NetSurf 3.9 BETA for Classic Amiga Revealed
Is there a chance that the most loved web browser which is IBrowse for Classic AmigaOS can be beaten? IBrowse development seems not to care too much about getting it updated soon. In this Amitopia Feature, we take a look at the browser that can do it. But will Chris put his energy into the Classic AmigaOS version, or keep it at BETA?

NetSurf 3.9 BETA for Classic Amiga is Getting Better

I have personally been testing both of the NetSurf versions that are out for Classic AmigaOS. I always end up questioning why these two brilliant coders couldn’t co-operate and make the ultimate NetSurf browser together?

Chris version of NetSurf for Classic AmigaOS is the one that is the most stable one with most features that works. The browser requires AmigaOS 3.5 or newer that runs on Amiga hardware with 32MB of Fast RAM or more. Also, you need a 68060 or 68080 to get some speeds out of it. Since NetSurf 3.7 BETA the improvements are speed. The whole browser now feels snappier.

Our test machine is our Amiga 500 with Vampire 68080 accelerator and a Plipbox Deluxe Ethernet adapter. It is great to see the speed improvements of NetSurf and finally, the browser doesn’t crash when opening the Preferences window! *Improvement! The graphics glitches are still on the GUI but it is improving.

NetSurf 3.9 BETA for Classic Amiga Revealed
photosource: Amitopia – Browsing our Classic Amiga Software Facebook group with NetSurf 3.9 BETA on 68080

Get on Facebook with this SSL Browser for AmigaOS

NetSurf is completely free compared to IBrowse. With the launch of NetSurf 3.9 BETA, the browser just passed iBrowse in SSL compatibility and is adding more CSS compatibility for each release. It means that with the latest AmiSSL installed for Classic AmigaOS you can reach many more sites.

With AmiSSL activated correctly, it means that you can even visit sites such as the basic HTML version of Facebook, etc. What surprised me in this testing part was that uploading pictures to Facebook worked! *Great! I could both write and share a nice post for the Classic Amiga Software group without issues.

You can also, of course, browse Amiga sites without issues. Downloading stuff from Aminet is also not an issue at all. There is even a simple download bar that works.

BETA means still lots of Bugs

Even though the browser experience is much better. NetSurf 3.9 BETA for Classic AmigaOS got some serious issues still. The browser hangs the entire AmigaOS when you close the window. In NetSurf 3.7 BETA on our AmigaOS 3.9 setup, the browser gives a Guru at closing but now its complete freeze. I don’t know how it is on AmigaOS 4 which Chris is developing this browser for feels but on our Classic Amiga setup, this is something that should be done.

IBrowse is still one of the best browsers available for Classic Amiga. But NetSurf even with its bugs is getting better and better. It is interesting to have a browsing experience on a machine with 128MB of RAM. It makes me think of how much the Internet has evolved from being just a simple information source to a source that needs several GHz or several GB of RAM to work.

I still can’t exchange our Amiga 500 with a PC or Mac for browsing the net (I want to!…), but the fact that you can surf a lot more pages with latest NetSurf is really nice. I really love the author’s passion for trying getting NetSurf to be a great alternative. Because you are doing something right. I just hoped that with Vampire 68080 moving the Amiga platform forward that NetSurf for 68k will not have a BETA status anymore in the future.

Get the latest NetSurf 3.9 BETA for Classic here

Get the latest NetSurf 3.9 for AmigaOS 4.x here


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Source: Amitopia Own Experience