Tuesday September 28th, 1999
4.7 is out and available and available for download here. Get it while it's hot.
#1 Why not Windows?
Tuesday September 28th, 1999 6:41 PM
Why isn't there a Windows version 4.7?
#3 Why not Windows?
Tuesday September 28th, 1999 6:49 PM
Netscape has officially dropped all support for Windows as it is a dead-end operating system.
Tuesday September 28th, 1999 9:07 PM
I would agree, but I am still stuck on my stuped machine running, rather unfortunately, Windoze 98.
Even though I don't get to try NS 4.7 I am rather glad that Netscape is supporting the alternative platforms first.
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 9:29 AM
They just uploaded the others first. I watched for about an hour last night, and saw each megabyte of the Windows versions increase. ;)
#13 Why not Windows?
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 6:31 AM
It is now. I downloaded it last night and am using it right now. ftp://ftp2.netscape.com/pub/communicator/english/4.7/
or try ftp://ftp3 or try ftp://ftp4 etc.
#2 Re: Why not Windows?
Tuesday September 28th, 1999 6:49 PM
It usually takes a few hours for all of the binaries to get released. They usually do this friday evening, so, there's a lot more attention being paid to it now, since it's tuesday.
#4 Mmmm. Shopping!
Tuesday September 28th, 1999 8:27 PM
I know I need a button to do my shopping from. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Netscape for the Shopping button, and I hope that there will be more of these buttons in 5.0!
Maybe they can add one to the mail toolbar. Then I can compare what the spammers are trying to sell me to what Netscape is trying to sell me!
#7 Mmmm. Shopping!
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 12:15 AM
I've submitted bug #15144 that aims to handle toolbuttons in a sensible way.
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 12:11 AM
So does anybody know what's new about 4.7 besides the Shopping icon?
Any significant stability/speed improvements?
#12 Netscape Radio
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 4:34 AM
The only other difference I have noticed is Netscape Radio. As for speed and stability . . . well, I just finished downloading it a couple minutes ago. Couldn't comment on that aspect yet.
#14 What's new
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 7:30 AM
New: Netscape Radio, Shop Button, Winamp, same speed as 4.6.
#35 loads a bit faster here
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 10:17 PM
Linux 2.2.12 glibc 2.1.2
Definitely loads/closes faster.
Seems to suffer from fewer memory leaks.
#8 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 1:25 AM
I feel sorry for Netscape.
Netscape has put so much work into Communicator 4.x, yet people still think that "Netscape is behind".
Netscape should have named 4.5 as 5.0 way in the beginning, so Nescape wouldn't have to add so many new features yet still name to name it with a humble 4.7.
Now that Mozilla will probably be named 5.0, people will think that it's "on par" with IE5 even though it's lightyears ahead.
#9 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 1:57 AM
the version-numbering wars generally aren't worth being fought tho. Personally, I have a hard time believing that mindshare in the consumer/business space is really that influenced by a number. Did communicator start losing market share when IE4 was released because everyone started believing that IE4==NC4? This is just one of the tools that microsoft uses every time it gets the itch to go steamroll another part of the industry (MS Word went from v2 to v6, suddenly at the same version as Word Perfect)
The higher the version, the more I tend to believe that it was a poorly planned product to begin with, requiring more iterations that could have possibly been avoided with more planning from the start.
for what it's worth, I think the first widespread release of mozilla should be numbered 1.0...netscape can count as high as they feel like with their branded versions.
#11 Early edition,
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 3:29 AM
Unfortunately, the version number matters a lot to "d'oh" users.
Microsoft realised this and ramped up the version number of Word to coax users from Wordperfect.
Nowadays, the version number is virtually meaningless (due to Microsoft). Or at least - the bit after the first period is pointless as far as the public/press are concerned.
One should perhaps adopt the methods books use - just go by edition... So even a bugfixed update warrants an increment. Mozilla, with a new build every night should already be at the 500th edition or something like that ;)
That would really fox 'em :)
#24 Early edition,
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 4:30 PM
well, in that case, maybe mozilla should use a year-month-day string for versioning.
"Well, I could use IE5, but Mozilla 19990929 is just so much ahead!"
#55 ms word 6
Thursday September 30th, 1999 5:06 PM
Actually, MS Word was bumped up to version 6 to coincide with the DOS version of Word.
#20 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 12:16 PM
Are you on crack? Have you tried IE4 or IE5? It's *SO* far ahead of Netscape 4.x it's not even funny! Try loading a moderately complex page, say slashdot.org and the resize the browser. First try it in IE4 or IE5, then in Netscape 4.x.. You'll see what I mean.
If this doesn't convince you, try loading one of the Mozilla stress-tests in Netscape 4.x.. The browser chokes on it and it might takes as long as MINUTES for it to draw them. Try it in IE4 or IE5 and you notice how it draws it less than 1 s.. Resize the browser like in the previous test and see how it draws it so fast that it actually resizes WITH the browser. Now try resizing Netscape..
How about CSS support? Even though it's not perfect in IE4 / IE5, it's lightyears ahead of that in Netscape. Java.. *MUCH* faster in IE4 / IE5.
"It's not Java.. It's Microsoft's own Java". Shyeahright.. What's missing? RMI, JNI.. Who ever used those in applets anyway? And it wasn't until 4.05 (4.06?) that Netscape started supporting Java 1.1 which had been in IE4 from the very start.
Rendering? Try defining two "layers" of HTML with forms, and move them on top of eachother.. Works in IE, looks totally screwed in Netscape. This makes it impossible to do decent web based DHTML user interfaces that would work on Netscape browsers. z-ordering is a JOKE in NS4!
Only in Mozilla is the quality on par, YES!! - *ON PAR*, with IE4 or 5.. I'm sure that before Mozilla reaches it's first "release" version, and before Netscape Communicator 5.0 is out, in maybe 4-6 months, Mozilla will be a better browser than anything MS has to offer, but to say that NS4.7 is better than IE5.. puh-lease!!!!
#25 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 5:43 PM
Calm down buddy,.. How does window resizing have to do with anything? For one,.. netscape refreshes the page when you change size,.. How many people resize their windows often?
Microsoft's implementation of Java is rather flawed,.. ask any big java developer.
You can fix your layer problem with a few lines of code,... I had a good site on multi browser CSS'ness.... and testing in both IE and netscape,.. netscape worked better (Yes, I do understand it IS missing a lot though..)
And mozilla being on par with ie4 or ie5? the current state of mozilla has a near perfect CSS implentation,.. ie's is STILL flawed to hell and buggy. Ever load up the display tests (the ones that test positioning...).. IE4 does about as well as netscape 4x,.. IE5 does a little better but still leaves some to be desired.. While mozillas render is almost perfect (one or two spots where I noticed things a couple pixles off.. but Im sure that has been fixed by now)..
The current state of mozilla is also a unfinished product. The email client has just started to become usable for example. And there is a LOT of debug code slowing things down. Sooner or later the debug code will be removed and optimization will take place.
And no one said NS 4.7 had any real advantage over IE5,.. from what I understand its more PR than anything. I still prefer using navigator... and 90% of that is because there is no IE for my platform. the other 10% is because IE has a few things I really do not like.
So in other words,.. relax :)
#37 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 11:56 PM
"the layer problem" can not be fixed with a few lines of code. It has to do with the fact that NS4 always draws widgets on the highest "layer" because the widgets are native (OS) widgets that don't support z-ordering, clipping etc.
IE4&5 have gfx widgets, just like Mozilla, so you can do clipping, z-ordering, background images etc. in them.
"Java is flawed, ask any Java developer". Well, I happen to be a Java developer. I write 99% server side stuff, but I still have enough experience from applets that I can say that Netscape's Java is equally "flawed" as Microsoft's version. Some things are done slightly differently in the browsers, but the big sticking point is that RMI and JNI (especially RMI) is missing from MS. The typical comment is "it's flawed, ask anyone", but nobody ever gives any reason WHY it is flawed.
Even in *COURT*, Sun only mentioned JNI, because MS now has an RMI implementation, and every single other part of their VM passes the compatibility tests!
And resizing the browser shows the speed of the renderer. Another good way is to load one of the Mozilla stress tests and check out how fast it loads on IE4&5 vs NS4.
#80 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Sunday November 21st, 1999 5:06 PM
I support this. Until now I used to think that Netscape was very great. After I did the test with the Mozilla test pages with NN4.61, IE5 and Mozilla M11, I found that Mozilla is far ahead and of the other two and NN falls behind IE5.
Specially irritating aspect of NN nowadays is its table rendering. (checkout http://www.onsale.com/ any of the product pages) It hangs the NN windows, not only the rendering window but all the netscape windows! But I still use NN, report all the crashes with fullcircle, hoping to see the sleek, robust Mozilla 5.0 to appear soon...
#72 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Saturday October 2nd, 1999 11:48 AM
I resize my pages often enough so that Netscape's defect really bugs me. Especially if I'm stuck on a modem connection. It's a very valid concern IMO, along with the fact that Netscape's is *extremely* slow at rendering tables.
#60 Feeling Sorry for Netscape
Thursday September 30th, 1999 7:33 PM
I don't know about you, but I spend more time reading web pages than resizing them...
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 3:11 AM
Where are the mirrors ?
#15 128bit version?
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 8:52 AM
Does anyone know when the 128bit version will be available? I mean if they want us to 'shop' they should certainly allow us to protect our credit card numbers.
#62 128bit version?
Friday October 1st, 1999 12:11 AM
Its out now, it can be DLed at
(Sorry but that is the only URL that I have for the 128 bit, I'm sure that there are better looking ones out there.)
#16 4.7 Out
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 8:53 AM
On my PC, startup speed has significantly improved between 4.6 and 4.7. It's quite amazing...
#19 It's fast, but still buggy...
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 11:07 AM
I like it - very fast indeed. I was really getting tired of the poor performance of the Linux Netscape.
It still self-destructs on some of the pages in http://www.globinvestor.com, however. I have to use Mozilla if I want to browse that site.
#22 4.7 Out
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 2:06 PM
>4.05 (4.06?) that Netscape started supporting Java 1.1 >which had been in IE4 from the very start. And 4.05 was release shortly after IE4, was it not? Can't have been more than a month or two.
>Rendering? Try defining two "layers" of HTML >with forms, and move them on top of eachother.. >Works in IE, looks totally screwed in Netscape. >This makes it impossible to do decent web based >DHTML user interfaces that would work on Netscape >browsers. z-ordering is a JOKE in NS4! NS4 just uses differant tags, its DHTML is much worse but it CAN Z-order, just using layer instead of (is it) DIV.
#23 NS 4.7 still bloatware
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 3:31 PM
One major problem I have with NS 4.X distributions is that there's a *huge* leap between "Navigator Standalone" (8.8MB binary, no mail/news but, critically, no working mailto: link) and "Complete Install" (16.8MB binary, but way over-bloated with stuff I never use [the HTML editor, the mail and news stuff]). Anyone else noticed that 7MB of extra RAM is used at run-time when you hit your first applet with NS 4.7 ? On multi-user systems (e.g. base machine plus 4 or 5 X terminals), 30MB+ RAM for a browser is completely unacceptable. For that reason, I can never install anything but the Navigator Standalone release.
Are there any plans to have a more granular set of Netscape 5.X releases when it finally comes out ? I'd like to see a Netscape 5.X "Navigator Standalone" that supported the mailto:, but only let you *send* e-mail via a simple composition box a la NS 3.04, but had no mail reading or news facilities in at all.
It would be nice to have a Netscape 5.X with just mail reading/sending and no news (or a pointless HTML editor - a day-to-day browser should *never* come built in with an HTML editor, IMHO - that should be a separately callable app).
#49 4.7 Out
Thursday September 30th, 1999 10:53 AM
Forget the standalone bringing up it's own little mail send window -- how about correctly implementing the MAPI (at least in Windows) so that when you want to send a message your default mail program's mail send window will open?
I love Navigator, but their mail support sucks, so I use Outlook Express. It would be great to be able to click on a mailto: in NN and have my OE mail window pop up!
And while we're on the subject of correctly implementing events, why not let us choose what programs we want to use when viewing the source or opening up an editor?
#52 NS 4.7 still bloatware
Thursday September 30th, 1999 3:14 PM
> a day-to-day browser should *never* come built in with an HTML editor, IMHO - that should be a separately callable app).
Um, I'm sorry to inform you of this but Mozilla will probably require the HTML editor. Its used to handle the editing of text in forms. If you exclude the HTML editor, you remove the functionality of forms.
#54 Mozilla and the HTML editor
Thursday September 30th, 1999 5:02 PM
Actually, I noticed a while ago in the builds that the configure script supports the "--disable-editor" option, but if you try to build Mozilla with that option, it falls over (I think it was a find/replace issue - sharing of code between the editor and the find dialog). That was a while ago...maybe that's been fixed by now.
It will be very disappointing if there can't be a Mozilla (and by definition a Netscape 5.X) released without an HTML editor - that's *instant* bloat for about 99% of all users !
It would be great if we could have a basic browser binary ("Navigator Standalone" equivalent) under 10MB - that should be the aim of the Mozilla team, IMHO. Navigator Standalone 4.7 is currently 8.8MB - anything much larger than that for the Mozilla beta/Netscape 5.X version would be a step back in my books. Of course, run-time RAM usage is important too, but I usually find it's proportional to the size of the binary :-)
#70 NS 4.7 still bloatware
Friday October 1st, 1999 4:26 PM
You can set up the standalone version to invoke another mail reader when it sees a mailto: link, at least on Unix machines. It's not trivial, but not real tough and it works. See e.g. http://www3.bc.sympatico.ca/brian_winters/mutt/ for info.
#26 The Resize Bug...
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 8:15 PM
...is rather well documented, and can be extremely frustrating for users to have to deal with. There's a couple of JS fixes for it, but not everyone knows about or uses them.
#27 4.7? - I could almost cry...
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 8:46 PM
Why does NS insist on burning more development resources on a to be dead browser?
"Shop"... oh boy that just makes *everything* better - just a few bug fixes and a another coat of lipstick on the pig.
IMHO NS needs to focus on one thing - getting 5.0 fully compliant and out the door!
I stick with NS as my primary browser out of dislike of MS's politics and hopes that NS will not be rendered moot. Moves like this leave me thinking that fate is very likely.
Just a frustrated fan and professional web developer - thanks for reading.
#29 4.7? - I could almost cry...
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 9:02 PM
Because their live browser isn't ready to be released, or even beta-tested yet, and they do have an obligation to fix bugs in the browser that people are actually using for their day-to-day work.
By your logic, the Linux development team is only wasting time by continuing 2.2.x development when they could have started working on 2.3.0 the moment 2.2.0 was pushed out the door. But I'd hate to be using 2.2.1 with all of its TCP/IP and filesystem bugs just because it's no longer the cutting-edge product....
#31 4.7? - I could almost cry...
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 9:26 PM
You do have a valid argument when you put it that way.
In that case they should stick with fixing bugs, not spending time on "Shop", "My Netscape", etc. Just fix the bugs and get 5.x out. Nevermind 4.x "fluff features".
#36 Spending time?
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 10:45 PM
I may be wrong, but I'm guessing that the amount of developer effort involved in adding a "shop" button was quite minimal.
Ditto Netscape Radio -- it's a Spinner thing, just another AOL acquisition.
My Netscape isn't being developed by the application developers, but by the portal team, so none of the developer's time is going to that.
What's Related improvements are being done by Alexa, not Netscape app developers.
The other 4.7 (Win32) features -- RealPlayer G2 update2, AIM 3, Winamp -- are all done by other people.
So 4.7 is bug fixes plus a few *very* minimal changes which almost certainly took very little time away from Mozilla.
#28 I want 5.0
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 9:00 PM
forget this 4.7 stuff. Take the programmers off updating the 4.x NS browser and put them on the MOZZILLA team... GET THAT 5.0 out!!
#30 5.0 size
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 9:02 PM
isn't 5.0 supposed to infantile in size compared to 4.x???
#32 Netscape FTP problems?
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 10:00 PM
Has anyone had problems connecting to the Netscape FTP site with NS 4.61? It sits there connecting and never logs in. It' been that way since I upgraded from 4.6. Other machines where I work do the same thing, and it's only on the NS FTP site with 4.61. WS_FTP or the command line FTP.EXE both connect fine. Go!Zilla 3.5 also cannot connect. What's going on???
#33 Netscape FTP problems?
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 10:11 PM
I can't download 4.7. It's driving me nuts. This is my problem: 4.7 downloads completely and it says "100% downloaded" and then does nothing. The file doesn't uncompress. The downloading window stays put and does nothing. I've tried downloading 4.7 with NS 4.6, NS 3.0 and even IE 4.5 and I got the same results with all the different browsers. I have Stuffit Expander and downloaded loads of .bin files before so it's definately not a compression issue. With IE 4.5, the downloading window said "waiting for Data" after being fully downloaded. And it stays like that forever. It's missing some info to finalize the downloading. What's going on? Help!
#45 pipes cut...
Thursday September 30th, 1999 7:24 AM
Appearently a hugh backbone was cut by some folks in my great state of oHio. like 3-4 40gb pipes. i can't connect to netscape either via ftp, and this may be why.
#34 4.7 Out
Wednesday September 29th, 1999 10:12 PM
I haven't had any trouble connecting to the FTP site but one thing I just noticed is it just killed support for my mouse wheel! Argh!
Thursday September 30th, 1999 6:09 AM
Hmmm My IntelliMouse works fine...
Thursday September 30th, 1999 7:15 AM
Might have been a hiccough on my system or something. Right after I used SmartUpdate it failed after I rebooted.
After D/Ling the drivers from MS and installing them the wheel works perfectly fine again.
*shrug* could've just been me though.
Thursday October 7th, 1999 8:25 AM
Heh heh use Logitech. Not a problem with my Wheel Mouse, and I haven't found an app yet that doesn't support it, unlike MS.
#38 It's deiniftely faster
Thursday September 30th, 1999 3:09 AM
I'm using 4.7 on a Solaris platform, and it definitely does seem faster. What on earth took them so long to achieve this though? But surely, this must be the last little release before 5.0 is finally unleashed on the world....
#39 4.7 Out
Thursday September 30th, 1999 4:22 AM
IMO, they need to release "new versions" of 4.x for two reasons; (a) to keep in the public eye so that everyone doesn't forget about them ("Netscape? Didn't they used to make browsers before we had IE?"), and (b) to keep their existing users happy so that yet more don't abandon ship for IE [hence bugfixes and possible speed improvements].
They also, obviously, release for reason (c) - chance to increase advertising revenue, keep partners happy, etc., by foisting crappy new buttons on the poor users.
By the way, I like 4.7, on initial examination: there was one situation in which 4.61 would very regularly crash (opening numerous windows on Wired News stories) and 4.7 hasn't done yet, so I have hopes that they fixed that one.
#40 But is it any more stable?
Thursday September 30th, 1999 6:07 AM
4.6 crashes daily on my laptop. I've never had so much trouble keeping a browser up and running. I stick with NS browsers b/c I dislike ms business practices and software design, but the 4.x series is a dead end unless it can run and stay running.
What's the latest schedule on the Mozilla beta? I would much rather run beta-ware than the 4.x series.
My two cents.
#42 But is it any more stable?
Thursday September 30th, 1999 6:13 AM
As I posted the previous comment, the damn thing crashed. I wasn't even sure if the comment got posted. This is the frustrating thing for me. Lucky for my my crashes interrupt things like posting to Mozillazine, but I can't imagine if my business depended on the stability of a browser. I don't imagine that ie is any more reliable. I'm really, really hoping for big things from Mozilla.
To everyone who is working on the project, thank you in advance. I can't wait to see what you have created.
#44 IE is far more reliable than 4.61
Thursday September 30th, 1999 7:17 AM
IE is *far* more reliable than 4.61. Crashes with IE are a very occasional thing for most people. I know several who switched to IE for that reason alone.
As I noted above, on initial viewing, 4.7 appears to be more reliable than 4.61 (i.e. it hasn't crashed for me yet), so if that is genuinely the case, IE and Netscape may be roughly equivalent now. MAY be.
I agree though, I'm hoping Mozilla will be reliable right from the start, and actually the last milestone build didn't seem too buggy considering it was pre-pre-beta software... but hope and reality don't always match, and this WILL be a "1.0" product, whatever the version number :)
#48 Uh - not for me
Thursday September 30th, 1999 9:40 AM
I tried IE5, but it crashed waaaay too often for me. Add to that the numerous security issues (a new one just appeared - see our QuickNews column on the front page), and I couldn't bring myself to use it as my default browser.
#64 Guess it depends on the system
Friday October 1st, 1999 7:04 AM
IE5 never crashes for me - that said, I use it less than Netscape. But I do know several people who've actually said that they switched to IE precisely because they were fed up with NS crashing, and they're now much happier... *shrugs*. I guess it depends on the system, maybe on some systems IE5 isn't reliable [a buggy installer maybe?].
Re security issues, Netscape had a "oh look, a web page can run any native code on Windows" security bug a few weeks ago, didn't it? (Unless that was overhyped, anyhow.) Hopefully that has been fixed as part of the 4.7 upgrade. I agree Netscape *is* probably more secure and there have been far fewer holes discovered - because there's slightly less to go wrong (no ActiveX) and because Netscape isn't a target in the way Microsoft is. It would be even more secure to use Opera, say - or a current Mozilla build - because no hacker is going to bother targetting those, at least not seriously intending to exploit anything, while usage remains very low...
#57 not for me either
Thursday September 30th, 1999 5:10 PM
On my linux system netscape 4.x tends to crash a lot, but on win95 communicator has been pretty stable since 4.04. I don't use IE all that much because it's so bloated (into the OS itself), but it certainly doesn't seem to be more stable than netscape (and I use netscape daily).
#63 not for me either
Friday October 1st, 1999 12:16 AM
Personaly I have found IE to not crash as often as netscape 4.x, but when it does watch out it normaly takes out at a bare minimum exsplorer and sometimes the entire OS.
The only time that I seem to have much of a problem with NS is when I have a lot of windows open at once, then it is a gamble as to when it will come down on me.
#68 IE is far more reliable than 4.61
Friday October 1st, 1999 12:55 PM
I'm using MSIE 5.0 in Win2K and nothing EVER crashes! What's the point here?
#50 But is it any more stable?
Thursday September 30th, 1999 1:14 PM
I just ditched 4.7 and went back to 4.61. It was crashing on startup everytime in fullsoft.dll, and it lost half of my mail messages. I had to delete the summary file to get my mail back in 4.61. Be careful out there!
#46 Who is begging to get flamed here?
Thursday September 30th, 1999 8:05 AM
Just mentioning IE, let alone saying that it is better than NS (which is a lie) is a recipe for disaster! Invitation to get flamed!
BTW, got 4.7 - It took me 4 hours on a clean 56K connection! Much faster launch than 4.61 though...
#65 IE is better than NS. So what?
Friday October 1st, 1999 7:41 AM
I wasn't trolling (assuming it was my comment you referred to) and I doubt anyone else was... though the attitude you refer to does sadly exist to an extent.
There are some hard facts around about IE/NS4.x, which people need to accept in order to help push for Mozilla to be the best browser possible.
IE5 is definitely more technically advanced than Netscape 4.x; for one thing, it has a faster renderer that actually copes with most of CSS1 (it does miss out/get wrong some important bits, but it's orders of magnitude ahead of NS) and can actually allow users to resize a window sensibly. It also has better usability features. (Right-click from bookmark menu to edit/delete a bookmark, for instance, is something that I'd really like in Netscape - although netscape's "drag little bookmark icon into menu" is cool too, that's one of the few little usability features on which Netscape still leads imo.)
In my experience, IE has also been more reliable than NS 4.61 although 4.7 may bring things back to a level, and some systems seem to be unreliable with IE, too.
But anyway... who cares? This isn't "netscape4.xZine". Netscape 4.x was definitely a good browser when it came out, with some impressive technological breakthroughs. Now it's a tired, old, crappy browser, slightly inferior in most ways to the Windows competition (IE5 and Opera as well), that remains in use only because people prefer its UI due to personal taste, because of pathological anti-MS sentiment, or because of inertia.
But, that doesn't matter, because the reason Netscape's current browser has been crap for some time is that they're working [with a little bit of outside assistance] on a new one which should be really good; which should be up-to-date; which should leapfrog the competition. Which is, in fact, the focus of this site.
--sam (who primarily uses Netscape 4.7 :)
#71 Was Netscape 4.X ever a "good browser" ?
Friday October 1st, 1999 5:10 PM
I'm off the opinion that I took an instant dislike to the Netscape 4.X series and have stuck with Netscape 3.04. I don't have much choice really, because I use UNIX.
Netscape 4.X's ergonomics and memory usage are horrendous really, particularly on 8-bit colour UNIX displays (the infamous "colour drain" that wasn't present on NS 3.04).
Here's the stuff that's wrong with all NS 4.X releases on UNIX:
* Navigator Standalone has no mailto: link support by default. * 8-bit colour displays map colours badly (even with "-install"). * Option to toggle auto image loading is ludicrously stuck way down in a dialogue box. * Far too much "chrome" at the top and bottom compared to NS 3.04. * RAM usage is off the scale compared to 3.X (30MB+ is not uncommon for the Complete Install version). * Very crucial "Find" button in NS 3.04 removed and replaced with the utterly, utterly pointless "Search" button (luckily, you can reverse this disaster by app-defaults hacking). * You can't close the "View Document Source" or "View Document Windows" (no menu option or keyboard shortcut to do it !!) - this means I end up with dozens of open windows and have to use my window manager to remove them....grrr.... * Security dialog can be brought up by about 4 different icons/keystrokes which is redundancy gone mad, particularly as the Security dialog is utterly irrelevant in non-secure mode !
Netscape must have had at least a dozen 4.X releases by now and have failed to fix any of the above major UNIX problems. Let's just be thankful they threw away the poor 4.X code and started again from scratch with Mozilla.
Netscape still have the eyes and ears of UNIX users mainly because IE never came out for Linux and the IE 5 implementations on Solaris and HP-UX are a major travesty.
Roll on Mozilla beta - I might finally be able to switch from NS 3.04 on UNIX (currently the best browser on that platform, IMHO).
#47 Can't download 4.7
Thursday September 30th, 1999 9:36 AM
I can't download 4.7. As anyone else experienced this? The whole file downloads then when it reaches "100% downloaded," it doesn't uncompress. It's not compression software issue because I have all the compression softwares. As anyone else experienced this stalling?
#58 Can't download 4.7
Thursday September 30th, 1999 5:39 PM
I've had similar problems, it seems that it isn't downloading right. This morning I set it to download and left for class and when I returned an hour and a half later it looked like it finish and I double clicked the icon but it didn't work.
#51 CNET's FUD
Thursday September 30th, 1999 2:51 PM
It's a CNET article about 4.7. Leave alone that they call it "AOL's new browser", look at this - the last line reads: "By most accounts AOL has fallen behind Microsoft in browser technology. Microsoft released its version 5.0 browser in March; Netscape has yet to release Communicator 5.0. A beta version was expected this summer."
This is so awful. As if bigger version number _means_ better technology. Internet Explorer 5 should have been called 4.3. The only feature that really works better in IE is better i18n then in Communicator 4.x (specifically - good Hebrew support, apparently not yet in the milestone builds).
#56 CNET's FUD
Thursday September 30th, 1999 5:07 PM
I just sent e-mail to the C|Net guy who authored the article explaining that the major improvements in 4.7 are actually the bug fixes (possibly one of the most stable 4.X releases so far) and the speed improvements. The "Netscape Radio" and "Shop@Netscape" things are *irrelevant* (they add no functionality to the browser at all - they're just built-in links to parts of Netscape's site !).
I also chided him for completely omitting to mention the 22 UNIX platforms that 4.7 has come out on (if you believed C|Net, you'd have thought it was only out on PCs and Macs) and also castigated him for failing to mention the Mozilla progress, pointing him to the nightly builds and the milestones page (beta = M13 - due out 2nd November).
Seems like these "journalists" just don't do any research - most of this was probably fed to him by a third-party and the lazy-arse just rephrased it and posted it up to news.com. Irresponsible considering the large readership the site has.
#66 IE *is* more advanced for now
Friday October 1st, 1999 8:20 AM
Not to play devil's advocate or anything, but all I have to do is resize a web page to see that Netscape 4.x is less advanced than IE 5.0. Don't kid yourself, until Mozilla comes out, Netscape is behind technically. Sure I like Netscape's interface better but when it comes to the HTML renderer, IE clearly has the edge for now.
#69 So Mozilla doesn't exist then ?
Friday October 1st, 1999 2:12 PM
"Until Mozilla comes out...".
You can go to Mozilla's FTP site, down a zip file, unpack it and run the apprunner. A pretty stable browser now (and the M10 snapshot due shortly will hopefully be even more stable) and actually usable as a day-to-day browser.
Yes, it's an alpha release and isn't shipped with Java or SSL, but you should really have said "until Mozilla beta comes out and is packaged with a no-brainer installer" (are there plans for one of those with the December beta release ?).
Also, will Mozilla be available for ftp.netscape.com and/or publicised from Netscape's site ? Since we know that Netscape 5.0 beta won't be out until next year now, the Netscape site really should player up the December Mozilla beta release to push people towards it. If they don't, very few Netscape users (Joe Public Windows users, not your Linux technies) will "stumble" across www/ftp.mozilla.org !
I'm sure about 95% of Netscape users don't even know that Mozilla exists.
#77 CNET's FUD
Sunday November 7th, 1999 7:56 AM
Don't forget final version of IE4 was released half a year after the final version of NS4, so obviously IE had technological advantages. And speaking of which, anyone's using IE4 with the channels feature anyway?
#53 Transfer interrupted! Fixed?
Thursday September 30th, 1999 4:30 PM
I'm still downloading NN4.7 and i wonder if this bug is fixed:
All of a sudden i have to press the stop button while loading a web page. So a bar and a message saying "Transfer interrupted!" gets appended to the end.But when i reload, they aren't erased and the webpage looks something li --------- Transfer interrupted! ref="booh.html">
Let's hope this bug got fixed now.
#59 Version Number Silliness
Thursday September 30th, 1999 6:36 PM
This one-upmanship in version numbers (NS 4.x vs. IE 5.x) is complete foolishness.
Here's a quick, simple fix:
Rename Netscape 5.0 to "Netscape 2001"
[The actual version number can stay 5.0, but it will be "Doing Business As" NS 2001 ;-]
That'll give M$ (the Bea$t) something to gnash its hairy teeth at!
#61 4.7 Out
Thursday September 30th, 1999 8:32 PM
I've gone right off NC4, because it is quite unstable on my Win98 box, and most importantly it's caching sucks. That "Work Offline" thing doesn't work!!
I pay for Net access per hour, and if I go to a very big page, like programming documentation, I don't want to sit there reading it while the meter is ticking.
IE5 works offline very well, the only pages I can't see are those generated by a POST request, which is fair enough. But with Netscape, any page that has any type of server-side dynamic logic is chucked out.
I know that maybe IE isn't totally spec-compliant in this respect (is it compliant with any??) but this is a useful feature to have.
Mozilla developers, please consider this.
#67 I'm kind of switching to IE
Friday October 1st, 1999 8:25 AM
I've stuck with Netscape for years, but lately I've been using IE quite a bit. The reason is that IE resizes pages on-the-fly without contacting the server, and you all know how Netscape does it.
Also IE's engine seems to start displaying pages much faster, and it counts when I'm on the road using a modem.
I really can't wait until "the" Netscape uses the Mozilla HTML engine, it will make it so much better. However, I notice that a lot of the pages I look at (e.g. www.shugashack.com, www.voodooextreme.com) look good in Netscape 4.x and IE, but don't look good in Mozilla.
This is alarming to me, are we going to get 100% standards-compliance at the price of web pages which are designed around the quirks of IE/NS4.x not displaying correctly?
A big price to pay IMO.
#73 Fullsoft.dll error
Tuesday October 5th, 1999 7:27 AM
After installing 4.7 I had an error in the Fullsoft.dll module.
This was fixed by deleting the folder Data in Communicator/Program/FullSoft
Before the update I had installed 4.6. I downloaded the cc32e47.exe. Via the Controllpanel I uninstalled Netscape and the RealPlayer and runned the program cc32e47.exe
Running the Mail client or the Browser both caused error in the Fullsoft.dll, but all worked fine after deleting the folder Data.
It seems like you can delete the folder before the install or after. Both will work.
Best regards, Herman Ransborg email@example.com
#75 Why no Navigator standalone for Windows?
Wednesday October 13th, 1999 12:15 PM
Why is there no Navigator standalone version 4.7 for Windows? (I found one for Linux.)
#76 TrueDoc Font Support Busted?
Thursday October 28th, 1999 5:16 PM
It seems TrueDoc Font support has been busted (again) since 4.5. Any news on a fix?
Monday November 15th, 1999 5:22 PM
wanna know what's really going on with NSC 4.5 thru 4.7 with the every day user? go2 dejanews.com and search with "netscape 4.x" and read the everyday comments... some comments are really surprising; but then again, it confirms some of the problems i'm also having. al B
#79 4.7 faster than IE5 to load on Win98SE systems
Wednesday November 17th, 1999 7:04 PM
After much testing, I have found Communicator 4.7 faster to load on systems running Win98SE ranging from a 486 DX-2 66 to a PIII 550. Anybody else found this?