Netscape Communicator 4.5 PR2 now available

Netscape Communications has released the second beta of its upcoming Communicator 4.5 Internet client suite, known as PR2. Communicator 4.5 PR2 includes numerous improvements over the previous beta, including some "Windows Integration" install options that let you determine whether Navigator is your default Web browser, whether Netscape Netcenter is the default homepage, and whether Netcenter will be used to search the Web. You may recall that the previous beta of Communicator 4.5 caused a bit of a stir when its search feature defaulted to Netcenter, which is advertiser driven. One big minus, however, is the proliferation of icons that this version of Communicator spews throughout your system: I had icons on top of the Start menu (Netscape SmartUpdate), in the Programs menu (the usual program group) and in my Quick Launch toolbar on the taskbar (Navigator, Messenger, and Composer).

One other problem you should be aware of: If you remove your previous installation and delete the D:\Program Files\Netscape directory as I did, Communicator 4.5 will be confused when it can't find your profile directory, which isn't removed when you uninstall 4.x. You'll have to do some registry editing if this happens. Drop me a note if you want the instructions, but it's pretty simple.

One other note: Netscape is now password-protecting profiles, which is a nice touch for machines with multiple profiles. If you don't want to enter a password every time you use Communicator, however, leave this blank.

To download Communicator 4.5 PR2, visit the Netscape FTP site.

From there, you can choose base install (12.4 MB), complete install (13.9 MB), or Professional Edition install (17.4 MB). Netscape recommends uninstalling any previous versions of Communicator 4.x (including 4.06) that you might have on your system before installing 4.5 PR2

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