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Netscape Navigator 9 Free Download

These days, when Firefox has the cool appeal and Internet Explorer the market clout, is there a place for other browsers? Yes, and the venerable, too-often-forgotten Netscape is a serious contender.

Netscape 9 borrows many of the cutting-edge features from its competitors and adds some nice touches of its own. The default interface is clean, clear, and functional, a marked contrast to the jumble of buttons and text bars which mar Explorer 7. It has a multi-functional sidebar which can show, as you desire, bookmarks, history, a mini-browser (allowing you to view two pages on the same tab), or Netscape's Linkpad. This clever innovation lets you store links for later review without cluttering your bookmarks with one-time URLs. Although the mini-browser would be more useful if it could be positioned horizontally, the other functions are very handy, and the ctrl-key switching between them is fast and smooth.

Response was generally snappy for normal use, with about a half-dozen tabs open. Even picture-heavy pages loaded quickly and smoothly. The download tool manages multiple files simultaneously. It shows them all in a single window, instead of cluttering your taskbar with multiple processes. It also gives you the option to restart a failed or interrupted download

In addition to the convenience of remembering your passwords, Netscape also allows you to enter a master password which unlocks all the others. This makes the save-password feature useful in an office or shared computing environment, where co-workers or family members might be using your computer.

The most distinctive feature of Netscape 9 is its emphasis on community. Netscape users can rate sites as interesting (or dull), so that other users can see what's hot--- or at least they are supposed to be able to do so. This feature would be very nice--making the browser a social networking application as well as a Web viewer--but I was unable to activate the feature on my computer. Despite becoming a member, making sure the option to disable this functionality was not checked, and restarting the browser, this function did not work on my PC. This was the only serious issue I noticed; a lesser issue was the curious inability to import settings from separated-at-birth twin browser Firefox (on the up side, Opera and Explorer imported easily).


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