Netscape 8 'breaks' IE

Netscape 8 'breaks' IE

Summary: Following a problem in IE with XML rendering after Netscape 8 has been installed, Microsoft is advising users to uninstall Netscape

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TOPICS: Apps
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Microsoft has alerted users that Netscape's latest browser appears to break the XML rendering capabilities in Microsoft Internet Explorer.

Dave Massy, a senior programme manager for IE, warned users in a blog posting that after installing Netscape 8, IE will render XML files as a blank page, including XML files that have an XSLT transformation.

Microsoft did not make clear what versions of IE were affected, but a user of the DeveloperDex forum said he experienced the problem on version 6 of IE, which had been patched with Windows Service Pack 2. The forum user, known as cybarber, said this issue has put him off using Netscape.

"This is really really bad," said cybarber in the posting. "Netscape was dead and now I will bury it so deep it will never surface. Internet Explorer (7?) is all I need."

Microsoft said it was investigating the problem and will work with Netscape to resolve it. It advised a "work around" of uninstalling Netscape 8 and editing the registry settings.

One reader of the blog said the rendering problem could be a problem with IE, rather than Netscape. He suggested that such a feature could be useful for Microsoft as it would deter users considering a migration from IE to Netscape.

"I really don't want to sound cynical, sarcastic or satirical, but that is one hell of a way to prevent users from switching to another browser. Are you guys absolutely sure it's a conflict with IE?" said the reader, called Tony.

But another reader, Chris Beach, came to Microsoft's defence. "Cue endless conspiracy theories about Microsoft's 'dirty tactics'. Honestly, the rubbish you [Microsoft] have to put up with… my heart goes out to you guys. Keep up the good work with IE7," said Beach.

This issue will be another blow to Netscape, which released Netscape 8 only two weeks ago. Only a day after launching Netscape 8 and touting the browser's security features, the company released an update to fix several serious security flaws.

Topic: Apps

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10 comments
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  • Regarding Microsoft's history of "interfering" with competing products, I have to say if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck...
    The cause of this incompatability will be discovered soon enough, and I'm willing to bet it will be the fault of Microsoft (again).
    anonymous
  • I
    anonymous
  • If Netscape 8 does accurately mimic IE's rendering engine, then there is really no need to keep using IE at all. So for some this is a mute issue.
    anonymous
  • Irony, anyone? Seems to me that Netscape si giving Microsoft a dose of their own medicine, and MS is whining about it.

    Serves them right.
    anonymous
  • I have been using Netscape 8 since the beta, now on 8.0.1. I would need an example of something to try
    anonymous
  • Netscape 8 'breaks' IE

    WOW! You mean to tell me that Netscape 8 makes windows safer?

    Cool. :P
    anonymous
  • There has been too much cynicism of Microsoft. Myself, I don't use IE, nor do I plan to in the future. Instead I use Mozilla Firefox. Netscape, to me, while more secure, is less usable than IE. What this article fails to mention is that there are browsers similar to Netscape that cause no such problem. Furthermore, speculation on the part of the author is out of order. No facts or sources are mentioned, and one can only assume these facts are unreliable.
    anonymous
  • Firefox is my default browser but I downloaded Netscape 8 to check it out. I have already removed the IE icon from my desktop to prevent anyone else from using it. But, maybe the problem is NOT Netscape but IE itself. After all it has been "broken" for such a long time that maybe it can't be fixed. I would take the word
    of MS blindly.
    anonymous
  • IE has been broken since Day One, so I doubt Netscape 8 really broke it. Firefox is the real browser alternative.
    anonymous
  • Since downloading Netscape 8 none of my browsers operate properly-could it be that n8 changed registries? I then unistalled N8 but I am still unable to use the browers without deleting all the cookies and restoring defaults each time-any solutions?
    anonymous