Hmm, the "netscape" binary has special needs. In particular, it uses
malloc in a way that doesn't work properly with the malloc in the modern
libc. So you have to tell it to use an old libc library binary,
available from linux archives, I do this by unpacking
the netscape tar.gz file in a directory all its own
(/usr/X11R6/bin/Mozilla-v30 so I can remember what it is and where) and
making a shell script /usr/X11R6/bin/netscape that takes care of the
silly library thing. This works. (If your netscape bus-errors when you
hit a java page, this will fix it.) It also keeps any other program
from stumbling into the old libc, and you don't have to mess with
ld-config. Fill in the directory where you keep obsolete libraries.


# Use an old lib for netscape due to malloc error


if [ ! -x $LD_LIBRARY_PATH/ ]; then exit 1

exec /usr/X11R6/bin/Mozilla-v30/netscape

> For quite some time netscape has been dying when it loads and tries to
> execute java applets. Probably about half the time it tries to run the
> applet it dies. Does anyone have the same problem and if so, is there a
> way to fix this? I'm at Netscape Nav. Gold 3.01.

Take a look at:

[which says:]

3. How to make Netscape 3.0 and java work

3.1 Getting the environment right

The fundamental problem with Netscape 3.0, java, and linux machines
is the use of a Standard C Library compiled with dl-malloc. Using a
wrapper script and the older gnumalloc, java will for the most part
cease to crash the browser.

The script also sets a very simple CLASSPATH. Be careful, certain
CLASSPATH entries can confuse netscape and cause it to crash, as can
the presence of outdated Netscape class libraries.

export CLASSPATH="/usr/local/netscape/java/classes/java_30:."
export LD_PRELOAD="/lib/"
/opt/netscape/bin/netscape $* # NOTE! This must be the path to the
real netscape executable.

To make this all work, follow these steps:

Install netscape. Copy the java_30 file included with the netscape
archive to /usr/local/netscape/java/classes/. Copy to /lib.
Edit the shell script to match your setup.

You can find at
downloads/gnumalloc.tar.gz. Thanks to Doug Ridgway (ridgway@routh.
UCSD.EDU) for this tip.

Recently, it has been reported that netscape will also crash with
Java applets if using versions of higher than
The solution is to copy into a directory such as /lib/509/,
making the appropriate symbolic links and setting the LD_LIBRARY_PATH
to look in that directory first.

>>This happened to me a lot as well. I finally decided to just disable
>>the java in the preferences menu. Since then, Netscape has only crashed
>>a few times.
>>I don't think there's another way around this. If there is, I'd love
>>to hear it.

If you're using JDK as well as Netscape, you may find that the CLASSPATH
variable used by JDK interferes with netscape (it uses CLASSPATH or

exec /usr/local/bin/netscape3.0

Date: Wed, 22 Sep 1999 07:04:15 -0700
From: Don Marti
To: "J. Paul Reed",
Subject: Re: [svlug] Netscape Question
X-Mailer: Mutt 0.93.2
X-WebTV-Stationery: Standard; BGColor=black; TextColor=black
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X-OS: Linux 2.0.30 #3 Thu Aug 14 14:47:34 PDT 1997 i486 unknown

On Tue, Sep 21, 1999 at 11:16:51PM -0700, J. Paul Reed wrote:

> The Win32 version of Netscape, when one selects Exit from the file menu,
> will ask "Close all windows and exit" before doing so.


> So, anyone know/care to drop the hint of where this little "feature" is
> hiding?

In .Xdefaults. Search for the file in your /usr/lib/netscape
(or whatever) directory and rejoice in the Netscape-customizing lines
you may find within. Copy them to .Xdefaults and make Netscape do your
bidding. A few good ones:

! Set this to false to disable the <BLINK> tag.
*blinkingEnabled: False

! Whether the Exit menu item should confirm first.
*confirmExit: True

! These resources control the foreground and background colors of text
! which has been selected with the mouse.

*selectForeground: #000000
*selectBackground: #FFFF33

(I like the last one because the default selection color is hard
to see on a laptop screen.)

Don Marti | As for systems that are not like Unix, such as | MSDOS, Windows, the Macintosh, VMS, and MVS, | supporting them is usually so much work that it
whois DM683 | is better if you don't. -- Richard M. Stallman