscape, but at the end of the day, stability and support is more important for some people. Netscape also has built-in AIM/ICQ clients and a few other extras (e.g. spellchecker).
    • by Surak ( 18578 ) <surak AT mailblocks DOT com> on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:36PM (#3567485) Homepage Journal
      Am I dunk, or haven't I been using tabbed browsing in Mozilla now since version .5? ..

      Drunk or not, you need the spellchecker in Mozilla 7. :-P
  • While I agree that tabbed browsing is one of my favorite features in a browser, it's already old news to us Mozilla/Chimera users;-)
  • Opera? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Demon-Xanth ( 100910 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:22PM (#3567304)
    Opera's had MDI browsing for quite some time. I still don't know why IE doesn't. It keeps all those popups under control.
    • IE... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by KjetilK ( 186133 ) <kjetil.kjernsmo@net> on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:40PM (#3567520) Homepage Journal

      I still don't know why IE doesn't. It keeps all those popups under control.

      Well, the cynic in me says that's the reason. IE isn't a browser made for users. It is a browser made for web designers and businesses. If IE would do a lot to control popups, it would annoy content providers that rely on that kind of advertising. Wouldn't be good... :-)

      • This is a very good analysis. While I love developing for IE, and while we require it for support for all Internal apps, I still like Opera as a browser a lot more (from a feature standpoint).
    • Re:Opera? (Score:3, Informative)

      by daytrip00 ( 473461 )
      Opera's had MDI browsing for quite some time. I still don't know why IE doesn't

      One of the new features in Windows XP is that when you have too many instances of one program window open, it collapses them into on the task bar. Interestingly enough, MS seems to be moving away from MDIs in a number of their apps, as both Word and Excel also aren't MDIs anymore .(Well, you can set them to be, but they aren't by default.)
      • If you have a lot of programs trying to display data, MDI makes a lot of sense. It allows you to have logical groups of windows, rather than just a collapsed "every instance of that hwnd" in the taskbar. I have one Mozilla window for work research, one for gaming, one for reading news, etc. Each has its own entry in my Gnome tasklist applet, and each has its family of tabs inside. This also makes it easy to move my "webwork" windows(s) to another desktop, allowing me to make the next logical extension to MDI: multiple virtual desktops, each one focused on a specific goal.

        However, I think it'll be a few years before you see that on the MacOS/Win32 side. MS frobbed with MDI, which is a good idea that their guidelines and API were poorly written for (thus leading to bad app design). The "collapsing taskbar" entry thing is a band-aid (TM) over not having virtual desktops and smart MDI.

        However, until we see people who have computers that are on and have work open in many different areas for months at a time, I don't think MS will know much about the "UI scalabitily" issue to actually do something useful about it.

        Of course, that doesn't bother me because I use these features *now* in Gnome with IceWM and Mozilla :)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:22PM (#3567310)
    Pop-up blocking. It's not in Netscape 7.0PR1. The other script blocking options are, though, so it was a very concious decision. However, for Joe Homeuser, Netscape is nice in that they bundle Java and Flash and some other junk that may starting off with Netscape easier. Mozilla is still for the technically advanced (Slashdot?) crowd. Netscape is for the home user who doesn't care, as long as it works. Now, how long until IE7? We all know a higher version means better!
  • by Aanallein ( 556209 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:26PM (#3567357)
    Although the main netscape site [] doesn't yet show this, Netscape 7 PR1 can be downloaded [] from already.

    And although the option for disabling popups has disappeared from Netscape's preferences, so as not to harm AOL's revenues too much, adding this line to your user.js (create the file if necessary) will get you the same functionality:
    user_pref("dom.disable_open_during_load", true);
  • by halftrack ( 454203 ) <jonkje@g[ ] ['mai' in gap]> on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:27PM (#3567374) Homepage
    Person writing has obviously been using Netscape (and/or IE) a bit too long. Opera [] is born with it.
  • already has this.

    I'm using it now.

  • I've used the rudimentary predecessor to tabbed browsing (Open Link in New Window...) for a while, and I loved that it helps me preserve my stream-of-consciousness while scanning the news.

    I'd hoped tabbed browsing would spare me the memory overhead of having all those windows open, but it doesn't have a crucial feature; hotkey cycling through tabs.

    After I open a bunch of interesting stories in new windows on Slashdot, for example, I can Ctrl-Tab between windows according to the whims of my rampant ADD.

    Alt-Tab between programs, Ctrl-Tab between documents seems to be a pretty accepted convention in the Win32 environment.

    Am I missing an undocumented keyboard shortcut here?
  • Is the macintosh version a native MacOS X application?
    • Re:MacOS version X (Score:5, Informative)

      by Jon Abbott ( 723 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:32PM (#3567427) Homepage
      While it is a native OS X application in the most basic sense of the word, it does not yet use the Aqua interface. For this functionality, check out the Chimera [] browser.
      • While it is a native OS X application in the most basic sense of the word, it does not yet use the Aqua interface.

        And it never will. If they add that feature they will have to support it on every platform, meaning macos, macosx, gtk, qt, windows.... you get the picture. While there are complaints that mozilla is redesigning the wheel, it does (arguably) save them development and commitment time.
  • Bundling AOL?? (Score:2, Interesting)

    the folks at Netscape are also bundling AOL Instant Messenger and a radio station (Radio@Netscape)

    This is not a troll, but I hope they give the option of not installing the AOL IM to end users. M$ has shown us the folly of bundling software in a web browser that must be installed.
  • you pare back need only click on the offender's e-mail address

    Nice mail feature, but since when did spam come from the same random generated email address?
  • by instinctdesign ( 534196 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:31PM (#3567420) Homepage
    CNet [] also has also taken a look at it. Check out their news release [] or the preview/review [], 7 out of 10 if you don't feel like clicking. (and I'm maxed out in karma... so don't start ;) )

    But what I really want to know, is if AOL will ever wake the heck up and integrate AIM and ICQ. This may not seem relevant, but from the CNet article:
    Even better: this AIM version lets you log on to the ICQ network so that you can talk with ICQ pals, too. Unfortunately, you'll have to log out of one IM to access the other; there's no three-way chatting with friends from the two IM networks.
    Now I understand why AOL might not want to integrate with MSN, Yahoo, and the like. But they control both the software development and infrastructure for both AIM and ICQ. Is it simply due to lack of effort that they won't integrate the two? (A little off-topic yes, but since NS7 is/will be just Mozilla 1.0, the parent not really all that interesting news-wise.)
    • Now I understand why AOL might not want to integrate with MSN, Yahoo, and the like. But they control both the software development and infrastructure for both AIM and ICQ. Is it simply due to lack of effort that they won't integrate the two? (A little off-topic yes, but since NS7 is/will be just Mozilla 1.0, the parent not really all that interesting news-wise.)

      They have integrated AIM and ICQ, there was a time a year or two ago where you could sign into ICQ using an AIM client in one beta version. They don't publicly integrate them, because then they would be closer to admitting that interoperability is possible. They'd rather continue claiming that other [] clients [] are a security threat to their network.

      It's a load of hooey if you ask me

  • netscape 5 (Score:2, Funny)

    by abe_is_fun ( 320753 )
    My favorite browser has always been Netscape 5 and I will never, ever, ever stop using it.
  • by n3xu5 ( 205312 )
    Not that it is necessary, but I didn't notice Mozilla mentioned once in the entire article. Gecko was mentioned at the end, but that's about it. Just found that a little odd.
  • by afflatus_com ( 121694 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:35PM (#3567472) Homepage
    If you are running a Windows OS on an old machine, you may want to try out a run of the free K-Meleon (which despite the name, isn't for KDE):

    K-Meleon on SourceForge []

    Stripped of bloat, Mozilla's rendering engine runs fast and light on a P133Mhz laptop with 16MB.
    A sample screenshot is here:
    Screenshot of UI and context menu []

    No extra frills (though popup killing is included)---just fast, stable, and beautiful compliant HTML rendering.
  • Highlight text web searches, ICQ and AIM supported with the IM client, pop-up e-mail alerts, live e-mail searches, and tabs.........this is one cool browser.
  • Mac OS X version (Score:2, Interesting)

    by VEGx ( 576738 )
    I tried it, and deleted it after a few minutes of use. My reasons?

    1. It's not cocoa

    1.1. It does not access any of the build-in Mac OS X technology such as spellchecker, and other services (open text in TextEdit, mail selection, etc.)

    2. It just looks awful

    3. There's no privacy setting that would allow me to block in-page adds.

    4. There are other browsers that are better (OmniWeb).

    • by phossie ( 118421 )
      Points in favor of Mozilla under OS X:
      1. It's faster than IE, at least on my not-terribly-tweaked system.
      2. It looks like Mozilla everywhere else - I don't mind this since I use Windows for job-defined stuff, Mac for everything else.
      3. It's way more standards-compliant than anything else comparable (and more usable than Amaya).
      I haven't checked out the Netscape rebrand, but I can't say I have any problem with the latest release of Mozilla. Your point 1.1 is the most convincing argument. Your point 3 may be addressed with a simple edit to your preferences file, found elsewhere in this article. I wouldn't be surprised if someone scripted that edit and published it, either. Maybe I'll do it. ;) -j
    • Re:Mac OS X version (Score:4, Informative)

      by AT ( 21754 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:56PM (#3567675)
      Check out Chimera, a native MacOS X frontend for gecko:

      It IS Cocoa, and it looks like a Cocoa app should. It's not perfect, but it definately gives OmniWeb a run for its money.
    • by hyperizer ( 123449 )
      1. Why would you delete an app because it's built with the Carbon API? This O'Reilly [] article puts things in perspective. Other commonly used Carbon apps: IE and Finder.
      2. I can understand your "looks awful" point.
      3. See a post above for editing your prefs to block pop-up adds.
      4. OmniWeb has poor support for standards [].

  • From the article:

    With AOL's powerful market presence--numbering 34 million registered users--Netscape could be poised for a comeback if it replaces IE's role for AOL users.

    Well, we all know that AOL is no slouch at slipping it hard and rough to their users but even AOL isn't going to be stupid enough to try foisting a noticeably slower browser on their users. MSN's marketing would go into overdrive.

    People are used to IE, most sites were designed with it in mind; AOL might be big but they aren't big enough to pull off a coup like that.

    Many of you may refuse to use IE for idealogical reasons, and that's valid, but nothing can change the fact that, when it comes to the simple activity of browsing, the MS product gives a smoother user experience.

    We can only hope to succeed if we recognise the competition's strengths and, in this case, MS have done a great job; that's why they get away with slippin in the proprietry stuff.

    • by Wylfing ( 144940 ) <brian&wylfing,net> on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @04:59PM (#3568179) Homepage Journal
      These kinds of comments always make we want to barf. It's the same type of reasoning that you see over here []. The basic premise of these arguments is that you can't switch away from MS technology because it'll baffle Joe Dumbass.

      But of course I want to refute the individual lies and misinformation too, just because you are an insufferable moron:

      AOL isn't going to be stupid enough to try foisting a noticeably slower browser on their users

      Mozilla RC2 pops up from a cold start (hasn't been run before) in about 4 seconds on my machine. IE takes -- guess what? -- about 4 seconds from a cold start too. And that's not using Quickstart, which would've boosted Mozilla's performance.

      People are used to IE, most sites were designed with it in mind

      I'm sure you mean that "web pages won't render unless you use IE." That's pure BS. I always install Mozilla or derivatives (e.g., Netscape) for machines I support and not once has a page failed to render. Oh wait, by "most sites" you must mean MSN.

      nothing can change the fact that, when it comes to the simple activity of browsing, the MS product gives a smoother user experience.

      What the blazing hell does "smoother" mean? Both Opera and Mozilla provide what is clearly a superior browsing experience. Maybe by "smoother" you mean "more apt to get hacked by a malicious script" or "capable of having your bookmarks, start menu, desktop, and registry tampered with by web sites with questionable motives."

    • I don't agree (Score:3, Informative)

      by theolein ( 316044 )
      I use a Mac with OSX and a PC with win 98 and win2000. I use IE5 and Moz1rc2 on the Mac and IE5.5 and Moz1rc2 on the PC. The result is similar - IE simply crashes more often on both platforms. I don't know why or if I installed something wrong but they do. IE is also noticably slower on Mac OSX and it is about equal on Win. The amount of security bugy in IE worries me, and while Moz has also had some, it's a long shot from some of the bad security bugs in IE.

      Therefore by default I use Moz.
    • Mozilla is not slower on my box then IE is. It has a slightly, and I mean slightly longer initial startup time, which is amazing since the core of IE is already loaded before I click its icon.

      MS hasn't done a great job at all. Their browser is a sieve chock full of security holes, and so tightly integrated into the OS, many of those holes are frighteningly dangerous.

      They chased netscape for the first 3 versions, then passed them on the fourth version, drove them out of business with bundling, and haven't really done squat with their browser since then. Is IE6 really that much different than IE4? Hardly. Talk about stagnation...but that is what happens when you have no competition to worry about.
  • Sorry, no more Netscape for me. No IE. Mozilla is ok, but frankly I'll just stick with Opera. All the functionality I need and quite small compared to the others out there.
  • This is no surprise to me -- in fact I was just wondering as I was downloading Mozilla RC2 how long it would be before we got Netscape 7.0...

    Netscape is, as has been pointed out here many times, a stripped down (perhaps dumbed-down) Mozilla... That isn't necessarily going to upset AOL for people to call it that though...

    Mozilla RC2 had advanced far enough that it was making Netscape 6.22 look downright OLD... and for good reason, Netscape 6.22 was based on an older branch from Mozilla.

    AOL couldn't have its thunder stolen, so they *had* to release a new Netscape. Smart business decision.

    As for being dumbed-down... Well, yes, it is. Remember folks, Netscape 6.x series (and obviously 7.x now) is working toward inclusion in the AOL browser.

    Can you imagine what the 13 year old kids using AOL would do to Mozilla if they found the "File A Bug" option on the QA menu??? Or how confused the 60 year old grandmas would be when they saw too many options on the preferences menu?

    AOL takes a very advanced product - Mozilla - and makes it for the mass market - Netscape.

    Netscape is updated less frequently so that end-users can feel comfortable without having to upgrade regularly, and Mozilla remains development oriented for those of us who must have the latest features. Nothing wrong with that at all.

    That, actually, is the ideal world for browsers, if you ask me.
  • Netscape's had an integrated AIM client since 6.0, so it's not a "new" feature unless you've been using Mozilla or have been waiting for ICQ integration as well.

    However, it is a bit interesting to put this side-by-side with Apple's iChat announcement [] for the next major OS X release. This, too, integrates an AIM-compatible client with a major piece of software -- in this case, the Aqua-fied OS itself.

    So I'm wondering, where are we going to see it next? AOL's already pretty universal, but for those of us who prefer direct connections, we'll have two new ways to be exposed to it.

    I'm starting to wonder if someone in AOL's camp is working on adding AIM to Eudora []'s or someone else's e-mail client, or even a Linux distro with the AOL/AIM clients integrated right into the dialup. Why play games with Microsoft's bat and balls, when you can help your customers overwrite it entirely? (Joking, mostly.)
  • by Eric Seppanen ( 79060 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:48PM (#3567605)
    ... just so the theme support code doesn't look like a big, fat, stupid waste of time.

    I mean, come on, guys, themes have been in mozilla for a really long time now, and there's still how many included? two. (and one of them is just the old Netscape 4 look.) Oh, and if you're feeling really adventurous, you can wander out to the web, and find a whopping ten more. If you can find them; it seems as though the websites are packing up and moving once a month.

    Sorry about the flame, I really like the browser. But the whole themes thing has started to look kind of silly.

    • "Sorry about the flame, I really like the browser. But the whole themes thing has started to look kind of silly."

      no, you've *really* missed the point here; the whole theme thing is just beginning. the language for writing themes has been under development, so if you wrote a theme for one release of Mozilla / Netscape, it would break in the next release. 90% of the point of having Mozilla 1.0 is to *freeze* this language (the APIs), and once these things are frozen people can get to work devloping *with* them
  • It's the NAME (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Kraegar ( 565221 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @03:55PM (#3567669)
    To all those questioning why use netscape instead of Mozilla... Netscape isn't targetted towards you. It's targetted towards the masses of people for whom their first online experience WAS netscape. They'll hear Netscape is back with a shiny new version, with new features, and give it a try. Or at least that's the idea.

    AOL didn't buy netscape purely because Mozilla is a great product, they bought it because the Netscape name has a huge amount of recognition.

    So yeah, Mozilla's better... but who's heard of it? Not joe-sheep user.

  • by teslatug ( 543527 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @04:00PM (#3567710)
    I see about 20 new bugs are filed every there a chance they'll fix most of them without introducing new ones in time for 1.0? I guess they could always go to RC3...
    • by guanxi ( 216397 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @10:06PM (#3569765)
      Maybe you know this, but to educate anyone else reading this thread, many (most?) reports in Bugzilla aren't bugs and those that are bugs are unlikely to affect you.

      Many (most?) reports are,
      o duplicates of already reported bugs
      o reports of symptoms of already reported bugs (for example, sharing profiles between Moz and Netscape causes many different problems, all of which are reported over and over).
      o reports of problems that either have nothing to do with Mozilla or are unique events (i.e. nobody else can duplicate the problem).
      o reports of bugs already fixed (the reporter is using old versions of Mozilla)
      o requests for enhancements to Mozilla

      Even if it is a real bug, it probably won't affect you:
      - Do you use the platform affected by the bug?
      - If it's a compatiblity problem (e.g. Netscape profiles), do you use the incompatible software?
      - Are you using those particular Mozilla features, in that particular combination?
      - Are you trying to load websites affected by that bug?

      Anyway, you get the idea.
  • User Farms (Score:3, Funny)

    by guttentag ( 313541 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @04:03PM (#3567726) Journal
    When I first launched Netscape 7, I got about a dozen connections from [].
    There are farms, Marc, endless farms, where Netscape users are no longer born. We are grown...
    Yeah, so I know I'm a copper-top with a serial number... but does AOL have to make it so obvious?
  • I'm sorry...I tried to like Mozilla, I really did. But here's my tale of woe...

    I installed Mozilla on my fiance's brand new Windows install (sorry, but she's not a Linux geek). She is, however, a hardcore Netscape user and really refuses to use IE. So I figured a good bet would be to install Mozilla.

    I installed Mozilla RC1 and everything was good to go. However, then she ran into some Flash content. For whatever reason, Mozilla seems to not be able to handle *some* Flash, and a plugin is unavailable...

    Ok, no big deal, who needs it anyway. However, then she wanted to do something for work that required Java. Ok, no problem, grab the JRE & the Java plugin from Mozilla's links. Did so, installed, and it even prompted to install the plugin to Mozilla. I let it do so...however, the next time we get to a Java site, poof it says "you need a plugin".

    I asked a guy at work, who told me I had to search around and update a few config files to get the Java plugin to work. I have not done this and likely won't...Mozilla has become in my mind another example of how the OpenSource community can build solid products w/o any thought to usability.

    I'm assuming NS doesn't have these issues and will give it a shot. But come on, it's not 1994, you guys can get Mozilla to install plugins correctly.

    • All you have to do is copy some DLLs from the Java directory into the Mozilla plugin directory.

      Granted it is misleading when the JDK says it will install the plugin for that browser but then doesn't, but the workaround is pretty painless.

      Although I often wonder why I need to do these extra steps for Flash/Shockwave/Java. I'm assuming it is up to the plugin developers to get it to work.
  • MathML works (Score:5, Informative)

    by nms99 ( 581001 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @05:10PM (#3568247)
    MathML [] is part of the preview release, although Netscape seems pretty quiet about it. It wasn't mentioned in the PC World article either. I tried it out on the Mozilla MathML torture test [] and it works fine. The only negative is that you need to separately load some math fonts []... at least on unix.

    Undoubtably MathML support is there because it is in Mozilla. Between Mozilla, Netscape, and IE (with MathPlayer []), all of the major browsers will support MathML. That together with support from math programs such as Mathematica [], it really looks like MathML will finally become real this year.

    There's a conference [] on MathML at the end of June this year. Leslie Lamport (LaTeX fame) and Roger Sidje (who did the MathML support in Mozilla) are among the invited speakers.

  • by RayChuang ( 10181 ) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @06:40PM (#3568845)
    I think I'll skip out on Netscape 7.0.

    30 megabyte download?! That's way too big for my own good taste even if you have broadband. I'd rather AOL provide the standard Mozilla 1.0.0 browser (when that's released) and let end users pick and choose their own plugins.

    Mozilla 1.0 Release Candidate 2 is very nice, but when you add in all that AOL bloatware, no thanks.

"If it's not loud, it doesn't work!" -- Blank Reg, from "Max Headroom"