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(2) 2.5

Very light Web browser.   Free
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Lightbrowser is a light Web browser. If you find any bugs or have recommendations, email me at
What's New
Version 1.3:
  • Live search! Search Google, Yahoo, Rotten Tomatoes (movie reviews), Fandango (movie times), or YouTube!
  • New and improved interface
  • Ability to change your user agent! Ever come across a site that is windows only? Ever want to play iPhone games in your browser? Or do you just want to be anonymous? You can do it all with the new Lightbrowser.
  • Other bug fixes
Intel/PPC, Mac OS X 10.4 or later

MacUpdate - Lightbrowser

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Lightbrowser User Discussion (Write a Review)
ver. 1.x:
Your rating: Now say why...

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Notimetoulouse commented on 15 Apr 2011
Dead Link everyone -domain now for sale.
[Version 1.3]

1 Reply


Paulcoholic replied on 18 Oct 2013
Can be downloaded from here:


Dajonel reviewed on 27 Dec 2007
Very good browser. If you look at its features you can easily see that it could soon be ready for prime time.

A couple of things:

1) The bookmarks need to be improved
2) There are definitely stability issues
3) Interface needs improvement
4) Status indicator doesn't need to be quite so big
5) Needs more updates (more frequently)
6) Needs more detailed MacUpdate listing
7) Needs more preferences options
8) Needs to be able to check for updates
[Version 1.2]

BarbaryCorsair commented on 17 Nov 2007
I have tried this twice now. I thought it was fast, however it crashed after several minutes of use. The way bookmarks are used is somewhat cumbersome for me. I will try new versions as they come out, just to see the improvements over time. My main focus on a web browser is...... SPEED. The faster it is, the more I like it. Obviously I want to be able to efficiently bookmark sites, however I only go to maybe 20 sites at most. If the browser can go to those 20 sites, be able to log in to banks et al, then I will use it. I think some posts regarding Lightbrowser have been rude, and not constructive. This software is not ready for use yet, however it is free, and the developer does appear to be improving. Gibve 'em a break!!
[Version 1.2]



Jan_rybar reviewed on 12 Nov 2007
It is hardly pre-alfa version: crashing all the time, bookmarks are an ironic joke (there can't be more difficult way to work with them!). The idea of small'n'fast browser is nice, the implementation too poor. Let's wait several months...
[Version 1.1]


nostrodumbass commented on 08 Nov 2007
Ok, I'll tell it like it is. You, (very)novice developer, are no way near ready to play with the big boys. I'm embarrassed for you. I honestly don't feel you really know what you're doing.
You've just added bookmarks, have you? Well, it's grotesquely implemented! It's tacky! It's clunky! It's just plain ridiculous!(for example, if your browser is set at full screen, how in hell can the user access them, hmm?) You just don't have a clue about efficient UI design, do you?
There's a good reason why ALL browsers follow the same bookmark format. Because it works beautifully, get it?
Sorry guy, but you're obviously in WAY above your head. Don't mean to be cruel, but it was your decision to put yourself out here, and you're just NOT ready.
[Version 0.7]

9 Replies

xiotios software (developer) replied on 08 Nov 2007
Sorry about the badly implemented bookmarks, I'm changing them now.

Anyways, I actually CAN code so do you have any recomendations other than telling me that I am a complete novice? And, I also KNOW that my browser runs on webkit. I DEVELOPED it. Why would I not know that?

Example of a complete novice who is getting credit but has no idea what he is doing:

I find it intersting that he does not have bookmarks or search...
xiotios software (developer) replied on 08 Nov 2007
Would you belive me that I am not a "very novice" developer if I released the Source Code?

I spent a lot of time actually coding this software, not just setting up simple IB bindings, and it dissapoints me that people are calling me a complete novice. I think that if you actually saw the source code then your opinion would change... The whole webkit thing was a misunderstanding. I do actually understand the concept.

I spent a lot of my time on this browser, and I hope that someone finds in satisfactory.

nostrodumbass replied on 09 Nov 2007
The fact that you know how to code is beside the point.
My issue is that you just haven't demonstrated that you can come up with any unique, interesting concepts. Your browser is very ordinary, unoriginal and uninventive. Ok, you can type in a URL and it'll take you there. Big feckin' what?
Your method of implementing bookmarks is just horrible!! It's different, true, but it's crude, it's cumbersome, it totally lacks any semblance of elegance. It's no where near as slick and efficient as the tried and true way used by every other competently done, full featured browser out there.
I just took a look at Tominated browser, to which you refer as an example of work by a novice who doesn't know what he's doing. Lightbrowser is just as much of a big yawn as that one. Both are equally insipid and uninspiring.
You seem fixated on developing a browser, yet there are already a fine selection of good ones out there. What has yours got to offer that the others don't? You think that it's speed? If yours is a tad faster, and I'm not convinced that it's so, Lightbrowser will become heavier as you add features. And a browser lacking the features that are offered by most others is a crippled browser and a browser not worth using, as yours is now.

neonblue2 replied on 10 Nov 2007
There are some key differences between you and Tom.

1. Tominated Browser is only at version 0.2b, not 1.0

2. Tom is bogged down by his Year 8 homework right now (To Tom: Just wait until you're buried under Yr 11)

3. Tom looks like he is trying to do something original. From what he's revealed about himself, he's learning Objective-C, adding features but keeping everything light.

And how can you call Tom a novice when you've both done the same things? I've seen both of you on Mac Rumors talking about your browsers, asking for feedback.

The thing is, making a basic WebKit browser isn't that hard. Back when I first saw Tominated Browser (and learned the dev was 13!) I thought "Why can't I do that?" So I tried, succeeded and didn't bother releasing it because there are over 100 Mac browsers and I don't want to become another.

Oh and before I forget, if you know so much about creating apps then can you please tell me who you credited for Testing? I can.
xiotios software (developer) replied on 10 Nov 2007
Why am I doing something unoriginal? I'm trying to make a light, but not totally feature crippled browser. Basically, I'm trying to make something that is quite light and fast, but also not making it unusable by not implementing must have features. (bookmarks, etc.)

Also, I know that you probably will not believe me, but I am currently in year 9 and also being bogged down by homework.

Peter da Silva replied on 11 Nov 2007
You're not making a light browser.

That's the thing that you're missing. Your browser is just as "heavy" as Safari. Because it's the same browser. The bits you're leaving out aren't the bits that weigh it down.

xypher replied on 17 Nov 2007
I haven't seen many examples of shameful bashing like this. If you don't like it then please don't download it. If you want to help development then say something constructive. This browser helps me a great deal as I can use it and keep Photoshop open at the same time. When you're low on Ram you'll start to appreciate apps like this a lot more. I've tested a lot of the other so called slimmed down browsers and prefer this one. Thanks for this again. There is definitely a need for it as your download stats show.

NeoX replied on 17 Nov 2007
Wow, give the guy a break already. People think it is just so easy to learn to program when it really isnt. Getting criticism, even harsh ones like this, is something you have to expect, especially in the Mac world. If you want to criticize the app, and feel the need to be so cruel about it, how about showing some humanity and sending the developer a note about things you like and dislike about it.

Dajonel replied on 27 Dec 2007
Besides the bookmarks and few stability issues, this browser seems to have a VERY good potential. Don't lose heart -- keep developing. I'm 14, so I'm sort of in the same situation as some of us younger developers. Nobody likes my products, either.
auzy83 commented on 08 Nov 2007
I really hate to shoot down a fellow developer, especially a newbie, but in this case, I'm afraid I have to point a few things out.. Everyone is right, its a cocoa interface to Webkit. And the only thing gained is 9MB of ram tops.


So summary first:
- You saved 9MB of ram (nothing really) in very basic tests.
- Both browsers load the same speed because its Apple doing your rendering. Yes, its webkit, proof is below. No, its not standalone, webkit does all your heavy lifting.
- Safari is 10x more usable.
- Yours uses more ram when there are popups, and has no popup blocking.
- Yours stalls while downloading with a spinning beachball.
- You dont have more then 1 language.
- Without tabbing built in, its easy to say you dont use much ram, but yours is using 105MB now, while safari has dozens of pages open, and only is using 60 atm. I'm not convinced that yours is freeing memory properly..

Find me a single person who claims this runs faster on their computer, and I'll show them how an extra 64mb of ram on their pismo can make things seem so much faster, in fact equally faster in both browsers. Otherwise, show me proof of its superiority.

And yes, I agree with the others, posting pre-alpha code to MacUpdate is a bad idea. I also think u need some genuinely good ideas, before it will make it worth it. Maximum memory you can save is 25MB maybe, and your memory usage will only increase dramatically, and your speed decrease as you add features

Sorry dood, but for a training exercise, making a web-browser is a great idea. In the real world though, unless u work flat out on it or fork webkit, u will have trouble finding a userbase.

And I honestly don't mean to hurt your feelings or anything. (We were all newbies at some point of time).


Proof 1:Check your user agent. It comes up as "Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; U; Intel Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/523.10.3 (KHTML, like Gecko)".

Proof 2: Show package contents and look inside the binary using textedit. You will see /System/Library/Frameworks/Cocoa.framework/Versions/A/Cocoa
[Version 0.7]

5 Replies

xiotios software (developer) replied on 08 Nov 2007
I KNOW that my web browser uses webkit! Why would I, the DEVELOPER, not know that?

About downloading: It does actually download the file, I just have not programmed the progress indicator correctally. (Why didn't you check the download?)

I will be putting multiple languages shortly
auzy83 replied on 08 Nov 2007
It looks like a lot was cut off.

And yes, you were banging on about how your browser was standalone, and how Webkit was compiled into your browser, while it was actually dynamically linked.

But like I said, any page with popups (especially since popups normally use flash) essentially use a significant more ram then with safari. And in fact, not adding popup blocking in a way is a security risk, and you run the risk of recursive popups that crash the browser and computer (and yes, I have seen it happen before).

And my point being is that when you start adding even basic stuff like threading to fix the download issues (and btw, I believe "Application not responding" while downloading says alot), uses more and more ram.

And you were saying it is really light, but once you add other languages, the file size will significantly increase the app size, like safari.

So, I'm saying in real world usage, you save a maximum of 9MB of ram, but are more likely to use a significant amount more overall. And when your browser actually becomes usable, you will start using more and more ram. One of my tests showed your browser using 100mb of ram, while safari was using 50mb (a bug I suspect)

I want you to prove.. POST PROOF of why you think your browser is a lot lighter then safari, or evidence of it!

Do you honestly believe that Apple's enormously massive team of safari programmers, do not know how to program a browser, considering they have been targetting safari for efficiency and speed.

Furthermore, have you even touched Dtrace for profiling your application? Because I guarantee, Apple has, and so you can pretty much guarentee that safari has barely any memory leaks (if any at all, in leopard ObjC 2.0 fixes that anyway), and they know how to keep memory usage minimal.

So answer this... Do you believe you are better then Apples programmers? And have you got any evidence with real world testing that your app is more efficient then 9MB.

Because my tests show otherwise.
xiotios software (developer) replied on 08 Nov 2007
No, I don't think that I am better than apples programmers.

I released this web browser as a light web browser, not a competetor to safari.

I don't think that I ever said that WebKit was compiled in my app, and if I did it was by mistake.

I actually did work hard on this app, so it does dissapoint me that people are flaming me about it...

How am I so different from this guy:

The answer is that mine has bookmarks, search, downloads, and a home page button. Also, mine is not straight from a tutorial. What is the other difference? The comments. His: "I like this little browser" and "Great browser, but too lite" "GREAT job it very fast look forward to tabs and bookmark, when that happens would not use any other". What are mine? Well, that's obvious. Is there something about me? Why is it that people like to flame me so much on here? Well, either way I will not be putting any of my upcoming programs or updates on here.
auzy83 replied on 09 Nov 2007
I'm not sure what the other guy was cracking on about.

I just replied to this thread because I know from experience... My first major project was a system called driver on demand (an auto driver downloader for linux). In fact, it even became part of an o'reilly article. Unfortunately, I had never properly researched it in its inital stage, and so it turned out systems by dell and others were doing a similar thing, so after spending 2 weeks on it continuously, I dropped the project at the end because nobody accepted it. There was only 1 distribution that even considered it

Which is why I suggested you severely look at the benefits, or the same thing will happen here. There are hundreds of webkit browsers out now, and it needs to have a real purpose to take off..

One suggestion to make it take off though, is add a bonjour type thing, so you can share bookmarks over the network or something. Apple wont do that on safari without .mac (because they make money from it). Its got to have 1 killer app feature, or it will turn out like my project. Even after all the arguments though with people, i never regretted doing it, even if I did get dissed a lot on slashdot.

NeoX replied on 17 Nov 2007

What apps have you developed, got a link?


I know why some people are flaming you, because people can be cruel. Any developer that leaves a message like this is not cool in my book and I would never buy anything from them ever! It seems that Mac users are hard on developers especially ones that are somewhat new. Believe me I know from experience. It also seems that sometimes it is hard to give CONSTRUCTIVE criticism these days, at least for people that like to make themselves look better by slamming the "little" guy.

My suggestion is to not get discouraged. There is nothing wrong with a new browser based on webkit. Heck there are a ton of them but most are feature laden and in no why lightweight. Although I don't know just how lightweight you can make it with WebKit as the backbone.


nostrodumbass reviewed on 07 Nov 2007
While Lightbrowser might be a little faster than other browsers, so what, it's got none of the amenities that make a browser really bookmark capability(a MUST HAVE), no cookie control, no pop-up control, no history, and on; in fact it's SO bare bones that it's essentially crippled.
It's Preferences has merely one selection, for setting one's home page, that's it.
Lightbrowser might be good for novice users with slow, antiquated machines but for anyone else(most of us?) it's a real pain to use.
It would make a lot more sense for the developer to spend his time on creating(or learning to create) a unique, innovative app rather than just another, essentially pointless, reinvention of the wheel.
[Version 0.5]



xypher reviewed on 05 Nov 2007
Great browser. Just what I need since I don't have much Ram. And very fast and stable too. Thanks!
[Version 0.2]

1 Reply

xiotios software (developer) replied on 05 Nov 2007
Thanks, I'm glad you like it... Also, in the first 0.2 I uploaded the forward button was sightly smaller than the back button... I fixed that, so you can download a fixed one if you want.

Thank you for the review!

hihagen commented on 05 Nov 2007
If this was made with Xcode then you have seen that there are a browser project in the samples folder. The size of you interface is less then 100k. This is not the full size of the application source. If you add the webkit framwork it will add an additional 4700 k to the size. This app can very easily be made by working with bindings in Xcodes IB (interface builder). So, add features of you own. Learn C (or an other language) and release it again. We are looking forward to 0.2 ... it should include some great features. (I was very trilled about a browser i made the first time I used Xcode - some years ago, as well) Good luck!
[Version 0.1b]

1 Reply

xiotios software (developer) replied on 05 Nov 2007
I actually did use C to make this, and I had no idea about that browser... Anyways, yes I did use Obective-C and this browser actually has the ability for javascript windows, new windows, preferences, etc. because it is a Cocoa document based app, not a no-code Cocoa app that uses the cocoa bindings in Interface Builder. (I do actually know C)

Thanks for the comments!

Gordon142 commented on 04 Nov 2007
Please stop doing this. A webbrowser is one of the most difficult applications to do well. People need to stop just releasing the first webkit front-end they create while playing in Xcode. You can make a webkit webbrowser without even entering a line of your own code.

Before even thinking about releasing a webbrowser, you need to consider the following:

1. What important features or user experience am I going to introduce that is not found in any existing browser available today?

2. Do I have the experience and skills to effectively undertake this very extensive task?

There are useful applications that can be created without years of programming experience (How about making a preference pane to manage Input Managers?), but browsers are not one of them.
[Version 0.1b]

8 Replies

xiotios software (developer) replied on 04 Nov 2007
Why is this web browser not useful? It is much lighter than either safari or firefox, and therefor it is faster. I do know Objective C. You are right, a web browser is one of the hardest things to do right. I was not aiming for innovation, but rather for extremely fast web browsing that does not suck on your computers ram or performance.

Peter da Silva replied on 07 Nov 2007
Is it in fact lighter than Safari?

99% of the code is the same code as Safari. Safari and all other webkit browsers are just shells around webkit... if your shell is 10% the size of Safari's shell that will still leave your program 99.1% the size of Safari. The remaining 0.9% isn't going to make any difference.
xiotios software (developer) replied on 07 Nov 2007
Um, 55 megabytes is a lot more than 500 kb. My web browser is lighter, meaning that it does not hog ram or processing power.

Peter da Silva replied on 07 Nov 2007
Your browser is NOT "500kB".

Safari's 55 MB includes Webkit. Your browser is based on Webkit. Without most of those 55 MB your browser isn't a browser at all.
xiotios software (developer) replied on 07 Nov 2007
Fine, 496 kb...

It is in fact a web browser. The only things that it is missing are bookmarks and tabs.

Peter da Silva replied on 07 Nov 2007
Your browser is not "496 kB" either.

Your browser is 50+ MB, just like Safari, because all it does is piggyback on Safari. Without Safari it's not a web browser, it's an error message.
xiotios software (developer) replied on 07 Nov 2007
Um... No, my browser is still 496 kB. Download it and see.

It is a standalone webkit browser, not a safari piggy back...

Peter da Silva replied on 07 Nov 2007
You're missing the point, son.

Most of that 55 megabytes you see in Safari IS WEBKIT.

When you install or upgrade Safari, most of what that does is install or upgrade webkit. You can't count those 50+ megabytes of webkit as part of Safari and refuse to count them in your own package.
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Version Downloads:2,361
Type:Internet : Browsers
Date:06 Feb 2008
Platform:PPC 32 / Intel 32 / OS X
Overall (Version 1.x):
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Lightbrowser is a light Web browser. If you find any bugs or have recommendations, email me at

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