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Strengths and Weaknesses

  • August 10, 2000
  • By Michael Hall

Netscape 6 can be downloaded from the Netscape Web site or their ftp site. It weighs in at around 12MB, making it about 5MB heftier than the Mozilla binary release.

It arrives in a standard tarball that unzips into a directory labelled 'netscape-installer'. By running the script within that directory (named, unsurprisingly, 'netscape-installer') the user can launch a graphical installation tool. The tool offers the usual (for the Windows world) "Typical/Custom/Full" options for installation. Users may choose to install the browser on its own, or include support for AOL Instant Messenger, Japanese language support, Full Circle crash reporting software, the mail and news clients, and the spell checker. The installer is, by the way, GTK-based.

Once those options are selected, the program installs the required components in the target directory and quietly, very quietly, exits. Changing to the target directory (/usr/local/netscape, by default) and typing ./netscape, which sets some environmental variables and launches the program.

We installed it on a Duron 650 with 160 MB of RAM running Debian 2.2 (Frozen/Potato) with all updates, and ran it under Helix Code GNOME 1.2 with the Sawfish window manager.

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