Latest Mozilla Build Adds Fuel To OS X Browser Wars

The OS X version of Mozilla, known as Fizzilla, has received another update. With each release, Fizzilla become a bit more stable and a bit more usable, while still having an array of quirky behaviors. Most troublesome, or perhaps not for many users, is Fizzillais complete departure from the Aqua interface elements. Running this gives one the feeling that they are running Netscape Communicator 4.7x under OS 9.

The latest version includes an update allowing menus to be fully compliant with the Carbon APIis.

Rendering speed is wickedly fast, and all but the most complex pages render accurately. During our limited use, we did not experience any crashes or unexpected quits.

The new version also comes with the standard array of Netscape style add-ons, like a Usenet News reader, Composer, and the Netscape Mail program. Here is an interesting tidbit from Mozilla.org:

We now have two paths to Fizzilla:

  • FizzillaCFM -- fully Carbon, mac back-end, CFM based
  • FizzillaMach -- mac Carbon front-end, unix backend, Mach-o based

Each path has its own build instructions and its own set of flaws and foibles and hence deserves its own page. The wonderful thing about open source is that both can get the attention they deserve.

The big question, however, is "what is Netscape going to do with Netscape6?" Even though we like the idea of FizzillaMach for the future, the tools just arenit there yet. The benefits of being able to leverage the existing OS9 build system and tools for development are too great given the small amount of time we have to work on this on the side. Remember, Netscapeis primary mission right now is to ship Netscape6 for OS9 and we cannot do anything to jeopardize that plan. So where you will probably see the majority of the work is with FizzillaCFM.

We are not abandoning FizzillaMach by any stretch of the imagination. Now is just not the time for it to shine.

However you look at it, OS X is bringing the notion of the Browser Wars back to life...at least a bit. If you would like to give the latest build of Fizzilla a try, you can find more information at the Mozilla.org web site.

Sign Up for the Newsletter

Join the TMO Express Daily Newsletter to get the latest Mac headlines in your e-mail every weekday.

No Comments

Log-in to comment