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NetSurf 1.1 download available

By Nick Brown. Published: 17th Aug 2007, 21:01:51 | Permalink | Printable

Open source web browser for RISC OS updated

netsurf in WikipediaJust months after the long awaited release of NetSurf version 1.0, the team has provided us with an update.

After years of hard work, you may have assumed the NetSurf developers, arguably the creators of the most up to date usable RISC OS browser, would have taken a break after getting to the important 1.0 milestone in time for Wakefield 2007. Not these guys though, and following feedback from punters, an updated version, 1.1, was released this week to address some of the bugs and security issues found in the May release.

The new release is provided for both RISC OS and other platforms by using the GTK library. Some notable bugs are fixed and general updates for RISC OS have been found in the charset detector, cookie system, error page builder, scroll wheel system - now supported in the hotlist and history list - ArtWorks renderer, and hot list entries are now more up to date. This latest version also includes updated documentation and translations.

The full list of tweaks and enhancements is here.

Interestingly, with the release of the GPL version 3, the latest version of NetSurf's open source license has been changed to GPLv2-only with a clause allowing for the use of OpenSSL. The development team leaders made a considerable effort to contact all known past code contributors to agree on the licensing path taken.

Even though these updated version releases are often found a couple of months apart, the latest test build is available as a direct snapshot of the web browser, updated every 15 minutes, direct from the team. With talk of future features being, amongst other things, eventual Javascript support, updates to come from the team should certainly prove to be useful.

Links


NetSurf website Wikipedia entry

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Discussion

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Great since NetSurf by now is my favorite browser for RISC OS - kicking Browse off that throne.

One small oddity might be nice to be fixed: When I click on the maximize window icon at the top right hand corner the window height is maximized but the width is not - I'd love that one fixed since for some pages like on eBay full screen display at 1600x1200 is really nice.

Another nice feature would be the option that when adjust clicking on a window it opens *behind* the currently open one so that opening the several Google or eBay links is quicker (that is a bit like the tabbed browsing of Firefox).

 is a RISC OS Userhzn on 18/8/07 7:43AM
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hzn: The first problem you mention is not a bug, it is by design. I don't personally agree with that design, so it'd be nice to have an option to switch between modes. (It's standard RISC OS behavior for the toggle button to only change change veritically if it already has enough horizontal space to display the document - try it in something like Publisher or TechWriter.)

The second option: I think I'd just prefer tabbed browing :) It means you don't get a dozen windows floating about, only one.

 is a RISC OS Userrjek on 18/8/07 8:44AM
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I think a bit of thought needs to go into the UI design for "tabbed browsing". The way RISC OS windows naturally work is already half way there, so I'd prefer to see the design working in concert with the general RISC OS UI than just copying Firefox/Opera wholesale. Another opportunity (like the drag-file-to-upload-box method) for NetSurf to show its colours :)

 is a RISC OS Useradamr on 18/8/07 11:20AM
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Excellent news, indeed I was a bit surprised by the quick appearance of 1.1. My compliments to the team!

hzn: That sounds like you want a bit of (archaic) Windows behaviour in NetSurf! Like rjek points out, NetSurf simply follows standard RISC OS GUI behaviour. It's quite typical though; most newcomers to the Mac also find this behaviour odd, since OS X mostly behaves like RISC OS in this respect. Personally I find the Windows approach such dated behaviour, which stems from the low-resolution, pre-drag&drop, single-app focus days... RISC OS and NeXTSTEP got it right at the beginning!

Support for tabbed browsing would be very cool in NetSurf, which could be implemented in a RISC OS friendly manner by providing suitable configuration options. For the time being, I simply iconise new windows.

 is a RISC OS UserhEgelia on 18/8/07 4:39PM
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In reply to rjek:

I never claimed that to be a bug but just an oddity! Anyhow, according to the style guide when I ask a window to go to max size it should do so if possible.

 is a RISC OS Userhzn on 18/8/07 4:55PM
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In reply to hEgelia:

Well, what's wrong with "archaic Windows" behaviour if it makes life easier - anyhow it is not Windows but Firefox behaviour! Every so often I search for something on eBay. With Firefox on Windows (on RISC OS it is unusably slow) I like the option to click on several items found by my search, wait for them to load and then look through them. With NetSurf I click on one link, have then to iconise the new window or get the search result list one back to top, click on the next etc. It works but is by far less efficient.

If such a option is added to NetSurf with tabbed browsing of if it offers some option to open a link in a window behind the current one I'd be happy!

 is a RISC OS Userhzn on 18/8/07 5:00PM
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hzn: If it makes your life easier and it doesn't cause worldwide chaos and madness, I guess it's all right then. :)

Firefox on Windows follows Windows GUI behaviour, since it's a Windows application. On RISC OS, an application rarely, if ever, uses more space than required to display a window's full content, i.e. it will not 'stretch' the content when toggling the size button to maximise a window. Anyway, I understand your point. It's always a matter of personal preference, but my previous comment mentions why I think it's "wrong", i.e. dated behaviour.

 is a RISC OS UserhEgelia on 18/8/07 5:44PM
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Yay! Compiled on Kubuntu 7.04.

[link]

BTW, is the 'click and hold' nature of the pop up menu intentional?

 is a RISC OS Userkillermike on 18/8/07 10:42PM
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killermike: No. It's a bug I keep meaning to investigate (it doesn't occur on any of my machines.)

We have an Ubuntu package pre-built that we may put on the website - NetSurf 1.1 has gotten into Debian Sid and FreeBSD ports already.

 is a RISC OS Userrjek on 19/8/07 9:35AM
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