Friday, September 30, 2011

What to Know About Web Browsers

A person who uses Internet has surely used a web browser which is the computer software that retrieves, represents, and traverses digital information resources found on the worldwide web. The information resource is classified by a uniform resource identifier or URI and these could be an image, video, web page or any piece of digital content. The hyperlinks found in these information resources allow users to navigate easily the web browsers to the communicated resources.

The web browser starts functioning once the user types in a URI, for example, 'http://'. The prefix (in the example, it is "http") of the URI defines how the given URI is interpreted. The most common prefix used for a URI is "http" which determines that the information resource is to be regained through the hypertext transfer protocol.

There are other prefixes that are supported by browsers such as "https" (hypertext transfer protocol secure), "ftp" (file transfer protocol) and "file" (local files). If a prefix cannot be handled directly by a browser, the request is sent off entirely to another application. An example is the "mailto:" prefix where the URI is often passed to the default email application of the user and the "news:" prefix where the URI is often passed to the default news group reader of the user.

The first browser to be launched successfully was called Mosaic which was programmed by Eric Bina and Marc Andreessen in 1992 and released by 1993. During these years, the graphical services found online which are popular and dominating were from America Online (AOL), Prodigy and Compuserv. These online servicing companies do not provide Internet access.

Through Mosaic, Internet was opened for use of the common people. It gives easier ways to navigate and explore the World Wide Web and it is free. By mid-90's, Andreessen made a partnership with the former initiator of Silicon Graphics, Jim Clark and Netscape was born.

Netscape became number one for a while until Microsoft started pre-packaging its web browser into its Windows operating systems. Microsoft's Internet Explorer or IE was way behind Netscape in a lot of ways. IE had been criticized because of its abundant bugs, security problems and lack of conventionality to the standard protocols of the web. However, since a lot of new computer and internet users are unaware and unconcern of these risks, IE became the top choice for by 1998.

Article Source:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Web Browser Conflicts Explained

A quick look at Wikipedia reveals that Mosaic was the first popular World Wide Web browser to mix image elements with text. It was developed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications in 1992, released to the public in 1993 for non commercial use, and orphaned in 1997.

Mosaic project alumni and other users established Mosaic Communications Corporation which eventually became Netscape Communications Corporation, producing Netscape Navigator. A different group established Spyglass Inc. with their own version of Mosaic. When Microsoft was not allowed to license the Netscape Navigator, they made a deal with Spyglass for fees partly based on browser sales. Microsoft called their browser Internet Explorer and introduced it as an add on to Windows 95. MS bundled IE with later versions of Windows, thus having no sales revenues on the browser, which caused Spyglass to threaten legal action, resulting in $8 million settlement to Spyglass.

Netscape had initial market dominance, based on user acceptance. IE gained dominance via distribution with Windows. Such competition fostered both proprietary code and the evolution toward similar user interfaces. As of this writing, Netscape has been discontinued, and the non-profit Mozilla Foundation has continued Netscape concepts into the open source FireFox browser and related applications.

The Safari browser was developed by Apple Inc. for distribution with Mac OS X. It was first released as a public beta in January 2003 and is now available for Windows. It is claimed to be significantly faster than the alternatives.

The Opera browser ranks behind Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, and Netscape in popularity. It is now free for personal use. Some of its security concepts and other features have influenced development of the other main browsers.

A recent web template was made elastic ("fluid" or "liquid") using the DIV element instead of TABLE for layout and variable font sizes. A floating text box (DIV) was added so that it remained fixed as the user scrolled down through a page. The results looked great in FireFox 2.x, and nearly the same in Opera 9.x and Safari 3.x, except that "fixed" box scrolled in Safari. For Internet Explorer 7.x, the fixed box scrolled, spacings differed, text background colors didn't stay with highlighted text, and some menu colors (for active, hover, visited links) were totally screwed up. In other words, IE 7, supposedly free of bugs found in prior releases, is not usable for this design template.

Rather than load down the template design with work-arounds for IE, it was replaced with a TABLE layout for positioning, plus some other HTML Tags/Elements on menus and text selections. It still has elasticity and variable font sizes from dimensioning mostly in "em" and "%" rather than "px".

The logo.jpg image stays fixed in size when font size is changed, for FireFox and Safari, but is elastic for Opera and Internet Explorer. Either is acceptable if the base image has adequate resolution, namely upwards of 144 dots or pixels per inch, perhaps minimum 300. The 72 ppi that Adobe recommends for screen images is more suited for small icons.

For the uncommitted web designer, it seems that ease of coding for these four browsers ranks as FireFox, Opera, Safari, Internet Explorer, with IE being a problem. Netscape is no longer an issue, but it is the ancestor of FF.

IE browser through version 7 still does some things differently from the other most popular browsers. As a consequence, a lot of web design effort is wasted on making web pages work the same for IE as for other browsers. One workaround is to have web pages check the browser in use, then switch CSS style sheets or JavaScript definitions to match. The alternative is for page builders to design for only one browser, usually justified with a statement "optimized for nnnnn browser".

It is unfortunate for designers and web users that Microsoft is so resistant to open standards.

Article Source:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Growing Accustomed to Using Your Web Browser

The web is built upon a layer of HTML. Your browser is a software program that interprets the HTML and delivers a translation that can be viewed and easily understood. These programs have evolved dramatically over the last decade as dial-up access has given way to broadband connections. The most popular among them - Internet Explorer (IE) and Firefox - are loaded with an assortment of features and security protocols.

Below, we'll provide a brief history of the web browser. We'll take you back to the beginning and introduce you to a humble piece of software called Mosaic. We'll also compare IE and Firefox so you can choose the program that best meets your surfing preferences.

A History Of Surfing The Web

In the early 1990s, a young programmer named Marc Andreessen designed Mosaic. Prior to its debut, most people did not have access to the internet. Many thought they did through AOL and similar services when, in fact, those services were merely closed systems. Mosaic introduced the public to the net by interpreting HTML code. Within a few years, Andreessen had finished developing a new program called Netscape.

The next few years were tumultuous. Due to its phenomenal success, Netscape came to the attention of Microsoft. Microsoft had developed their own browser (IE) and began integrating it within their operating system. Because their operating system was so pervasive, IE eventually wrenched the market from Netscape, despite its lower quality. Netscape was sold to AOL which later gave development authority to the Mozilla Foundation. Netscape eventually evolved into Firefox, which currently battles Internet Explorer for market dominance.

Internet Explorer Versus Firefox

Both pieces of software offer attractive features. For example, both can read RSS feeds, an option that is increasingly important as more websites generate such feeds. Both offer convenient tabbed browsing rather than forcing you to open multiple windows. They also provide strong security protocols and easily-installed patches, an early stumbling block for both browsers.

Internet Explorer offers users an enhanced search facility that mines multiple search engines and other information databases. Its printing functionality has also been bolstered with small, but useful upgrades; for example, it will automatically shrink text to fit on the printed page.

Firefox is supported by an enormous developer community that continues to create useful add-ons and extensions. Mozilla has also created a feature that gives you the option to restore your previous session in the event of an unplanned shutdown. If you have a dozen tabs open, you'll find this option invaluable.

So, which browser is better: Internet Explorer or Firefox? It depends on your preferences. Both companies have dedicated fans who enjoy browsing online with their favored program. Download and install both of them. Explore the features and gain some experience before making your choice. You may find that having both browsers at your disposal is the best way to enjoy your residential broadband service.

Read more:

Monday, September 19, 2011

Advantages of Using a Proxy Browser

A Proxy Browser is a proxy server site that allows users to browse through different sites without being directly connected to them. It is a program used by most Internet entrepreneurs to market and expand their business. What's good is that hundreds of these are available on the web.

It is a type of server that can act as an intermediate between clients and other servers. The client will first have to connect to this browser and request for what he needs. He can request for a certain service, a file, a connection, a web page or a resource that is not available on his server.

The next thing a proxy browser does is to evaluate the client's request according to their standard filtering rules. It can for instance, filter traffic by IP protocols or addresses. Once the client's request is found valid, the proxy will now readily provide him with the resources.

There are many kinds of proxy servers found online. You can use any of them depending on your preferences. This long list includes caching web proxies, Content-filtering web proxy, Anonymizing web proxies, Hostile web proxies, Intercepting web proxies among many others.

If you are having trouble looking for one, you can always join forums where you can seek opinions from other users. Here, you may ask them for an effective site you can use. If you are having doubts about the proxy browser you found, you can always read on reviews about that server.

Perhaps the best thing about these browsers is that they have no down times unlike other sites. This can allow you to access them anytime and anywhere. These tools have indeed been a big aid to many Internet users. From helping them in their online business to just simply going to sites that are blocked by their main server.

Here are some significant uses of a Proxy Browser:

* Keep the users and the machines behind it anonymous. Did you know that with every site you enter, you basically give away all your personal information such as passwords and usernames? This tool will provide no way for the user after you can to trace your Internet history easily.
* Speed up your access to online resources. Sometimes, the most annoying part of surfing the web is to wait for it to buffer. These kinds of browsers are commonly used to cache web pages. These servers do this by delivering the requests quickly.
* Censorship and Filtering. In schools and public computers, these browsers are utilized to filter certain websites or its content. This allows them to prevent their users from entering inappropriate websites. If you own a company, you cans use these browsers to prevent your employees from accessing sites that will cause them to waste time compromising your company's output.
* Accessing blocked sites from your school or workplace. This is one of the superficial but fun uses of these browsers. This function is just the opposite of what was previously mentioned. Most social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter are blocked on universities and offices. With the help of these servers, you can easily enter these sites.
* Proxy browsers can also be useful in preventing your account in any site from being hacked.

Article Source:

Friday, September 16, 2011

Internet Explorer 7: Is Your Site Ready?

Potentially more exciting than the arrival of a new phonebook is the planned automatic update of Microsoft's web browser, Internet Explorer. If you haven't already heard about it-and I'm sure that most of you have-Microsoft is planning to release the first major upgrade to Internet Explorer since IE6 in 2001. With many new features, security upgrades, and changes to the core software itself, it's a totally new browser that will suddenly be the primary browser of a good 70% or more of your audience. Is your site ready for that? If you don't know for sure, now's the time to find out.

At some point during the next few months (the fourth quarter of this year,) Microsoft will be rolling out this upgrade as a high-priority, automatic update. That means that most Windows XP users will simply be online one day when they'll receive a popup alert from the system tray saying that updates are ready for their computer. Virtually overnight, you'll find most of your site visitors have made the switch.

This all seems straightforward enough until you consider someone like my father. My father is in his 70s. He browses the 'Net daily. If presented with the option to install a security update, he has been trained to click accept (without trying to comprehend what specifically it is patching). If he accepts this and suddenly his browser experience changes (sites that used to render properly no longer work) he'll be completely confused. He wouldn't know how to uninstall.

- Tom Raftery IE7 + Automatic Update = support nightmare

Frankly, this is true for the majority of your users. Like it or not, once the change is made, there'll be no going back. Certain questions then arise:

* What will they see when they go to your site?
* Should you panic?
* Will you need to recode?
* Are you ready for the new toys? (Didn't expect that last one, did you.)

Let's have a look at what this change will mean for your site.

Things to Be Happy About

Those of us that routinely use other browsers or check our sites out in multiple browsers will find a lot of very familiar things integrated into IE7. I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I'm happy for the changes and improvements they've made, but on the other, I find it annoying that a majority of non-technically-oriented web users will think of these as Microsoft innovations rather than Microsoft trying to catch up with everyone else's innovations. Still, there is a lot to be happy about in this upgrade. Some of it-like improved web standards and CSS support-might require changes for some sites (That's a good thing, really.) and some of it-like RSS integration-are an open opportunity to provide new services and gain a larger audience.

Tabbed Browsing

That's right, tabbed browsing has finally made its way to Internet Explorer (boldly going where everyone else has been for quite some time.) If you're like me and you regularly have to have a number of applications running simultaneously and then additionally have to open several different browsers to compare page layouts, then you'll truly appreciate this addition. I can finally have ONE window of Internet Explorer open with a number of web pages displayed in different tabs (as I always could in other browsers.)

My only regret here is that there's not yet a good, all-purpose, cross-browser compatible script to automatically open external links in new tabs rather than new windows. This would make a nice addition to Paul Boag's External Links script that I (like many others) use so extensively. However, I'm sure that one will come along eventually.

Article Source:

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Speed up Internet Explorer 6

Internet Explorer 6 has been around for a while and its been a good browser. Since new alternatives like Firefox and Opera have come out we now know that, yes there is faster browsing out there. Internet Explorer can be as fast after trying out a few tips in this article.

Step 1: Default is your friend.

You heard it here first folks. (probably not) Generally setting the browser to its defaults will make it go faster. There are two areas in specific that will make the largest impact. Security settings and the advanced settings. To set these at their defaults go to Internet Explorer. In the browser go to the tools menu and select internet options. In the internet options go to the security tab. In the security tab set all of the zones to default. Then go to the advanced tab. In the advanced tab you will find the restore defaults button at the bottom of the window. Click o it and that's it. Click on OK and restart your browser.

Step 2: Setting the Number of Connections per Session.

Internet explorer limits the number of connections it opens when you click on a link to open an new web page. Microsoft did this to comply with HTTP 1.1 standards but it also really slows down things when you open a new website and download the sites images. So to change that go to the start menu and select run. In the run command type regedit and click OK to open the registry editor. In the registry editor navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER SoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionInternet Settings. Here change the MaxConnectionsPerServer and MaxConnectionsPer1_0Server to a number you wish. That's it, once done restart windows and you are all set. Just a note that this will effect all windows applications that use the internet explorer api so if something else is not working right that is why.

Step 3: Keep less and save time.

Windows by default will automatically set your temporary internet files to a certain percentage of your hard drive. If you have a hard drive that is a 200 gigabytes your temporary internet files will be a couple of gigabytes in size. The more files that Internet Explorer has to look through the more time it takes to load a page. To change the size of your temporary internet files goto the tools menu in Internet Explorer and select internet options. In the internet options click on the settings buttons in the temporary internet files. Change the size to the desired amount (I usually use 100MB) and click on OK. Your computer might stall for a little bit if there are a lot of files to delete.

Its as easy as that. Three steps to speed up your internet browsing in Internet Explorer. I'm sure there is a whole lot more out there but these are the ones that will help you out the most. Till next time.

Article Source:

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Why is Web Browser Compatibility So Important?

Can you remember when there were essentially only two web browsers? Nowadays, there are several web browsers available and as a result, it has become crucial for website owners and developers to ensure that their websites are compatible with all the browsers.

Let's face it; in this day and age one would think that you could open a website with any browser but unfortunately different browsers interpret HTML and CSS in different ways, which of course has an impact on how things are viewed on your monitor. Because of this, it's crucial that the CSS and HTML of a website are optimised and programmed to be compatible with all the available web browsers.

While this certainly does require considerably more work, it can essentially result in your website getting a number of new users. Furthermore, one should also bear in mind that certain browsers are more popular than others.

Firefox for example now has approximately 30% of the browser market while Internet Explorer still continues to be the leader with approximately 60% (although statistics suggest this varies in different countries). Safari accounts for approx 5% of the market while Google Chrome and Opera currently have more or less two to three percent of the market but this is only to be expected considering they're still relatively new in the game. One of the main reasons why Internet Explorer has managed to dominate the market for so long, is because it comes preinstalled with the Windows operating system. However, its ease of use has also helped to ensure it retains the top spot.

Of course, computers which run on the Windows operating system will in most cases already have all the necessary plug-ins installed so that the browser is ready to use immediately. Computer owners who decide to switch over to Firefox can sometimes wonder if the browser is working properly. For example, if you have just switched over to Firefox and you visit certain sites, you may be prompted to download an ActiveX application. However, even though some people may find this to be an inconvenience, Firefox has just recently celebrated their 1 billionth download and there are no signs to suggest this trend is changing.

In fact, the number of people using Firefox continues to increase by the day with many believing it to be better than Internet Explorer, largely because of its noticeable stability. Even though this may be true to a certain extent, it's also worth noting that Firefox has gone to great lengths in order to retain the old Netscape Communicator appearance and this of course is something which appeals to those looking for a little nostalgia.

The Opera web browser is also enjoying increasing popularity although it has been experiencing certain issues lately regarding various web pages. As a result, website owners and developers need to make an effort in order to make their code compatible, so that this browser can function as it should. In order to determine whether or not this browser is compatible with your website, you can simply use the browser to access your site so that you can see for yourself how things appear on your monitor.

Article Source: