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A lightweight web browser is a "web browser that sacrifices some of the features of a mainstream web browser in order to reduce the consumption of "system resources, and especially to minimize the "memory footprint.[1][2][3]

The tables below compare lightweight web browsers. Several of them use a common "layout engine, but each has a unique combination of features and a potential niche. The minimal "user interface in "surf, for example, does not have "tabs,[4] whereas "xombrero can be driven with "vi-like keyboard commands.[5]

Four of the browsers compared—"Lynx, "w3m, "Links, and "ELinks—are designed for "text mode, and can function in a "terminal emulator. Links 2 has both a "text-based user interface and a "graphical user interface. w3m is, in addition to being a web browser, also a "terminal pager.[6]

Contents

Overview[edit]

beta 12[20]

Browser "Developers Development status "Engine "Programming languages "Software license Latest stable release
"Arora Benjamin C. Meyer et al.[7] Discontinued "QtWebKit[8] "C++ "GPL 0.11.0[9] (27 September 2010; 7 years ago (2010-09-27)) [±]
"Dillo Jorge Arellano Cid et al. Active Dillo "C, "C++ "GPLv3 3.0.5[10] (30 June 2015; 2 years ago (2015-06-30)) [±]
"ELinks Petr Baudiš, Jonas Fonseca, et al. Active Links "C, "C++ "GPLv2 0.11.7[11] (22 August 2009; 8 years ago (2009-08-22)) [±]
"K-Meleon Christophe Thibault et al. Active "Gecko "C++ "GPL 75.1 (September 19, 2015; 2 years ago (2015-09-19)[12]) [±]
"Links Mikuláš Patočka, Twibright Labs, et al. Active Links "C "GPLv2+ 2.14[13] (3 November 2016; 15 months ago (2016-11-03)) [±]
"Lynx Lou Montulli, "Thomas Dickey, et al. Active "libwww derivative "C ("ISO C) "GPLv2 2.8.8rel.2[14][15] (9 March 2014; 3 years ago (2014-03-09)) [±]
"Midori Christian Dywan et al. Active "WebKitGTK+ "Vala, "C "LGPL v2.1+ None [±]
"NetSurf John-Mark Bell, Michael Drake, et al.[16] Active NetSurf "C ("ANSI C) "GPLv2 3.7[17] (16 October 2017; 4 months ago (2017-10-16)) [±]
"Otter Browser Michał Dutkiewicz[18] Active "QtWebKit / "QtWebEngine "C++ "GPL 0.9.95-RC5 (4 February 2018; 13 days ago (2018-02-04)[19]) [±]
"QtWeb LogicWare; LSoft Technologies[21] Unmaintained "QtWebKit "C++ "GPL 3.8.5[22] (9 September 2013; 4 years ago (2013-09-09)) [±]
"QupZilla David Rosca Active "QtWebKit "C++ "GPLv3 2.2.5 (28 January 2018; 20 days ago (2018-01-28)[23]) [±]
"qutebrowser Florian Bruhin et al. Active [24] "QtWebKit / "QtWebEngine[25] "Python3 "GPLv3 ?
"rekonq Andrea Diamantini et al. Unmaintained "QtWebKit[8] "C++ "GPLv3 2.4.2[26][27] (12 January 2014; 4 years ago (2014-01-12)) [±]
"surf Christoph Lohmann et al. Active "WebKitGTK+ "C "MIT License 2.0 (28 March 2017; 10 months ago (2017-03-28)[28]) [±]
"uzbl Dieter Plaetinck et al. Active "WebKitGTK+ "C, "Python "GPLv3 0.9.1 (October 27, 2016; 15 months ago (2016-10-27)[29]) [±]
"w3m Akinori Ito et al. Unmaintained w3m "C "MIT License 0.5.3[30] (15 January 2011; 7 years ago (2011-01-15)) [±]
"WebPositive Andrea Anzani, Ryan Leavengood, et al. Active "HaikuWebkit "C++ "MIT License 1.1-alpha["citation needed] (15 November 2013; 4 years ago (2013-11-15)) [±]
"xombrero Marco Peerboom et al. Discontinued "WebKitGTK+ "C, "JavaScript "ISC license 1.6.4[31] (17 February 2015; 3 years ago (2015-02-17)) [±]

Operating system support[edit]

Browser "BSD "Haiku "Linux "macOS "OpenIndiana "OS/2 "QNX "RISC OS "Windows
"Arora Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes[32] Yes No No Yes
"Dillo Yes No Yes Yes Yes[33] No No Yes[33] "Cygwin[33][34]
"ELinks Yes[35] ? Yes[35] Yes[35] Yes[35] Yes[35] No[35] Dropped[35] ?
"K-Meleon "Wine No "Wine[36] "Wine No No No No Yes
"Links Unofficial No Yes Unofficial ? Yes No No Yes
"Lynx Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes[37][38] Yes
"Midori Yes No Yes No Unofficial[i] No No No Yes
"NetSurf Yes[39] Yes[ii] Yes[39] Yes[39] Yes[39] No ? Yes[41] Yes
"Otter Browser Yes[42] Unofficial[43] Yes[42] Yes[42] No No No No Yes
"QtWeb Yes Unofficial[44] Yes Yes Unofficial[iii] No No No Yes
"QupZilla Yes[45] Yes[45] Yes[45] Yes[45] No Yes[45] No No Yes[45]
"rekonq Yes No Yes No Unofficial[iii] No No No Inactive[iv]
"surf Yes No Yes ? ? ? ? No No
"w3m Unofficial Unofficial Unofficial Unofficial Unofficial Inactive No No "Cygwin
"WebPositive No Yes No No No No No No No
"xombrero Yes No Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes
Notes
  1. ^ Must be built from "source code with a "Vala "compiler.[32]
  2. ^ A binary for NetSurf v2.0 for Haiku is available. For v2.1 and higher, one must build it from source.[40]
  3. ^ a b Must be built from source code; requires a compatible version of "Qt.
  4. ^ rekonq v1.1 for Windows was published in September 2012. As of June 2014, it is the only published version for Windows.[46]

Features[edit]

Test scores reflect the version of the browser engine in use. Generally, a lower score indicates an older version of the browser engine.

Image formats Advanced Test scores Plug-in "APIs
Browser "GIF, "JPEG, "PNG "WebP "JavaScript "Frames "Acid3 "HTML5test "Netscape "Pepper
"Arora Yes No Yes Yes ""100/100[i] 359/550[47] No[ii] No
"Dillo Yes No No Partial N/A[iii] N/A[iii] No No
"ELinks No No Partial[iv] Partial N/A[iii] N/A[iii] No No
"K-Meleon Yes No Yes Yes ""100/100[i] 416/555[49] Partial[50] No
"Links Yes[v] No Partial Partial N/A[iii] N/A[iii] No No
"Lynx No No No Partial N/A[iii] N/A[iii] No No
"Midori Yes Yes[vi] Yes Yes ""100/100 325/555[52] Yes Yes
"NetSurf Yes[53] Yes No Yes N/A[iii] N/A[iii] No[54] No
"Otter Browser Yes Yes Yes Yes ""100/100 370/550[55] Yes No
"QtWeb Yes No Yes Yes ""100/100[i][vii] 234/550[56] No[ii] No
"QupZilla Yes Yes Yes Yes ""100/100[i] 497/550[57] Partial Partial
"qutebrowser Yes Yes Yes Yes 99/100 497/550 No No
"rekonq Yes No Yes Yes ""100/100[i] 385/555[58] No[ii] Partial[59]
"surf Yes Yes[vi] Yes Yes ""100/100[i] 385/500[60] Yes ?
"w3m Yes[61] No Partial Yes N/A[iii] N/A[iii] No No
"WebPositive Yes No Yes Yes ""96/100[i] 253/500[62] No No
"xombrero Yes Yes[vi] Yes Yes ""100/100 385/500[63] Yes ?
Notes
  1. ^ a b c d e f g Some tests take too much time to complete.
  2. ^ a b c NPAPI is ported to QtWebKit, but is not implemented in this browser.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l The test requires JavaScript, which is not sufficiently supported by this browser.
  4. ^ ELinks implements Mozilla's "SpiderMonkey JavaScript engine.[48]
  5. ^ Only Links 2 supports graphics.
  6. ^ a b c WebP is supported via the "WebKitGTK+ browser engine.[51]
  7. ^ The final state does not match the reference rendering.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Arora, Himanshu (6 November 2013). "5 lesser-known browsers: Free, lightweight and low-maintenance". "Computerworld. International Data Group. Retrieved 18 June 2014. 
  2. ^ Klimkiewicz, Kamil (18 January 2003). "Lightweight Web Browsers". "Freecode. Dice Holdings. Retrieved 18 June 2014. 
  3. ^ Arimbra, Krishnan (16 July 2013). "Memory usage of the browsers – Lightest browser". Geekiest.Net. Retrieved 18 June 2014. 
  4. ^ "surf". Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  5. ^ Peereboom, Marco; Hill, David; et al. (1 March 2012). "xombrero wiki § Quick-Start Tutorial". Conformal Systems. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  6. ^ Ito, Akinori. "w3m". w3m.sourceforge.net. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  7. ^ Meyer, Benjamin (2 October 2009). "Arora 0.10.0!". Arora Development. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  8. ^ a b Poulain, Benjamin; et al. (10 May 2010). "Applications Using QtWebKit". Qt Wiki. Qt Project Hosting. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  9. ^ Meyer, Benjamin (27 September 2010). "Arora 0.11.0!". Arora Development. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  10. ^ Arellano Cid, Jorge (2015). "ChangeLog". www.dillo.org. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  11. ^ "ELinks - Full-Featured Text WWW Browser". elinks.or.cz. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  12. ^ "News". kmeleon.sourceforge.net. September 19, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015. 
  13. ^ "ChangeLog". links.twibright.com. Retrieved 20 February 2017. 
  14. ^ "Dickey, Thomas E. (14 February 2014). "Stable release". Lynx official website. Retrieved 12 April 2017. 
  15. ^ "Dickey, Thomas E. (9 March 2014). "Changes since Lynx 2.8 release". Lynx official website. Retrieved 12 April 2017. 
  16. ^ "The NetSurf Developers". netsurf-browser.org. Retrieved 26 August 2014. 
  17. ^ "News". netsurf-browser.org. Retrieved 29 Nov 2016. 
  18. ^ "Otter Browser". otter-browser.org. Retrieved 11 April 2017. 
  19. ^ https://sourceforge.net/projects/otter-browser/files/
  20. ^ "Otter Browser - Browse Files at SourceForge.net". sourceforge.net. Retrieved 2017-04-11. 
  21. ^ "About QtWeb". QtWeb.NET. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  22. ^ "Qt Web Browser". QtWeb.NET. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  23. ^ Rosca, David (28 January 2018). "QupZilla 2.2.5 released!". QupZilla Blog. 
  24. ^ https://github.com/qutebrowser/qutebrowser
  25. ^ https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Qutebrowser#Use_experimental_webengine_backend
  26. ^ "rekonq: Files". "SourceForge. 12 January 2014. Retrieved 30 March 2014. 
  27. ^ Diamantini, Andrea (12 January 2014). "rekonq 2.4.2". adjam.weblog(). Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  28. ^ "Index of /surf/". suckless.org. 28 March 2017. Retrieved 18 August 2017. 
  29. ^ "uzbl release page". 27 October 2016. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  30. ^ "w3m: Files". "SourceForge. 15 January 2011. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  31. ^ "xombrero Git Repository". "GitHub. Retrieved 7 December 2016. 
  32. ^ a b "Spec Files Extra Repository". OpenIndiana Wiki. 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  33. ^ a b c "Dillo Web Browser Compatibility". Dillo.org. Retrieved 7 July 2014. 
  34. ^ Vibber, Kelson (28 April 2005). "Installing Dillo on Cygwin". Hyperborea. Retrieved 7 July 2014. 
  35. ^ "UKmeleon: Unofficial K-Meleon Distributions". kmeleonbrowser.org. 26 March 2011. Retrieved 2017-02-14. 
  36. ^ "Nettle". nettle.sourceforge.net. Retrieved 26 August 2014. 
  37. ^ "New Telnet Client and Web Browser for RISC OS". My RISC OS. 2 September 2001. Retrieved 26 August 2014. 
  38. ^ a b c d "GTK NetSurf Downloads". netsurf-browser.org. Retrieved 14 August 2014. 
  39. ^ "Haiku and BeOS NetSurf Downloads". netsurf-browser.org. 24 April 2009. Archived from the original on 12 January 2011. Retrieved 14 August 2014. 
  40. ^ "RISC OS NetSurf Downloads". netsurf-browser.org. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  41. ^ a b c "OtterBrowser/otter-browser". GitHub. Retrieved 2017-04-11. 
  42. ^ "Otter browser: new recipe by miqlas · Pull Request #1006 · haikuports/haikuports". GitHub. Retrieved 2017-04-11. 
  43. ^ "QtWeb - Web Browser". Haikuware. 31 May 2013. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  44. ^ a b c d e f "Qupzilla - Lightweight multiplatform browser: Download". Qupzilla.com. Retrieved 28 August 2014. 
  45. ^ Papp, Laszlo (24 September 2012). "Randa: Rekonq installer for Windows". KDE (Laszlo Papp's blog). Retrieved 21 June 2014. 
  46. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/537.21 (KHTML, like Gecko) Arora/0.11.0 Safari/537.21". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  47. ^ Inge Bolso, Erik (8 March 2005). "2005 Text Mode Browser Roundup". "Linux Journal. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  48. ^ https://html5test.com/s/553a452871cce107.html
  49. ^ "ThirdPartyPlugins". kmeleonbrowser.org. Retrieved 28 July 2014. 
  50. ^ Jáquez, Víctor (31 December 2013). "Boosting WebKitGTK+ compilation for armhf with icecream". Herostratus’ legacy. "Igalia. Retrieved 29 July 2014. 
  51. ^ "Midori (web browser)#HTML5 score
  52. ^ Auza, Jun (27 June 2009). "5 Free and Open Source Web Browsers That You May Have Never Heard Of". TechSource. Retrieved 26 June 2014. 
  53. ^ "0001896: NPAPI plugin support". NetSurf Bug Report System. 22 October 2010. Retrieved 14 August 2014. 
  54. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/602.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Otter/0.9.91". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 11 April 2017. 
  55. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux; en-GB) AppleWebKit/534.34 (KHTML, like Gecko) QtWeb Internet Browser/3.8.5". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  56. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) QupZilla/2.1.99 Safari/537.36". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 21 February 2017. 
  57. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/537.21 (KHTML, like Gecko) rekonq/2.4.2 Safari/537.21". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  58. ^ Howell, Dean (22 May 2013). "ReKonq Gaining Chrome Extension Support, Still Sponsored By Blue Systems". The Powerbase. Retrieved 28 July 2014. 
  59. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Unix; en-US) AppleWebKit/537.15 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/24.0.1295.0 Safari/537.15 Surf/0.6". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  60. ^ Hoffman, Chris (23 January 2012). "How to Browse From the Linux Terminal With W3M". How-To Geek. How-To Geek, LLC. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  61. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; U; Haiku x86; en-US) AppleWebKit/536.10 (KHTML, like Gecko) Haiku/R1 WebPositive/1.1 Safari/536.10". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 28 July 2014. 
  62. ^ "HTML5test results for: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/538.15 (KHTML, like Gecko) Safari/538.15 Version/6.0". HTML5test.com. Retrieved 28 July 2014. 

Further reading[edit]

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