Netscape Communicator 4.8 Browser-Suite Released
Mike Angelo -- 23 August 2002 (c)
Netscape 4.8 is out! The Netscape Communicator 4.8 browser-suite upgrade for the Linux, Unix, Macintosh, and Microsoft Windows platforms is on AOL-Time-Warner's Netscape division FTP servers (links below). However, at press time Netscape 4.8 is not listed on the Netscape Products Page.
At press time, there is no what's new section in the Netscape Communicator 4.8 Release Notes. However, here is the what's new info from the Netscape Communicator 4.79 Release Notes:
Netscape Communicator 4.8 is based on more than four-year old code that was thrown out by the Mozilla Organization in its development of the Mozilla browser-suite and application-programming framework. The newer Netscape 6 and Netscape 7 browser-suites are based on the re-built from the ground up Mozilla code.
Nevertheless, a significant number of Netscape Communicator users appear to prefer the older Netscape 4 product to the newer Netscape 6 and Netscape 7 products. Also, Netscape 4.7x is included with many Linux distributions. So, AOL-Time-Warner's Netscape division continues to make minor updates to its older Netscape 4 product in order to accommodate its Netscape 4.x users.
In our 30 December 2000 article, New Browser War Heats Up -- But It's Netscape vs. Netscape, we noted that "MozillaQuest Magazine is getting more hits from Netscape 4.x browsers than from Netscape 6 and other Mozilla-based browsers combined." However, we now are getting more hits from Netscape 6 and other Mozilla-based browsers taken together than we are from Netscape 4.x browsers. Our Web-server log analyses do not distinguish between the Mozilla-based Netscape 6/7 browser and the actual Mozilla browser.
Starting with the first Netscape 6 preview release (Netscape 6 PR1), in April 2000 and then through the NS 6 PR 2, NS 6 PR3, Netscape 6.0 and Netscape 6.01 editions, Netscape 6.x has come under heavy criticism from the computer trade press, consumers, loyal Netscape fans, and developers.
The recently released Netscape 6.23 is much improved over those earlier, premature Netscape 6.x releases. It is getting a much better response from computer trade press, consumers, and loyal Netscape users. Give it a try and judge for yourself. For more information about Netscape 6.23, download links, and installation instructions, please see our articles Netscape 6.23 Browser-Suite Released and How To Download, Install, & Configure Netscape 6.0 -- Safely!.
However, you might want to try Netscape 7.0-PR1 even though it is a preview release. It's much better than the Netscape 6.x series. However, Netscape 7.0-PR1 still has lots of bugs, annoyances, and issues. It is based on Mozilla 1.0 release candidate code. So, many of the performance, bug, annoyance, issues, and other such matters that apply to Mozilla 1.0 also apply to Netscape 7.0-PR1. You might want to check our comprehensive Mozilla 1.0 coverage and just apply most of the pros and cons there to Netscape 7.0-PR1.
You can download Netscape Communicator 4.8 for free from the Netscape FTP servers. We suggest that you download the complete install files and install Netscape 4.8 off-line. Please see our article How To Download, Install, & Configure Netscape 6.0 -- Safely!. for more information about that. Although that article is written for use with Netscape 6.x, much of it applies to Netscape 4.8 as well.
Here are the Netscape Communicator 4.8 download links.
For more information about the Mozilla browser-suite and downloading it, please see our Comprehensive Mozilla 1.0 Coverage.
To create your own Netscape 6 themes or to build your own customized Mozilla-based browser suite, please see: MozillaQuest the Series: Building Your Own Mozilla-Based Web Browser
For more information about Netscape 6.23 (NS 6.23), please see our article, Netscape 6.23 Browser-Suite Released.
Please see our two part series, Is Netscape Losing the Browser Wars? Part I: Linux Could Be Netscape's Last Browser Battlefield and Part II: Why Are Major Linux Distributions Rejecting Netscape 6?
For more information about AOL's rejection of the Netscape browser and its plans for Gecko technology, please see our article AOL 7.0: Good News for AOL Users & Microsoft - Bad News for Netscape & Mozilla
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