homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member

Home / Forums Index / Code, Content, and Presentation / HTML
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: incrediBILL

HTML Forum

Netscape 6 ships

 2:13 pm on Nov 14, 2000 (gmt 0)

Netscape 6 finally ships after 32-month gestation [news.cnet.com]



 4:25 pm on Nov 14, 2000 (gmt 0)

Thanks, RC. I noticed this line:

>>...Netscape 6 marketing campaign bears the stamp of AOL's familiar methods: Netscape 6 will be distributed on CDs included in numerous magazines...<<

I've been wondering how they hoped to carve out a market share now that MSIE is so dominant. Should have known with AOL as owners we'd see lot's of free coasters.

I'm more than a little apprehensive about this. Not that I'm against standards-compliance. It's a nice idea (wonder if it will ever really happen?). It's just that backward compatibility may be a huge problem for a while -- even with Netscape 4.7 -- since so much HTML today includes non-standard workarounds which would not work well in a strict HTML4 environment.

I'm most concerned with is this: right now we code for NN and MSIE on at least PC and Mac. Some sites I optimize for WEBtv as well and AOL has some proprietary oddities of its own to look out for. Add in SEO as at LEAST the equivalent of coding for another browser. Will a standards-compliant Netscape 6 add yet another item to this list before it eventually simplifies things?


 5:39 pm on Nov 14, 2000 (gmt 0)

>Will a standards-compliant Netscape 6 add yet another item to this list before it eventually simplifies things?

Since I happen to know that you ran the beta through hoops on this, I'm assuming that's a rhetorical question, Tedster. (I shudder to think what the NS6 rendering might produce. My browser sniffing script will soon be bigger than the content on most pages, btw.)


 7:16 pm on Nov 14, 2000 (gmt 0)

Yes, it's a rhetorical question, rc. I'm very much in the same camp with lots of designers -- I never worried about standards compliant coding as long as I found a way to render the page well in most browsers.

Now I will have some past sins to fix, and some learning to do. I hope it's all worthwhile, because the future really needs standards. (heck, the present does!)

Imagine not worrying about compatibility testing!


 5:07 am on Nov 15, 2000 (gmt 0)

1st problem that I've found is that it doesn't have support for layer animations (which is supported by IE and netscape 4.7)


 7:44 am on Nov 15, 2000 (gmt 0)

Thanks seth. I look forward to hearing more of your observations. The sooner we see the lay of the land, the better. Explorer is also gearing up for their HTML4 release -- but last I heard it won't be in strict standards compliance.

When I tested the preview version, it behaved exactly as the "strict HTML4" viewer on anybrowser.com [anybrowser.com] predicted -- with no concession made to transitional HTML4.

This is probably a good thing. A lot of the bugs we've seen in the past came from trying to make browsers that were "forgiving" of bad code. It's just going to be a painful transition, except for the most vanilla sites.


 4:45 pm on Nov 15, 2000 (gmt 0)

What am I doing wrong? I type https://www....... into the address window to go to a site with a Thawte cert. It won't go. The lock flashes and tells me that the site I'm currently at (netscape) doesn't support validation.

I tried going to a site that (when you order) goes to a different domain (with a Thawte). Same thing.


 9:08 pm on Nov 21, 2000 (gmt 0)

I can't get it to let me paste urls into the address bar. Right-clicking does nothing.

Super annoying when trying to check sites/pages.


 9:21 pm on Nov 21, 2000 (gmt 0)

>I can't get it to let me paste urls into the address bar. Right-clicking does nothing.

>Super annoying when trying to check sites/pages

The right-click button is exactly the reason I use NS4 for working vs IE (also I like the NS bookmark file). I had heard that the right-click had been hurt in NS6.


 9:29 pm on Nov 21, 2000 (gmt 0)

I'm concerned about keeping my old 4.7 in working order. Any word on how well this works with a 6.0 install?


 9:32 pm on Nov 21, 2000 (gmt 0)


NS 6 Browser Sniffer [webreference.com]


 9:40 pm on Nov 21, 2000 (gmt 0)


I run 6.0 and 4.6 concurrently with no problems. I have heard different NS versions usually play well together.


 9:46 pm on Nov 21, 2000 (gmt 0)

>concerned about 4.7

Tedster, I kept a copy of the old n32d408.exe download. That's the "browser only" version of what's packaged w/ NS4.7 Communicator. If you wipe out, and need to reinstall, let me know.

Thanks Drastic, that's good to know. We were posting at the same time.


 1:13 am on Nov 22, 2000 (gmt 0)

Thanks for reassurances. Now I have NN6 safely installed, without mishap - except that I also got Composer, despite my best efforts not to. No wipe out of bookmarks, addresses or other key records.

I see the non-functioning right click, and that is a pain. I also felt a moment's anger when the AOL shortcut appeared on my desktop.

The browser-based search, right from the location bar, could be an important change. If users start going to Netscape Search results (and therefore the GoTo top 2) directly from the browser GUI, that could be an interesting factor in the SEO game.


 7:46 am on Nov 22, 2000 (gmt 0)

Well, after a few hours, I've seen enough problems with Netscape 6 that I think I'd have to call it a beta (and not a very advanced one.)

I noticed the same extreme sluggishness with secure sites that net24_7 mentioned. For instance, it took over 2 minutes to access the account management page on GoTo. That just won't work in an e-commerce world. It's like having sleeping cashiers all over the net!

I've seen some real insanity on simple javascript -- basic rollovers not preloading the new images, so the area of the page just goes blank on a mouseover. Then the rolled-over link takes over a minute to respond onclick.

It's often hard to tell if the browser isn't working at all or if it's just extremely slow. The status bar gives no informative messages -- just a thermometer. Maybe AOL thought all that technical stuff was scaring the multitudes.
The status bar reports "document done" when the HTML is in, even if nothing renders on-screen for another two minutes because of images downloading and tables getting sorted out.

The feel is very strange. The new screen often waits to come up until there is material to render -- and I'm used to a nearly instantaneous change to a blank screen once a link is clicked.

Even the onboard menu is slow to respond. I went to clear the cache and thought my click hadn't registered. And not only is the right click gone, but the instant highlight of the full URL in the location window is gone, too.

Some old bugs are fixed -- that's good. No more extra "browser english" in rendering frames, for instance. No more 1 pixel margins if margins are set to zero.

But if AOL expects their Netscape dog to hunt, they better train it a little better before they flood the world with a whole bunch of shiny new mini-frisbees.


 9:40 pm on Nov 22, 2000 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the 'beta' report, Tedster. Maybe I'll just wait for version 7... ummm, no, they'll skip that... version 8 coming out in early 2003.


 9:47 pm on Nov 22, 2000 (gmt 0)

You're welcome, rc. I'm pleased to report that the uninstall is very clean. It did leave the AOL shortcut behind for a manual delete, however.

To be even-handed, NN6 shows a lot of promise. But what they need is excellence, not just promise.


 9:13 pm on Nov 25, 2000 (gmt 0)

I noticed something, and failed to investigate beore I hastily uninstalled NN6. I was pretty sure that something was different about the color rendering -- the shades of gray on WmW looked different -- and better.

Has anyone checked into the color rendering on NN6?


 4:21 am on Nov 27, 2000 (gmt 0)

I use Netscape 6.0 as my main browser, and I *have* noticed differences on some sites (Burst! looks more pastel with 6.0 than with 4.x)

Most sites seem unaffected, aside from the fact that NS6 implements a number of CSS features that were ignored by NN4 and IE5.x.


 6:40 am on Nov 27, 2000 (gmt 0)

Hi, gmiller, and thanks for your input. Since you are using Netscape 6 for your main browser, do you have any input about the other areas mentioned above?

I know I've been picking on it a bit, but I would value someone to champion it and tell me where I'm off-base.

Bernie Greene

 4:05 pm on Nov 27, 2000 (gmt 0)

I use Netscape 4.76 right now.
I am a strict Netscape user, using IE only for testing purposes. Is NS 6 worth the upgrade or should I wait for more of the bug fixs (are there any fixs coming up?)?
Your personal and professional
are appreciated.


 4:45 pm on Nov 27, 2000 (gmt 0)

yup IE to test only :) MAC purist!

Wait for the fixes.
Stalls and crashes 1 to 2 times a day.
You would think it was an MS product - jezzzzzz MAD AS H###


 3:54 am on Nov 28, 2000 (gmt 0)

Here's my list of pros and cons so far... Pros:

Fast page rendering. It seems somewhat slower than IE on complex nested table pages, and somewhat faster on simple tables and CSS-based layouts.

Accurate page display. You can pretty much name whatever feature you might want and it's supported. It seems to do a much better job with CSS and JavaScript DOM than IE.

W3C DOM. It's nice to finally be able to produce JS pages that work with both IE5 and NS6 without any sniffing or conditional code. Based on my current visitor statistics, I'd say it's time to drop document.all, and Netscape 6 means we can probably lose document.layers within 6 months or a year.

Slick UI. The modern theme is simple and clean. The one from PR1 and PR2 was hideous.


Slow startup time. A shade over 20 seconds for me. My understanding is that we can expect a statically linked version and a boot-time preloader like IE uses to leave most of the browser in RAM and reduce app startups, so that should help.

No XSLT yet. It wasn't ready when 6.0 was released. Personally, I'm more concerned with SVG (which also wasn't ready), but XSLT is an issue for some people.

No LDAP. Not a problem for me, but it seems to be giving corporate users some headaches.

No layers or IE DOM. If you haven't moved to W3C DOM yet, Netscape 6 users will either get the wrong page or fall back to the non-JS version. Another fine example of why so many tutorials advise you not to use browser sniffing :)


 4:39 am on Nov 28, 2000 (gmt 0)

Thought about it some more, and here are some additional issues:


Stability. I've been using 6.0 constantly since release without a single crash. The original release of 4.0 was a true disaster.

Sidebar. Some people love it. I don't use it, but you can have the browser do a web search and put the results in the sidebar (no need to click back after visiting of the sites in the results), operate bookmarks from there, etc. Sites can add buttons to install custom content into the user's sidebar on demand, and you can configure the browser to add a news site's RSS headline feed as a sidebar tab. Someday, I'll give that one a try, but I haven't gotten around to it yet.


The bookmarks menu. It uses autoscrolling menus instead of multicolumn menus. The "File Bookmark" option wasn't finished in time for release. Sometimes the bottom of the menu gets chopped off, forcing you to either open a new window and use its bookmark menu to scroll down or use the bookmark editing window. Sometimes, passing the pointer over the scroll arrows causes the UI to get "stuck" scrolling until you pass it back over the arrow more slowly.


 4:54 am on Nov 28, 2000 (gmt 0)

Has anyone tried the Linux version? I am not too happy with 4.x - well, I mean it is quite poor compared to the windows version. I don't really have the space on my partition but I'll make the room if I here thumbs up.

Bernie Greene

 2:14 pm on Nov 28, 2000 (gmt 0)

Thanks everyone for your feedback, I think I will do as someone else mentioned and try it along with 4.76 and give it the run through.:)


 8:00 pm on Dec 14, 2000 (gmt 0)

LA Times/MacCentral: Don't bother with Netscape 6 [maccentral.com]


 8:40 pm on Dec 14, 2000 (gmt 0)

>Has anyone tried the Linux version?

To answer my own question. Yes, it is an improvement over Netscape 4.x. It does seem to load pages faster and have some features that are good for seo work the 4.x just didn't have. I particularly like how 6.0 gives you greater access to the cookie file. You can enable / disable cookies, view them and delete them (all at ones or one at a time). I don't like the side bar much, but it could be deactivated. External proxies are still easy to add and remove.

Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  

Home / Forums Index / Code, Content, and Presentation / HTML
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved