Windows

Safari 3.0 Beta For Windows: The Right Tool for the Job?

Safari installer

Apple claims its new Safari 3.0 Windows Web browser loads pages faster than both IE 7 and Firefox 2.0. Here's a look at the new Windows Safari interface and an overview of its many new features.

The Safari Setup program, about 8MB, features a simple installer.

About

Erik Eckel owns and operates two technology companies. As a managing partner with Louisville Geek, he works daily as an IT consultant to assist small businesses in overcoming technology challenges and maximizing IT investments. He is also president o...

38 comments
orange2343
orange2343

I started using it, though not exclusively, and it does seem faster than IE7 and Firefox.

Fil0403
Fil0403

Competition is always good, but I wouldn't exactly consider a tool in which security vulnerabilities were found before it was even released to be the right one for the job. Regarding the page-loading times, no wonder Safari it's faster, it doesn't have Phishing Filter like Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer 7 does, I think it would have been much more fair and scientific to disable the Phishing Filter in IE7 before doing these tests - maybe they did that but the results weren't convenient to them, because I bet IE7 would be faster (no wonder they call the test "unscientific").

betta093
betta093

"Just like Internet Explorer 7 and Firefox 2.0, Safari readily supports surfing the Web using multiple tabs." Tab browsing is a feature, even Mac users have enjoyed long before Internet Explorer 7.

zarathustra2010
zarathustra2010

It's a little too buggy to use on an everyday basis, but it is looking rather promising, and should give IE 7 some needed competition. What I DON'T like about it: the non-standard windows, which refuse to conform to the XP theming engine. What Apple products would I LOVE to see on my Windows desktop? iChat+Bonjour, so I can speak with my brother visually on our local Apple wireless network while he is elsewhere (He refuses to use a cross-platform IM agent which uses an external network such as Yahoo Messenger or Microsoft Messenger.) Donald McDaniel

naebeth
naebeth

although i am open minded to software from other OSs, such as Apple Mac or Linux, i refuse to believe that FireFox 2 was slower than IE7, especially seeing as i access the xbox website frequently and have never found it to load faster in IE than FireFox.

TNT
TNT

I really wish TechRepublic would go a little deeper than showing us install screens and other screen shots and telling us information that is only a rephrasing of what is already mentioned in that window. How about telling us what benefit or problems may be associated with letting Bonjour examine your network? How about telling us what currently doesn't work? (Like proxy settings and spell check.) And while it's okay to do an "unscientific" study in the interest of time, how about telling us at least what connection speed you were using when conducting the tests? I know more about this product in five minutes of playing with it than I learned from this article. Here's my take on the product: First, this is a Beta product so some things are not going to work well, or at all. Is it the right tool for the job? Not yet, but when the final release comes out both IE and Firefox will have fresh competition. If you like the iTunes interface, or just love all things Apple, this browser is for you. If you hate iTunes stick with FireFox.

niallf
niallf

Tried it, didn't see much of a speed up, the gui wasn't as good as Firefox. It crashed when using Yahoo mail. Uninstalled now.

darren
darren

wont work on my vista PC

Mikecresci
Mikecresci

Wow! you might be able to actually surf the internet without your PC crashing!

drvssm
drvssm

nice i shall try it out

wood
wood

boy....your test really stink...it takes me 4 seconds to have npr's site finish loading...using firefox 2.0.4. so firefox is twice as fast as ... firefox????

brad.davis
brad.davis

it's still a beta product - the import is silly (one file at a time) and the password box popped up and Safari bombed off. (XP)

rising_hope
rising_hope

There's still a bit of quirkiness in behavior with the new browser which will probably prevent me from using it full time. In particular, you can't minimize it with a click on the task bar as most applications in Windows. The charcoal font looks great on a mac, but for whatever reason comes across as looking "thick" on my PC. Additionally, some pages still do not work, like Yahoo Mail Beta. Also, with no equivalent plug-in to no-script for Firefox, Firefox will remain my browser of choice -- for now, at least -- on Windows.

Mr L
Mr L

I loaded safari up, went to configure it for our proxy, a the option on the advanced tab is grayed out. I notice in the screenshots here that it is grayed out as well

Erik Eckel
Erik Eckel

Just to be clear, when I timed each of the three browsers (IE 7, Firefox and Safari) as to how long they required to load each of the five Web sites I compared against, I had IE's Phishing Filter turned OFF. I felt that only made for a fair comparison.

Sereniti
Sereniti

The best browser innovation/feature ever if you use the web like I do, even if you're just a surfer. I believe Safari was the first to implement it, but it's possible that was Firefox.

Fil0403
Fil0403

Too bad you Mac users can't "enjoy" Phishing Filter security, isn't it?

rader
rader

This probly one of the best I have found and have used for years and is free. http://www.avantbrowser.com/ There are a wide variety of accessible adjustments and easy to use. The rest of the browsers like Explorer 7 is lame. This Avant browser has awards also http://www.avantbrowser.com/awards.html What ever you are use to, but this the browser I like.

zetacon4
zetacon4

This beta has no javascript console. It bombs out on my application, but gives me no clue as to what is failing. Also, I didn't like the fact that you can only resize the window from a tiny lower right-hand corner. That is a serious omission for sure. As for speed, I see no difference in speed on my comcast cable connection. I believe perceived speed differences mostly result from other factors not part of the browser engine. This beta is still not ready for prime time. But, it's nice to know they will be putting the Safari on the Windows platform for web development testing.

bmagurn
bmagurn

I agree completely. It seems tech republic always has a good headline to grab my attention, and then, like you said, no meat to the article. I'm confused as to whether this is supposed to be a site for IT Pros or newbies. Some articles are slightly technical, and others show screenshots of the "next" button.

betta093
betta093

Sadly I hear that a lot from new Vista owners, it will be like that for a while.

jbunsto
jbunsto

I went into my IE settings and UNchecked the automatic configuration option in the LAN settings of IE7. We leave the autconfiguration script field empty and unchecked even though the autoconfig is checked. We used Group Policy to propagate this info...not sure why Safari fails to pick up the proxy data...perhaps it assumes there was to be info from an autoconfig script. Either way mine works now.

michael_orton
michael_orton

I have just added the Beta of Safari to a XP/SuSe 10.2 dual boot PC. Already in XP I had IE-7, Opera, Firefox, SeaMonkey, Flock and Maxthon so I could compare them. Safari is by far the worst followed by IE-7. Other than to see how the other side (macs) works, I see no point in Safari for Windows. Its large, bloated, slow, has no advantages over Firefox and Opera.

shawnx2000
shawnx2000

Safari gets it's proxy settings from Internet Explorer.

Sereniti
Sereniti

I haven't used Safari on my Mac (except for testing) since I discovered Firefox a few years back. What, you think we're all sheep?

noelrd
noelrd

I was wondering why you were calling IE "lame" when the Avant browser uses the IE engine and adds its own embellishments?

Sereniti
Sereniti

Yeah, Mac users are used to that as it's been the standard since the stone ages. I've always hated it. You'd think they'd get a clue, wouldn't you?

colin_blunt
colin_blunt

Cricky, what a load of Bu_ll one would expect surely a company of Apple's supposed expertice in both the development and corporate environment when faced with the challenge or presenting a browser equivalent or better than Internet Explorer or Safari for Windows that it would work on Windows? Safarai on Windows XP prop SP2 fully pathced throws a rather nasty authentication window when trying to connect to our corporate Proxy server, if you type in the correct information the browser fails and wants to notify Microsoft with error reporting. IE 7 worked flawlessly for me first install on every machine I've got it on. I'm yet to be conviced otherwise. Having said all of that I suppose it is a Beta release.

rslegge
rslegge

My IE has proxy settings which work, the beta just doesn't provide this facility yet - OK for a beta, you can't expect perfection, can you say BETA?

christopher.ramey
christopher.ramey

I have the same problem. The proxy setting box is greyed out. Safari doesn't work, but IE and FireFox do. If it's pulling the info from IE, it's not doing a good job at it. My company uses an Automatic Configuration Script, which I suspect is the issue. I set the proxy in IE manually, started Safari and was then prompted for the proxy username/password. But once I clicked "log in", it crashes every time. Looks like Apple needs to go back to the drawing board.

Mr L
Mr L

I do not thin' it means what you thin' it means... Releasing a browser that nabs its proxy setting from IE very unreliably is poor form no matter who you are. A "public" beta should have already flown past closed beta testing where this should have been uncovered. Look at the forum you posted that fairly insulting comment in...yes, I suspect most of us know what a public beta is. Do you?

jdarellanos
jdarellanos

Take a breath and read, bugs like "my browser can?t work with a proxy server" never mind in a beta version, this is a 16 years old geek, never from a big and loved company like Apple. I admire and can died protecting Apple, but i have the objetivity to censure this big bug. A cup of coffe to relax?

markinct
markinct

While I agree people need to temper criticism with the fact that it's a BETA release... and they SHOULD be reporting issues... But bread and butter items like a proxy server configuration are things that should be nailed down in unit or ALPHA testing.

Sereniti
Sereniti

Interesting. Safari's beta has a bug. Did you report it? Isn't that why they call it beta TESTING? It really frosts me when people TEST a product that ISN'T READY FOR MARKET YET, then WHINE if something doesn't work. IF EVERYTHING WORKED RIGHT, IT WOULDN'T BE A BETA VERSION, WOULD IT? If you're not willing to be a TESTER and take the extra time needed to report bugs, then don't download/use the doggone software until the SECOND upgrade of the full, market-ready product. Seems like a no-brainer to me.

jdarellanos
jdarellanos

I've installed the latest version 3.0.1 and still no-working, it crashes after i introduce my credentials to proxy server, i did'nt find any support at apple web site. The apple software update is working great.

mconiegs
mconiegs

Same issue. This seems to be the same Apple issue that always arises. Everything looks great until you get to the bit where Apple knows better than you. Must admit that the un-install worked great. Also Firefox was just faster.

jdarellanos
jdarellanos

Same problem to me, i can't believe there is no option to change manually the proxy setting, i thougth it crashes because my SP or the language but it really crashes. I'm really disapointed, sorry Apple i follow you to the end of the world. Unfortunately i need to use WXP at work :-S