Browser

AOL pulls the plug on Netscape

On the threshold of a new year, AOL is finally calling it quits on the Web browser scene. It has officially announced that it is pulling the plug on the historical Netscape Navigator browser that literally popularized the World Wide Web.

On the threshold of a new year, AOL is finally calling it quits on the Web browser scene. It has officially announced that it is pulling the plug on the historical Netscape Navigator browser that literally popularized the World Wide Web.

In a blog post on Friday, Netscape's Tom Drapeau wrote:

AOL's focus on transitioning to an ad-supported Web business leaves little room for the size of investment needed to get the Netscape browser to a point many of its fans expect it to be. Given AOL's current business focus and the success the Mozilla Foundation has had in developing critically-acclaimed products, we feel it's the right time to end development of Netscape-branded browsers, hand the reigns fully to Mozilla, and encourage Netscape users to adopt Firefox.

Additional reading:

Support for Netscape will continue through February 1, 2008, but AOL recommends that people move on to Firefox. Happy 2008, folks.

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

8 comments
visitorsx3
visitorsx3

I'm using it now; this is an older PC and at the time the only IE out had no tabbed browsers, no adequate cookie filters, and the next upgrade of it (IE 6) was too much to download. Never understood why it shows up as a Mozilla Browser instead of ever being listed as Navigator; and it doesn't do well with some pages that use java and javascript - like these ones in fact! The forms don't show up in anything other than direct-reply mode. I haven't been able to view The Onion for years.

nentech
nentech

Try a download manager for large files Here is one that works with IE6 , IE7 and Firefox http://www.freedownloadmanager.org Links Firefox http://www.mozilla.com IE7 http://www.microsoft.com/windows/downloads/ie/getitnow.mspx IE6 sp1 How to get the full IE6 http://www.updatexp.com/download-ie6.html IE6 Downloader http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=1e1550cb-5e5d-48f5-b02b-20b602228de6&DisplayLang=en A download manger can stop and start downloads It can get the most out of your internet connection It can do slow downloads in the back ground while you browse the net Sorry if you already know all this

Tig2
Tig2

It has seemed to me for some time now that Mozilla should define its focus and stop with Netscape. Although it does feel a bit like waving good-bye to an old friend. Netscape was my first experience with an alternative browser and because of that, I was more willing to look at alternatives to Microsoft products. So long Netscape!

Larry the Security Guy
Larry the Security Guy

I too started in the early days of the net, being invited to dabble on ARPANet through a dial-up to NASA's Ames Research Center, then a UUCP and SLIP connection via a local provider (their host was called crash, but it never did as I recall). I had Quantum Link and Compuserve for my Commodore, then AOL for my IBM-compatible until they hit 600,000 about users (AOL actually had problems at that point because their systems couldn't handle the volume). I used all manner of non-graphic tools like Archie and Gopher, and even some early graphic tools like pen and paper to document my surfing history. DNS came out shortly after, so having to remember hundreds of IP addresses became unnecessary. Mosaic was the coolest thing to come out back then because it turned this geeky and foreign internet into a Hypercard stack. It put pictures into the text that could be viewed without first downloading a document and then hoping one had a compatible WYSIWYG viewer/editor. A 1200-baud connection was sufficient for most net surfing because web pages didn't have immense graphics or animations, and CD-sized files simply didn't exist online (an 80 meg hard drive was huge then). Ah. Those were the days.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

If I understand how this brand name has been passed around, Mozilla has nothing to do with "Netscape" any longer as they had previously sold the brand to AOL. They then continued on with Firefox and Mozilla/Seamonkey development. That's how I understand it anyhow but it's a lineage of history I don't know all the details of. If your interested there was a long line of posts about it here: http://www.osnews.com/comment.php?news_id=19093 For me, the first browser I used was actually a Gopher client. It blew my mind when that first session started at my ISP then sent me to a university in the states which routed me too some university in Australia. That was just before the BBs decline so anything past local calling was noticable. The second thing that broke my head was being able to read the document I was downloading *while* it was downloading. It was a copy of Grimm's Fairytales grabbed as a test. Ok, html browsers.. hehe.. Netscape would have been my first. Netscape, then IE.. Linux based OS didn't see my computer until after I got bored of NT4 which is when the rest of the browser offerings became available too me. Up until the last archive drive crash, I was still testing websites against Netscape Standalone (I never did like the bundled and bloated "communicator" edition.. it was always standalone browser for me).

ManiacMan
ManiacMan

I too then started with Netscape Navigator on Windows and eventually moved onto Firefox. What does annoy me at times is that some websites are strictly designed to be used with IE and don't work too well without it. Browser discrimination must stop!

Tig2
Tig2

There are open standards, they should be used at all times. When I happen on a site that does not render in Firefox, I email the site and tell them why they will not have my business. Sometimes I get a response, sometimes I don't. But I DO point out that Mac users don't generally take the step backward of installing IE on their computers. Firefox and Safari both work just fine.

NaughtyMonkey
NaughtyMonkey

IE Tab in Firefox but from what I understand, with IE8 most of those sites will not work either.