The Explorer: Open For Business: BT2K's Final Version - InformationWeek

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3/10/2004
11:04 AM
Fred Langa
Fred Langa
Commentary
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The Explorer: Open For Business: BT2K's Final Version

Here's a surprise: All Web browsers can go bad over time... and many do. No matter how perfect your original setup is, the more you use your browser, the more likely it is you'll end up with add-ons and plug-ins that will change the way it works; the more likely you'll alter -- or let a Web site alter -- some of your browser's internal components; the more likely that something, somewhere on the Web or inside your own system will introduce a serious problem into your once-pristine setup.

Worse, many online services and ISPs give away custom versions of browsers that may be heavily modified or that may include outdated components. The AOL version of Internet Explorer is perhaps the most glaring example of this. Even with a brand-new setup, you may have a browser that's outmoded or altered in some harmful way.

The bottom line is that no matter how good your browser seems at the outset, sooner or later it'll probably develop trouble. And because browsing is so central to the way we use our PCs these days, a bad browser can even cause trouble when you're not connected to the Net.

That's where BrowserTune comes in. BrowserTune2000 is a comprehensive series of Web pages that safely and non-invasively tests one or more essential real-life functions and features of your browser.

In all, BT2K thoroughly and safely tests close to 300 separate browser features and functions from the bedrock basics up to Dynamic HTML, Cascading Style Sheets, multimedia, streaming audio and video, Java, ActiveX/OCX, scripting, push "channels," applications- and desktop-integration, virus protection, data binding, security and more. (Whew!) BT2K also includes all the tests that were in all previous versions of BrowserTune, but they've all been recoded and refreshed for better performance with today's newest browsers.

And unlike earlier versions, BT2K now automates much of the testing so you can breeze through the tests at top speed and with maximum accuracy. You can complete a reasonably thorough test in just five or 10 minutes!

BT2K's automation is highly complex; as a result, BT2K was in "beta" (prototype) for a long time while we perfected its operation. But now -- finally! -- BT2K is highly polished, fully debugged, and ready for prime time:

BrowserTune 2000 is divided into three parts, each with a set of increasingly complex tests: The three levels of testing build on each other. You can run just Level One, or just Levels One and Two, or (best of all) Levels One, Two, and Three.

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