Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

An IE-Based Tabbed Browser from China 163

Posted by timothy
from the adversity-breeds-strength dept.
wannabgeek writes "CNET reports that a new browser, Maxthon is gaining wide popularity in China. 14 percent of Chinese websurfers have used it ... Part of the reason, it has features that help in circumventing the Chinese government censors. CNET says it was shown at the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas this year, and is slowly gaining foothold in Europe as well as the U.S."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

An IE-Based Tabbed Browser from China

Comments Filter:
  • by daveschroeder (516195) * on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:24PM (#15584452)
    "CNET reports that a new browser, Maxthon is gaining wide popularity in China. 14 percent of Chinese websurfers have used it ... Part of the reason, it has features that help in circumventing the Shinese government censors. CNET says it was shown at the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas this year, and is slowly gaining foothold in Europe as well as the U.S."

    First, women slaving away making iPods. Now, they've got trained dogs [dogbreedinfo.com] doing their network censorship. This could have an impact on Shinese-American relations.

    Where will it end?

    Perhaps China will start using Slashdot editors to proofread the English versions of official propaganda for spelling and grammar! That's almost like trained dogs!
  • The people need protection from both the Chinese and the Shinese... Glad to see someone is finally helping these folks!
  • by Goblez (928516) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:25PM (#15584460)
    So that means that the goverment can exploit it to add censoring? Won't that be a switch from what we're used to?
  • them pesky dogs (Score:2, Informative)

    by Bananatree3 (872975)
    Apperently the Shinese dog breed have taken over the government of China [dogbreedinfo.com] Hopefully they will be kind to their previous masters.
  • Grathiath (Score:3, Funny)

    by Doc Ruby (173196) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:26PM (#15584466) Homepage Journal
    If all you have to do is lisp to avoid Chinese government censors to connect Chinese people to the rest of the planet, then Spain is going to take over the world again.
  • Drunk? (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by dwandy (907337)
    Wath timmmothy drunk when he wrote thith?
  • Engrish? (Score:5, Funny)

    by thoughtlover (83833) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:30PM (#15584488)
    "...features that help in circumventing the Shinese government censors."

    Hrm. It almost sounds like one of our Engrish-reading friends submitted this story from behind the Great Firewall of Shina.
    • Kid: Dad, why did they build the Great Wall of China?
      Dad: Umm, that was in the time of Emperor Nasi Goreng. They, um, built it to keep the rabbits out. Yeah, big rabbit problem in China.
      Kid: [looks out car window in awe of his fathers knowledge]
      [Cut to a classroom scene] Teacher: And now Billy will present his talk on China.
      (TV ad from Australia. It probably is a little bit more humourous if you know that they built a "rabbit proof fence" for thousands of miles in parts of Australia to keep out the rabb
  • by operagost (62405) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:30PM (#15584489) Homepage Journal
    Ooh... Shinese!
  • New browser? (Score:5, Informative)

    by transwarp (900569) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:31PM (#15584498)
    Maxthon hasn't been new for a long time. In fact, the only thing in the article I hadn't heard a million times already was that it's made by a Chinese company. And this "parallels" feature they're working on--sounds like MDI.
    • Re:New browser? (Score:4, Informative)

      by TheSpoom (715771) * <slashdot@@@uberm00...net> on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:34PM (#15584525) Homepage Journal
      Amen, tagged this 'oldnews' as soon as I saw it. I remember seeing this browser at least a year ago. I'm pretty sure they just use the IE ActiveX control; from there, you can pretty much do anything. Tags would seem (on first glance, without doing any research) to be pretty trivial to implement.
    • I used to use Maxthon back when it was called MyIE2. I don't remember exactly when, but it was probably early 2004. It was almost better than Firefox, and the only reason I switched to FF was to get rid of IE. This will make it very hard for Firefox to take hold in China.
      • Re:New browser? (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Incoherent07 (695470)
        I actually in some ways preferred Maxthon's interface to Firefox's, at least out of the box, but I could never get the Gecko support working, so I switched as well.
      • Re:New browser? (Score:5, Informative)

        by kukyfrope (889948) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @03:17PM (#15584771)
        I use Maxathon on my computers with tiny amounts of RAM, like my old 866mhz 128mb machine that runs WindowsXP. I've got a minimalistic install of WindowsXP on it and use it for only browsing the web. Firefox was too slow on that machine with how many tabs I like to open up, yet with Maxathon I had open 30 tabs and in task manager, it was only using about 15-20mb of RAM.

        The main pitfalls of the app are it's still based on IE so the DOM Firefox support isn't there, and while Maxathon has an "AdBlock" like feature, Firefox's is cleaner and collapses the page where graphics previously were, while Maxathon keeps the ad space open and blank. And it still isn't great about handling file opening (torrent especially).

        Overall it's a great little browser and on old machines I can live with its few features I wish worked differently in exchange for super low memory usage.
    • From the version history on the website: v 0.1 [2002-07-11]
  • A new browser? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:31PM (#15584499)

    Maxthon's been around for years. It used to be called MyIE.

  • Why doesn't CNET just come out and give the Chinese government the IP addresses of every Chinese websurfer using Maxthon? Better yet, the company's in Beijing - why not just throw a street address up there? Of course, if the web is censored in China, then the censors aren't reading unfiltered CNET in English, are they? Naaaaaah!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:33PM (#15584509)
    "Browsers are very much like a car," said Jacobsson. "Most people don't care what engine is inside, (they) choose which type fits, with the right shape and color."

    Yes, I use Opera because it's round & red.
  • Maxthon, Not New (Score:5, Informative)

    by Webz (210489) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:33PM (#15584515)
    Maxthon isn't all that new. Long time users know it as MyIE2.

    If you've ever wondered what a browser with an IE-engine and tabs that didn't suck is like, try Maxthon. It's really lightweight.

    For development purposes and sometimes just pure speed (IE feels faster than Firefox sometimes), I keep a copy on my machines alone Firefox.
    • wondered what a browser with an IE-engine... that didn't suck is like

      Mod parent oxymoronic.

      And no, I'm not trolling. Most of IE's problems are due to its engine.
      • by RzUpAnmsCwrds (262647) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @03:40PM (#15584938)
        Mod parent oxymoronic.

        And no, I'm not trolling. Most of IE's problems are due to its engine.


        While it's true that third-party browsers using Trident are vulnerable to the same security flaws as IE (and, of course, share the same CSS and other rendering bugs), there are a number of flaws in IE that are corrected by third-party browsers.

        Because third-party browsers don't support IE toolbars, they aren't as affected by spyware. Third-party browsers generally have search boxes, tabs, and other features that IE lack.

        And, quite frankly, saying that IE "sucks" ignores the reality of the situation.

        From a developer's perspective, IE "sucks" because it means that I have to bend over backwards to support IE's broken CSS implementation (although, to be honest, the CSS standard sucks in many ways anyway). But even if IE stopped "sucking" in this regard tomorrow, it wouldn't make a bit of difference to me - as a user, IE's crappy CSS support doesn't really affect me (because developers work around it), and as a developer, I'm still going to have to develop for IE6 because it will represent a significant portion of my users for years to come.

        But from a user's perspective, IE isn't really that bad. From a security perspective, it's subpar, but IE has greatly improved in that regard since SP2. Users neither know nor care whether their browser has decent CSS2 support.
        • But even if IE stopped "sucking" in this regard tomorrow, it wouldn't make a bit of difference to me - as a user, IE's crappy CSS support doesn't really affect me (because developers work around it), and as a developer, I'm still going to have to develop for IE6 because it will represent a significant portion of my users for years to come.

          That's the spirit! What's with these people who keep adding features and fixing bugs in software, when everybody knows that there are a bunch of old versions of the sof

    • IE feels faster than Firefox sometimes

      I've noticed this too. But chicken or egg? Is it because more sites are optimized for IE than Firefox, perhaps?

      • In my experience as a web developer, unless we're talking about high-end, intensive, cutting edge dynamic content, rarely ever are sites optimized for one browser or another. And usually, certain features are a path of exclusivity, so optimized really isn't the word. IE supports these visual filters, this that and the other, and Mozilla supports some xyz new CSS attributes. Whatever.
  • Notice how this browser looks a lot like IE7?

    Has anyone tried introducing any other other NUMEROUS options of web browsers to this country? Firefox, Mozilla, Opera, etc, etc...

  • Fun With Statistics (Score:4, Interesting)

    by TripMaster Monkey (862126) * on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:37PM (#15584544)


    From TFA:

    According to Maxthon research, about 14 percent of the Chinese Web population has used the browser and 17 percent employs it for Web search.
    So...3 percent of the Chinese Web population employs the Maxthon browser for Web search without having used it?
  • by DoctorDyna (828525)
    You are all falling over yourselves comically to point out the fact that sombody said "shinese". It's not that funny.

    Out of all you wonderfully articulate people, nobody has anything interesting to say? I think this kinda squashes a huge mis conception that most of the Slashdot community seems to have, that is only people who don't know any better want anything to do with IE. Obviously, these people who created this aren't newbs.

    • "Out of all you wonderfully articulate people, nobody has anything interesting to say?"

      Sure. You spelled misconception incorrectly :)

      Come on. Incorrect spelling and grammar are some of the finer points of Slashdot. You could change it from "News for Nerds" to "Fifth Grade Proofreading Test" without much trouble.
    • You are all falling over yourselves comically to point out the fact that sombody said "shinese".....Out of all you wonderfully articulate people, nobody has anything interesting to say?

      You must be a new Shinese person here.
    • You are all falling over yourselves comically to point out the fact that sombody said "shinese". It's not that funny.
      Okay, but does this mean that it's actually called the "Great Wall of Shiny"?
    • by Anonymous Coward

      You are all falling over yourselves comically to point out the fact that sombody said "shinese".

      I don't think anybody cares that somebody who probably doesn't speak English as their native language mixed up "sh" and "ch".

      I think the real problem people have is that somebody who does speak English as their native language, and who is paid to correct errors like these, is seemingly entirely incompetent, either in doing his job, or in spotting glaringly obvious errors in his native language. Is he lazy

    • Obviously, these people who created this aren't newbs.
      I'm not saying that these people are noobs, but have you ever used the IE ActiveX control? It is trivially simple to throw together a web browser using it, and Visual Basic.

      Having never used their product though, I can't really comment on the level of sophistication that it has though.
  • Next update of Windows will prevent it (the browser) from running. No worries.
    • Microsoft make the IE engine extremely integration friendly, why on Earth would they want to prevent people from using their web engine?

      There probably isn't an engine as easy to integrate into your application as IE, although there is a drop in compatible Mozilla/Gecko ActiveX control.
  • by baadger (764884) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:41PM (#15584568)
    On occasion the authors of Maxthon have hacked in third party protection against zero day exploits. I can't be arsed finding the reference, but I thought i'd mention it since this is such an uninteresting news post.
  • Browser tabs YOU!
  • Hard to tell from the fact that most of the developers aren't using their actual names. But it looks to me like this might be being developed a substantial amount of work from behind the great firewall.

    In which case be ready for it, or it's contributors, to vanish if/when it actually starts showing up as a means of bypassing that nations security. The Chinese who run things there are not the laughable Team America Kim Jong-il-esque style of villans. They're smart people. I mean look, they got Google to
  • USED it? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by clragon (923326) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:46PM (#15584597)
    14 percent of Chinese websurfers have used it
    have used it? I've used countless softwares in the past, but the ones that I continue to use is only a fraction of that. Just because a Chinese websurfer have used it once does not mean they thought it was a good software and continued to use it. IMO some more evidence should be provided before saying this internet browser it is "gaining wide popularity in China"
  • This sounds like IE 7. Only this one is built on top of the previous IE, so it's less secure than 7. Plus, it's missing a whole lot of features that 7 has. But hey, at least it's free, right?
    • The key thing to remember is it came long before IE7. In fact, considering IE7 isn't actually out, this is still the case.

      It brought tabbed browsing and all the other modern browser features to the IE engine. This is a big win if you are forced to use IE renderin for various things (as ./ers will be well aware of).

      Once you get it configured the way you like it, its nice to use.
    • by n101 (984349)
      It works fine with the IE7 core too, so it's as security as IE is. Most (if not all) features that IE7 has will be added to Maxthon 2.0, which will probably be out before IE7.
  • Is this like being different for the sake of being different? If it's based on IE, it's still garbage. Use Firefox or Opera. If you really want IE with tabs, just use the IE Tab Firefox extension and set it to work for every page. That way you get a shitty rendering engine AND good karma.
  • This isn't new... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Mark LeMunyon (977994)
    Maxthon is not new, and it's not a browser iteself. Its just a shell for IE.
  • TorPack? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by aymanh (892834) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @02:57PM (#15584662) Journal
    Maxthon, a browser made by a tiny Beijing company of the same name, has attracted millions of users in China for functionality that can funnel traffic through a Web proxy and circumvent government controls on information in search engines like Google, Yahoo, MSN, Baidu.com and other popular sites or Internet service providers in that country.
    Neither the article nor Maxthon's feature list [maxthon.com] go into the details of how this feature is implemented, does it simply provide a list of open proxy and an easy way to switch to one of them? Or is it something more sophisticated? Anyone tried this feature?

    I wonder if Chinese users are aware of TorPack [nyud.net], it is Tor + portable Firefox + some extensions. Being Firefox-based, it can benefit from the wide range of extensions available, and is arguably more secure.
  • Wow... (Score:1, Funny)

    by dep01 (730107)
    That's great and all, aside from the fact that it's built upon Internet Explorer.
  • Maxthon Access ? (Score:2, Interesting)

    I see on the Maxthon web site a related product called "Maxthon Access". Does anyone have any addtional information /reviews about this product?
    It looks like it offers "PC Anywhere" features, but the Maxthin browser is a required component (?).
    Has anyone used it and could comment?
    Is it safe / secure?
    Any (known) spyware / back doors to it?
    • It's a Maxthon branded Avvenu service. http://avvenu.com/ [avvenu.com]
      Basically allows access to your files via a browser interface.
      • Brit_in_the_USA (936704) said...

        I see on the Maxthon web site a related product called "Maxthon Access". Does anyone have any addtional information /reviews about this product?
        It looks like it offers "PC Anywhere" features, but the Maxthin browser is a required component (?).
        Has anyone used it and could comment?
        Is it safe / secure?
        Any (known) spyware / back doors to it?

        yjchung (801385) said...

        It's a Maxthon branded Avvenu service. http://avvenu.com/ [avvenu.com]
        Basically allows access to your files via a browser in

  • by aymanh (892834) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @03:07PM (#15584708) Journal
    It looks like Maxthon isn't entirely IE-based, its Wikipedia entry [wikipedia.org] suggests that it can use the Gecko engine as well (which is the same rendering engine used by Firefox):
    Maxthon (formerly MyIE2) (pronounced "max-ton") is a freeware browser. It uses Trident, the same layout engine used by Internet Explorer as its default layout engine, but can use the Gecko technology used in Mozilla Firefox as well.
    • I've used Maxthon, nee MyIE2, for years now. Natively it is a well-written shell over MS IE. Interestingly MS has even featured Maxthon in some of their conferences. Maxthon has a decent set of plug-ins that can overcome many of IE's worst shortcomings, including fixing PNG alpha-layers, control over flash, etc.

      And yes, Maxthon can also use the Gecko Active-X (or whatever it's called this developer season) engine. Note "can", I haven't seen any interest in this since it was first done about 2 years ago and

  • You know what is sad (Score:2, Interesting)

    by fullphaser (939696)
    Is that a third party browser like that could gain such a sizable market share in china that quickly, granted its still IE but they are seeking out browsers none the less. Whats that say about the US & internationally, which still reports firefox and other 3rd party browsers at no more than 10% according to some studies (I can't remember the link right now)
    Hey mabye China has got something right?
  • avant browser (Score:3, Interesting)

    by toirdnim (559346) on Thursday June 22, 2006 @03:23PM (#15584809)
    Avant Browser is another tabbed browser based on the IE engine. I prefer firefox for most of my browsing, but I use avant when I have to load up my company's intranet site, which breaks in firefox.
  • How ironic (Score:2, Funny)

    by j1mc (912703)
    Wait, so this shelled version of IE exploits security holes??
  • Proxy (Score:2, Insightful)

    by sxmjmae (809464)
    Maxthon uses a proxy. If the China's government is smart they would release Maxthon that uses it own proxy - let the end users view censored infor. Let use Maxthon spread. Then you have a nice log of who the trouble makers are and can take them down at any point. I for one would not trust a browser that uses a proxy to surf the internet. I think the AOL browser also routes all your internet traffic through their proxy servers.
    • "Yeah! Get those damn thought-criminals!"
    • by CaseyB (1105)
      You have no idea what you're talking about. Maxthon CAN use a proxy, just like IE can. Maxthon differs only in that it's much easier to toggle proxy use on and off, and switch between multiple proxies.

      These features are important for Chinese users specifically because they have to find and use open proxies in order to circumvent the censors.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I'm actually using it right now. I've been using this browser for the past few years, ever since it used to be called MyIE. It has most of the same features and a few a like more than Firefox like the mouse gestures feature.
  • ..and recently switched to firefox.

    Don't get me wrong. Maxthon is a decent browser. Aside from tabbed browsing its pop-up and ad blocking was terrific and ahead of competitors before others caught up.

    The only drawback, of course, was that it uses IE engine, which means it's vulnerable to most IE holes and bad system interaction (like often freezes with outlook).

    Firefox 1.5 has become good enough (with tab mix, adblock and other goodies) so I switched a while ago.
  • How easy is it to get attention in Slashdot with keywords like "China proxies and freedom?" I live in China and work in IT field. I never heard of Marthon until I heard of it in CNet podcast and saw it on Slashdot. Slashdot effects are used to promote the very browsers supported by the authority. Somehow a 1984 moment...

The speed of anything depends on the flow of everything.

Working...