As expected and previously announced, Netscape Browser marked its end yesterday. The browser has been removed from download by AOL.
Now, Netscape did promise to keep the components that made Netscape different from Mozilla Firefox available for download… but did they?
The answer appears to be (at least partially), no. Netstripe, the official theme for Netscape 9, was removed from the Firefox theme library on Mozilla’s catalog of add-ons. It’s not clear why Netscape did that, as it was one of the ways the team said you could enjoy the Netscape theme while keeping Firefox.
You can still manually download the theme files from Netscape’s blog. Problem is, now that they are gone from the add-on catalog, don’t expect Netscape to update them for Firefox 3.0. That may be the reason for the pulling, since the team has probably been fired by now (or, reassigned to other divisions in AOL). With nobody to support the theme anymore, Netscape may have felt best to simply delete the theme.
Update: The author of the theme, Andy Fraley, dropped me a note to let me know that the theme has been replaced by a new generation, Simply Green. This is almost identical to the Netstripe theme of old, with the classic (and trademarked) N logo removed. Unfortunately, that was one of my favorite features of the theme. Hopefully Andy can sort out the legal mishap and get the theme back to its original glory.
You will need to replace the theme if you are using Netstripe… due to a technical limitation, the theme won’t auto-update to make the switchover.