Netscape Browser is the name of a proprietary Windows web browser issued by AOL, but formulated by Mercurial Communications. It is the eighth major release in name of the Netscape serial publication of browsers, originally produced by the defunct Netscape Communications Corporation.
This article is about Netscape Browser version 8. For an overview of all versions of the Netscape web browser software.
While Netscape Browser's version numbers begin at 8, it is grounded on Mozilla Firefox, whereas Netscape 6 and 7 were based on Mozilla Application Suite, itself a complete rewrite of the codebase developed in versions 1 through 4 - Netscape Navigator and Netscape Communicator. As with other recent versions, it incorporates support for AOL Instant Messenger, and other AOL-related features.
The Netscape Browser series was came after by Netscape Navigator 9. However, on Dec 28, 2007, Netscape developers announced that AOL would discontinue the web browser on Feb 1, 2008.
The Fusion theme included with version 8.0-8.0.4
The revised Fusion theme, included in versions 8.1-8.1.3Perhaps the most noteworthy feature introduced in Netscape Browser is the ability to use either of two layout engines to render websites — either Internet Explorer 6's Trident layout engine or the Gecko engine used by Mozilla and its derivatives. This is used as part of the browser's "Site Controls" system, which allows security settings to be altered on a per-site basis, and is also touted as a defense against phishing and similar attacks, with both blacklists and whitelists built in and automatically updated regularly. This system decides whether a site is "trusted" or "suspect", while only whitelisted sites use the Trident engine by default.
However, this feature is actually implemented by using the IE ActiveX control, which is composed of most of IE's architectures.
Other features highlighted by AOL's publicity include improved tabbed browsing capabilities, a toolbar system called the "MultiBar," which includes up to 10 toolbars in the space of one, and extra support for "Live Content", such as RSS feeds. In keeping with the security emphasis, a new secure form information and password management system, known as a "PassCard," which saves usernames and passwords for individual sites, is also included.
In Netscape version 8.1, the Security Center feature is much more integrated into the browser, and extra features, such as ID Theft Protection and Spyware Protection have been integrated.
Netscape includes a host of "widgets" designed to improve the browsing experience, including Local Weather data, Movie Times and reviews, Mapquest maps, Yellow pages, White pages, Stocks, and a City guide, all integrated into menu-enabled toolbar buttons.
Furthermore, a webmail button is included in the toolbar, which links directly to multiple webmail homepages and is configurable for multiple webmail accounts. A button to run the user's default mail client is included.
There are multiple smaller features included, including a shortcut menu that appears when text is selected to paste the selected text directly into a search engine of choice.
Finally, the browser includes a pop-up advertisement blocker which can be configured to allow pop-ups for individual sites, block only unrequested pop-ups, and open any pop-ups in new tabs in one window, thus preventing pop-unders