Netscape 7.01 Released with Pop-up Blocker
Tuesday December 10th, 2002
Netscape has updated its flagship browser to version 7.01. This latest release is based on Mozilla 1.0.2 and combines several bug fixes with a couple of new features. The most notable of these is a sophisticated pop-up blocker (accessible from Edit > Preferences > Privacy & Security > Popup Window Controls). Also new in this release is an option to set a group of tabs as your home page.
good to see they're keeping netscape up to date - although i don't know how much people use it these days. seems like the tech savvy crowd uses chimera, phoenix or some other gecko based browser, but not NS.
Before Mozilla reaches 0.9x it was fun to follow Mozilla development to try out the latest and greatest builds, but since then the code base has matured, and it just wasn't as fun using in-development browsers that are like moving target. I settled with Netscape 7 and has enjoyed its stability since.
I would say that the most important reason for us gecko users that Netscape continues to update is that Netscape is the only gecko browser which many web site admins would care enough to support. That is, when a problem comes up with Mozilla, most web designers could not care less. But when they hear that their web site doesn't work well with Netscape, they might make an extra effort to fix the problem.
A second reason is that Netscape is currently the only fully supported commercial version of a Gecko browser. This means companies which want to include or use an "official" Gecko with their product, they will want to pick something that has the backing that Netscape does. This helps the rest of us Gecko users as those products will spread support and user base for Gecko browsers resulting in an increased chance that people designing applications will be XUL and Gecko aware enough to make it compatible.
The only problem with this is that browsers are end user products. I have never heard about end users looking for commercial support for their browser. So this only matters to companies who bundle gecko or gecko derivatives with their product. However, typically these companies will bundle their own custom versions which are not supported by netscape.
So that leaves the question what the businessmodel behind Netscape is? I mean, other than AOL throwing some money at it I can't think of a single other significant source of revenue. Of course you could argue that AOL wants to have a browser alternative on other platforms than windows and that that justifies the investment for them. But does that justify funding an organization as large as Netscape or would it be more cost effective to license something like Opera?
I'm a Mozilla user and I love the product but I never understood the economics behind it. IMHO AOL is just one of the remaining .com dinosaurs that has not yet fully realized .com has flopped. Essentially the way AOL is treating mozilla is like burning money. Netscape has quite a bit of employees who work fulltime on creating a product that so far is barely used by AOL. Thank you AOL, I like Mozilla but why??. Microsoft, another company with too much money (arguably because they rip off their customers), has the same problem that many of their activities are not profitable and are also not likely to become profitable in the near future.
So let me get this straight, Opera can make a browser (an you accept that as a business model) but Netscape should not make a browser because trhat is burning money? Netscape is still used by many companies and many of these companies will NOT use a browser that is not backed by an established corporation (just in case there is a liability issue). Sun is reporting that since they started selling Star Office 6.0 (instead of giving it away) the number of companies that have decided to use it has increased dramatically.
> Sun is reporting that since they started selling Star Office 6.0 (instead of giving it away) the number of companies that have decided > to use it has increased dramatically.
Not to mention all the schools deploying it now, including the school where I'm teaching. Oh! but wait! This is a Mozilla Forum!
So back to the point: Should AOL sell the Netscape Browsers, so that companies start deploying it? ;-)
I wish the line breaks would be shown like in the textarea, when I'm typing my text. And where's the "Preview" button? Oh well, have slashdotted too much lately and got used to their stuff...
Sell it? Nope, you iss the part about having a corporation backing up a product. Since IE is free and comes with the monopoly OS, there is no way they can sell it. Sun can sell the office suite because MS Office is not given away for free. Companies were not considering it because they were afraid of a product being given away by a major company with little incentive to keep developing and SUPPORTING it. If Nestcape fails, companies can still go back to IE (or Opera) and can still assign liability to the provider. And with Open Office or Mozilla, who will you sue. Same applies to Linux, companies pay to get it from Red Hat or Suse, etc not because they want to pay for it but because they have a company to make responsible in case something goes awfully wrong.
Maybe you've never read a EULA before. If using Windows 2000 causes your entire company to crash and burn and sensitive data to leak out and terrorists use that info to destroy Washington D.C., chances are that you'll go to jail before Microsoft or any other large software company sees a day in court. This argument of "Responsibility" does not hold up under the industry standard EULA agreements.
Maybe it's just a psychological matter? people know they cannot sue, say Microsoft. But knowing there is a big company behind the product - and not "amateur" folks scattered around the world - gives them some security...
#50 Not liability but support
Wednesday December 11th, 2002 4:33 AM
I think you're all looking at this from the wrong angle. The attraction to big companies of having a known, real company behind the product (whether Sun behind StarOffice, or AOL/Netscape behind Netscape) is not that they've got someone to sue when it all goes wrong, but when there are problems they can go to a real company and demand a fix.
I work in the IT department for a large corporation and I know for a fact that when we standardise on a particular software package to do a certain job, then we will always prefer the one that has full maintenance agreements, large knowledgebases full of problem fixes, and dedicated support people on the end of a phone line. Microsoft can supply all of this to us, so a lot of the time given two similar products we'll choose the MS one.
An purely open source product can't offer this, there is no dedicated phone support, and although there may be a large community of knowledgeable, helpful people, they have no obligation to find a fix to MY problem. A large company can talk to MS, or Sun, or Netscape and state what problem they're having and they will bend over backwards to help you. That is what sells this kind of thing to a board of directors, and that is why large companies will choose Netscape over Mozilla.
#35 It's indirectly generating revenue
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 6:19 PM
The browser wrt AOL revenue is buried way down in some execs business plan. I guess the simplest way to look at it is that they want to reduce reliance on MS by having an alternative and be able to plant icons on people's desktops to drive eyeballs to their website (where they do make revenue). Profit? That's another matter...
You missed the point dude. Where is Netscape getting it's money? Opra gets money from actually SELLING their browser. There is a trial free version, but you have to pay to get rid of the banners. Most companies need to make money to survive.....Netscape gives its browser away for free. Hm...Maybe they get money through their web page? They don't sell much though, do they? And the banners don't give as much money as they used to as it sounds. hmm....
Opera sells a browser, Netscape gives a browser away. Opera has many paying customers (both end users and companies). In short, Opera is generating revenue and Netscape isn't. The whole point of why a commercial company invests millions of dollars in a product that isn't generating any revenue escapes me. If on top of that they continue to ship the main competitors product (internet explorer) it becomes even more silly. That's what I call burning money.
I fully agree. I just wish Netscape didn't lag so far behind official Mozilla releases. I mean, 7.01 is based on the 1.0 branch (1.0.2) which came out in JUNE. Mozilla is now up to 1.2.1. Mozilla 1.1 came out in AUGUST. I can understand there needing to be a certain amount of time for reworking, tweaking, testing, and branding, but doesn't this seem excessive?
For the record, I use Mozilla.
Proper testing takes a long time. Try it sometime...
Consider how long it takes to ship a "stable" mozilla milestone (about a month of testing) and realize that Netscape releases get much more thorough testing... (not to mention having to do localizations etc all _before_ the release, unlike Mozilla).
I have a feeling that they are sticking to stable releases until 1.5 or 2.0. Can anyone explain Netscapes Release plan? They seem to be sticking to the 1.0 branch, but for how long? Does someone actually know?
#4 Re: cool....
by jonadab <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 11:21 AM
> good to see they're keeping netscape up to date
> although i don't know how much people use it these days.
More than they did during the 6.x era (ugh).
> seems like the tech savvy crowd uses chimera, phoenix or some other gecko based browser, but not NS.
I personally use the mozilla.org builds, but I deploy the Netscape release to some of the computers I administer. (Not all. There are some systems that need mail/news, and I don't like dealing with the hassles of the bundled AIM client, so on systems that need the Mail/News component I tend to deploy Mozilla and install Java myself. If the AIM client could be deselected separately from Mail/News, I'd deploy Netscape on more systems.) The Netscape build is better aimed for less technical users. I could take the mozilla.org builds and _make_ something that would work for end users (by adding plugins, hiding debug-related UI elements, and so on and so forth), but that would be actual work; I prefer to let Netscape do that stuff for me. For my own use, that stuff doesn't matter, so I just use Mozilla.
My folks don't want to use IE thanks to its various and sundry security holes which allow access to the entire OS, or even simply hijacking the browser with ActiveX spyware. My mother accidentally clicked "OK" on a permission box once and when I was visiting a bit later I found some nasty shit like Gator installed and tracking them (sorry for the strong language, but it is the word that fits).
At that point they had tried Netscape 6.0, which was unstable, slow, and buggy, keeping them with IE. Thankfully 6.2 had just been released so I moved them completely over to Netscape. They have since updated to Netscape 7.0, will update to 7.01 soon, and will probably install "Buffy" (8.0? 7.5?) when it is released.
Testing a browser is not in their interest. Using a stable, hammered-on, commercial browser suite for Web and e-mail is. Now the only time they fire up IE is to run Windows Update, which usually is sending them the latest, urgent Critical Update for (drumroll, please...) IE 6.0.
#28 I also use it on my work notebook
by ezh <email@example.com>
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 3:28 PM
Subj. I also install it to my friends and clients since it's a brand and it's widly tested.
I've put Netscape 7 on any pre-Mac OS 10 Macs that I have lying around. The wife users Netscape 7 on the iMac, and we both use Mozilla on the PowerBook...
What I liked was that Netscape still uses pop-up ads on its front page as I just checked with NS4
#10 Not available for Solaris, no OS/2, no ...
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 1:10 PM
I think it is pretty lame that Netscape is only available for Win, Mac, and Linux. Mozilla shows that it is possible to build it for many other platforms and Opera makes its browser available for a dozen platforms (however on some platforms, only old versions). NS 4.x was available for fam more platforms. This is bad for corporate users, but NS was never particularily good to listen to the needs of corporate users (just browse bugzilla for bugs like APOP support etc.)
Are you serious? You want NS to build products for platforms with 3 users? NS only has finite resources. Those few users on OS/2 (you'd think they would move on by now), Solaris (cde is outdated and unusable) can use Mozilla.
OS/2 - go to IBM's web page for everyone's second favorite operating system. They are handling their own deal for OS/2.
As for Solaris, yeah, that's a good point. For now, Mozilla is available, at least.
here u go <<http://wwws.sun.com/software/solaris/netscape/>>
Contrary to what you said about corporate support, Netscape was very good in that regard. That's why 4.x versions are still be upgraded and supported despite most everyone here has written them off. If bugs are in Bugzilla about corporate issues, I would say that's more a reflection of Mozilla's focus than Netscape's.
#47 I meant never good since 6.x :)
Wednesday December 11th, 2002 12:12 AM
Yes, I agree - corporate support was good in the 4.x times. Unfortunately, these times are long gone and it got worse with 6.x and 7.x. There are lot of bugs now open - even 4.x parity bugs - that would be important for corporate users to be fixed, but dont get much attention. One of the things that have been a nuisance for the corporate users I know is lack of movemail support and lack of secure POP support. The ridiculous result is that some of them still use NS 4.x!
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 2:05 PM
That rocks that they added back the pop-up blocker. ROCKS! Go Netscape! Woohoo!
Probably the pop-up blocker was added by the marketing department to get some of the fame of Mozilla. Remember how every publication screamed: "tabbed browsing and pop-up blocking" upon the arrival of 1.0?
#55 They should never have killed the feature
Wednesday December 11th, 2002 7:52 AM
For some weird reason, Netscape 7 did not include the feature, even though it was in the code. The feature could be restored, but most non-geeks wouldn't know how. The reason I get so excited about them adding the feature back is that in so doing Netscape has made a major paradigm shift from the AOL "we want pop-ups, like it" to "we want to make Netscape competitive, let's do it". Of course, this may have something to do with AOL's recent overhaul, as well as them finally killing pop-up ads, but either way, I'm glad the feature's back in by default.
Damn is it good.
Is this Netscape Radio thing free, and unlimited? It's sweet.
We should all be recommending this to non-geeks and putting links to it on our sites, etc.
Microsoft must be worried. They have no answer for Netscape 7.01.
try <http://www.shoutcast.com> i recommend that to not-quite-geeks
They got completely roasted last time when the installer FORCED AIM on you if you wanted email and also put AOL icons all over. The installer does the same thing again regarding AIM&ICQ. I'm not sure about the icons part, but I'm not going to install it to find out. They pissed off ever reviewer and user off by doing it last time and they are doing it again. Again I ask what is wrong with them? This isn't a "value-add" its an annoyance. People HATE bundling, especially of AOLware.
Oh well, evolution takes care of those who don't learn from their past mistakes. Its just a shame since the browser Netscape is based on is so good.
#42 Re: WTF is wrong with them?
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 7:51 PM
Don't ask... If you ask me, the changes must be: -> remove AOL-Pages from popup-whitelist -> remove popups on netscape.com (startpage!) <<< VERY REQUIRED! -> remove the registration-dialog on startup -> make every addon optional, default installation may only install Browser, MailNews and the Plugins
where is the Netscape spirit gone? Those AOL businessheads are a true annoyance. The ridiculous thing is that not even IE is cluttered with that much spam.
...all it took was one of their best programmers getting so sick of the company he quit and went to work for apple. The only problem is, there are a few more features Netscape lacks, and I think they're running out of developers... :)
I don't know which developer we're discussing, but if he thinks Apple is a better company than Netscape, then Netscape can live without him. There's only one reason Apple's not dead now; Microsoft is trying to prop up any and all proprietary OS makers (even Amiga Inc. now has deals with Microsoft) in an attempt to fend off open source. Apple is just a blundering goon of a company run by a blundering goon of a CEO who puts appearance over performance.
Yeah, who needs that Hyatt guy anyways? I mean, what's he contributed to Mozilla?? :)
Wednesday December 11th, 2002 11:34 AM
So, okay, I'm sure Hyatt'll be missed. He still could have had better taste than to go work for Apple.
#31 When will Netscape move beyond 1.0.x
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 4:28 PM
Is there any reason why they are not using 1.2.1, or at least 1.1. I don't even see a Mozilla 1.0.2 on FTP.
I will probably download it since I have it set up for my Mom. Already have pop-up blocker installed, but I am sure there must be bug fixes and performance enhancements.
#33 Re: When will Netscape move beyond 1.0.x
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 5:24 PM
I suppose they want a release with as few bugs as possible. As it's only a point release I don't see why they'd want to introduce all the new regressions in post 1.0.x releases. 1.0.2 might not have some of the cool newer stuff in the later branches, but it's extremely stable, and that's important for a consumer product. Having said that, Netscape have included stuff that's not even in 1.2.1 (such as the new popup controls), so it's still a pretty good release.
#61 Re: When will Netscape move beyond 1.0.x
Wednesday December 11th, 2002 2:13 PM
In one word - stability. NS branded browsers get an unbelievable amount of QA testing and it's not feasible to be constantly bumping up the version and maintain the stability. 7.01 is a case in point, receiving months of clobbering to ensure that features such as popup blocking and bug fixes didn't adversely affect performance. Less testing goes into a Mozilla milestone so the tradeoff is clear - more features or greater stability.
I'm probablly missing something but every time I upgrade NS I loose all the packages I previously installed; Venkman, DOMInspector, Calendar etc. So after each upgrade I have to hunt around for all the XPI packages (be nice if somebdoy put them all in one spot after each NS release). Is there something I don't know about.
Under Windows, I uninsall the old version of NS and install the new version in the same directory - I keep all my mail, passwords and stuff it's just all the additional packages that I loose.
I've got project kitchen sink available at <http://plugindoc.mozdev.org/sink> for that purpose :)
#37 Popup Blocker
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 7:15 PM
Just exactly how much better is the popup blocker?
I just had a quick look under linux. The popup blocker is alot better than in moz.
has allow popups with exceptions or block with eceptions, plus playsound when suppressed and/or put icon in status bar when suppresed.
(also let me uncheck AIM and ICQ in the install even though I installed the email componant)
#41 Re: Popup Blocker
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 7:42 PM
whitelist, blacklist - as you want ;)
This is cool feature and it's better than mozilla. However, those icons are too close to the corner. The page security information is easy to bring up when brower is resized or scroll bars are click. This is one UI issue which I believe that it can be improved.
This other issue I suggest both Netscape and Mozilla add go button by the address, like IE. Maybe, there is a bug. I got a lot of chance that browser go nowhere even I enter valid address and hit ENTER.
Go button is "there" . Just Edit > Preferences > Navigator Section go to "Select buttons you wan to see in the toolbars" and checkmark "Go" or any other button you want to see or remove
#57 Re: Re: Re: Popup Blocker
Wednesday December 11th, 2002 9:05 AM
Thanks. I feel more confident with Go button now.
Could someone who's used it tell us what the AOL advertisement icon count is this time?
I think I remember something like 23 icons being placed in your bookmarks, personal toolbar, desktop, start menu, and even IE favorites advertising AOL properties after installing a previous netscape release. I'm curious to know if they have reduced or increased that number with this one...
Why isn't this "sophisticated pop-up blocker" not in 1.2.1? I always hear stuff about "cutting edge technology" in the latest Mozilla vs 1.0 (1.02 was claimed to be less stable <http://www.mozillazine.or…le=2707&message=29#29> ). Now Netscape has more stuff than in the latest Mozilla. Why not delete all the Mozilla releases and replace them with the Nescape releases; this way people will get more stable releases and more "cutting edge tech"!
Only a friend will tell you of your bad breath...
> Why isn't this "sophisticated pop-up blocker" not in 1.2.1?
It was in 1.2b. It was removed from 1.2.1 because it was considered too buggy for actual use in the wild.
> Now Netscape has more stuff than in the latest Mozilla.
The latest mozilla is the upcoming 1.3a and trust me -- it has a _lot_ more than Netscape does (including the return of the popup blocker, with the bugs worked out).
#45 It's about time AOLTW surrendered
Tuesday December 10th, 2002 10:55 PM
Popup window control is in Netscape 7.01 by default? Well, it's about time AOL/Time Warner backed down. Of course, they didn't have a choice, did they? It's been widely knows that the popup window control they took out of Netscape 7.0 could be easily put back in by simply downloading & installing a small program, and that it was widely avaliable to everybody (Heh!! Heh!! Heh!!). I like this new multiple home page feature. Can't wait to install it & try it out.
#51 Re: It's about time AOLTW surrendered
Wednesday December 11th, 2002 5:02 AM
Funny thing is that they added all AOL/TW sites to the popup whitelist by default (but you can remove them), therefore even with popup blocking enabled you still have to take one more step to remove popups from Netscape and AOL sites :)
#63 Is "prefs" the JScript Script File?
Thursday December 12th, 2002 1:48 AM
Did you see that message? It said something like "Disabling popups for these web sites might make them not work correctly". What a bunch of bullsh*t!! That stuff was the first thing I erased.
Finally, they get smart! What's a better reason to switch from explorer?
#64 What's impact of Netscape layoffs?
Thursday December 12th, 2002 11:26 AM
AOL's cutting most of Netscape's staff. Read the story here. <http://www.bizjournals.co…s/2002/12/09/daily30.html>
What will be the impact of Netscape/Mozilla development?
#65 Re: What's impact of Netscape layoffs?
Thursday December 12th, 2002 12:43 PM
"AOL's cutting most of Netscape's staff."
"Not too many layoffs, as was being touted in the press and expected by many in the building."
Still bad but from what I hear, it was nowhere near "most" of Netscape's staff.